So, Hope To Die has been on my TBR and I am working my way to it, but I didn’t reach it in time for publication. But I do get to have David Jackson answer some questions for you guys today! 🙂
About the book:
On a bitterly cold winter’s night, Liverpool is left stunned by a brutal murder in the grounds of the city’s Anglican Cathedral. A killer is on the loose, driven by a chilling rage.
Put on the case, DS Nathan Cody is quickly stumped. Wherever he digs, the victim seems to be almost angelic – no-one has a bad word to say, let alone a motive for such a violent murder.
And Cody has other things on his mind too. The ghosts of his past are coming ever closer, and – still bearing the physical and mental scars – it’s all he can do to hold onto his sanity.
And then the killer strikes again . . .
Buy the book:
Q&A with David Jackson:
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I think I have a split personality, and both halves of me may sound a little unsettling. By day I play the mad scientist, where I breed, evolve and mutate computer programs. By night I play God, populating fantasy worlds with people who are forced to do my bidding (mwahahaa!)
How did you get into writing? Is it something you’ve always wanted to do?
No, it never crossed my mind to be a writer until a few years ago. I’ve always loved reading, though, and writers’ lives fascinate me. One day, feeling bored, I thought I’d give it a whirl. I began with short stories, and that’s when the bug took hold and refused to let go.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Everywhere and everyone. There are certain writers I admire, and they influence my style, but the inspiration for stories is all around. I think it’s a question of looking at the world in a certain distorted way. You take life as it is, and then you knead it and twist it and stretch it until it becomes the stuff of a story.
How would you describe your writing to anyone who hasn’t read your books?
Fast paced, but with the focus on character. I do my utmost to make my characters feel real to the reader, and that goes for minor characters too. I have also been told that my writing is very cinematic and visual. (That’s a hint to any TV companies reading this).
Do you think social media helps in regard to promotion and drumming up publicity for a new book?
Yes, I think it can. There is only so much a lone author can do, but the right push from a publisher can really help to spread the word. Especially important these days are the book bloggers and reviewers, whose enthusiasm can create quite a buzz.
What’s your most favourite thing about being an author?
I think it has to be the enthusiasm of fans. There aren’t many things we do in life that stirs up fascination in others, but being an author is one of them. There is nothing nicer than receiving an email or a comment from someone who has read and loved one of my books.
What’s your least favourite thing about being an author?
Where do you see your writing career 5 years from now?
I try not to have unrealistic expectations. I don’t expect to be rich or famous, but I’d like to see a steady progression. I’ll be more than happy if people are still enjoying my books and I still enjoy writing them.
What’s next for you?
You’re the first to ask, so you get the scoop! I’ve just signed a contract with Bonnier to produce two more Cody books. ‘Hope to Die’ is only just coming out, but I’m already really excited about book 3 (more to the point, so is Bonnier!)
*EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEK!!!!!!!* I am so excited!!!!
I often wonder are authors voracious readers. Do you read much, and if so, what kind of books do you enjoy?
I don’t think you can be a half-decent writer unless you read a lot. I read all kinds of things, fact and fiction. To give you an idea, I’m currently reading ‘Behind Her Eyes, by Sarah Pinborough, but I’ve also recently read a history of World War II, a biography, a book on Shakespeare, and a James Bond novel.
Can you tell me your all time favourite book, or if you have to, your top 5?
I think it would have to be ‘Cop Hater’ by Ed McBain. McBain’s 87th Precinct novels were a huge influence on me, and the whole series occupies pride of place on my shelves. ‘Cop Hater’ is not the best in the series, but it was the first, and so deserves singling out for that reason.
Have there been any books you’ve read that you wish you had written?
There are so many, but perhaps ‘The Big Sleep’ by Raymond Chandler. The writing is superb, of course, but what I really love about the Marlowe books is the humour, which can be a tricky thing to pull off. A wonderful example is at the start of the novel, where Carmen says to Marlowe, ‘Tall, aren’t you?’ and he replies, ‘I didn’t mean to be.’
When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?
As I mentioned above, I have a day job, so with that and the writing, very little of my time is spare. What there is of it, I devote to my family.
Have you any hobbies that aren’t book-related?
I love a good walk, a good meal, and a good movie. A perfect day for me is one that contains all three.
What’s your favourite holiday destination?
Again, so many, for very different reasons. I think I’d have to plump for Canada, which seems to have everything and does it in a civilized way.
Fish, particularly shellfish. I make a mean prawn curry.
A nice silky-smooth pint of bitter.
Big thanks to Dave for answering my questions today. It’s always great having you on the blog!