Frances Brody, author of the Kate Shackleton mysteries, has invited me to take part in a blog entitled THE NEXT BIG THING – a series of questions and answers about what is happening in my writing life.

What is the working title of your book?

Cafe Assassin.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

Cafe Assassin was a members’ only club I was trying to set up in the early 90s with a friend. It was themed around Le Club de Hachichin (a group of artists and writers in nineteenth century Paris). We found some premises on Oldham Street in Manchester but the business venture never really got off the ground. This was for two reasons: 1. We were threatened by some gangsters that we would have to pay weekly tax of £800, which seemed a lot at the time, though was probably the going rate. 2. My friend went to prison.

What genre does your book fall under?

Psychological thriller/literary fiction

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

Christopher Eccleston would do a good job of the protagonist, but the ideal actor would be Nick Stanley.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

A man comes out of prison after 22 years for a murder he says he did not commit to systematically take everything off the person he blames for putting him in there in the first place.

Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?

Neither. It will be published by the brilliant Bluemoose Books late next year.

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Six months. The first draft is just the beginning. The real writing is in the re-writing.

What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?

We Need To Talk About Kevin is nothing like it but closer than anything else I can think of.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

A friend who I no longer see, but whose friendship I still mourn every day.

What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

The protagonist is a bitter, hate-filled psychotic who has few redeeming features.

Michael Stewart


About headspam

I'm a writer from Salford, now based in Bradford. I've written for theatre, radio and TV. And the following books: King Crow (novel: Bluemoose Books); Couples (poetry: Valley Press); Cafe Assassin (novel: Bluemoose Books); Mr Jolly (short stories: Valley Press) Author page:
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