Writer’s choice: Clare Dudman

Link: normblog: Writer’s choice 91: Clare Dudman.

There is a lovely piece on the normblog this week by Clare Dudman, who discusses Wild Boy by Jill Dawson.

"Victor has been brought up by wolves. There are local stories of his being suckled by them, of his living with them and almost becoming one of them – and the third-person narrative tells this story with a delicate touch. This precarious existence is brought to an end when he is spied in a village, captured and sent to the institute for the deaf in Paris. Here he encounters the ambitious Dr Itard who views the child as an ‘extraordinary opportunity that has walked out of the forest and into my life’. This is where the story starts. Dr Itard is determined to make his name by teaching Victor to talk."

Read Clare’s article, and short autobiography, at the normblog link above.

Stephen White’s Dry Ice

Link: An Interview With Stephen White Author of DRY ICE.

Stephen White has a new Alan Gregory novel coming out. Furthermore, the author has a beard. See link for interview in the California Literary Review (via Sarah Weinman), complete with photo of author, which clearly is one for my beard collection on Flickr (which doesn’t actually exist, but has lurked in my mind for some months and so far consists of Dave Lull, Frank Wilson, Viggo Mortensen, Ken Sampson (have not seen him for years but he used to do the typesetting for Nature’s news and "front half"),  and a picture of George Clooney sent to me by Jenny Davidson — as well as hon. mem. Walter Raleigh, whose beard is not quite right but near enough).

Enough of this frivolity. I am looking forward to reading Stephen White’s next book. I’ve read the entire Alan Gregory series and can highly recommend them. They are rather like Jonathan Kellerman, focusing on psychology, family, cycling and crime. A perfect combination?

For a flavour of the Alan Gregory books, here is an extract from the interview:

DRY ICE deals with the damaging effects that secrets can have on an individual. Is that a recurring theme in your books? Are there particular aspects of human behavior that fascinate you and that you continually explore in your novels? 

I try to avoid recurring themes as much as I can. I have no doubt that certain ideas do show up with some regularity because so many characters recur, but I try—for selfish reasons—to focus each book on a fresh idea or dilemma. I am constantly grateful for the opportunity I’ve had to write about things that fascinate me. I’ve written books, for example, about the nature of a good death, the cult of celebrity, the concept of retribution, the Witness Protection Program, the political aspirations of the LDS church, fascination with high-profile crimes, and the echoes of school violence. I live with the process of writing each book for almost a year and each time I consider a new project I try to select a topic that feels interesting enough to keep my attention for the duration.

John Baker on the radio

Link: World Book Day in Harrogate – John Baker’s Blog.

Here’s the best thing I’ve read about World Book Day, which happens this Thursday (1 March). John Baker is in Harrogate and being interviewed on Radio York. "10.30am to 11.30am. You can listen live on the Radio York site or tune in to: 103.7FM, 104.3FM or 95.5FM."

John writes excellent crime fiction books and has a blog which I like a lot — it is most definitely not an "author marketing his book" blog whose main aim is to sell his books, but is a thinking, personal and poetic blog, complete with various samples of John’s writing and his advice to other writers. I can’t think of a blogger/published author who gets both activities as spot-on as John. Any thoughts?