Wednesday 21 April 2010

Garry Kilworth - An Interview

Garry Kilworth, born in York, raised in Aden. Next year he will be standing on top of seven decades and looking down with wry face. A backpacking traveller to far flung regions. Writes in just about every genre but thrillers, which he would like to write but finds the plotting too complex for his style of work and for the size of his brain.

Q1. What are you writing at the minute?

The second historical war novel in a series involving the beginnings of the military police. Ensign Early is made Provost-Marshal during the Anglo-Zulu wars of 1879 and annoys everyone by trying to solve murders while the fighting is in progress.

Q2. Can you give us an idea of Garry Kilworth’s typical up-to-the-armpits-in-ideas-and-time writing day?

I try to write 2000 words a day, but I don’t work every day. In fact, as with most full-time writers, other more mundane things seem to demand far more attention than the latest story or novel. Sometimes I wonder how the damn things ever get written.

Q3. What do you do when you’re not writing?

I travel. I play golf, tennis and badminton. I do country walks with my wife Annette. I cycle with her. I sit and stare. I visit my five grandchildren. I do the garden. I do the housework. I fix things that are broken. I watch TV. I sleep, perchance to dream.

Q4. Any advice for a greenhorn trying to break into the crime (or science) fiction scene?

There’s only one way to become a published writer, and that’s to enjoy writing for its own sake.

Q5. Which crime writers have impressed you this year?

This year? Haven’t read a crime book this year, but normally Scott Turow, Ed McBain, others - I know, I’m an old-fashioned reader.

Q6. What are you reading right now?

‘Redcoats and Rebels’ by Christopher Hibbert.

Q7. Plans for the future?

More short stories, which are my forte. I love them like I love my own children.

Q8. With regards to your writing career to date, would you do anything differently?

I sometimes wonder if I was not such a gadfly with my subjects and genres - eg writing different books each time - whether I would have been more successful financially. But then, would I have had as much satisfaction and fun? Nah, I would probably do the same think all over again. I’m a philanderer when it comes to writing.

Q9. Do you fancy sharing your worst writing experience?

Writing my ‘The Navigator Kings’ trilogy after intensive research, receiving the best reviews I’ve ever had, feeling that the trilogy was probably the best set of novels that I’d ever written, to have it bomb on the market. Nobody bought it. Fantasy readers thought it wasn’t fantasy and straight readers thought it was fantasy.

Q10. Anything you want to say that I haven’t asked you about?

Am I rich and famous after 35 years of being published? I wish. Actually, I don’t really want to be as famous as JKR, nor as rich as Terry Pratchet - both would ruin the essential me - but I would like more recognition than I’ve had, and I would like to be comfortable enough not to worry as I cruise into old age.

Thank you, Garry Kilworth!


Michael Stone said...

It really bums me to read the Navigator Kings trilogy didn't do well commercially. They're absolutely fabulous books. But then Garry's a fabulous writer. :)

Gerard Brennan said...

It's the kind of story you hear all to often in the writing industry, isn't it?

A real shame.

Still, great to have a writer of his fabulousness in the collection.