How excited am I at the lovely Mark Edwards Author of The Magpies has dropped my blog to take part in my Q&A interview…...so without further ado I would like to welcome the one and only Mark Edwards
Hello mark thank you so much for joining me today
Hello and thank you for inviting me
Can you tell us a little about yourself and background?
I’m 45 (I know, it’s hard to believe) and grew up in Hastings but now live in Wolverhampton. I’m married with four children, one of whom lives in Australia (long story). I spent my twenties doing some terrible jobs, answering the phones at the Child Support Energy and then replying to complaints at a rail company. Then I got into marketing and, apart from a year teaching English in Tokyo, I worked in online marketing for just over ten years before finally becoming a full-time writer in 2013.
When did you know that you wanted to become a writer? and how did you go about it?
I started by writing comics when I was at primary school - silly cartoon strips about monsters and robots and evil pigs. Then, when I was a teenager, I got into Stephen King and James Herbert and wrote a novel when I was sixteen. It was truly awful. I wrote another when I graduated from university and so began a long obsession with trying to get published. After years of trying and collecting many rejection slips, I appeared on a TV documentary about aspiring writers. This led to me meeting Louise Voss and we started writing together in 2002. But we still couldn’t get a book deal.
I gave up for a few years, sick of all the rejection and wasted effort, and it wasn’t until 2011 when I got a Kindle that it all started up again. Louise and I self-published two of our books, got to No.1 and 2 on Amazon, got a deal with HarperCollins and, despite a few ups and downs over the last few years, I am now the author of ten published books.
Can you tell us what genre your books are and the audience you write for?
My solo books are all psychological thrillers, though they have shades of horror. All of these books take an ordinary situation and make it scary. For example, I’ve written about neighbours from hell, a relationship from hell, the holiday from hell, colleagues from hell… That’s my formula! But I am running out of ‘from hell’ situations so am going to need to move on soon...
What is your writing process? and how long does it take?
I pretty much make it up as I go along, finding the story as I go. Someone said it’s a bit like being a sculptor - you start with a large chunk of rock and chip away at it, the story slowly taking shape. Sometimes you make a mistake; sometimes it takes a lot of trial and error to find the story. But this is how it works for me. Each book takes about ten months.
Are your characters based on anyone you know or are they just fictional?
I have never deliberately put someone I know in a novel - they are all amalgams of lots of people I’ve met. My wife says my main male characters are all like me. Sexy geeks. Except she didn’t say sexy, just geeks...
Have you wrote about a personal experience in your novels?
Most of them come from a true experience - for example, The Magpies was based on some awful neighbours I had, and I was robbed on a sleeper train just like the characters in Follow You Home. Also, Because She Loves Me took two nightmare experiences - a jealous ex girlfriend and eye surgery that I had to undergo a few years ago, and blended them into a single terrifying ride.
What research do you do?
As little as I can get away with! I mostly use Google. If I need specific information I will approach an expert. Most people are very happy to help. Wolverhampton University has a crime suite, where cops learn about forensic analysis, and I’ve visited it. Fascinating stuff.
Who would you like to co-write with and why?
I have co-written six books with Louise Voss. I wouldn’t want to co-write with anyone else.
What's your favorite book?
The Secret History by Donna Tartt
What's your favorite food?
Haagen-Dazs pralines and cream ice cream. Heavenly.
What's your favorite film?
The Blair Witch Project. Or possibly Grease.
What's your favorite song?
Just Like Heaven by The Cure
How can readers find out more information about yourself and your books?
Thank you Mark for taking time out of your busy day and good luck with your next book
Thank you shell I have enjoyed it