Jake Arnott

Mr Gay’s London Is Back In ‘The Fatal Tree’

Hogarth

Jake Arnott’s ‘The Fatal Tree’ is a ripping new 18th century yarn of London lowlife on the make and take, trying to stay one step ahead of the Fatal Tree itself (the gallows of Tyburn). It uses the story of  Jack Sheppard and more importantly the lesser-known Edgworth Bess, his woman, who led a ‘wicked […]

Why There Are Fewer Original Novels…

The-Outsiders-2

Today’s column is a coalescence of several others I’ve been writing and thinking about for a while. It came to a head when I gave a speech at the Southbank Literary Festival about outsider status. I’d written before on the subject, but the speech introduced a number of outsiders from different centuries. The ultimates are […]

What Does A Publishing PR Do?

Patsy-Stone

Publishing PRs can be a bit of a punchline; there are plenty of jokes about posh girls called Daisy or Emma looking to fill the time between finishing school and marriage to a trustafarian, but in reality a good PR is worth her weight in diamonds (they’re usually women, although I know a few male […]

The Next Big Thing

It’s spreading like a virus, or possible a minor rash, but I’ve foolishly agreed to encourage an author round-robin that goes like this… The Next Big Thing works by getting an author to answer these ten questions on his blog. He then tags five authors to do so the week after. Which presumes the author […]

The Flaws That Hold Us Back

Every writer, no matter how brilliant she or he is, eventually becomes aware of the flaws in their work. They’re usually things we can’t do much about because they stem from our personalities, and going against the grain is very difficult. JG Ballard and Arthur C Clarke have often been criticised for not writing more […]

Writers Who Look Like Their Books

In these days of celebrity tell-all, it seems that writers are expected to resemble their creations. This has always escaped me, for the simple reason that I don’t. When I write dark fiction, people come up to me and say ‘You don’t look anything like I imagined. I thought you’d be really sinister.’ While writing […]