Stepping into my spotlight today is author Tom Binnie whose books are both Edinburgh based. Thanks for joining me today Tom. First of all, would you tell my blog readers a little about yourself?
My name’s Tom Binnie. I’m a young retired chap residing in Edinburgh & Cambridgeshire. Writing is a change in profession for me. I have always loved reading and watching films. I’ve studied a little philosophy and am hugely interested in people, who they are and what drives them forward or indeed hinders their development. (Not that I have any answers!)
What inspired you to start writing?
Recently two things; a close friend who casually said to me, ‘I love listening to your stories,’ and a writer, Gavin Inglis at Edinburgh University, who taught me and gave me the confidence to take writing seriously. I wrote plays for friends when I was eleven and then stopped – I regret that now.
Tell me about your journey to publication
Arg! is the short answer. A steep and wide learning curve. I had lots of advice from others who have travelled the route. A younger writer may have the patience to search for an agent and/or a publishing house to respond, but I didn’t. I find that low cost self-publishing has revolutionised the publishing industry and I am a big fan. Everyone now can have a narrative voice.
In a nutshell, what is your book about?
My first novel (‘To the Cry of the Sand’ling’) is about a family based in Edinburgh in the early 18th century and how the cope with love, loss and life’s challenges. The second book (‘The Painter and the Sea’ – recently released) is independent but does continue the story. In both, there is drama, love, laughs and sadness.
How did you come up with the title for your book?
I’d don’t really know. It came into my head and I had to write it into the book – not a method I would recommend.
How did you celebrate publication day?
Facebook, tweets, blogs, chat, etc. And a glass of wine.
Do you have a work in progress just now?
Yes, I’m on my third novel. It’s a sensual, coming of age, romantic, ghost story, based in Glasgow and Perthshire in 1974
What one book would you recommend to a friend and why?
‘Days Without End,’ by Sebastian Barry. Impeccable writing. Story telling at its very best.
What are you reading just now?
‘Small Pleasures,’ Claire Chambers.
If you were on Desert Island Discs, what one book would you take with you?
‘The Cider House Rules,’ or anything else by John Irvine.
Is there a book you’d love to see made into a film?
There are many: ‘A Place called Winter,’ by Patrick Gale
[Oooh, I loved that book too. I read that Patrick Gale is adapting it for TV so we may see it on screen sometime.]
How can people follow you or connect with you on social media?
Tom Binnie – Author (Facebook) or @DrTDB (Twitter) or Tom Binnie (polebrookpress.com)
And finally, if you could be a character in any book you have read, who would it be and why?
Nancy ‘Nan’ Astley in ‘Tipping the Velvet,’ by Sarah Waters because I would like to experience life as a totally different person in another age.
You will find more information and can order Tom’s books on his Amazon page here.