Interview with Author John Nicholl – participant of Carmarthen Book Fair 2016
Hi John Nicholl, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?
Hi, thanks for the invite. I live in and grew up in West Wales, where I live with my wife and two adult sons. I also have an adult daughter, who lives in London with a partner, and one granddaughter. I worked as a police officer and as a child protection social worker prior to early retirement, and began writing after leaving my post heading up child protection services for Carmarthenshire. I’ve also lectured on child protection matters at several colleges, including Swansea University.
Which writers inspire you?
Oh, so many, but if I had to name but a few, I’d choose: Roald Dahl, Kurt Vonnegut, Paulo Coelho, Sebastian Faulks, Graham Green and Leslie Thomas.
So, what have you written?
I wrote a child protection good practice guide, and articles for news papers and a national social work journal during my career, but White is the coldest colour was my first novel. I was both amazed and gratified when it did as well as it did, becoming one of the twenty-five most read books on Kindle in the UK at the time of publication in 2015. The sequel, When evil calls your name was published in December, and continues to sell well. I’m writing a third book at the moment, and both of the first two are currently being produced as audio books.
Where can we buy or see them?
The ebooks are exclusive to Amazon, but the paperbacks can also be ordered from Waterstones, W H Smiths and Barnes and Noble. The audio books aren’t available at the time of writing, but they will be shortly on Amazon, iTunes and Audible.
What genre are your books?
I write dark and topical psychological suspense thrillers which draw heavily on my professional experiences.
What draws you to this genre?
I guess, given my career, they were the books I had to write.
Do you write full-time or part-time?
I’m very fortunate in that I can now write full time, as and when I want to. Some days I write for hours, and other days not at all. It just depends if the creative juices are flowing, so to speak. The publishing world had changed so very much in recent years, and it’s much easier than it was to get your work out there on a worldwide basis. I’d encourage anyone who’s considering writing a book to give it a go. Why not let the buyers decide if your work’s worth reading? At the end of the day, theirs are the opinions that matter. I’ve chosen to remain an independent writer despite offers from publishers, although the audio books are being produced on a different basis, thanks to Amazon (ACX) funding, and the commitment of two excellent young actors. I guess it’s a case of never say never.
Do you have a special time to write or how is your day structured?
I write whenever the mood takes me, in the morning in the main, but certainly not exclusively.
What is the hardest thing about writing?
How long it all takes. I’m not a patient man by nature.
Do you ever get writer’s Block?
I can honestly say I haven’t experienced writer’s block, although some others might wish I had!
Do you read much and if so who are your favourite authors.
I read every night before going to sleep, and for hours every day when lucky enough to be on holiday somewhere warm and sunny. In an addition to the authors I’ve already mentioned, I read an eclectic mix of history, humour and biography (not celebrities). I find WW2 novels particularly fascinating, probably due to the fact that my father was an active combatant. If you have similar tastes, check out Christoph Fischer’s excellent novels. I feel sure you’ll enjoy them.
For your own reading, do you prefer ebooks or traditional paper/hard back books?
I have to admit that I’ve been converted to ebooks.
What book/s are you reading at present?
Kiss Kiss, a series of dark and surprising short stories by Roald Dahl. I read the book for the first time in my early twenties, and it’s just as good the second time around.
Are you looking forward to the Carmarthen Book Fair 2016? And if so, why?
Yes, I’m really looking forward to Carmarthen book fair. Carmarthen is my home town, and it’s great to meet up with other local writers and potential new readers.
How can readers discover more about you and you work?
Check out my author website at: http://www.johnnicholl.com
That will tell you all you want to know.