We interview author Peter Thompson who lives in Bridlington and has been writing books for nearly half a century.
1. How long have you been writing books? I started when I was 27, back in 196, and I’d been made redundant and had little money. I saw a programme on TV on how to write a book. I gave it a go and in three months I wrote my first novel called Floating Eyes. I bought a ‘sit up and beg’ Remington 77 typewriter, although I could not type and spent a lot of time using correction fluid. That novel will never see the light of day, but the bug bit, but remained hidden for the next 20 years as I married and worked long hours to own my own home. I started writing again in 1990 and have written 25 novels to date.
2. What genre(s) do you write? I write in three main genres: Science Fiction, Fantasy and the Tom Ranswick Thrillers.
3. What was the first book you had published?
That was Time Capsule, published by Lodge Books, a 20,000 word love story with a bit of intrigue.
4. What was your favourite book as a child and do you still have a copy of it?
Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea – one I won at school. I do not still have this book. I also liked The Famous Five by Enid Blyton.
5. Who is your current favourite author? I have two and both are dead now – David Gemmell and Edgar Rice Burroughs.
6. If you could take just one book to a desert island, what would it be? The life story of Winston Churchill.
7. If you were not a writer how would you like to share your ideas with others? I wouldn’t share with others; I never did before the writing bug bit. Very few of my friends like Fantasy or Sci-Fi, so nothing in common.
8. If you were doing a book signing, who would you most like to come to you with a copy of your book and ask you to sign it with a personal message? David Gemmell, but sadly he is dead.
9. What are your writing ambitions? Hopefully, to be recognised as a good writer and sell enough books to break even.
10. What is the biggest compliment you have been paid as a writer? A friend bought one of my Tom Ranswick novels as a present for his father who was going on holiday. He did not tell him that he knew the author, just gave him it to read. His remarks after reading the book surprised and delighted me. “Paul, that was a bloody good read, who is this guy?” Paul told him that he used to work with me; his next words knocked me flat. “Why isn’t he in the bestsellers list among the Chris Ryans and Andy McNabs? He’s better than them.”
11. Kindle or paperback, which do you prefer? Paperback, always. Feels good in the hand.
12. Imagine you have lost your memory and someone gives you one of your own books to read. Would you know you had written it? Not sure about this question, but I like what I write and I think my books are not too bad. Only the reader could put me right on this.
13. What are you writing at the moment? Strangely enough, another Tom Ranswick thriller, the seventh in the series.