READER Q&A WITH MALCOLM DUFFY
What is your most favourite book that you have ever read and why?
My favourite book is Life of Pi. It manages to be scary, though-provoking, funny, exciting, and sad. It’s not only beautifully written it shows that you can write about almost anything, even a boy on a lifeboat with a tiger.
What inspired you to be an author?
I’ve always loved writing. My career has involved me writing ads for lots of different clients. I loved this. But what I always wanted to do was create my own stories. I guess I wanted to be in charge for a change.
What advice would you give to someone who also wants to be an author?
Read. By reading good books you learn what it takes to create a great story. Books also reveal different ways to tell your tale, build believable characters, and use the English language in a way that engages the reader.
What is your favourite style of writing?
I like comedic writing. I love it when an author surprises me with something funny and unexpected. I try to add humour in all of my books.
What inspired you to write the book "Read between the lies"?
My daughter, Tallulah, is dyslexic. Also, I was asked to write a short film, Mical, about the real-life story of Pat Jones and her struggle to help her dyslexic son, Mike. Having learned about the subject I decided it would make a great subject for a book.
Do you have any ideas for any more books that you would like to write?
I have lots and lots of ideas for books. But you’ll have to wait and see if any of them make it into print!
How long does it take you to write a whole book?
It probably takes about a year from beginning to end. About three months agreeing the idea with my agent and publisher. Six months to write the story. And three months to re-write and polish so it’s nice and shiny.
As a child did you want to be an author?
Yes, I always wanted to be a writer, but not necessarily an author. English was always my favourite subject at school, so I knew I wanted to do something based around words. I also wanted to write screenplays and plays. Hopefully that will happen one day.
What is the best thing about being an author?
The freedom. I love the fact that you’re in control of what ends up on the page. There aren’t many jobs that give you that.
Do you have any recommendations of books for 12 year olds?
Here are some books you might like:
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, by Mark Haddon.
Boy 87, by Ele Fountain.
The Radleys, by Matt Haig.
Furious Thing, by Jenny Downham.
The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green.
Crongton Knights, by Alex Wheatle
A Monster Calls, by Patrick Ness.
Lord of the Flies, by William Golding.