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""A story assembled from everyday objects, unassumingly and quietly, that stuns and horrifies by increments...The Canal may look, at first glance, like a love story, but it harnesses the power of parable." John Wray, author of Lowboy.

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Tuesday, 5 January 2010

New Decade . . .

Well, that's another decade of my life reduced to mere memory. Happy new decade to all who find yourselves here.

So, 2010, eh! I don't know what to say, really. But for a start I was completely honoured to have been included in Bookmunch's thorough '50 Books you'll want to read in 2010' list. It's always heartening to be mentioned alongside so many writers I admire.

For those of you who have not seen the list, it is here.

And, just for the sheer hell of it, here is my pick of the bunch (in no particular order, ahem):

Richard - Ben Myers.
The Thousand Autumns of Jacob De Zoet - David Mitchell.
The Pale King - David Foster Wallace.
Chronic City - Jonathan Lethem.
Castle - J Robert Lennon.

In a few days I'll post my own list of books I'm looking forward to reading this year. And I'll also begin to post all the reviews and criticism I had published last year.

I met Jonathan Lethem the other night (I’m interviewing him for the New Statesman). He’s a truly interesting man and completely engages with the art of writing fiction. His writing seems to tap into so many different things, it’s all rather incredible. He has been labelled the poet laureate of Brooklyn (which is a fair enough assumption), but I feel his work is far more universal and isn’t necessarily exclusive in that way.

I've been busying myself with my final edits on 'The Canal' - it's all looking good. My editor and publisher Dennis Johnson has done such a great job with the book and has truly whipped it into shape. He just seems to notice the little things that make all the difference - I never see these, maybe they are too obvious and I'm looking to change bigger things. I guess that what makes a true editor (and the fact that Dennis, along with running Melville House, is also an award-winning writer himself, probably helps).

Plus, I need a haircut!


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