When unworldly 22-year-old Sam is offered the chance to swap life in his regulation bungalow for a job at a countryside retirement home, he drops everything and heads to the rolling fields of Sussex. But things at the eerie Edge Hill are far from what he imagined.
The residents are easily over 100 years old, but due to rigorous cosmetic upkeep they look like they are in their twenties. The strange ‘handlers’ who work in the facility seem to have everything under control – until a geriatric stampede sets off a mind-blowing sequence of events that threatens to alter his life for ever.
In this sensational debut novel set in the not-too-distant future, Robert Ford has created a universe of his own in order to brilliantly illuminate the one - and the age - we all share...
What is your name, where were you born and where do you live now?
Robert Ford. Born in Sussex. Now living in London.
Did you always want to be a writer? If not what did you want to be?
I always wanted to do something I love for a living. And I love writing.
Do you work another job as well as your writing work?
Yes, I work in film and television on the editorial side of things.
What is the name of your latest book, and if you had to summarise it in less than 20 words what would you say?
The King of Spain, http://apostrophebooks.com/kingofspain/. It’s a dark comedy set in the near future, in a retirement home. It’s about hope and love and friendship and bears.
Who is your publisher? or do you self publish?
Apostrophe Books www.apostrophebooks.com. They’re lovely.
How long does it usually take you to write a book, from the original idea to finishing writing it?
From the idea to being published, probably 2 years all in.
What can we expect from you in the future? ie More books of the same genre? Books of a different genre?
I think I write literary fiction and so yes I hope to continue in this vein although the question of genre doesn’t enter my thinking when I write.
Do you have plans for a new book? Is this book part of a series?
Yes lots of plans, must get cracking. And no they are all stand alone books.
What genre would you place your books into?
What made you decide to write that genre of book?
I wrote the book and that happens to be the closest approximation, the most obvious label to apply.
Do you have a favourite character from your books? and why are they your favourite?
Hal. He is rude and misanthropic in a way that I could never be. And he makes me laugh.
If you had to choose to be one of your characters in your book/books which would you be? and why?
Hal. As above.
Where do you get your book plot ideas from?What/Who is your inspiration?
I wish I knew. Alcohol usually plays a part.
Do you have a certain routine you have for writing? ie You listen to music, sit in a certain chair?
Whenever, wherever I can. Time is always short when you have a day job too.
Do you have anybody read your books and give you reviews before you officially release them?ie. Your partner, children, friends, reviewers you know?
My wife. She is a great sounding board and a natural editor. And the beautiful people at Apostrophe Books, without whom the book might still be something of a shambles.
How do you come up with characters names and place names in your books?
I work around ideas until the right choice presents itself.
Are character names and place names decided after there creation? or do you pick a character/place name and then invent them?
They usually come together at the same time but are always subject to change.
Do you decide on character traits (ie shy, quiet, tomboy girl) before writing the whole book or as you go along?
I think of characters as people and don’t think too precisely about traits although they are there in their make up of course.
Do you basic plot/plan for your book, before you actually begin writing it out? Or do you let the writing flow and see where it takes the story?
I plan a fairly detailed plot outline. I think this gives me freedom to work through other elements as I go, without worrying too much about plot.
Is there a certain Author that influenced you in writing?
Not one, but many have.
What is your favourite book and Why? Have you read it more than once?
Too hard to choose one!
Do you think books transfer to movies well? Which is you favourite/worst book to movie transfer?
Generally, no. The film version of Catch 22 is not bad.
Do you think ebooks will ever totally replace printed books?
One day, yes.