To many people of a certain age, the name Frank Muir brings to mind a tall, urbane, moustachioed quintessentially English gentleman, who partnered Denis Norden on panel games and radio shows.
This isn’t that Frank Muir.
aficionados, has no moustache and he certainly isn’t English – and I’m not sure he’d thank me for calling him urbane. He has become a denizen of the burgeoning world of ‘tartan noir’, and his is a name which is being spoken alongside the likes of Christopher Brookmyre, Quintin Jardine and Caro Ramsay, and may soon aspire to the bestselling ranks of
McDermid, Mina, Rankin and McBride.
St Andrews, in general more famous for golf and a venerable university than violent crime – which was one of the things that intrigued me.
involved. I am often asked how I became an author, and it’s taken me some time to understand that the question should really be how in the hell did I ever become a civil engineer?
citizenship. How did that come about?
woman I should have married forty years ago.
But once I was overseas, I picked up my love of reading again, and devoured Robert Ludlum, Frederick Forsyth, Jack Higgins, and all the thriller and suspense books I could find. Then one morning in my late 30s, I woke up and realized that I didn’t want to reach old age and look back on my life and wish I had tried to become an author. So that same day, I set a goal to write a novel and get it published. My first manuscript was a sprawling international
Lynne: Who do you write for? Who is the reader in your mind when you start a new novel?
Mostly, my ideas for a story come to me from something I see, hear or read. For example, the idea for my most recent novel, The Meating Room, came to me when I was watching a news report about historical sexual abuse allegations, and I found myself asking the question: What if a number of women hated this particular guy so badly, that they decided to conspire and fabricate a case against him for historical sexual abuse? That was the spark that got my writing mind fired up. My publisher had asked me to come up with a synopsis and a title, and out of nowhere, The Meating Room popped into my mind. I found as I wrote my way through the first draft, that I had no idea what the meating room was, what it meant, how it affected the characters – all I knew was that I loved the title. So as I worked through that first draft, I found myself adjusting my initial idea into something different to match the title, and I ended up with a story of which I am immensely proud, and believe is my best yet.
Lynne: Is there anything you wouldn’t write about?
Hand for a Hand
Tooth for a Tooth
Life for a Life.