Friday 15 March 2019

Q&A with author Douglas Skelton

Welcoming Douglas Skelton to So Many Books, So Little Time. Thanks for taking time out to chat today us especially with this week being the launch of Thunder Bay, Skelton's newest creation. Available to buy NOW, here is the link to Amazon available in tree book and ebook format.

Tell us about your newest book "Thunder Bay"

Thunder Bay sees weekly newspaper reporter Rebecca Connolly defy her editor’s orders to visit the island of Stoirm. Roddie Drummond, a man cleared fifteen years before on a Not Proven verdict for the murder of his partner Mhairi Sinclair, is returning for the funeral of his mother. His return will stir up old passions and memories. Rebecca has a personal reason for visiting the island – her father was born there but refused ever to speak about it or his family. She wants to know why.

Is the Island & Thunder Bay based on a real place and if not what inspired its creation. If it is what made you choose that one to write about?

It’s completely fictional, although I’ve used elements not just of other islands I’ve visited but also the mainland. I wanted to control the history and the mythology, both of which play a part in the story, and the idea of characters being cut off – by the water, by the weather – is something many writers are attracted to in order to make the stories more claustrophobic.

This was my first book of yours, is this a good place to start or would you rather new readers start with another of your titles, if so which and why?

New readers can certainly start with THUNDER BAY as it’s planned as the first in a new series. There are four Davie McCall books – gritty, Glasgow crime – beginning with BLOOD CITY. The two Dominic Queste books, the first is THE DEAD DON’T BOOGIE, are lighter but still thrillers, while THE JANUS RUN is a stand alone chase thriller set in New York.

I personally loved the wee legends/myths you put in the story, are any of them based on truth and why did you choose to include them?

All the legends are based on stories from across Scotland. The witches of the mountain, the petrified sisters, the water horse are all fairly common themes on Scottish folklore. The mountain on Stoirm is actually based on Schiehallion in Perthshire.

What research did you carry out for the book, if you can share without spoilers

I suppose the research was carried out over a number of years of visiting islands and reading about history and folklore. There was a bit of reading about vegetation in the Hebrides. The rest was made up!

The book has more than one timeline, going past to present and back and forth did you know this was what you wanted when penning it?

I always knew I would move back and forward between the present and the events of fifteen years before. I don’t plan my books in any way but as it gestated in my mind – and it’s been there for some considerable time – I knew that would be the structure I would follow.

Is it easier to write in one timeline or both? Which do you prefer?

Each one was difficult! This book is a departure from my usual style. In the past I’ve followed the Raymond Chandler suggestion of having two guys kick the door in with guns in their hand. This story did not lend itself to that, so it was a more challenging write for me.

How do you keep track of so many threads of stories and characters?

Often with difficulty! As I said, I don’t plan but I will make notes on bits of paper, which are strewn across my desk. I really should be more organised. I might get on better!

What is next for Douglas Skelton? Are you writing or thinking about your next book?

The process has begun on the next one. I have a title and a plot. Unusually I even have an ending! For me that’s a silver lining. All I need to do now is write it. Every silver lining has a cloud.

Where can fans connect with you?

I’m on Twitter @Douglasskelton1 and my website

Thanks so much Douglas, here is to smashing it to no.1 - If you haven't been spoiled enough by the Q&A I am offering my pre loved copy of the book. To be in with a chance of winning just use the Rafflecopter below to enter, the more entries you complete the more times your name goes in.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Lainy, thank you for this interesting interview, and for hosting this great giveaway. Have a super weekend!


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