DJ Priddle is a book-lover and movie-fan, and of course, a writer. Yet he is so much more than a writer. The man is multi-talented. He’s lead singer of a rock band, writes press releases and even presents on his local radio show. Somehow, in the midst of all that, he finds time to be a husband to his beautiful wife, father to his three lovely daughters, and manages to keep his coffee addiction topped up. He’s even found time to finish his second novel; the sequel to The Honey Trap, which will be out at the end of January.
Despite a crazy schedule, the talented man found time to interview for me. Hope you enjoy it!
1. What are you working on right now?
Right now I have just finished the manuscript for my second book, “Blood Runs Deep.” Due out at the end of January from Percy Publishing.
2. Can you tell us a little something about it?
It’s a follow on from my first novel, “The Honey Trap,” following the life of a very troubled ex-police detective, who spent five years in Belmarsh prison for taking backhanders and becoming involved with prostitutes. Both novels are about how he deals with the world around him. Life after prison has been tough for him, and he is now working as a Private Investigator of sorts, but he soon realizes that his criminal past is still very much a part of his life. In this next book, he has to deal with past events head on as he is thrown into a case searching for the son of a wealthy businessman, while trying to fend off the assistance from a determined young journalist and with an old flame thrown in for good measure.
3. Tell us, why do you write? Where do you draw your inspiration from?
Most of my current inspiration comes from the millions of books that I have read and the billions of films that I have seen. I have also got into a really bad habit of watching thousands of hours of documentaries, searching for anything that I can use as content. Even the smallest details can be over emphasized and expanded to make interesting plotlines. As for why I write, I think that it goes back to having always been creative in some way or another. It was not that I always wanted to write, I just did. Since I was young, I’ve always enjoyed creative writing. Throughout school I wrote short stories and enjoyed studying English Literature and the Greek Classics. I had two English teachers at high school who were a huge inspiration to me and their passion for the classic writings of Sophocles, Homer, Harper Lee and Shakespeare meant that I really engaged with them. I was inspired by the way that the characters interacted with each other. The main storyline always felt merely like a top layer of a much more complex idea, to me, and that is what I wished to create in my own writing. As I got older, I continued to write, but never completed anything. I realised that I did not know how to write a story to the end. I did not have the focus or the attention span to see it through. So, I had to retrain my brain and learn the craft of ‘long-distance’ writing.
4. When I write, I require Jaffa cakes (and lots of them), do you have a writing must-have?
Coffee between the hours of 8am and 6pm and whiskey thereafter. No seriously, I do drink a hell of a lot of coffee whilst I write, but depending on where I am in the text I have to force myself to take breaks. When my mind is getting bogged down with worrying about my own plot holes, I tend to sit and watch a film that I know is completely different. Suddenly, something will snap in my mind, and I’ll be able to return to writing again.
5. What is your favourite book?
Of all time? I’m not sure if I have a favourite. I have different answers for different reasons.
The Republic by Plato would be my most pretentious answer. I’m a fan of Ancient Greek writings and philosophy although I would not consider it a bedtime read.
I love Terry Pratchett, so a more sensible answer would be one of his. Probably the later books, maybe something about Commander Vimes?
John Grisham and Richard North Patterson for my slightly more intelligent moments. I love the American law style books and actually would say that this is what I read most. My favourites are Private Screening by North Patterson and The Street Lawyer by Grisham.
Then there are the standards by which all others are judged. It’s a cliché I’m afraid, but I love Dan Brown. To keep slightly controversial I’ll say that my favourite was Digital Fortress.
6. Which author’s career, alive or passed on, do you admire most, and why?
I have no idea. I don’t really know a lot about other authors. I remember seeing a program recently about Terry Pratchett’s battle with Alzheimer’s so I would have to say him. The struggle to continue doing something that you have always done, because of something out of your control, must be heart breaking for him and his family. I’m not sure that I could be as strong as he has been.
7. Tell us something about yourself…an annoying habit or party trick perhaps? Can you speak a foreign language or have a hobby?
I’m the lead singer of a rock band. No really, I am. My wife and I run a wedding and function band, and I’m the front man. I travel the country in an old transit van and perform on stage. When I am not doing that, I write press releases for an independent PR company and I present a show on local radio. I live with my wife and three daughters, which mean that my spare time is filled very quickly with DIY, day’s out and dad duties, so that’s hobbies out of the question. As for party tricks, I think my band has played at every party that I’ve ever been to. Family weddings and birthday’s mean that I have to work. So I’ve never made time to learn a party trick. I’ve never really needed one.
8. Do you have a blog, website or social networking account people can go to if they wish to learn more about you or your work?
I’m a bit rubbish when it comes to blogging. I have a twitter account, that I keep updated when I’m not rushed off my feet. @djpriddle and I also have a facebook page facebook.com/djpriddle. I will be getting a website in the New Year, but so far I have not sorted one out.
9. What are your writing plans for 2015?
I will be writing the third and fourth instalments of the Jonas Brock books. Book three is already planned and plotted and it promises to be a good one, full of good old fashioned sex and violence, so I will start that in March or April. Before that I will be taking a little break to work on an interesting project. My Great Grandfather wrote a war memoir of the 1914-18 war, so I want to edit it up and see if I can get it published on behalf of my family.
10. And now, for the most important question of all: Jaffa cakes – love them or hate them?
I live in a house with three children. If we buy Jaffa cakes, they last around about three minutes. I have to be very quick and tough if I want one, wrestling the children to the floor in a desperate struggle to be the first to open the packet. So, I will answer that as; love them but never get to have one.
To follow DJ Priddle and his work, see the details below:
I’d like to take the time to thank DJ Priddle for completing this interview at short notice so I had something to post for my Christmas Edition. And what an edition it was.
Merry Christmas everyone, and a Happy New Year 🙂