I would like to introduce you to author Peter Taylor-Gooby, he is joining me today to share with you a little about himself and his new release, Blood Ties, which went live 16th April 2020.
Welcome Peter, let’s start with you telling us a little about yourself
Thank you for having me, I’ve worked in a variety of jobs – in a London tax office, on adventure playgrounds, in a social security office in Newcastle, on a teaching project for untouchables in Vijayawada – and now in my day job I’m an academic. I have three wonderful children. I was shocked by the warmth I felt when my lovely grand daughter was born.
So please tell us how you got into writing
I’ve always wanted to write. I became increasing dissatisfied with my day job (I’m an academic and research social issues through surveys, statistics and charts). Surely feelings – compassion, fear, uncertainty – are more important to people than facts? Novels deal in feelings. That’s why I decided to write.
Congratulations on your new release, Blood Ties, please tell us what it is about.
Blood Ties is about love, betrayal and compassion. Ritchie, a successful advertising executive, is blackmailed into leading a campaign to make modern slavery acceptable to the public. His children, activists in the struggle against people-trafficking, are horrified. The novel tells of his journey through a Britain where rich and poor live as close and as distant as the cheeks of the blade of an axe, and how he finds that it is only through self-sacrifice that he can reunite his family.
When I wrote it i wanted to write about family life in modern Britain – a complex diverse society where no-one has a job for life and identity is something we construct as much as we discover it in ourselves. that was my starting point – but the story of Ritchie just came to me and some of the scenes. I couldn’t hear what people were saying but I could tell from their body language and the expressions in their eyes – so I wrote it down. Then I rewrote many times.
Do you base your characters on people you know or strangers you see in the streets?
Neither. They appear inside my head, I’m aware of them and think about them and try to see how they act or interact in various situations. Often they surprise me.
lastly, Where do you think your writing career will go next?
I don’t know, which makes it exciting! I’m sure a new story will start to take shape and slowly develop and I’ll play with it, but I won’t know what it is until it’s there. One thing: it won’t be about the lock-down – we need to think about all the other issues in the world – runaway climate change, the inequality between north and south and how that will grow worse in the coming recession, how to sustain the massive generosity we have seen in recent weeks, and many others.
Thank you so much for taking time to talk to me about your new book. We all wish you good luck and look forward to what happens in your next adventure.