Interview with Nick Gilbert

Published 2016-09-14.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first story I remember HEARING is "The Tale of Henny Penny", and it plays a crucial role in my own book
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Wow.... tough question. I like Geoff Dyer but can't think of an individual book which stands out. Roger Lewis' biography of Anthony Burgess is proably the best, most scabrous literary biography i've read. Klaus Kinski's is the funniest and most outrageous autobiography. Both of those books have influenced me. Jan Morris' Conundrum is one of the most moving books I've read, and goes some way to understanding transgenderism (if that's a word). I don't really read novels, but A Confederacy of Dunces and Wise Blood are two of my favourites, because they're well-written and funny. Funny is always important to me. That's 5 books I think. Oh, and The Third Policeman. They all get mentions in my book.
Who are your favorite authors?
Geoff Dyer, Roger Lewis, William Burroughs, George Orwell, Kurt Vonnegut, Mike Parker, Robert MacFarlane, Robert Fisk, RA Gilbert, Bruce Chatwin, Tove Jansson, Robertson Davies, Michael Moorcock, Adam Gopnik, Thomas Hardy, Ryszard Kapuscinski
When did you first start writing?
As a child. I had a good teacher. I used to write poetry in primary school, but I'm proud to say I grew out of that.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
No-one in their right mind would publish me.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I think you should read it. Oh, alright... Bristol boy falls in love with cinema, possibly as a way of avoiding the fallout from his parents' divorce, then falls in love with music and recreational drugs, moves to London, falls in and out of love with lots of women (and a few men) writes a lot of scripts (which don't get made) falls out of love with the film industry, and writes about it, in what he hopes is a humourous fashion....
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Bristol, in the West of England. We are seen as country bumpkins and I enjoy demonstrating that we may be bumpkins, but we aren't stupid. It's also an area steeped in mysticism, paganism, hippyness and cider, all of which feeds into my writing (if you read very carefully).
What are you working on next?
I'm writing a book about Extremedura, in South-West Spain. It's going to be like Bruce Chatwin meets Geoff Dyer (him again) put through a meatgrinder operated by Luis Bunuel.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I have to go to work.
Describe your desk
It's small. it has a laptop and a printer on it, and a lot of dust - not a good combination.
How do you approach cover design?
I designed my own cover for "Sixty-Eight and a Half". Yes, I know - it shows. If I make loads of money from this book, I'll pay a proper designer for the next book, although since this book is free, that isn't going to work, is it?
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Word of mouth every time.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
It seems to be doing a good job so far, just putting it out there. Will have to wait and see.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I'm ashamed (?) to say I don't use e-reading devices. I like old-fashioned print. But I can read off my laptop screen okay. Typing isn't so easy. I keep making spelling mistales.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Working (teaching) cooking, shopping, spending time with my partner and daughter, travelling, drinking, listening to music, watching films, eating, sleeping, answering this questionnaire.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author or publisher.

Books by This Author

On Brandon Hill: Popular Culture in Bristol since World War Two
Price: Free! Words: 132,750. Language: English. Published: September 5, 2020. Categories: Nonfiction » Entertainment » History & Criticism
On Brandon Hill is the first ever comprehensive history of post-war Bristolian culture, and covers all the major art forms for which the city is famous – music, TV, animation, street art – as well as its contributions to film, theatre, literature, fine art etc. First-hand accounts by the author and a gurt big dollop of West Country humour are woven into a gigantic cultural tapestry,
68½ - Movies, Manson & Me (Redux)
Price: Free! Words: 69,810. Language: British English. Published: April 28, 2018. Categories: Nonfiction » Entertainment » Entertainment industry
A mind-bending journey through the outer reaches of the late Sixties and Seventies: the movies, the music, the drugs, the murders. Equal part autobiography, cultural history, warning to aspiring screen-writers, and inquiry into the nature of truth, fiction and memory. A scandalous genre-buster, now edited down to a manageable length in honor of fifty years since May 68.
In Extremadura
Price: Free! Words: 59,540. Language: English. Published: December 10, 2017. Categories: Nonfiction » Travel » By region
Part travelogue, part diary, part history of this hidden corner of Spain, In Extremadura is also a tragi-comic treatise on the nature of mortality, and a love letter to cinema & literature. It veers from the films of Welles and Bunuel to meditations on torture, terrorism, peregrination and the death of David Bowie. A rib-tickling and thought-provoking genre-buster.
68½ - Movies, Manson & Me
Price: Free! Words: 104,860. Language: British English. Published: September 13, 2016. Categories: Nonfiction » Entertainment » Entertainment industry
(4.00 from 1 review)
A mind-bending journey through the outer reaches of the late Sixties and Seventies: the drugs, the movies, the music, the murders. Equal parts autobiography, paean to 60s and 70s cinema, DIY guide for aspiring screen-writers, and inquiry into the nature of truth, fiction and memory, 68½ is a true genre-buster.