Q & A with Dylan Young, author of Silent Girls
Dylan Young Author Bio…
Dylan Young grew up in a mining village in South Wales before boarding a train for university in London. A career in the NHS followed, but the urge to write never went away. Three dark psychological thrillers for Random House emerged in the late nineties, two of which were made into BBC films. Over the last decade, under different pseudonyms, he’s written children’s books and an adult contemporary fantasy series. But his liking for crime (writing) never died. The Silent Girls releases 19th January with the second book to follow soon after.
Q ~ Where have your travels taken you and how much of an influence did the places you visit have on the settings in your books?
A ~ In my other life, I’m a doctor. As a young medic, I moved at least half a dozen times to different posts during my training. Therefore, I’ve lived in several cities—London, Oxford, Bristol, Cheltenham, Bath, Cardiff. All very nice, and each one with its quirks. It’s logical for me to use these places as settings. For example, Anna Gwynne, the DI in my new series works in Bristol. I write fantasy as DC Farmer and there I’ve used Oxford as a backdrop. It just helps that you have a feel for a place in my opinion. Cities change but the bad places often stay the same. Those are the ones that interest me.
Q ~ Would you describe yourself as a thrill seeking, roller-coaster riding, adrenaline junkie or a laid back, cold drink sipping under a warm sun, wave crash observer, kind of guy? Or somewhere in the middle? In other words…what do you love to do in your spare time? 😉
A ~ I know I’m not an adrenaline junkie. Though I do like roller-coaters. I like exploring, walking through empty landscapes. But then I also love crashing waves. In fact, I’d say one of my favourite things is body surfing and being tossed about by the sea, but the temperature has to be high twenties and preferably in the Indian ocean off Australia. Not the freezing Atlantic on the Gower coast as I did when I was a boy. Blue is not a very fetching skin colour when you’re trying to be macho. So, bottom line, I like open spaces, high places with a view of the sea, the sun. Cities are great for short periods but after a while my brain I begins to melt.
Q ~ If you woke up tomorrow with a supernatural power of your choice, what would it be, and why?
A ~ My supernatural power would be to be able to open any door on to anywhere else in the world. All you’d need to do would be imagine or envisage the place you’d want to go to. I have thought about this a lot. Even written about it (DC Farmer again)…
Q ~ We love that your repertoir of genres expands beyond the traditional psychological thriller! As mothers of young children as well as an educator, it is so great to find authors of quality young adult and middle grade literature! What inspired you to write for this age group?
A ~ You’re right, I also write as Rhys A Jones for middle grade and I have a quintet in the drawer waiting to emerge –though I have published two of them as well as some others. I love the discipline of middle grade books. Although my stories deal with a teenage view of the adult world, the themes are the same. But you’re not encumbered by too many overpowering adult themes. I find it refreshing and stimulating not to have to think about sex all the time. It’s a primal drive in adults and so there’s no escaping it. But feelings and experiences are so vivid in teenage, it’s a blast.
Q ~ If we were to interview your mother or father, what might she say to us if we asked her what you were like as a child?
A ~ Both my mum and dad are no longer with us but they’d say I was a dreamer, lost in books, pretty good in school, but also into sports—rugby and cricket (I’m Welsh for God’s sake). I’m the youngest in the family with two much older brothers so for a lot of the time I was also an only child of sorts. And you know what they do when their bored—kill small animals –Read. I read a lot of SF and Horror in my early teens. I’m sure I may actually have been in Stranger Things….
Q ~ Preferences… cold beer, aged wine – spicy or mild – dark chocolate or milk chocolate – beach-side or country living – ice cream sundae or cone?
A ~ Cold beer on a hot day
Nice wine of an evening
Spic-ey! (ey is deliberate)
Q ~ What is something that you see others do that grosses you out? (for me…I HATE when people lick their finger to turn pages – yuck)
A ~ What grosses me out? In no particular order…
Men fiddling with their undercarriage in public.
Railway lines with the debris of flushed toilets between them. DId you know that it’s only just becoming the norm for trains to contain the human waste dispelled during journeys? Up to now, when you flush, it’s simply discarded to the elements. Hence the warnings ‘Do not flush in Stations’. But the next time you are in a railway station, have look down between those steel rails. It will put you off your cappuccino, I guarantee it.
Women makeup victims with overdone cake mixture that stops at around their chin so that the rest of them is a different colour. WTF is that all about?
Q ~ What do you consider to be your BEST life accomplishment?
A ~ Marrying my wife and having three healthy kids
Q ~ As a teacher, I know how important it is to share my love of reading and writing with my students. I have had students come back to me as adults and ask me for book recommendations. When you look back on your childhood, can you think of a teacher that you can still remember because they inspired you to be the reader/writer you are today?
A ~ That’s a difficult one because I took the science path in school. I loved reading but it was never on the curriculum with zoology and chemistry etc. But when I was in primary school, the village I lived in had a library. I used that a lot. I can still smell those books. The librarian switched me on to books like the Gauntlet by Ronald Welch. That started it for me off. Like a cattle-prod to my imagination. That librarian has a lot to answer for.
Q ~ Can you give your fans a little hint about what you are working on now and what we can expect from you in the future?
A ~ What am I working on? So many things. Book 2 of the Anna Gwynne series is more or less written. I have two more fantasy books I’d like to put out. I also have had the rights of the middle grade series back from an American publisher who did not know quite what to do with them. All I need is an extra three hours in the day and to finally give up the day job!
Thanks for asking me these questions and letting me take part. I’ve enjoyed it a lot!!
~ Dylan Young
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