Steve Mosby (UK) is the coming man in crime literature. His novel “The 50/50 Killer” got him international attention – and is a very good read!
Steve grew up in a fairly poor family, but was encouraged by his parents to read books as his mother used to say ‘there’s always money for books’. At the tender age of ten, he began to write. His mom or dad used to fold a bunch of A-4 sheets and sew the edge, so that it became a ‘book’. Steve then wrote ‘choose your own adventure’ stories.
Later on, Steve went to university and studied philosophy. Not exactly the background needed to write psychological novels? According to Steve, this background is useful for many reasons, not in the least because it teaches you to appreciate other people’s viewpoints, which is good for the logic of plot development and for understanding why people might think the things they do.
After writing just for fun, Steve decided to give serious writing a try. His first novel, “The Third Person” did the rounds and was finally published by Orion as crime, which was not his deliberate intention. Still, Steve likes the genre because it’s high-level and covers a lot of ground. Now he even likes to be listed as author of psychological thrillers. He’s confident that he can write dark, fast-paced, character-based material and he feels that he is now drawn into it anyway.
Steve remains modest, though. He would not yet describe himself as being ‘successful’. He starts to become comfortable after about ten years of serious writing. He claims there’s a lot to be said about the Ray Bradbury approach – which is to serve an apprenticeship, if only with yourself. Write a few hundred words a day, every day, for – say – ten years, and be enormously self-critical throughout. It sounds like a huge commitment, and in some ways it is, but writing is a craft like any other. Most days, Steve says, he still feels like a complete amateur – which he thinks he still is!
Readers are important to Steve, and he loves every email he receives, even when it’s negative. He thinks the reader contributes in the process of writing. In his view, a book is only just words on a page until someone reads it and ‘creates’ the story in his or her head. In many ways, readers are more important than the writer. At the same time, there is a massive difference between telling people what they want to hear and saying what he wants to say. He hopes the people will want to listen.
Life looks good for Steve. After the success of “The 50/50 Killer,” the next contracted novel, “Cry for Help” was published in May 2008, and the next one in June of this year. Writing now for him is putting one word in front of the other. And as he says, when you get paid for doing what you like, writing is the best job in the world.