Name: Alan Bunn
Date of birth: 20 July 1944
Place of birth: Kent, England
Now living in: Christchurch
What is your favourite food?
Duck and orange sauce.
Do you have a nickname and if so what is it?
Not at the moment. It has been ‘D’Artagnan’ (because I was a fencer), ‘Gadget’, or ‘The Runaway Tractor Driver’.
What was your most embarrassing moment?
Having a rock and rolling woman, with skirts flying, fall on me while she was dancing and I was only 15.
How do you relax?
Walk, read, lie down and drift off to sleep.
Who inspired you when you were little?
Alan Ladd (Western hero), Fred Astaire (his dancing), my mother (her suffering and patience).
What were you like at school?
Pretty hard-working and responsible but not particularly bright.
What was your favourite/most hated subject at school?
Most hated: Maths
What was the book you most loved as a child?
The Valley of Adventure by Enid Blyton.
Which person from the past would you most like to meet?
Who is your favourite author/children’s author?
Children’s: J. R .R. Tolkien
Adults’: Simon Winchester
Why did you want to be a writer?
To try to get more boys reading. To get a story off my chest.
Do you have a special place where you write your books?
My study on the word processor at 5 am.
What’s the best thing and worst thing about being a writer?
Best - going down the stairs to my study with a wonderful expectation of doing something completely involving.
Worst - writing books that aren’t published.
If you weren’t a writer, what would you like to be?
A dancer or a singer.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Live life. Develop a good memory. Love words. Be fascinated by people, places, things, ideas, sensations. Be very patient and hard-working.
This interview is from 2002.