Today I’m delighted to feature author Tim Ewins. Tim’s debut novel We Are Animals was published in paperback last month and it’s gathering great reviews.
Tim Ewins had an eight-year stand-up career alongside his accidental career in finance, before turning to writing fiction.
He has previously written for DNA Mumbai, had two short stories highly commended and published in Michael Terence Short Story Anthologies, and had a very brief acting stint (he’s in the film Bronson, somewhere in the background).
He lives with his wife, son and dog in Bristol. You can follow Tim on Instagram @quickbooksummaries (where, frankly, he makes stupid jokes) and on Twitter @EwinsTim (where, frankly, he makes stupid jokes)
Over to Tim:
Which 5 pieces of music/songs would you include in the soundtrack to your life and why?
I Want To Break Free – Queen I spent the majority of my childhood and teenage years listening to Queen and watching Queen’s music videos. I had the greatest hits I and II on VHS and would spend my Sunday’s just watching song after song. I wanted to be Freddie Mercury so bad. Who am I kidding, I still want to be Freddie…
Skinny Love – Bon Iver Bon Iver is my writing music. Whenever I have a spare hour or so to get typing, I’ll always stick on a bit of Bon (Iver, though don’t get me wrong, I do also love a bit of Jovi). I write quite a lot though, so my Spotify end of year playlist basically plays like a Bon Iver album.
Crazy in Love – Beyonce and Jay Z Jay Z and Beyonce were my son’s first ever gig at the grand old age of one. I have a lovely video of me and him rapping along to 99 problems in the back seats of the arena (he mainly giggles, and I change the words!). He’s seen the video now he’s three, can’t remember it and wants to go again!
Freedom – George Michael I used to dance around the kitchen with my mum to George Michael after the Sunday roast each week whilst we were washing up. I also spent my teenage years wanting to be like him, to the extent of having my ear pierced and getting the same earring. Surely George Michael should be in any musical list…
Smells Like Teen Spirit – Nirvana Just because if there’s going to be a soundtrack to my life, I’d best make sure it kicks ass.
What 5 things (apart from family and friends) you’d find it hard to live without.
I was going to write wine, but then realised I’d basically be admitting to being an alcoholic. I guess I could probably live without wine if I had to…
Love Island: Although, without wine, it’s going to be a different experience altogether.
The sea: And I don’t mean just because I’d find it hard to live without water (although, I probably would), I just mean being near the sea.
Land: Because if all I had was the sea, I’d either be knackered, dead or a fish.
Coffee: Because I decided not to admit to the wine.
Can you offer 5 pieces of advice you’d give to your younger self?
Stop trying to be cool. You’re not cool, and as soon as you stop trying to be cool, you’ll probably be cooler (but only a bit).
You look quite good in girl’s coats. They hug your waist and make your shoulders look bigger than they are.
You were right when you told your dad that the Spice Girls would still be massive in decades to come. Go and let him know, because he won’t remember the conversation when you bring it up in your thirties.
Let that girl you like know that you like her. One day you’ll marry her and there is just a small chance that there are five wasted years of you trying to find the confidence to tell her.
You react to gluten and hangovers aren’t actually as bad as you think they are. Drink cider or wine.
Tell us 5 things that most people don’t know about you
I have three nipples (I don’t, but there is a very nipple-y looking mole)
I know how to fix a washing machine (I only learnt this about myself yesterday, and I’m absolutely psyched to share it!)
Sometimes when I’m listening to an audiobook on my headphones I nod along as if it’s music. I have no idea why I do this.
I chew coffee. It drives my wife mad.
I once listened to the audiobook of ‘The Fault in our Stars’ whilst cycling through the banking district in London and started crying whilst cycling.
Tell us 5 things you’d like to do or achieve.
I’d love to swim in the sea every morning when I wake up. I reckon that’s one for retirement though. The babs needs his breakfast.
I’ve got it stuck in my head that one day we’ll hire motorbikes and drive through Vietnam.
I’d love someone to make a film out of one of my books. I don’t know how really. I think We Are Animals would have to involve plasticine.
I’d like to hire motorbikes and drive through Vietnam one day… oh, I’ve said that. See, I told you it was stuck in my head. OK, I’ll replace that with, be married forever.
Oh, and I do fully intend to be Freddie Mercury one day. I’m waiting for my invitation from Brian, Roger and John to front the band.
Thanks for joining me today Tim, I’m looking forward to reading We Are Animals, it certainly looks to meet my penchant for quirky, upbeat reads. How cool is your son going to look when he reveals he saw Beyonce aged one (never mind he can’t remember). He needn’t heed his Dad’s possible advice based on his own experience about being cool. It’s OK to admit to wine, we don’t judge and anyway you’re not the first, I’d be more worried about watching Love Island sober (say’s she who’s never watched more than 5 minutes). Maybe a bit of dutch courage might also have reduced that 5 year wait? Well done on the washing machine, that’s a real result. Here’s hoping that you get to achieve those items on your list. I’m sure you’ll be married forever, she waited 5 years remember, and best get to Vietnam pronto to get it out of your head.
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We Are Animals
A cow looks out to sea, dreaming of a life that involves grass.
Jan is also looking out to sea. He’s in Goa, dreaming of the passport-thief who stole his heart (and his passport) forty-six years ago. Back then, fate kept bringing them together, but lately it seems to have given up.
Jan has not. In his long search he has accidentally held a whole town at imaginary gunpoint in Soviet Russia, stalked the proprietors of an international illegal lamp-trafficking scam and done his very best to avoid any kind of work involving the packing of fish. Now he thinks if he just waits, if he just does nothing at all, maybe fate will find it easier to reunite them.
His story spans fifty-four years, ten countries, two imperfect criminals (and one rather perfect one), twenty-two different animals and an annoying teenager who just…
But maybe an annoying teenager is exactly what Jan needs to help him find the missing thief?
Featuring a menagerie of creatures, each with its own story to tell, We Are Animals is a quirky, heart-warming tale of lost love, unlikely friendships and the certainty of fate (or lack thereof).
For the first time in her life the cow noticed the sun setting, and it was glorious.
When You Read This I Will be Dead – Anthology
An Anthology of tantalising short stories selected from the Michael Terence Publishing Short Story Competition, February 2019. Includes I Spent My Time Running by Tim Ewins
A Tail of a Mouse – Anthology
An Anthology of tantalising short stories selected from the Michael Terence Publishing Short Story Competition, 2017. Includes A Little, Lost by Tim Ewins.