A Quickie with Calvin Wade

Tell me about your latest book and why we should read it…

The first three fictional books I have written have relied upon several characters to narrate the story but for the first time, with ‘Living On A Rainbow’, I have allowed the narration to come (almost exclusively) from one character’s perspective. That character is Harry ‘H’ McCoy and the story explores his life from childhood through to his thirties. At its core, it is a story of male friendships and focuses primarily on the relationship ‘H’ has with his best friend, the eccentric, dramatic, effeminate Andy and also the relationship ‘H’ has with his ageing father, George. Personally, I think it is the best book I have written since my first book, ‘Forever Is Over’ and the majority of those who have read it so far are tending to agree.

 If someone was to write your life story what would the title be?

SMILE – (I am told I have a big one and try to use it as often as possible – my smile that is!)

What’s the strangest fan question or request you’ve received?

I find it very strange that people who know me tend to presume my fictional works are about me! It was widely presumed by readers of ‘Forever Is Over’ that I had had an orchidectomy (I haven’t).

If you could co-write with anyone in the world (alive or dead) who would it be?

John Irving would be the writer who is alive that I would be most fascinated to work with. If I could resurrect a dead writer it would be Josef Skvorecky. I would like to think my writing has some similarities to both of these writers although I accept I do not have their incredible intellect. Male characters infatuation with females is often central to their plots.

Tell me something nobody else knows about you (yet).

I was once so drunk I fell asleep in a bidet in a girl’s apartment in Magaluf (thankfully I wasn’t using it at the time). I did wake up worried that I had used it though as there were a load of bikinis drying out in it. *there are plenty of other drunken stories but people did know about them so I felt that would have been cheating.

Recommend three books you’ve read recently and tell me why you’ve chosen these.

  1. Howard Webb’s ‘The Man In The Middle’ – football is in my blood (my Dad and my two Godfathers have all played at Wembley and my eldest son is a full-time footballer) so I enjoy most football books. This was a little different though as it was written from a referee’s perspective.
  2. Joseph Heller’s ‘Catch 22’ – obviously not a new book but a new book for me. I thought it was brilliantly written and at times incredibly funny.
  3. Giulia Enders ‘Gut’ – I read all sorts of books (fiction and non-fiction) and like to read something that makes me feel better informed after I put it down. Gut is (to quote the front cover) ‘the inside story of our body’s most under-rated organ.

Who is Calvin Wade: Calvin Wade was born in Ormskirk, Lancashire in 1971. He studied Economics at Manchester Metropolitan University, graduating in 1992. On graduation, he worked in a record shop for eighteen months to fund a backpacking trip around the world.

Since returning from his travels, his working life has been in the mortgage industry, working for Alliance & Leicester, Yorkshire Building Society and Birmingham Midshires. During this period, he has run five marathons – three London Marathons, one in Liverpool and one in New York. His first London Marathon was run in a fancy dress house where he was narrowly beaten by an apple, a banana and a pear.

In 2006, Calvin wrote a five minute monologue for BBC Radio Five Live entitled, “I Hate Football”, which was performed by Johnny Vegas. It first aired in June 2006 and was repeated on a Christmas Day special.

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