WELCOME KEVIN RAMSEY
Kevin has worked in the IT industry since the 1970s. (Yes, there WERE computers around in the 70s!) He has worked and lived in England, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore and has travelled extensively around the world.
For years he wrote reports, technical books and papers in the IT industry, but all that time there was a novelist waiting to get out.
He’d always enjoyed crime, mystery and political thriller novels, as well as more general stories – and even some science fiction!
Authors he long admired include (in no particular order) Frederick Forsyth, John Le Carre, Ian Rankin, Colin Dexter, Henning Mankell, John Braine, Stan Barstow, Fred Hoyle, Frank Herbert, Stieg Larsson, George Orwell, Aldous Huxley.
For years he wanted to write his own novel but work, family, inertia, fear all got in the way. Finally, after massive encouragement from his wife, he started. The end result, after more than a year’s work, is his first (and hopefully not last) novel The Andersen Plan.
This interesting mix of political and crime thriller is set in England and Australia, where he lived for many years.
Connect with Kevin at these sites:
Q&A with Kevin Ramsey
Writing and Reading:
Do you draw from personal experiences and/or current events?
A bit of both. This novel is mostly drawn from reflections of current events but all the locations are places I know well.
Do you start with the conclusion and plot in reverse or start from the beginning and see where the story line brings you?
I had a rough outline and started writing different bits, in rough chronological order, but sometimes I would go back. Parts of the plot and some of the characters changed several times in the process
Your routine when writing? Any idiosyncrasies?
Much of the early work on the book was written sitting in my car in a car park. I guess that’s a bit odd. I prefer my first draft to be scribbled in a notebook rather than typed. I type it up later and do a bit of tidying up in the process. I did the final version and editing on my laptop. I don’t have a set time of day or a specific place to write. When I’m on holiday somewhere warm I like to mix writing with lying in the sun and swimming.
Is writing your full time job? If not, may I ask what you do by day?
When I wrote the first draft I was working full time as a freelance IT project manager. When the job ended I took some time off to finish off the book and edit and publish it. Although I am looking out for more freelance work I am currently writing full time. If I can achieve any success with it I would love to become a full time writer.
Who are some of your favorite authors?
That’s quite a long list for different reasons. George Orwell and Aldous Huxley for their predictions of where society was heading; science fiction writers like Isaac Asimov, Fred Hoyle, Frank Herbert and Arthur C Clarke; crime fiction – Stieg Larson Ian Rankin, Colin Dexter, Henning Mankell; philosophy / economics – John Gray, Daniel Kahneman; political thrillers – Frederick Forsythe
What are you reading now?
“Thinking Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman. It’s good but a bit heavy going. When I’ve finished I want to relax with the new Rebus novel.
Are you working on your next novel? Can you tell us a little about it?
I’m currently working on a sequel to The Andersen Plan, tentatively titled The Andersen Contract. It’s a totally new plot line but follows on from the first book and uses many of the characters. Like the first book it mixes politics with crime and ranges from London to South Australia.
Your novel will be a movie. Who would you cast?
In my book the main “baddies” are Australian Brothers Greg and Tony Andersen. From the moment I wrote them I envisaged Javier Bardem playing both of them (if he can master a decent Australian accent), mainly because of his chilling character in “No country for old men”
Manuscript/Notes: hand written or keyboard?
Scribble in a notebook while I am creating, then type / edit on my laptop.
Favorite leisure activity/hobby?
In warm sunny weather I love walking, swimming, cycling, eating out. In cold weather I tend to hibernate, watch TV, read and play my guitar and bass. I also love art galleries. I would have liked to have been a painter but I don’t think I have the talent for it.
I like most things but particularly really tasty dishes such as chilli, curry and possibly my favourite is a good paella.
ABOUT THE BOOK
When a young British man goes missing in Australia, his fiancée forms an unlikely partnership with an ambitious newspaper reporter; the pair travel to the Outback to investigate.
It’s 2022 and Britain’s economy has been in steady decline for the last decade. As a result of the ongoing employment crisis, thousands of young Brits travel to Australia each year, in search of work. But Australia’s economy has taken a turn for the worse too, and the government has tightened its immigration laws to curb the flow of migrant workers.
A pair of Australian brothers, Greg and Tony Andersen, devise an illicit scam to take advantage of the situation: Greg Andersen, the elder brother, is based in the UK where he entices young jobseekers by promising to help them find work; the unsuspecting Brits are then sent on a plane, having apparently had all the appropriate paperwork taken care of, only to be met on the other side by Tony Andersen who beats them up, takes their money and leaves them stranded in the Outback. When the bloodthirsty Tony gets carried away and one of their victims ends up dead, the police start to take notice – DI Brian Chambers launches an investigation into the mystery of the growing number of missing and robbed Brits, in this bizarre new form of people smuggling.
Alan Warner is a young Englishman who is enticed by The Andersens’ scheme, and sets off to Australia in hope of starting a new life there. When he arrives in Australia all communication with him stops. Then his fiancée Carol sees a newspaper article about Brits going missing in Australia and fears that Alan might be headed towards the same fate. Not knowing where else to turn, she contacts the journalist who wrote the piece, John Foster. The pair, now almost certain that Alan is a victim of the same series of robberies being investigated by the police, decide to travel to Australia to find him. When they arrive in the small South Australian town of Mannum, they join forces with DI Brian Chambers who confirms that Alan is missing, but warns them not to interfere with his investigations. Carol is devastated but John is distracted by his wild affair with their Australian guide, Debbie.
Will The Andersen’s be caught and Alan Warner saved, or will Carol, John and Debbie’s reckless vigilantism undermine any chance of finding him alive? Is Alan dead or kidnapped – and why?
Genre: Crime Thriller
Published by: CreateSpace (paperback) and KDP (ebook)
Publication Date: 1st August 2013