David Owen is an inspiring Young Adult author whose recent novel, Panther, is published by Corsair. As well as being beautifully written with some amazing characters and a great story, Panther tackles the important issue of mental health in teenagers: he has such a gift for getting into the head of a teenage boy struggling to understanding himself and his place in the world. I couldn’t recommend it more highly. David lives in New Malden and is working on a new Young Adult novel as well as a Middle Grade novel, so watch this space!
What three words would you use to describe yourself?
Tall. Awkward. Oafish.
What do you love most about writing?
You get to create complete worlds and people out of absolutely nothing. It’s magic.
What do you find hardest about writing?
Everything. They don’t tell you how bloody hard writing is (they do, I just didn’t listen).
What kind of child were you?
A fat one.
Where’s your favourite place in the whole world?
Maybe Tenby in Wales. We used to take family holidays there, and it was just bloody gorgeous.
Do you have any quirky writing habits?
I really don’t! I don’t go to cafes or light candles or anything. I just sit inside at my desk and slug it out with the story.
What book do you wish you’d written?
All the ones that made loads of money? I’m not sure. It would be amazing to create something like Harry Potter that literally millions of people absolutely adore and will for the rest of their lives.
If you could have any super power, what would it be?
I would love to be able to instantaneously teleport anywhere in the world. Free travel, easy to visit people, comfortable bank robberies: perfect.
Do you have any writing tics that you’re forever editing out?
I overuse ‘suddenly.’ I can be a fussy writer, trying too hard to get something across when it doesn’t need it. I’m sure there’s more!
What’s your greatest fear?
Sharks. Hippos. Being eaten alive in general.
What are you reading at the moment?
I just finished Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami, and I’m about to start the final Skulduggery Pleasant book. Can’t believe I’ve almost finished the series!
What song would you like to be played at your funeral?
‘Song for Bob’ by Nick Cave & Warren Ellis. It’s the most beautiful thing.
What’s the most important lesson life has taught you?
Don’t get your hopes up too much. I am a very negative person.
Which writer do you most admire?
Do you have a favourite snack you turn to when you’re writing?
If it’s full of sugar I’m all over it.
What inspires you?
People who get up every day and keep going in spite of everything.
What’s your favourite word?
Kaleidoscope. One day I’ll learn to spell it.
When were you happiest?
I was always happiest, and still am, when hanging out with my closest friends.
What keeps you awake at night?
Fear of the abyss. Foxes.
What three tips would you give aspiring novelists?
Keep writing no matter what.