Sunday, 24 April 2016

#LadLitBlogTour Week 1 Round-Up

Lad Lit, Blog Tour, The Lad Lit BlogTour, The Drought, The Flood, Steven Scaffardi, Comedy, Humour, Humor, Sex Love and Dating Disasters,

"One month, 39 blogs, five countries, three continents and a whole host of interviews, character Q&A’s, guest blogs, book reviews and the odd giveaway – I am taking lad lit global. From London to California, Bradford to Texas, Ipswich to Montana; the #LadLitBlogTour bus will be globetrotting from as far afield as Australia then back into Europe across Scotland and The Netherlands, and it all starts here in Kent, England at Boon’s Bookcase…"

That is the exact intro that got the Lad Lit Blog Tour started with a bang on Boon's Bookcase with @JulieBoon on Tuesday, and wow what a week it has been since then. In fact, the whole tour started with a skip in its step following a bonus book review before the official April 19 start date.

On April 14, The Drought was given a five-star review on By The Letter Book Reviews, with Sarah Hardy (@sarahhardy681) saying: "The Drought is a hilarious novel that I think would definitely make a belter of a movie or television show. Would certainly highly recommend this to both sexes who have a good sense of humour and are in need of something more lighthearted."

From there it was off to My Book File Blog (who had already given four star reviews to The Drought and The Flood in March) for a Q&A session. My favourite question was when Cindy (@MybookfileBlog) asked me: "If you could take any of the women from The Drought and The Flood out on a date, who would you pick and why?" Check out the interview here for my answer.

Next up on day three was a trip to Bookaholic Confessions for another interview. Holly (@BookaholicHolly) - who is also running a giveaway for her readers to win a signed copy of The Drought on her site - was the perfect hostess. We had a good old chat about everything from lad lit to my stand-up comedy to my favourite authors. Check out the interview here. And I have just seen on Goodreads that Holly has finished reading The Drought so fingers crossed she enjoyed it!

Day 4 was with Linda Hill (@Lindahill50Hill) at Linda's Book Bag for a unique experience - an interview with Dan Hilles (lead character in The Drought). It was great fun actually, and Dan did a good job talking up the book if this tweet was anything to go by:


Following that nice little surprise, an even bigger one was in store on day 5. First of all I stopped by for a pint and a packet of crisps with fellow lad lit author Jon Rance (@JRance75) to have a good chat about writing comedy, and then I got the added bonus of a five-star review for The Drought from Michelle (@thebookmagnet) at The Book Magnet who said: "Steven Scaffardi has a Mary Poppins' handbag of hilarity that goes on and on until I had to put the book down from fear of actually splitting my sides!"

And to cap it all off, I was with Kerry Parsons (@bellaboobos11) from Chat About Books for another cracking interview. We spoke about where my ideas came from, how I picked the names for my characters, and who my favourite authors are. Make sure you check it out here.

Well, that's it! Week one is over and week two starts tomorrow with Chick Lit Goddess. A huge thank you to all of the bloggers who took part this week - you guys are awesome! Make sure you follow the progress on Twitter by using the hashtag #LadLitBlogTour and follow the rest of the blog tour here:

Lad Lit, Blog Tour, The Lad Lit BlogTour, The Drought, The Flood, Steven Scaffardi, Comedy, Humour, Humor, Sex Love and Dating Disasters,

#LadLitSunday: Matt Dunn joins the Lad Lit Blog Tour and Rob Radcliffe pens a book by his readers

Lad Lit Sunday, Keep Calm, Lad Lit, Lad Lit news, #LadLitSunday
It's been a quiet week in lad lit land so I will keep this update short!

First off, I am delighted to announce that Matt Dunn will be joining the Lad Lit Blog Tour. The lad lit best-seller will be hosting a guest post from yours truly on his very own blog in a few weeks time.

The first week of the blog tour to promote lad lit has just come to a close and it's been fantastic so far. One of the highlights was being part of a Q&A on Jon Rance's blog, so to have signed up a second hugely successful lad lit author is a real honour. 

And this week I interviewed Rob Radcliffe, who is currently flying high in the Amazon humour charts with his novel Meat Market. One of the highlights of my chat with Rob was finding out about his latest project called Untitled where his readers are helping him write the novel.

Rob said of the unique project: "As a writer you find yourself shut in the dark while you scribble away in the hope your book will connect with your readers once you have finished. For Untitled I have turned that on its head. As I write the chapters I post them on my website and the pages are accessible to people who have signed up to The Novel Experiment reader’s list. I wanted feedback and comments as I wrote this book, I wanted reader engagement as I went through the writing process and so far feedback has been awesome. There have been readers who have made suggestions to me which have helped shape the direction this novel is going and it is great. The title will be voted for by my ever growing email list and it really feel like I am connecting with the people I do this for, my readers"

You can check out the full interview here.

Tweet of the Week
He has a point...

Author Interview: Rob Radcliffe

Author Interview, Lad Lit, Rob Radcliffe, Lad Lit
Hi Rob, welcome to the lad lit blog. For those who don't know Rob Radcliffe, please tell us a bit about yourself.
Hi Steve, thanks for having me on here. I’m Rob Radcliffe, I live in Manchester, a single dad with two very noisy kids, a full time job and a full time writing career to juggle. Sometimes I even get to sleep. I started writing books about twenty years ago when I was 13 or 14 and pray they have gotten at least a bit better since then.

Fast forward those twenty years and I currently have two lad-lit novels, a sci-fi novella, and a sci-fi novel published. Now that I’ve put it like that it feels like I haven’t been doing very much writing at all in two decades…oh dear.

You've had a pretty awesome start to April with your novel Meat Market topping the Kindle humour charts. Congratulations! Tell us a bit about that book and why you think it has done so well.
Meat Market is about a guy who gets dumped, loses his job and loses his dog in one swing of the axe. Down on his luck Greg doesn’t know where to turn and that is when his friend Stu dives in to get him back out there into the world of singledom. Greg reluctantly follows Stu on this ride into the realm of the single person and in turn Stu delivers his cock-eyed view of the world, eventually signing the reluctant Greg up to be a male escort like him.

I think the book has done so well recently because of the characters. On one side there is Greg, a scared and timid guy who has been in the same relationship since University, his first relationship, and now has to deal with trying to wade through the terrifying waters of having to talk to total strangers who are also the opposite sex. Then there is Stu, Greg’s mentor through these trying times, super confident, unapologetic, a real player whose job is escorting ladies 24/7. It’s really very chalk and cheese with these guys but with some hilarious moments because of this.

Any tips you can share to any aspiring authors reading this interview how to top those Amazon charts?
Publish and pray? No, only joking. I think authors these days really need to wear two hats. First and foremost is the writer, creating the stories and having a great time doing it, but then when you have your story all packaged and ready to go you need to switch hats and think like a publisher/marketer. Get onto social media, find out about advertising your wares, generate a decent author website, collect reader email addresses and talk to your fans about what is coming next from you. This way when readers start buying your books and subscribing to your newsletters, you have that core for your business so that the next time you have a book out, you can email your group, they will buy, you will start inching up the charts where you’ll have more exposure and collect more readers for the next time, growing and growing in popularity.

Meat Market is your second lad lit novel after The Race. We already know a bit about Meat Market so here is your chance to do the sales pitch for The Race. Go...!
The Race is about four friends spending eight days on the Greek Island of Zante. To make their holiday interesting they decide to introduce a scoreboard which will tally up points on each of their themed nights from Snogathon (see how many girls you can kiss), Frolic with a Fogey (points rewarded based on the age of the lady and how far the contestants get with them), then there is, Identity, Deception, the list goes on. Along the way they appoint one of them as the judge who proceeds in making the pointing systems more and more elaborate and confusing. There are laughs, fights, make ups, lads being lads on a lad’s holiday, and then there is the sex because, after all, each one of the guys wants that crowning glory and the title of Sex God.

Meat Market, The Race, Rob Radcliffe, Lad Lit
You have also written thrillers and sci-fi novels. Do you have a favourite genre to write? And do any of the genres ever cross-over - could we see lad lit in space one day?!
Lad lit in space, now there’s a niche I’m guessing wouldn’t be too crowded, although wouldn’t that essentially have been the Red Dwarf spin off novels by Grant Naylor? I think for the ease of writing Lad Lit is my favourite genre to write in. It is also fun because really anything goes in terms of dialog. It is the closest to reality I write and so I try and keep the themes and characters as realistic as possible. Although, and this is a big ‘Although’, I recently finished a novel called The Divine which is a kind of an epic science fiction saga. It is not sci-fi in the traditional sense, there is no space or aliens, this book deals with themes such as immortality, evolution, the next step in man’s evolution and granted it took me a long time to write but at the moment it is the piece of work I am most proud of. The Divine will be a four or five book series but in between each book I will be writing a Lad Lit novel to keep myself entertained.

Out of all of the characters that you have written in your two lad lit novels, who is your favourite character and why?
Stu, without a doubt. Stu is Greg’s best friend in Meat Market, the unapologetic Lothario who leads Greg down the path of singledom and teaches him the way of his world. Such a great character, such fun to write and I think he comes out with the best and funniest one-liners in the novel. Upon reading Meat Market recently for the first time in several years an idea for a possible sequel has begun to form in my mind so watch this space.

Sounds intresting! We'll be watching! What made you decide to write lad lit?
I guess reading some lad lit, although I wasn’t even aware it was a genre at the time. I had spent my teenage years immersed in Jack Higgins, Stephen King, Irving Walsh, and John Grisham novels, but then I picked up a novel called What men think about sex by Mark Mason and loved the conversational style of writing. The Race was conceived on the back of Manson’s What men think about sex, and I gave writing in first person perspective a go…the end product is available for all to try. I went on to read Matt Dunn and Nick Hornby while writing and began to get a feel for the genre, but it wasn’t until I picked up Danny Wallace’s Join Me and then Yes Man that I realized how funny, sarcastic, and silly an author could be in order to make the reader smile. So in answering your question without going around the houses, Mark Mason introduced me to writing lad lit but Danny Wallace got me hooked.

Do you think lad lit will ever reach the heights of its older and much more successful sibling, chick lit?
That’s an interesting question, and I’d love to be the male Cecilia Ahern or Meriam Keyes but I think Chick Lit’s naughty younger brother will not be able to outshine his big sister and that is down to the readers. I have found that 70% of my Lad Lit novel’s readers are die-hard Chick Lit fans, which is great, but it also means there are still a lot of Chick Lit fans who don’t read Lad Lit…yet. As the reader base for this genre of writing is predominantly female it means more girls need to start discovering Lad Lit to even the playing field. That or guys could put down their FHM or Loaded magazines and start reading our stuff, come on guys, you’re letting the side down here, the girls are winning!

What are your top five lad lit novels?
5. Best Man by Matt Dunn
4. The Catch by Mark Mason
3. High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
2. What Men Think About Sex by Mark Mason
1. Yes Man by Danny Wallace

Unless of course I am allowed my own, yes Meat Market is by far my favourite Lad Lit novel. No? Against the rules voting for myself? Oh, alright then, stick with the list.

What's next for Rob Radcliffe the lad lit author?
The novel I am currently writing is called Untitled and is available for free download on amazon, itunes, B&N etc. I should probably explain what I am doing with this project a little more. As a writer you find yourself shut in the dark while you scribble away in the hope your book will connect with your readers once you have finished. For Untitled I have turned that on its head. As I write the chapters I post them on my website and the pages are accessible to people who have signed up to The Novel Experiment reader’s list. I wanted feedback and comments as I wrote this book, I wanted reader engagement as I went through the writing process and so far feedback has been awesome. There have been readers who have made suggestions to me which have helped shape the direction this novel is going and it is great. The title will be voted for by my ever growing email list and it really feel like I am connecting with the people I do this for, my readers.

As of this morning I am 26,000 words into the novel (Lad Lit but a lot darker than anything I have written before) and I am hoping to have the finished product available by June/July.

Once Untitled is done and dusted I will begin outlining for book two of the Divine Chronicles: CHRONOS. Already ideas are littering my head but I need to keep kicking them to the side so I can get Untitled written and ready for my readers.

Sounds very cool! I'll keep my eyes open for that. Good luck with the project and thanks for stopping by.

Find out more about Rob at his website and at his Amazon author page.

The Lad Lit Blog is now on Bloglovin!


That's right, you can now follow my blog with Bloglovin by clicking the link! I don't have too much else to say on this subject other than - give me a follow!

Sunday, 17 April 2016

#LadLitSunday: Mike Gayle and Matthew Norman have new books and Tony Parsons dines with a cannibal

#LadLitSunday, Keep Calm It's Lad Lit Sunday, Lad Lit News, Lad Lit
Mike Gayle will be launching his new novel The Hope Family Calendar at Waterstones on Birmingham High Street on June 14 at 7pm. The lad lit superstar (yep, that's a title now!) will be enjoying a glass of wine or two with fans to answers questions at the official book launch.

In Mike's new book, Tom Hope takes the centre stage as a man struggling to get on with life following the death of his wife. A year on from the tragic accident and Tom is arrested, leaving his mother-in-law Linda to step in and take Tom's two daughters off to Australia.Tom is left with the decision to either fall deeper into grief or step up and be the father his girls need. Pre-order the new book at Amazon.

Matthew Norman also has a new book coming out. The Domestic Violets author publishes We're All Damaged on June 1 and has been busy promoting it on Twitter saying: "My pre-pub publicity strategy for We're All Damaged is to awkwardly tell my friends I have a book coming out soon."

The story is about down-on-his-luck Andy Carter who has just lost his wife, his job, ruined his best friend's wedding and is now living in a tiny apartment in New York City with an angry cat. Then Andy meets Daisy who comes with her own baggage, but might just be Andy's last chance to set things right.

Tony Parsons was interviewed by WHSmith this week to promote his new crime thriller The Hanging Club and gave some very interesting answers on his favourite crime fiction, including that the fictional crime character he'd have dinner with is Dr Hannibal Lecter! Parsons said: "I think it would have to be Dr Hannibal Lecter – I am sure he would be civilised, sophisticated, amusing company – as long as I wasn’t actually on the menu." Read the full interview here.

Quick bits
  • I will be interviewing lad lit author Rob Radcliffe in the next 1-2 weeks to talk about his book Meat Market, following the Ben Hatch interview I announced last week.
  • The #LadLitBlogTour starts this Tuesday at Boon's Bookcase and then goes on to visit a further 38 blogs. Follow the hashtag for all the fun!
Tweet of the week
It's a double whammy this week! First John O'Farrell gives Obama something to think about...

...and then Danny Wallace displays his brilliant quick wit once again!

Sunday, 10 April 2016

The Lad Lit Blog Tour line-up announced with 39 dates! #LadLitBlogTour

Lad Lit, Blog Tour, Lad Lit Blog Tour, Steven Scaffardi

19 APRIL: @JULIEBOON
BOON'S BOOK CASE
boonsbookcase.blogspot.co.uk

20 APRIL: @MYBOOKFILEBLOG
MY BOOK FILE
mybookfile.wordpress.com

21 APRIL: @BOOKAHOLICHOLLY
BOOKAHOLIC CONFESSIONS
bookaholicconfessions.wordpress.com


22 APRIL: @LINDAHILL50HILL
LINDA'S BOOK BAG
lindasbookbag.com


23 APRIL: @JRANCE75
JON RANCE BLOG
jonrance.com


24 APRIL: @BELLABOOBOS11
CHAT ABOUT BOOKS
chataboutbooks.wordpress.com


25 APRIL: @CHICKLITGODDESS
CHICK LIT GODDESS
chicklitgoddess.com


26 APRIL: @REVIEWCAFE
THE BOOK REVIEW CAFE
thebookreviewcafe.wordpress.com


27 APRIL: @CHILLEDCH
CHRIS HILL BLOG
chrishillauthor.co.uk


28 APRIL: @GILBSTER1000
RACHEL'S RANDOM READS
rachelsrandomreads.blogspot.co.uk


29 APRIL: @CHICKLITCLUB
CHICK LIT CLUB CONNECT
connect.chicklitclub.com


30 APRIL: @SOPHIERTB
REVIEWED THE BOOK
reviewedthebook.co.uk


1 MAY: @23REVIEWSTREET
23 REVIEW STREET
23reviewstreet.blogspot.co.uk
2 MAY: @KINCAVELKROSSES
BCF BOOK REVIEWS
bcfreviews.wordpress.com


3 MAY: @BOOKREVIEWSAFAE
TRUTH ABOUT BOOKS
tabbyafae.com


4 MAY: @HELLOCHICKLIT
HELLO CHICK LIT
hellochicklit.com


5 MAY: @SARAHHARDY681
BY THE LETTER BOOK REVIEWS
bytheletterbookreviews.com


6 MAY: @HEYSAIDRENEE
HEY SAID RENEE
heysaidrenee.blogspot.co.uk


7 MAY: @HAYLEYSBOOKBLOG
RATHER TOO FOND OF BOOKS
rathertoofondofbooks.wordpress.com

8 MAY: @BCBANDMORE
BCB & MORE
bestcrimebooksandmore.co.uk


9 MAY: @MANOFLABOOK
MAN OF LA BOOK
manoflabook.com/wp


10 MAY: @AMYLUISAA
AMY'S BOOKISH LIFE
amysbookishlife.blogspot.co.uk


11 MAY: @CHICKLITPLUS
CHICK LIT PLUS
chicklitplus.com


12 MAY: @LOVEOFAGOODBOOK
THE LOVE OF A GOOD BOOK
theloveofagoodbook.wordpress.com


13 MAY: @CHELLESBOOKREVI
CHELLE'S BOOK REVIEWS
chellesbookreviews.blogspot.co.uk


14 MAY: @BECCASBOOKSUK
BECCA'S BOOKS
thisisbeccasbooks.blogspot.co.uk
15 MAY: @SBROADHURST
SARAH'S BOOK REVIEWS
sbroadhurstreviews.blogspot.co.uk


16 MAY: @INKEDBROWNIES
INKED BROWNIES
inkedbrownies.com


17 MAY: @XLEPTODACTYLOUS
XLEPTODACTYLOUS
xleptodactylous.co.uk


18 MAY: @CHICKLITCENTRAL
CHICK LIT CENTRAL
chicklitcentral.com


19 MAY: @COMMONBOOKSENSE
COMMON BOOK SENSE
commonbooksense.blogspot.co.uk

 
20 MAY: @CPHILIPPOU123
WRITING ROUND THE BLOCK
cphilippou123.wordpress.com


21 MAY: @BOOKBINGE
BOOK BINGE
bookbinge.com


22 MAY: @EMSB84
BOOKS & BOARDIES
booksandboardies.com


23 MAY: @THEBOOKMAGNET
THE BOOK MAGNET
thebookmagnet.blogspot.com


24 MAY: @LEAHJMOYSE
REFLECTIONS OF A READER
reflectionsofareader.blogspot.co.uk


25 MAY: @PORTYBELLE
PORTOBELLO BOOK BLOG
portobellobookblog.com


26 MAY: @SHAZSBOOKBLOG
SHAZ'S BOOK BLOG
shazsbookblog.blogspot.co.uk


27 MAY: @ANNETTEHANNAH
SINCERELY BOOKANGELS
sincerelybookangels.blogspot.co.uk

ebook giveaway, kindle giveaway, free ebook, free kindle, Steven Scaffardi, The Drought, The Flood

#LadLitSunday: Lad Lit authors support the occupiers of Carnegie Library & Rob Radcliffe tops the charts

Keep Calm It's Lad Lit Sunday, Lad Lit, Lad Lit news, #LadLitSunday, Lad lit superstars Nick Hornby and David Nicholls have thrown their support behind the occupiers of Carnegie Library by signing an open letter of support to condemn the proposed changes to the Lambeth library service.

Forty protestors have occupied the building in Herne Hill, London, since March 31 to campaign against council plans to close the library and transform it into a healthy living centre. More than 220 writers signed the letter within 24 hours of being asked to do so.

Good news this week for lad lit author Rob Radcliffe as he celebrated his novel Meat Market going straight to number one in the free download charts on Amazon in the humour category. Radcliffe was full of thanks on Twitter for the readers who shot him to the top of the charts.

I am delighted to announce that the Lad Lit Blog Tour has announced another eight dates taking the grand total to 39. Starting at Boon's Book Case on April 19, the tour will the travel all across the UK taking in 26 stops, with eight in the US, two in The Netherlands and two more in Australia. You can follow the tour on Twitter at the #LadLitBlogTour hashtag.

Quick bits
  •  Author Nick Spalding will be at the London Book Fair (April 12-14) this week at Olympia, London on Thursday morning. Go see him at the Amazon KDP stand
  • I will be interviewing Ben Hatch (author of The P45 Diaries) in the next week or two as part of my Author Interview series
Tweet of the week
Great banter from Danny Wallace this week as always...

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

UK Garage Horse Racing might just be the most brilliant thing I've ever seen!


Any group of lads involved in a WhatsApp group know that you are going to be guaranteed three things: discussions about the next boys night out, footy banter on a weekend, and the links to some pretty funny shit on the internet.

The latter happened to me a couple of days ago when one of my mates introduced me to UK Garage Horse Racing by comedians Ross & Josh - hosts of The Not So Late Show.

This my friends, is genius...


I think it might just be worth keeping an eye out for these two tallywhackers from Leeds...

Sunday, 3 April 2016

#LadLitSunday: Matt Dunn donates the dedication in his next book to charity

Keep Calm It's Lad Lit Sunday, Lad Lit, Lad Lit news, #LadLitSunday, Another week, another #LadLitSunday and this week there is no other place to start other than the awesome initiative Matt Dunn has set-up to raise money for the charity Streetwise.

The author of Home and The Ex-Boyfriend's Handbook will dedicate his next novel to one lucky winner to donates just £2 on his JustGiving page to help the homeless. Matt has been busy promoting the unique opportunity this week on Twitter by Tweeting: "Win a WHOLE BOOK DEDICATED TO YOU (or someone you love/fancy/want to embarrass) for just £2." The dedication will appear in every single copy sold, not just the copy the winner receives.

It's a brilliant idea and I have already made my donation - you can make your donation here.

Elsewhere, Esquire magazine published the article 50 Novels All Men Should Read. Some of the books included in the list: The Road by Cormac McCarthy, The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, Catch-22 by Joseph Heller, and Hearts In Atlantis by Stephen King. Sam Parker who wrote the article writes: "Forget coming-of-age fiction or impenetrable 'classics' – these are the books all grown men should be ticking off. Why? Because they're as entertaining as they are wise."

In other news, I interviewed lad lit author Ben Adams this week and he revealed he was busy working on his third book with the working title Trouble in the Staffroom. You can read the full interview here.

Quick bits
  • I announced this week that my Lad Lit Blog Tour will start on April 19 and run until May 19. Follow the hashtag #LadLitBlogTour for more announcements
  • The Real Men, Real Style website put together their 10 Books All Men Should Own list. You can see it here.
Tweet of the week
Great quote picked out from author Jon Rance. It's got to be up there with Rod Stewart's "I wish that I knew what I know now, when I was younger." :) 

Saturday, 2 April 2016

Book Giveaway! Download The Drought eBook at Amazon for free from April 28 - May 2

Book giveaway, Amazon KDP, Amazon KDP giveaway, ebook giveaway, The Drought, Steven Scaffardi, Sex Love Dating Disasters

To celebrate the upcoming Lad Lit Blog Tour I am delighted to announce that I will be offering Sex, Love & Dating Disasters: The Drought for free for five days straight in the build-up to the Bank Holiday on May 2.

You will be able to download the Kindle version of the lad lit comedy novel between April 28 and May 2. If you do download the book, please Tweet about it using the #LadLitBlogTour hashtag and then leave a review at Amazon so I know what you think of it.

But I don't have a Kindle
Not a problem! You can download the Kindle app to your smartphone or tablet absolutely free and then take advantage of this fantastic giveaway! Simply click one of the links below to get started.

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/kindle-read-books-ebooks-magazines/id302584613?mt=8
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.amazon.kindle&hl=en_GB

And finally all you have to do is to get yourself over to Amazon on April 28 and download the eBook. And if you can't wait that long then you can always treat yourself to a copy for just 99p! I'm almost giving it away right now!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Drought-Love-Dating-Disasters-Book-ebook/dp/B00FM53MK8/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8
http://www.amazon.com/Drought-Love-Dating-Disasters-Book-ebook/dp/B00FM53MK8/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

So now you have no excuses! Make sure you download The Drought during the #LadLitBlogTour, leave a review at Amazon and keep checking back for more lad lit news!

Author Interview: Ben Adams

Author Interview, Ben Adams, Lad Lit, Six Lies, Six Months to Get a Life
Hi Ben, thanks for taking the time out to chat to me today. I'm guessing you must be very busy promoting your new book Six Lies which came out at the end of last year. Tell me a bit about that book and how it has been doing so far.
Steve, it’s a pleasure to be invited on to your blog. Yes, the last few months have been busy. Six Lies came out in December, the idea being that it could fill a stocking far more effectively than your average socks, ties and cheap aftershave. The book did reach No.1 in some obscure category on Amazon for a while (books written on a Tuesday by a bloke called Ben), but the absolute top of the charts was dominated by a bunch of barely literate sportspeople with bugger all to say.

The story is in some ways classic lad lit. There’s a band stuck in the 1980s, a wife running off with a librarian and a fair bit of drunken banter. But there’s more. Our protagonist, Dave Fazackerley, discovers the day after her funeral that his mother wasn’t his mother after all. Six Lies follows Dave as he tries to make sense of his life. Will he discover the truth about his mother? Will he ever discover that there’s life beyond U2? More importantly, will he win his wife back from the clutches of the book dork?

Six Lies is your second novel following Six Months to Get a Life about a man coming to terms with the break-up of his marriage. You have openly talked about your own divorce inspiring you to write a novel so how much of your own experiences translates on to the pages of your book?
I remember staring into my fridge one lunchtime. It was Good Friday. I was in a pretty low place. My kids were off having fun with my ex, my house was oppressively quiet and all my mates were with their own perfect families. Should I open a can of lager and drift blissfully into a drunken stupor? It certainly wouldn’t have been the first time.

Somehow I found the will to kick myself up the arse, to stop feeling sorry for myself. It was time to get a grip. In a moment of inspiration, I decided to write Six Months to Get a Life.

Although it was a story about a man coming to terms with his divorce, it was never my story. I couldn’t write about my life. Aside from the fact that no one in their right mind would want to read my story, I had no right to write about my kids or my ex. So instead I took great pleasure in inventing a new ex, in inventing more interesting mates and, without giving much away, inventing a new love interest. Six Months to Get a Life is purely a work of fiction but it is certainly true to say that the emotions that Graham Hope, the divorced dad, feels are those that I felt at one time or another whilst going through my own crap time.

You also took part in a BBC documentary which aired in January called The Age of Loneliness. What made you decide to take part and how difficult was it to make the decision to speak in front of the cameras?
The documentary-makers approached me on the back of a blog I published bemoaning the havoc that my marriage break-up had reaped on my social life. ‘Will you speak openly on camera about your loneliness?’ The producer asked me. ‘No.’ I replied, and a year later, there I was, pouring my heart out on BBC1.

Ben Adams, BBC, Lad Lit, The Age of Loneliness

To this day I don’t really know why I agreed to take part in the project. Being filmed playing football with my boys, barbecuing sausages, writing my next book and then sitting on the BBC Breakfast sofa talking about the film were certainly a break from the routine. Being on the telly helped my book sales too, but I like to think that the reason I said yes was that I wanted other people who are going through what I went through to know that they aren’t the only ones feeling the way they do.

You've decided to tackle a genre of books dominated by female writers. How difficult is it for a lad lit author to make an impact when the audience you are going for are already committed to chick lit?
Most of my readers are women. I pitched Six Months to Get a Life to a few chick lit websites when it first came out. They gave the book great reviews but that doesn’t mean I am yet rivaling Sophie Kinsella and Helen Fielding for top spot in the bestsellers list. I have got a fair way to go before I can really say that I’ve made an impact.

In your opinion, what are the main differences between lad lit and chick lit?
Beer as opposed to wine? Penis size as opposed to weight loss? Moody strops rather than neurotic hang-ups? And maybe more lust, less love.

Seriously, I’m not sure there is a clear difference. Lad lit doesn’t always follow the same formula, and neither does chick lit. I might try and write a book with a neurotic, weight-conscious, wine-swilling protagonist one day.

Who are your favourite authors/books and why?
I love anyone who writes witty character-based stories. Without wishing to be clich├ęd, I have been a big Nick Hornby fan for more than twenty years. He writes about people you wouldn’t be surprised if you met down your local. Lisa Jewell’s ‘Ralph’s Party’ is also a story that has stuck in my mind. But I probably have to confess that Adrian Mole, or should I say Sue Townsend, probably convinced me that I wanted to write. Adrian and I are the same age. Obviously Adrian’s penis is shorter than mine, but other than that, the two of us had a lot in common. I started writing a diary once I had read his, and the rest, as they say, is history…

You are doing lots of self-promotion. What is the best advice you can give to an indie author from what you have learned promoting your first two books?
Don’t give your money to the multitude of websites that claim to have millions of readers clamoring to hear about your books. Instead, get active on social media. Blog more often than I do, tweet, be nice to other authors and doors will open for you.

From the two books you have written, which character is your favourite and why?
All of my characters have their personality faults but I love each and every one of them. They have all occupied a place in my heart for months at a time. If I had to pick a few out, I would say that I enjoyed writing Dave’s dad’s dialogue in ‘Six Lies’. He’s a cantankerous old sod. And Graham Hope’s children gave me some fun in ‘Six Months to Get a Life’. Children say things that adults might think but wouldn’t dream of saying.

I read one of your blog posts where you said writing is better than sex. Care to explain?!
No, my girlfriend has only just started talking to me again. If you really want to hear the argument, you can have a look here.

And finally, what can we expect next from Ben Adams?
More of the same I’m afraid. My third book, provisionally called ‘Trouble in the Staffroom’, is clogging up my laptop at the moment. I am thoroughly enjoying writing it. Hopefully it will be out later this year.

Great stuff, thanks Ben! Good luck with the new book.