Sunday Pate

My new book, With A Bullet, is a story set in London in the 1970s. It's about four people in the world of popular music who are dealing with their individual issues, some having to do with acquiring fame and fortune and some with living with it.

The title comes from Billboard's Top 100 jargon. When a record goes "Number 40 with a bullet", for example, it means that it shot up out of nowhere and is predicted to go straight to the Top 10...

I actually wrote this book many years ago, but it was pretty godawful. The manuscript was one thing that I was glad went in The Great Dump of 2001. A few months ago the story started haunting me and I knew that I could rewrite it into something worth reading. The characters are so firmly etched upon my life that my brain actually missed them (see this entry, The House I Never Lived In, for an explanation). The book is no longer self-indulgently autobiographical; the characters have evolved their own identities quite apart from those they previously had. I've grown up, it seems, and I can create characters that have little to do with me. That's the gift that years of experience gives us writers.