Egghead is a youngster stranded in a grey windswept northern seaside town. He got involved in something horrible three years before and has had to hide here. We get mysterious glimpses of the past in flashbacks. The scenes are vividly painted and the characters are gradually revealed. You’re kept on edge as the story races on. You can’t put it down. The atmosphere is dark and menacing, and you are swept forward to what seems an inevitable grim conclusion
Lawrence Estrey (lawrenceez) is a musician and a writer from the UK. Recently, he published his second novel EggHead, a psychological thriller set in the north of England. Here, he answers some common questions about EggHead and his life in general:
Why did you choose to write teen fiction? Several reasons. First of all, my debut novel Secrets contained several scenes told from the perspective of children and teenagers (in this case, a ten-year-old boy and a sixteen-year-old girl), and I’d enjoyed the experience of writing from these perspectives.
Second, having read a great deal of adult fiction, mostly crime/thriller, I’d observed a type of stalemate situation in the personal lives of the major characters – i.e. they were often disillusioned in some way (especially crime investigators) or recovering from major problems like PTSD. I felt this tendency often created a tired feel, and in many case I would abandon reading a story about half of the way through. In teenage fiction, however, the protagonists generally have far more energy and are prepared to take all sorts of crazy risks. That’s what I like the best…craziness, risk taking – plus, raw emotion.
Anything of yourself in EggHead? Not exactly, though I lived in a coastal resort for a few weeks, and like central character EggHead, I wandered around aimlessly during that time. I also drifted into lots of trouble in my teens, so I can relate to some of EggHead’s experiences. In the story, EggHead is a heavy smoker, just like I was for years and years, but I managed to quit smoking completely while working on the final draft of the novel. Haven’t touched a cigarette since.
Did you find writing a second novel easier? In certain ways. For instance, the novel took just nine months to write while Secrets had taken about six years. In other ways, though, I found the writing far more difficult. I had higher standards. I kept going back through the manuscript and pruning, cutting out sections that I didn’t feel were good enough.
Are you working on anything else? Yes, another psychological thriller about music students set in the north of England. Like the other two novels, this latest involves an element of cross over with some of the scenes written from the perspective of a young adult and other sections from when he first goes to study in a university environment, aged eighteen. I’m also a musician, having trained in classical piano, and so can relate to a lot of what happens in this next novel.