Friday, August 12, 2011

{Tens List} with Paul Dowswell


We’ve got Paul Dowswell on the blog today as part of The {Teen} Book Scene tour of his book Auslander. We got 2 great Tens Lists from him, His Favorite Quotes and his Favorite Things about Writing Auslander!


Ten best things about writing ‘The Auslander’

1) Going to Berlin to research the book. The librarians and museum curators I spoke to were all immensely helpful and Berlin is a fascinating place.

2) Visiting the spot where Stauffenberg planned his July 20th Coup against Hitler – it’s now The Museum of German Resistance (Gedenkstätte Deutscher Widerstand).

3) Spending days at the Imperial War Museum in London. I always wanted to work there when I was younger.

4) Visiting the Wiener Library in London – a fascinating archive of Holocaust material.

5) Being able to research in depth a subject that has fascinated me since I was a teen – how authoritarian regimes control their population

6) Getting a proof of the cover. My publisher Bloomsbury, had done a fantastic job, producing something that captured the spirit of the book. I was luck enough to have two great editors on the book too, who helped me shape and polish the story.

7) Getting invited all over the UK to talk in schools about it. I’ve been from Plymouth to Arbroath, Kent to Glasgow.

8) Talking at the Edinburgh Festival about it. I’ve been going to the Festival for twenty years and it was great to be an act rather than just a punter.

9) Getting invited to Rome, Turin, Paris and Bologna to talk about it. I love travelling, and its especially exciting to talk to young people in other parts of the world.

10) I was also invited to spend a week at Christ Church Grammar School in Perth, Western Australia, to teach creative writing classes, because they’d read Auslander.

Ten favourite quotes (Good and bad)


To everything there is a season and a time to every purpose under the heaven

King James Bible Ecclesiastes 3:18

Our lives are always changing and nothing stays the same. It’s banal when I say it, but it’s beautiful as its written here.


The golden age of rock and roll will never die

As long as children feel the need to laugh and cry

Ian Hunter/Mott the Hoople. The Golden Age of Rock and Roll

Noel Coward once said something snooty about ‘the potency of cheap music’. I love music and its power to touch our emotions and this sums that feeling up in one simple rhyme.


As for man, his days are as grass

As a flower in the field so he flourishes

For the wind passeth over it and it is gone;

And the place thereof shall know it no more.

King James Bible Psalm 103:14

I used to sing this at funerals when I was a chorister. It still sends a shiver down my spine in its description of our fleeting existence and the finality of death.


Our aim is not to cloth the naked or feed the hungry.

Joseph Goebbels paves the way for the Nazi Euthanasia programme against Germany’s physically and mentally handicapped. Nazi Party Congress, 1938. The utter heartlessness of the Nazis in one handy sentence. 2000 years of Western morality stood on its head.


All who would win joy, must share it; happiness was born a twin.

Lord Byron

I speak as a twin, and know, without a shadow of doubt, that the most important things in life are family and friends.


Death solves all problems — no man, no problem.

Attributed to Joseph Stalin (but actually made up by novelist Anatoly Rybakov)

A succinct summary of life in Stalin’s Russia – shame he never actually said it.


Live with me and be my love

Christopher Marlowe The passionate sheppard to his love.

My wife sent me that poem when I moved out of London to live with her.


If we moved in next door, your lawn would die.

Lemmy describes his new band Mötörhead to the music press

I’m glad they don’t live next to me, but this is the funniest quote in rock and roll.


Do to others what you would have them do to you

New International Bible Matthew 7:12

Is there a better rule in life?


I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I've watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die.

Replicant Roy Batty’s last words in ‘Bladerunner’

I ripped this off shamelessly for the prologue of my first novel ‘Powder Monkey’.


Thanks so much Paul for stopping in to our blog! We sure have enjoyed having you!

Find Paul Dowswell and his Novels:

amber copy

1 comment:

  1. Going to Berlin and London to research this book sounds exciting!

    Also, I’m a new follower—wonderful blog! Stop by my blog and follow me too? :)


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