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August 12, 2016 / peoplesbookprize

Alex Howard’s Library Cat – TPBP Summer Collection 2016


In the lead up to The People’s Book Prize 2016 we caught up with author Alex Howard to talk about his non-fiction book

Library Cat

Where did the idea of LIBRARY CAT come from?

Procrastination, really! That and a particularly aloof black & white cat that happened to be skulking around Edinburgh University’s library at the time. I created a Facebook page for him, and within a couple of months, the cat had a favourite philosopher and a French cousin called Biblio Chat! It grew from there…

Black & White Publishing publish a variety of brilliant authors, what is it like to be in the company of talented writers?

Black & White publishes some delightful books and I’m thrilled and flattered to be sharing shelf-space along with their fabulous list of authors. I’ve always loved James Robertson’s writing ever since reading The Professor of Truth for the James Tait Black shortlist, and I continue to be amazed by the dizzying heights of fame achieved by Estelle Maskame! The GFG has to be a particular Black & White favourite of mine at the moment, though, following a recent re-acquaintance I’ve had with Roald Dahl’s adult fiction.

Have you got a message for your readers?

I would just like to say thank-you. The Library Cat stories emerged out of a communal effort: people sent me photos of Jordan, and I added captions to reveal his thoughts. That I now have a novel published and a burgeoning writing career was much more than I expected, and I’m beyond thrilled. My only words would be, keep loving your cats, keep reading, and never be scared to get your thoughts – however silly they seem – down on paper. There’s room for everyone’s creativity and opinion. Make yours heard!

What can we expect from you in the future?

I have several ideas I’m working on. I think Library Cat is just the beginning! Some ideas involve cats, and some don’t. It remains to be seen which idea decides to seduce me the strongest and impel me to write a new story. One thing’s for sure… I don’t think we’ve quite seen the end of Library Cat yet. I just know he’ll be back in some shape or form. Watch this space!

Any suggestions to support libraries?

Love your local library, and never underestimate its capacity to allow your mind to wonder and divert. Rediscover the art of browsing the stacks – you never know what your next favourite book might be. There’s something lovely about being in a building of books which is stripped bare of any commercial agenda. Relish it! Its gambit is not for you to buy, but to discover. The fact that you’re more likely to leave its doors with an esoteric book on Spanish philosophy rather than the latest bestseller is an attribute that shouldn’t be underestimated. And look out for cats!



Website/ Blog: alex.howard.5492

Facebook:  (Library Cat) / (Cats of Edinburgh)

Twitter: @ajhowardwriter / @edinlibrarycat

Linkedin: theedinburghginnel


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