Garry Kilworth

Biography

"Garry Kilworth's stories refuse easy categorization; they’re gorgeously written, heartbreakingly poignant, multiculturally savvy, sharp and smart, and always strange and surprising."

- Claude Lalumiere

Garry Kilworth

Okay, here's the part where I get to tell you a little about myself. I was born in York., England, during the early years of WW2. My childhood was spent travelling with my mum and dad and two brothers to various parts of the globe - my dad was in the RAF - my favourite years being in Aden (now Yemen) where I lived the life of Kipling's 'Kim' and read a great deal, mostly William books and Rudyard Kipling. At 15 I had been to 22 different schools and was about to go to another one, Boy Entrants training school for youths who wanted to join the Royal Air Force. I spent 17 years in the RAF before joining Cable and Wireless for 8 years. During all that time I was writing stories. My break came with 'Let's Go to Golgotha' a short story which won the Gollancz/Sunday Times short story competition. I still felt a little under-educated so later I went to King's College, London University and obtained an English degree with honours.

At 35 I had my first novel published by Faber and Faber - 'In Solitary' - a science fiction novel. I've now written sf and fantasy novels, film novelisations such as 'Highlander', historical war novels set in the Crimean War (as Garry Douglas) and general fiction, such as 'Witchwater Country' and 'In The Hollow Of The Deep-Sea Wave.' As FK Salwood I've indulged in historical novels about country matters. I like to do something different each time, so if you want an author who has a string of books set in the same world with the same characters you're in the wrong web site. I'm now in my sixties, married to the same person who took me for worse or better at 21, Annette. We have two kids, Richard and Chantelle, who are married to Julie and Mark, respectively. We also have 5 grandkids in descending order of age: Conrad, Christian, Jordan, Alexander and Chloe. They're all well-loved.

I love writing. If it were outlawed tomorrow I would be a criminal. It's a compulsion. In 1980 I began writing children's books and this has become a major part of my output. It's still science fiction, fantasy, ghost stories and all that imaginative and speculative stuff, though as with my adult books there are one or two straight fiction novels amongst them. I go into the schools to give talks to the kids about writers and writing and I find them receptive and bright, even in so-called 'failing' schools. They ask a lot of searching questions and I have to give sensible answers or they boo me. It's good fun and I learn a lot.

Horn-blowing: I've won several prizes - British Science Fiction Award, World Fantasy Award, both for the same story, 'The Ragthorn' written in collaboration with a great writer called Rob Holdstock who has his own website, which appears under 'Links' on this site, so I'm not going into details here. On my own I've been twice shortlisted for the children's Carnegie Medal award and have won the Lancashire 'Children's Book of the Year Award' which is judged by kids so it's doubly relevant. In all I've been shortlisted for about two dozen awards. I've also won the Interzone Magazine poll for the best short story - twice - the first time for 'The Sculptor' and then again with Rob for 'The Ragthorn'. My novels and short stories have been translated into 17 languages including Hebrew and Japanese. Maybe more that I don't know about. That's about it. I've probably told you too much of stuff you didn't want to know and not enough of stuff you did.