Belinda Bauer, crime writer: 'I think Cryptonomicon is a work of genius'


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Where are you now and what can you see?

I am in bed, exhausted after a six-hour drive from the Harrogate Crime Festival. My dogs are in their beds beside mine, and from the window I can see a wheat field, the Bristol Channel, and Exmoor beyond that. But if I lean sideways I can see the maintenance hangar at Cardiff Airport, which is a bit less pastoral!

What are you currently reading?

High Rollers by Jack Bowman – it's about an air crash investigator and an international conspiracy. Scary, funny stuff.

Choose a favourite author and say why you admire her/him

Neal Stephenson, who has that rare combination of humanity and technical research perfectly balanced in his books. I think Cryptonomicon is a work of genius.

Describe the room where you usually write

It's small, with a fake wooden floor, an Ikea bookcase, seven small fish in a glass bowl filled with paperweights, a very messy roll-top desk and a lot of unpacked cardboard boxes from moving in four months ago. There are French windows which lead nowhere, but the dogs sleep there in the sunlight all day as I work.

Which fictional character most resembles you?

Eeyore. I love sitting by myself, doing absolutely nothing and going nowhere. A burst balloon in a glass jar sounds like a good night in to me.

Who is your hero/heroine from outside literature?

My mum, who's apparently decided to grow old mischievously. She's 79 and only just gave up work as a barmaid, so I think she's de-mob happy. It's fun to watch.

Belinda Bauer's novel, 'Rubbernecker', won the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award