Copy of P1000371(1)

Who is Kevin Wignall?

The birthday seems clear-cut - March 15th (though some sources cite March 2nd - either way, he's a Pisces for those who hold with such things). The year is less clear - 1965, 1966, 1967 or 1970 (maybe we could just average them out). The place of birth is only marginally clearer - definitely Belgium, but was it Brussels or Herentals? And his nationality? Belgian? British? A bit of both? [Ed.: Interesting to note that Wignall's heroes often have a confused nationality and are rarely known by their real name.]

And what about his past? He spent most of his childhood as an army child in different parts of Europe, and studied Politics and International Relations at Lancaster. He published his first novel in 2001, but that leaves a gap of over ten years, so how does he account for the lost decade? "I was a slacker," is his response. One thing he categorically denies is that he was ever a spy, and he cites the books to that end, "It should be clear to anyone who's read the books that I'm not particularly interested in espionage, I'm interested in the choices people make in desperate situations."

So why do the rumours persist? "I'm not sure, because there are writers out there who were spies, who include their intelligence backgrounds in their biographies - I have no particular reason to lie about NOT being a spy."

Now he's also writing for young adults as KJ Wignall, opening his account with a vampire trilogy. Why the shift in theme? "I don't see it as a big shift - like I said, I wasn't a spy writer, and I'm not a vampire writer, just a writer."

Let's take a gamble on some facts then. Kevin Wignall is a British writer, born in Brussels on the 15th of March 1967, he studied at Lancaster, loafed through the 90s and became a full-time writer with the publication of his first book in 2001. Does that stand up?

"More or less. And is it really so important? All that really matters is what's in the books. That's all that matters with any writer - the rest is just a vain attempt to make authors appeal to people who don't read anyway."

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