The stories and History of ‘Britain’s most elegant and intriguing city’. Sometimes in Bath is a captivating story-tour through the city’s history conducted by Charles Nevin, the award-winning journalist, national newspaper columnist, author and humorist. Beau Nash, Old King Bladud, young Horatio Nelson, Jane Austen’s Mr Bennet, the Emperor Haile Selassie and many more spring to life in episodes shimmering with the curious magic of Britain’s oldest resort and premier purveyor of good health, happiness and romance for the last 2000 years. Each story has an afterword distinguishing the fiction from fact, adding enthralling historical detail – and giving visitors useful links to Bath’s many sights and fascinations. Sometimes in Bath is warm, witty, wistful and will be loved by all who come to and from this most enchanting and enchanted of cities.
When and where do you prefer to write?
I like to write best in the mornings, the earlier the better if it’s not going as well as it might. But, having been a journalist for many years, I’m used to writing at any time because you don’t often have the luxury of choice. The place I prefer is my office, familiar, on my laptop, at my desk.
Do you have a certain ritual?
Not really, about from lots of sighs and occasional despairing stares out of the window.
Is there a drink of some food that keeps you company while you write?
Coffee! I used to smoke most enthusiastically, then gave it up and chewed pen tops instead. Now: just: coffee!
What is your favourite book?
Other writers: The Great Gatsby.
Mine: this one!
Do you consider writing a different genre in the future?
I’m a short story writer. I’d like to write a novel, but doubt I have the stamina – and, perhaps more importantly, the confidence I’m not boring the reader to death with my interminable ramblings…
Do you sometimes base your characters on people you know?
I think all characters are based on people you know, but only bits and pieces of them, all mixed up.
Do you take a notebook everywhere in order to write down ideas that pop up?
Or now, sometimes, as the latest of adopters, I use the notes bit on my phone, if I haven’t forgotten it as usual.
Which genre do you not like at all?
I’m not mad about whodunnits, or any thrillers not by Henry Porter.
If you had the chance to co-write a book, whom would it be with?
Sebastian Faulks. Tremendous writer, and very, very funny.
If you should travel to a foreign country to do research, which one would you choose and why?
Somewhere in Latin America. I’ve been there a bit, and have to tell you that magic realism is, well, real.
Thank you, Charles Nevin and Rachel’s Random Resources
About the author
CHARLES NEVIN is a freelance journalist, author, exiled northerner and generally bemused observer of life and its turns.