the state of things
Cold Cuts Publication Day Radio Interview
by Elvis Shackleton - 10:30 on 14 November 2017
With today marking the release of Douglas Lindsay’s latest book, COLD CUTS, this morning Douglas appeared on Radio 4 Today, where he was interviewed by John Humphrys about his influences, and what still drives him to continue to write after all these years.
JOHN HUMPHRYS: Now, we don’t have much time, so if you could just sum up your new book, for our listeners, in one word.
DOUGLAS LINDSAY: Thanks, John, it’s lovely to be here. I think, on the face of it, with Cold Cuts we begin with this macabre tale of sliced human flesh sold as sandwich meat, a kind of Grand Guignol of horror where –
JH: Well, you could hardly have a Grand Guignol of happiness, could you? Or, I don’t know, a Grand Guignol of Thomas The Tank Engine, for crying out loud. And which part of “one word” didn’t you understand?
DL: At its heart, however, I think the story is one of revenge, and the nexus of power that exists today in the age-old battle of the se-
JH: Now look, it says here in the publicity that you’ve created a new detective. I mean, seriously? Another one? How many detectives do you need?
DL: (laughing) Yeah, it’s funny you should say that, John. You know, I was speaking to my spirit guide, Snow Lizard, and we were talking about how I’ve got all these miserablist, middle-aged male detectives, and that it was about time I changed things up a little. So, I tried to go back to basi–
JH: Now look, you turn on the news today, any day, and it is, quite frankly, soul-crushingly awful. We have the on-rushing, devastating Brexit-inspired economic tsunami; we, in Britain, are governed by self-aggrandising, craven fools, with no credible alternative; we’re seeing globally the rise of the dictator, which will inevitably end in world war and the deaths of millions, if not billions; the great powers are fighting proxy wars in the Middle East and in eastern Europe; Russia is spreading mayhem and chaos, seemingly with impunity; refugees die on a daily basis trying to cross the Mediterranean, yet no one cares anymore; there’s genocide in Burma, astonishing, heart-breaking famine in Yemen, the news cycle is dominated by a preposterous, orange-faced man-baby with nuclear weapons, and climate change, over-population, deforestation and the over-whelming scourge of manmade pollutants threaten to destroy everything that’s beautiful about our planet, making it more or less uninhabitable… aren’t you just adding to the misery?
DL: (chuckling) There must be a Maya Angelou quote about the necessity of art, but–
JH: Well, art, yes, but how is it you’d describe what you do?
DL: I write–
JH: Well, sorry to cut you off there, Duncan, but that’s all we’ve got time for.
DL: Thanks, John, it’s been gr–
SARA MONTAGUE: Now, overnight we heard the news that Nigel Farage has been diagnosed by doctors as being 95% pus. Earlier Mr Farage spoke to us from his office in the Kremlin, and I asked him whether or not it was time he just shut the fuck up about absolutely everything.
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