Hamish Downie’s Five Questions With Christopher James

Editor Note: Hamish has another in his series of Five Questions With…

Hamish came up with this idea because he was accumulating too much material for his Famous News Sushi column and asked if he could do these mini-interviews. Why would we say no?

Thank you Hamish for being such a trooper for us. We really appreciate all for your hard work.

Let us know what you think of these interviews in the comments below.


TGG: I’m so happy to be able to introduce one of the best and most supportive people on Twitter, Christopher James. So, without further ado, could you please introduce yourself to our readers?

CJ: I’m Christopher James, I’m a writer from the North of England. I was formerly a writer for film but had always written more personal projects alongside that. I am currently redrafting my debut screenplay, What We Lost in the Firefight, which is hard to categorise. It has the DNA of Tyrannosaur and God’s Own Country had those two films had a sweaty fumble in a nightclub bathroom.

TGG: Could you please tell us about your latest collection of poetry and photographs?

CJ: My new collection of verse came from a need to make sense of grief and was originally intended to be a compilation of everything I wrote, unedited, in the aftermath of bereavement…but it turned into something else entirely. It’s more hopeful than despairing and pairs up lyrics and poems with photographs. It’s a monochrome mood piece. Yes, that pretentious.

TGG: What inspired this latest collection?

CJ: When I was looking for a book or something to articulate that profound emptiness there was nothing available that I thought might do that, and I couldn’t listen to music. So I wrote it. The ultimate point was to make a document that somebody who is in desperate need could pick up and maybe find a kernel of light within the pages.

TGG: Who are your favorite poets?

CJ: In the course of putting Before the Harbour Wall Collapsed together, I was reading a bit of Clive James and a lot of James Fenton. It’s difficult, I think, to detect any influence because they are far better than me but it is there. There is nothing despairing or defeatist about their work; always an element of hope, which I think is important. I never want to depress anybody.

TGG: How can we best support you?

CJ: Before the Harbour Wall Collapsed is released on October 5th and will be available from Amazon worldwide.

All of the profits from the book will be donated to Samaritans in the UK.

TGG: Christopher James can be found on twitter:

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