Big news. Very excited.

Twitter, Facebook, blog – first of all, I’m sorry. I’m sorry I’ve neglected you all recently, but there’s a reason for that. Not only have I been extremely busy, but I’ve been busting from all angles to explode and tell you all some very exciting news which I couldn’t tell you all… until now.

Robert Daws

Robert Daws

Following the release of Exit Stage Left last year, British screen icon Robert Daws contacted me and asked to work with me on adapting the book as a radio play. I thought long and hard for all of about three nanoseconds before acquiescing in an embarrassingly fawning manner. Since then, Robert and I have met a couple of times a week in order to develop our ideas and help bring Exit to your ears, as well as your eyes. It’s been moving extremely quickly: we’ll be in the studio within a couple of weeks.

Not only that, but there are some pretty big names potentially behind the project. We’re still to finalise things, but I’m going to be unashamedly gushing and crass in saying that a number of names have been thrown about [Disclaimer: Subject to ‘stuff’ being organised]. Robert’s part of a big show-biz family, not limited to his wife, Amy Robbins (of The Royal, Casualty and a cousin of Sir Paul McCartney), sister-in-law Kate Robbins (of Crossroads, Dead Ringers and the 1980 Eurovision Song Contest), and niece Emily Atack (of The Inbetweeners).

Ted Robbins

Again, casting is yet undecided, but the sheer quality of names that have thus far been thrown about is extremely exciting and makes me want to shout from the rooftops. Our hope (and he would be bloody fantastic) is to have Ted Robbins cast as Charlie Sparks. Ted’s a very well-known comedian and television personality who would be absolutely perfect in the role.

The production of the series will be in the hands of Keith Atack (of 70s band Child, also The Illegal Eagles et al), who is a vastly experienced audio producer who will do absolute wonders with it, I’m sure.

I feel the need to repeat the caveat that nothing is decided, and no roles have yet been cast, but Robert Daws has confirmed that he will play one of the leading roles, which is fantastic beyond belief. With production starting very shortly, I’ll be able to confirm a definite cast list quite soon, but for now you’ll have to make do with some random names thrown about in a nothing’s-confirmed manner.

I say it a lot, but I feel it needs repeating: Mass-market publishers and those from the traditional publishing background will crow long and hard about independent publishers never being able to make a success of it. There’s a reason for that: we’re doing them out of a job. The fact of the matter is, the tide is turning. 2012 will be the year of the independent writer, and I dearly hope to play a part in what’s to come.