David Shannon, author
Cover of HOWUL by David Shannon

My first published novel – HOWUL: A Life’s Journey (Elsewhen Press) – is out now. You can buy it in paperback c/o Waterstones here or as an eBook here. A full description of the book is here.


My parents’ gift to me on my 21st birthday was a beautiful old writing box. They must have been trying to tell me something.

I have earned money by writing since long before the Internet and Word Processors. Not much and, in some years, nothing at all, but enough to keep me from feeling like an impostor.

That old writing box

I started out as a journalist. After teaching myself touch typing on a cheap portable typewriter and embarking on a “How To Be A Writer” correspondence course, I eventually landed myself a job as an Editorial Assistant on Cosmopolitan magazine in 1980. Here I encountered my first “sit up and beg” manual typewriter. It was love at first sight. I still have the one I used all through the Eighties as a freelancer.

The “Sit up and beg” typewriter

I switched from journalism (as David Shannon) to acting (as David France) in 1995. (We can save that story for another day.) Instead of features for newspapers and magazines, I began writing murder mysteries which could be run as live corporate events and for private parties. I wasn’t responsible for creating all of them but most of those you can find here are games I wrote or adapted.

I completed my first novel Small People in the early noughties. It attracted some interest but never got a publisher. I worked on HOWUL from 2006, had it ready enough to start showing people in 2017 (it was, as you can see, a rush job), landed an agent for it in 2018 (thank you, Oli Munson at A M Heath) and a publisher for it in 2020 (thank you, thank you, Elsewhen Press).

There is, of course, plenty more to my story. To be continued…