Easy Distraction for Ian Rankin 236


By Douglas Walker

NOSEY author Ian Rankin has revealed he sits in front a plain wall to stop himself from spying on people.

The Rebus author reckons he wouldn’t get any writing done if he could sit and stare out a window all day.

He went on to say he plans to move away from the city and find a seaside home when he stops writing.

The Edinburgh-based crime writer says the study in his house is the best he’s had although he doesn’t know if his novels have got any better as a result.

Rankin, 48, said: “It’s the first time I’ve had a really nice office.

“It’s about 14ft by 12ft.  It’s got two desks – one with a laptop where I write my novels and another for correspondence and paying bills.

“And it’s got my turntable, CD player, loudspeakers, and lots of CDs and LPs and a sofa for listening to music.

“It has windows on two sides, so it has a lot of natural light, and an ornate fireplace, which looks authentic.

“Working in more congenial surroundings has certainly improved the comfort level, although I don’t know if it’s improved the quality of my writing.”

But Rankin daren’t take advantage of his view fearing he would spend all day staring outside and not get any writing done.

He said: “Out of one window I can see nothing but trees and out of the other the houses across the street.

“When I’m working, I sit facing a plain wall. And that’s a good thing.

“If I had a view I would do no work. I’d be too busy watching people walk up and down the street.”

Last year Rankin wrote his final Rebus novel, ‘Exit Music’, and lives in the Inspector’s Edinburgh beat with his wife Miranda and their two sons, Jack and Kit.

He says anywhere bigger than the Capital doesn’t agree with him.

He said: “It’s a very compact city – the size of a town – so it’s easy to get around. I start to get the shakes when I’m in a city that’s too big.”

Having just released his latest book, ‘Doors Open’, the writer shows no signs of hanging up his pen just yet.  He does have plans for when the day comes though.

He said: “I would love to live by the sea – the one thing I’ve never done in my life.

“I have this dream of walking out the door, through the garden and opening a door on to the beach.

“So maybe once my kids have left home and Rebus and my other writing projects have been put to bed it might be time for that one last move.”

However he admits moving away from the city would have one drawback – no coffee shops.

He said: “If we had the sea behind us and a little path leading down to the beach that would be lovely but you tend not to find that in the middle of a city.

“Although there are compensations, such as Starbucks.”