EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH JIM SMITH – BARRY LOSER AUTHOR
How did you get into writing?
It all started when I went to this place called ‘school’ and they taught me how to write. After that I just carried on writing. Most of my friends stopped once we left school and college and everything, but I just carried on. I looked up how to write proper stories on the internet then sent some of my own ones to some agents. One of them thought I might be able to sell something to a publisher. And we did!
I love reading your books, what was your favourite book as a child?
I loved Enid Blyton books, like The Faraway Tree, and Roald Dahl of course. Was also really into comics like The Beano and Mad Magazine.
What is your favourite Barry Loser Book? My favourite is My Mum is a Loser, as it was the first one I read, and it makes my dad laugh!
That’s one of the really short ones! My favourite is probably ‘The case of the crumpled carton’, because it’s a sort of mystery, plus it’s got a very stupid title, which makes me happy.
How many books have you written? And which is your overall favourite?
I’ve written ten Barry Loser books and three Future Ratboy books. If I’m being honest (which I am, so I probably don’t need to say that), I probably like them all the same. I have them all lined up on my shelf in front of my desk and I like the look of them hanging out together.
Can you Barrify my mum?
Do you prefer writing or drawing? I think your pictures are sick.
Writing is probably harder, but it can be fun if you’re on a roll (not sitting on one). Drawing is fun because you can listen to music and stuff while doing it.
Who is Barry Loser?
He is me but more loserish, but only a bit more. Plus with a bigger nose.
Where do you like to go holiday? I am going to Mauritius this year, I am very excited! Have you been?
I like going anywhere (unless it’s horrible). Mauritius sounds nice, I haven’t been there. I like to go more local like Europe – Spain, Italy, France, yada yada yada.
What was your favourite subject at school? Mine is maths, but I also love reading.
English and Art. I was alright at maths, but not brilliant. I’m not saying I was brilliant at English and Art. I thought I was though.
Who is your favourite singer and have you met them? Mine is Michael Jackson.
I have loads. I love MJ. One of my secret loserish faves is Billy Joel. I think Barry’s dad would like him.
Did you go to university? I am going to go as it sounds lots of fun.
Yeah, I did Illustration, Graphic design and Advertising at Buckinghamshire Uni. It was a fun course, you could just sit around creating whatever you liked pretty much.
What is your favourite food? Mine is spaghetti and meatballs.
That’s one of my faves too. I used to have meatball pizza at Spaghetti Junction when I was a kid, but that’s closed down now. Maybe I’ll start making it at home – I love making pizzas.
Who is your favourite villain?
Gru from Despicable me!
Do you play computer games? My favourite is Fortnite.
Not anymore, but I have played that round my kid’s friend’s house. I just find games really boring now that I’m all old and serious. I kept thinking, ‘Ooh I really fancy a nice walk outdoors in nature,’ the whole time I was playing it.
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** Thank you to Egmont Publishing and Barry Loser author Jim Smith for agreeing to this interview. There may be affiliate links included in this post.**