Frederick Forsyth

Why I gave up writing fiction

When, three years ago, I announced my retirement from writing fiction, the only thing that surprised me was the surprise it generated. I had long come to the somewhat un-arty view that writing was a job like any other (well, almost) and that nudging 80 was a good time to step back and consider a

Frederick Forsyth: The Day of the Jackal at 50

30 min listen

My guest in this week’s book club podcast is Frederick Forsyth, whose classic thriller The Day of the Jackal has been in print for 50 years this summer. He tells me about banging it out in a few weeks on a typewriter with a bullet hole in it, the shady characters who informed his research

Marine A: the shambles that shamed us

Like it or not, and many in high places will loathe it, what we may now call The Blackman Affair is not going to go away. It will be recalled as a shambles and a glaring miscarriage of justice. Also remembered will be the ferocious, self-serving and vindictive role of the establishment in permitting this

My brush with death in Africa’s skies

I had scrounged a lift on the third-from-last plane out of the dying enclave of Biafra at the end of the Nigerian civil war. Behind us on the airstrip, the last two aircraft waited in the pitch-black night. My lift was on a clapped-out old DC-4 flown by its owner, an Afrikaner really called Van