Mark Dawson was born in Lowestoft, in the UK. He has worked as a DJ, a door-to-door ice cream seller, factory hand and club promoter. He eventually trained as a lawyer and worked for ten years in the City of London and Soho, firstly pursuing money launderers around the world and then acting for celebrities suing newspapers for libel. He currently works in the London film industry.
He is presently writing two series.
The John Milton books involve a disgruntled British assassin who is trying - without much success - to put his past behind him. In order to atone for the blood on his hands he has decided to help those in need. The first full length novel in the series, The Cleaner, sees Milton struggle to adapt to life amongst the gangs of East London during the riots of the summer of 2012. The Cleaner, and the other books in the series, have all been best-sellers in their categories at Amazon and Barnes and Noble.
The Soho Noir books, beginning with The Black Mile and continuing with The Imposter, follow the glitz and glamour of criminal life in London's West End from the 1940s to the present day. The Imposter picks up the nefarious goings on of the Costello crime family and a protagonist who is rather more than meets the eye. Think of The Sopranos set in Soho and you'll be on the right track. This series, too, has been downloaded tens of thousands of times.
Mark lives in Wiltshire with his wife and two young children, plus a dog and two cats.
Read Mark's regularly updated blog for news on new releases, competitions, offers and appearances.
The launches for each of the Rose books were great, each one better than the last. But Rose is Rose and Milton is Milton, and, judging by the emails I’ve received, I’d say anticipation is riding high for The Sword of God. I’ve got some good stuff going on with promotion for In Cold Blood over the weekend and I’m hoping that some of that will rub off on the new Milton. I’m going to launch in my usual fashion, with a mailing to my list, and that is usually good enough to fire the book up into the top 1,000 or so.
I’m also changing things up this time with a couple of competitions.
The new Milton novel, The Sword of God, will be released on Monday 25th August. And, even more than usual, this one feels like a real team effort.
I wrote 90% of the novel in June when I didn’t have to worry about my commute into London every day. The first half of July was spent writing the final part and starting the polish. That’s usually one of my favourite parts of the process. The way I look at it (pretentiousness ahoy!) is that the first draft is spent assembling clay on my potter’s wheel. The edit is where I slice off everything that isn’t needed. Words, sentences, paragraphs, chapters – if they don’t advance the plot, or if they slow things down, or if they are extraneous in any way, they get lopped off.
I don’t blog about the business of publishing very often but it strikes me that the recent brouhaha between Amazon and Hachette is worthy of at least a few of my words. There is a lot of nonsense being tossed around and it stands to be redressed.
Back at the start of my career, in 2000, I was published traditionally by Macmillan. This was before digital books were a thing, and well before self-publishing had arrived to turn everything on its head. I was fortunate to be published and none of what follows is intended to take away from the people that I met along that particular journey. Everyone, from my agent to my editor to the publishing team and the supporting cast, was a pleasure to meet and get to know. And, for the most part, they did right by me. That the experience was underwhelming is not a reflection on them, but on the way the industry was back then.
So it’s been a little while since I updated the blog. There’s a good reason for that. I’ve been stupidly busy, but I’m not about to complain about that. It’s been the most productive couple of weeks I’ve had for a long time and I’ve got all kinds of stuff done.
Most importantly, at least in relation to the emails that I’ve received from readers, is that the new John Milton book is sitting pretty about 90,000 words and is, I think, the best thing I’ve ever written.