The Diary: Gavin conquers the universe - and meets Richard and Judy

Gavin Extence
Gavin Extence
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GAVIN Extence is a difficult man to pin down.

The 31-year-old Walkley author, whose debut book has just been made a recommended summer read by the name-making Richard and Judy Book Club, has spent the last six months attending book signings, literary festivals and award ceremonies across the country. Today, as we speak, he’s coming back from London after getting second place (and a luxury Fortnum and Mason hamper) at The Desmond Elliot Prize awards.

“The trouble with being a semi-succesful writer,” he says, “is you don’t get much time to do any writing.”

That, it seems, is the price one pays.

Six months after The Universe Versus Alex Woods was released through Hodder & Stoughton he’s not only met Richard and Judy (“it’s like meeting someone you already know”) and been named one of 2013’s 11 must-read authors by Waterstones, he’s also just seen the book storm the paper back sale charts and is now starting his second novel.

“It’s been a whirlwind,” says Gavin who grew up in Lincolnshire but moved to Sheffield to study in 2000. “But I’ve got a couple of months off now and I’m enjoying getting stuck into the new book.

“I have a start and an end and now I’m just writing my way between the two.”