Author Confessions: Aidan Moffat

Aidan Moffat's Author Confessions
Category: Reading

Aidan Moffat is a musician, formerly half of the critically-acclaimed band Arab Strap.

Originally from Falkirk, Aidan now resides in Glasgow and has recently brought out his first book for children, The Lavender Blue Dress with Cargo Publishing. Illustrated by Emmeline Pidgin, the book tells the story of Mabel, a little girl who wants a beautiful dress to wear to the Christmas ball more than anything else in the world.

Upon its release, we lured Aidan into our Author Confessions booth for a heart-to-heart about writing and reading... 


Where do you stand on spinebreaking?

to this day I rarely lend people books because I fear for the state they’ll be returned in

I used to hate it – and to this day I rarely lend people books because I fear for the state they’ll be returned in – but it can also be an enjoyable part of the reading experience. It depends on the book – if I’m reading something that I really care about and it looks great, I’ll take good care of it, but if it’s just a bit of page-turning fun then a bit of spine-bending’s almost essential.

Have you ever cried in public because of a book?

Aye, probably too many times! When I’ve been on tour with various bands, I’ve often found myself trying to keep it together on the tour bus. It’s not hard to set me off.

If you could throw a book at a celebrity which book would you throw at whom?

I’d throw the heaviest book I could find at any celebrity under the age of 30 who’s 'written' a memoir.

How do you react to bad reviews?

I try not to! You can’t expect everyone to like you, and if you can’t cope with criticism then a creative job’s probably not the wisest career choice.

Who would play you in a movie?

A young Brian Blessed.

What’s your opinion on reading in the bath?

Never! I’m too scared I’d drop the book. That’s what the radio’s for!

Are there any films that are better than the book in your opinion?

I absolutely loved Jonathan Glazer’s movie of Michel Faber’s Under The Skin this year, it’s a very different thing but I must admit it moved me more than the source.

What is your worst writing habit?

Not doing enough of it. I’m very easily distracted.

What’s the worst piece of writing advice you’ve received?

I’ve had some pretty dispiriting meetings where commerce was guiding the artistic decisions. 'Don’t use rhyme because it won’t translate to foreign markets' is a common one. It’s sad that business interests should dictate format.

Which book should every child read?

I’m a big fan of Peter Pan. It was the first proper novel I read and I still love a lot of the imagery, plus it has possibly the best opening line ever. Time hasn’t been too kind to it, though – modern readers might find its attitudes to gender roles a little unsavory, for instance – but as a celebration of the young imagination, it’s still pretty wonderful.


Competition: Win a copy of The Lavender Blue Dress

Thanks to Cargo Publishing, we have a copy of The Lavender Blue Dress to give to one lucky winner. 

All you have to do to enter is answer this simple question in the comments below or email your answer to marked 'Aidan Moffat Competition':

Which band did Aidan Moffat form with Malcolm Middleton?

Closing date: 17:00, Monday 3 November 2014. Open to UK entrants only. Full terms and conditions.


Download Aidan Moffat's track 'Wall Song' from our Soundcloud page. Read more Author Confessions, including Michael Grant, Laura Marney and Doug Johnstone here.

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