Author PJ McDermott chose the town of Paisley, just south of Glasgow on the west coast of Scotland, as the setting for his number one bestselling book, Small Fish Big Fish. The action takes place during the nineteen sixties and tells the story of the rather naive seventeen-year-old Stephen McBride, and his battle to free himself from the clutches of his psychopathic neighbor, Archie Stewart.
The author was born in Ferguslie Park, the setting for the novel and one of the roughest parts of Paisley. ‘Feegie’, as it’s known by the locals, was twice placed number one on the list of the most deprived areas in Scotland, but Paisley itself has a long, honorable history and is well known for it’s Abbey – the burial place of all six High Stewards of Scotland including Marjorie, mother of King Robert deBruce.
The town is also famous for it’s Paisley Pattern. The design can be traced back to Persia and the Sassanid Dynasty around 221AD. In more modern times, the pattern was produced by a thriving weaving industry in Paisley during the early 1800’s. Look around you – you’ll see it everywhere: neckties, shirts, furniture, tablecloths, etc.
At one time, over ninety percent of the world’s cotton was manufactured by Paisley’s two thread mills, the Anchor Mills and Ferguslie Mills. (The author worked for a short time in the later.) In its heyday, during 1949, there were 10,500 mill-workers in Paisley, many of them living in the suburb of Ferguslie Park. By 1991, after four roller-coaster decades of expansion, diversification, merger, closures, and three-day-weeks, the Paisley mills employed just 340. On Friday, April 2, 1993, the last mill-girl clocked off for the last time. Sadly, an era had passed. For more information on the fascinating history of Paisley, please visit Paisley.org.uk.
If you would like to know about the characters in the novel, click the following link: https://pj-mcdermott.com/small-fish-big-fish-2/
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After publishing Small Fish Big Fish in 2015, the author turned his hand to writing science fiction and has written four books in the genre, including, The Alien Corps, Rise of the Erlachi and The Scarf, all part of the Prosperine series. PJ developed a passion for scifi at an early age and could often be seen playing truant in Paisley Library, where he immersed himself in books by authors such as Isaac Asimov, Frank Herbert, Robert Heinlein, and Poul Anderson.
PJ’s novels reflect the style and scope of these early writers. Set two hundred years into the future on an alien planet in the Eridanus galaxy, PJ’s space adventures are a romp through the imagination, encompassing humor, intrigue, and escapism. They are available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, and iTunes amongst other online bookstores.
The Alien Corps can also be purchased in audiobook format.