Susi Qs – Week 50 – Luca Veste

At last… the endless year comes to an end, and the final Susi Qs is here – you might say I saved the best till last? And while that *might* be true, I think it’s fair to say that every single week has been an absolute treat and I’m very glad I did this little series! For anyone who hasn’t been with me from the start, the 10 questions asked are randomly generated from a set of 50 (inspired by the Smash Hits biscuit tin of days gone by: here’s an example of Little Mix doing the same questions as The Spice Girls) – anyway, without further ado – thank you to all my guests this year – and you never know, Susi Qs *might* return one day. In the meantime, here’s this week’s fabulous guest – Luca Veste… who I first met and interviewed in 2014, when we were both still at school (haha).

Luca Veste is of Italian and Liverpudlian heritage and studied psychology and criminology at university. He is the author of the Murphy and Rossi series and numerous standalone novels including The Bone Keeper, The Six, and the forthcoming You Never Said Goodbye. He is the host of the hit podcast Two Crime Writers and a Microphone, co-founder of the Locked Up Festival, and bass player in the Fun Lovin’ Crime Writers. He lives in Merseyside, with his wife and two daughters.

So, Luca…

Who was the best Beatle?

Much to many people’s shock and chagrin, I’ve never been a fan of The Beatles. Growing up in Merseyside, it’s been very easy to roll your eyes at constant mentions of that particular band – mainly as every time you’re on holiday abroad, and you mention where you’re from, it’s the first thing that is talked about! So, I’ve always had a disdain for them. Right up until I watched the Get Back documentary on Disney Plus. I thought it was astounding. I devoured all nine hours of it and could have happily watched more and more of it. I instantly reappraised the albums, and while I still can’t get on board with 99% of pre-1965/6 Beatles, I am now a huge fan of the later albums. And for me, the obvious best Beatle, is Paul McCartney. John has some good stuff, but post-Beatles I can’t get along with. George has some brilliant tracks (While My Guitar Gently Weeps has been a favourite for a long time), and Ringo… well, Ringo should be very glad of being in the right place at the right time. Said with Peace and Love. But, Paul has been consistently the best songwriter of them all and is massively underrated as a bass player. 

What’s your favourite kitchen appliance?

We’ve just renovated our kitchen, which has taken me a few months and a lot of hard work. This gave me room for a dishwasher. I’ve never had one before. It is magic. I still don’t know how it works. I have never been happier in my life. The joy I am getting from loading and unloading, seeing how clean it gets plates and pans, is indescribable. I actually rang my dad the other day just to talk about the dishwasher. 

Have you ever broken a bone?

I’ve broken many, many bones. Legs (tibia and fibia), ankles (broke that a few times – the last time in Harrogate at Theakstons Crime Festival), both arms, my nose about six times, fingers, toes, all of them. Usually playing some kind of sport. Or during my misspent youth.

Do you have any weird habits?

I have OCD, which involves compulsions surrounding numbers. I’m constantly counting. I add numbers I see together and divide them by 4. I count to 5 if I think I’ve done something unlucky. Odd numbers are evil. I guess this counts as weird, but I think everyone should be doing it. We may have had a better couple of years if we had.

How many pairs of shoes do you have?

I own 4 pairs. One pair of posh shoes to go with a suit. One pair of dark trainers to go with jeans. One pair of white trainers to be sporty in. One pair of walking boots. And I still think I own too many.

When did you last sleepwalk?

I’ve never had a sleepwalk. It has always been a source of disappointment for me. I’d quite like going for a wander and waking up in front of the fridge or something. 

What was your first gig?

My first gig was quite late in life (if you discount the many I played as a wannabe rockstar during my teen years). I was 18, and went to see Muse at Manchester Apollo in 2001. It was epic. Two weeks later I saw Wheatus in the Liverpool Royal Court. That was a good fortnight. 

How many times have you seen Top Gun?

I have never seen Top Gun. There are a bunch of huge films I’ve somehow never seen. I only saw Die Hard for the first time a couple of years back. I’ve never seen a single James Bond film. It’s like my party piece – name a classic film that everyone has seen and Luca will probably shrug his shoulders and tell you about watching Goodfellas for the 216th time.

Did you like school?

I loved school. I never tried, which was probably a mistake, but I was too busy having a good time. My high school had a fantastic drama department, led by two incredible teachers Ms Moore and Miss Schofield. I was in school musicals every year, I played football, and had loads of fun. I wish I’d appreciated it more at the time.

What are you wearing?

A pair of Friends lounge pants, from my huge collection of lounge pants – the greatest clothing ever manufactured. I have over 50 pairs of them now. And a jumper, because it’s cold. I plan on getting dressed properly at some point in 2022.

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If you want to know more about Luca, you can find him on twitter @LucaVeste. His books can be found HERE.


Susi Qs – Week 31 – Doug Johnstone

Photo credit: Duncan McGlynn

This week I’m grilling one of my favourite countrymen, the very cool and ridiculously multi-talented Doug Johnstone. Doug is the author of thirteen novels, three of which have been shortlisted for Scottish Crime Novel of the Year. He’s a songwriter and musician with five albums and three solo EPs, and he plays drums for the Fun Lovin’ Crime Writers, a band of crime writers.

Let’s hear it, Doug…

What would you cook on Come Dine with me?

Steak and chips, keep it simple. They’re all gonna get smashed and slag it anyway, so it might as well be something I like that’s easy.

Which actor do you fancy the most?

Amy Adams. I think it’s her ability to talk to aliens in Arrival.

Which dead celebrity do you wish was still alive?

Jimmy Savile, so he could finally fix it for me to be a drummer in Adam and the Ants. Then I’d kill him again for being the worst person of all time.

Do you find it hard to take criticism?

Not really. Opinions are like arseholes, everyone’s got one. Folk are entitled to criticise me, and I’m entitled to ignore them.

Who do you love?

Family, friends, the guys in the Fun Lovin’ Crime Writers. Amy Adams in Arrival.

What are you wearing?

Joggers, hoody. Also a T-shirt for obscure podcast How Did This Get Made, which is hilarious about shit films.

What’s your most unrealistic ambition?

To score the winning goal for Scotland in the World Cup Final. To be the first person on Mars. To make first contact with aliens. Take your pick.

Have you ever heard voices in your head?

Only my own voice, telling me that my first draft is shit.

Do you empty your own hoover bag?

Well it doesn’t have a bag cos it’s a Dyson (fuck that guy, Brexit twat). But yes, I empty it.

When was the last time you were arrested?

As a student. Urinating in a public place. Up against the wall of a church.

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If you want to know more about Doug, you can find him on twitter @Doug_Johnstone. His books can be purchased HERE.