Friday, 22 August 2014

'How I Left The National Grid' to be published in the UK, US & Canada In February 2015

After two and a half years of writing, I'm excited that my third novel, 'How I Left The National Grid' will be published in the UK, US and Canada in February 2015. More information to come soon through Zer0 Books / Roundfire. In the meantime, here are some words that have been said about it-

'A cross between Twenty Four Hour Party people and Tom Perrotta's The Leftovers, written by Julian Barnes. It contains a narrative as spiky as a punk set, a whole symphony of ideas composed by Mankowski within a few subtle bars of text. 'This book is the epitome of cool.  A brilliantly written literary treat.' AJ Kirby, reviewer for The New York Journal of Books.

‘Anyone who remembers Melody Maker, or who attended indie nights in clubs strewn with Snakebite, will fall in love with this book immediately. Mankowski captures brilliantly the psychology of ‘fan obsession’. Those of us who marvelled at ‘The Secret History’ or ‘A Passage To India’ are sure to find it enthralling.’ Matthew Phillips, Huffington Post.

‘Already recognised as a major rising talent, Mankowski here establishes himself as a significant voice in British fiction. 'How I Left The National Grid' is a compelling story of youthful rebellion and midlife angst, as a music journalist tries to track down the legendary band that launched his career. His search for the elusive artists and their legacy is a journey through time and place, from the Manchester post-punk scene to the hip media world of contemporary London. This novel will raise knowing smiles from the rock cognoscenti, plaudits from literary critics, and will captivate readers everywhere.' Andrew Crumey, author of Pfitz, longlisted for the Man Booker Prize.

 ‘There is so much about this novel that people would enjoy. It's funny too- at times I laughed out loud. With the character of singer Robert Wardner I felt he was channelling Mark E Smith, Ian Curtis and Richey Edwards simultaneously. Very powerful.’ Lyn Lockwood, Chief Examiner for A Level Creative Writing (AQA).

‘Scintillating, vivid, haunting and haunted. Mankowski’s original and captivating alternative history depicts an era when we were told there was ‘no alternative’, and sketches a different landscape for the future.’ Adam Hansen, editor of 'Litpop: Writing and Popular Music

Friday, 1 August 2014

Northern Film & Media Award for 'Antennae: Manchester's Darkest Band'

Greg Fox and I are excited to have just been awarded Northern Film and Media funding to start making our comedy script 'Antennae: Manchester's Darkest Band'. We had the idea for it three years ago, on a tube ride after a Manic Street Preacher's gig in London. I was on crutches at the time and Greg somehow managed to blag our way into the backstage party, which led to the most ludicrous situations ever as some people assumed I was a competition winner. As passionate fans of music, we thought it would be funny to come up with something lampooning the pomposity of the English popstar (something which was not in evidence that night but with the likes of Morrissey, David Bowie, Mark E Smith etc we thought it would be interesting to explore). It's a subject we don't think 'Get Him To The Greek' quite covered. What we're aiming to do is a Spinal Tap set in the North East. No wonder if took us three years to even begin to get our heads around it.

Having never written a script before we've been fortunate to benefit from the input of brilliant people like Slumdog Millionaire producer Ivana MacKinnon to help complete the script. We are now moving forward with the project working with Mac & Fox, the production team that brought you The Suggestibles.

So if you need us we'll be in our (fictional) trailer.