It paid off. Today, the long-time Edinburgh resident is the most widely-read crime novelist in the UK, with worldwide sales of more than 30 million for his Inspector Rebus novels.
In the first in a new series - with more famous names to come - the Evening News caught up with Ian to find out how he is coping under lockdown.
What is the best thing about lockdown?
Selfishly the best thing about lockdown is that all my public commitments have melted away, meaning I can focus on putting the finishing touches to my next book.
What is the worst?
The worst is that my son Kit, who is disabled, is in lockdown and likely to remain so for some considerable time. It’s been six weeks since we could share a sofa with him and get a hug.
Have you been more creative during lockdown?
Lockdown hasn’t made me lose focus on my writing (I’m perhaps lucky that the book I’m working on is set in June 2019), but I’m finding it difficult to concentrate on reading for long stretches - I was quite looking forward to tackling a really long book.
What’s your exercise routine?
I’ve tried jogging but I give up too easily. I take the bicycle out occasionally. Otherwise it’s just walks around the empty streets. I avoid The Meadows - too busy!
What's the first thing you plan to do when the restrictions are lifted?
I’m looking forward to sitting with Kit for a while. Might visit a pub on the way home from visiting him.
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