Novel publishing debut for Kent author after literary prize win

Gary Hughes

The time-travelling debut novel by University staff member and author Malcolm Dixon will be published on 4 February 2022.

The novel, titled The Little House on Everywhere Street (Regal House Books), is the result of Malcom (pen name F.M.A. DIXON) winning the inaugural Acheven Book Prize for Young Adult Fiction. The prize included a cash award and publication of a book described by author Adam Roberts as ‘a scrumptious time-travel adventure written with elegance and charm’.

Aimed at readers and book lovers of all ages, The Little House on Everywhere Street is about the Redmayne family and their ability to live every day in three cities at once: London, Paris and New York. The three Redmayne children – George, Felice, and Emile – believe they know all about their extraordinary house and its many secrets but when they begin to investigate, disaster strikes: George and Felice accidentally misplace their younger brother in time, with the result that the entire family must unite to find him and bring him home.

Fans and those curious to know more about the book and its author can hear Malcolm reading extracts from it and talking about his inspiration for it during his appearance at the Faversham Literary festival on 19 February.

He also recently discussed his background, inspirations and writing life with Dr Chris Deacy as part of his ‘Nostalgia series’ of podcasts. Listen here.

Speaking ahead of the book’s launch, Malcolm, who is Head of the University’s Quality Assurance and Compliance Office, said: ‘Writing fiction alongside a full-time job has not been easy but with this novel I generally aimed for around 1,500 words a week. I wrote mostly at weekends but when I could I edited the novel on my phone during lunchbreaks in the Templeman Library.

‘Although I have written and published many short stories, when I came to write the first page of The Little House on Everywhere Street, I knew, with absolute certainty… this is exactly what I should be doing. Everything came together, the years of effort… I wanted the novel to be both well-written and as entertaining as I could make it. That the novel has been honoured by the award of this inaugural prize recognises that fact and means everything to me.’

Malcolm was born and grew up in Liverpool but since studying English at universities in Sunderland and Minnesota, USA, he eventually arrived in Canterbury, Kent, where he still lives with his wife and family.

However, it was during several family holidays and one particularly memorable extended stopover in Paris’s Gard du Nord railway station that the foundations were laid for what is now The Little House on Everywhere Street.

Malcolm Dixon outside the Templeman Library