The Fourteenth Duke of Plimsoll

NIAIW Cover FileIain Banks’ novel ‘The Bridge’ is partly set on a fantastical Kafka-esque Bridge, a version of the Forth Rail Bridge extending thousands of miles and populated by an entire civilisation.

I was so impressed by him transforming something so familiar (I grew up in Fife) into something so different, I immediately looked for a structure on which I could perform my own magic. My first idea was a tower (defined as any structure whose height is greater than its diameter) and so Plimsoll Tower was born.

Plimsoll Tower is humanity’s last outpost. Rising from the centre of a vast ocean, its occupants must continue building the tower upwards to keep ahead of the rising sea-level (cause by the never-ending train) and provide enough wall space to grow enough food.

After many years (and many different versions, including the final Film script for MA in Scriptwriting), I have decided to complete Plimsoll as a novel, probably aimed at the YA market. An early chapter of the story was selected for the Retreat West climate change anthology ‘Nothing Is As It Was’.