Upon enrolling in an English Literature course, Sawney promptly lost interest in English Literature and stopped reading altogether. At this time he was supposed to read Chaucer, Austen, Blake, Defoe and Hobbes (among others), but did not. He has been trying to make up for this ever since. He did manage to read some Conrad and some Woolf, however, and very much enjoyed it in spite of himself.
After several years of kicking around Liverpool, Sawney relocated to France and began writing The Ruin. Living in a tiny flat above a halal butcher’s shop, he wrote most of the first draft on a borrowed laptop, supporting himself with bar jobs. The story had been gestating in his head for the best part of a decade, and there had been a number of false starts in trying to commit it to print. Returning to Liverpool, he finished the draft and began the process of editing it to a manageable length.
Sawney now lives in Manchester and is working on a second novel, Last Respects. A short story, ‘Faux Amis’, was published by Notes From The Underground in 2012.
The Ruin: A gritty tale of Dark Age Britain, where heroes are few and the lives of thousands hinge upon the whims of greedy and unscrupulous men. In fifth century Britannia, the Roman colony has all but disappeared; the west and north remain wild and lawless. Plague ravages the countryside. Eiteol, a cloddish nobleman, manages to save the dictator Vertigern from an assassination attempt and the pair must flee for their lives. Deep down Eiteol knows that Vertigern is a monster, and that he should abandon him to his fate. But for reasons he does not understand, Eiteol finds himself bound to the man whose life he has saved. Their desperate search for shelter drives them into the barbarous west—where money has no value, the law has no power, and murder is a daily reality.