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About Tania Carver

Q & A

Tania Carver

So who's Tania Carver?

Well, the first thing you should know, is that Tania Carver doesn't actually exist. Let me explain. She's a pseudonym for Martyn Waites. That's me, by the way.

Why a pseudonym?

Well...it happened like this. I was having coffee with my old editor one day. And he said that the one thing he was lacking was a 'real high concept female thriller writer. Like a British Karin Slaughter or Tess Gerritsen. That kind of writer. And without thinking I replied, 'I can do that.' (Why did I say that? Because I trained as an actor. And at drama school they always tell you that you say yes to anything. Get the job, learn how to do it afterwards. I think they were talking about things like horse riding and fencing and stuff but the same applies, right?)

Now, the editor, quite rightly, didn't believe me. So he asked what it would be about.

Now, this is the bit that shows you just how far from normality crime writers are. If you read something horrible in the papers, your usual response is one of horror. Not so if you're a crime writer. Your usual response is, 'There's a novel in that'. As was the case this time. A couple nights before I'd seen an article in the paper about a serial killer targeting pregnant women and cutting out their unborn babies. How horrible. Yes but, there's a novel in that . . .

'So what would this novel be about?' asked the editor/ 'A serial killer who targets pregnant women and cuts out their unborn children.' Now instead of being appalled, as most people would, he responded with, 'That's exactly what I'm looking for.' Which also shows that crime editors are a long way from normality too. 'Give me fifty pages and a synopsis.'

I did. And thus was born Tania Carver.

So who is Martyn Waites?

Well, if you're on this site, I guess you already have some idea. I'm a writer, predominantly of crime novels, although I do other stuff too. You can read all about that here.

How have people taken to Tania Carver?

To me being Tania Carver? Quite well, on the whole. Amused, more than anything. I do get the usual questions, such as 'Do you dress up to write them?' (Answer: No. I'm one of those writers that barely gets dressed.) 'Is it hard to write as a woman?' (Answer: No. I may present things slightly different in a Tania novel than a Martyn novel, a different emphasis, but there's no real difference. Gender doesn't matter.) But if you're asking how do people respond when they find out Tania Doesn't exist, I don't think many people really care who writes their books as long as they enjoy reading them. As for me I enjoy it. It's very liberating having an alter ego. Like Bruce Wayne and Batman. Except if he was Batwoman.

So what next for Tania Carver?

More books, I hope. I'm currently, at time of writing, working on the eighth novel and I don't want to end it here. The Surrogate, the first one, was an international bestseller and nominated for the Theakstons Crime Novel of the Year Award. The others have all enjoyed huge international success and great sales. Heartbreaker is out this year and I'm currently working on the eighth novel in the series, The Hanged Man and I don't want it to end there. There's plenty more where these came from . . .