Russell Celyn Jones’ first novel Soldiers and Innocents (Cape) won the David Higham Prize and his last novel, Ten Seconds from the Sun (Little, Brown) won the Weishanhu Prize in China for a foreign novel in translation. Neither prize gave him quite as much thrill as winning the junior Welsh surfing championship a long time before he ever planned on being a writer. Since graduating from the Iowa Writers Workshop in the US he’s worked as a paramedic in the London Ambulance Service and as a Professor of Creative Writing, setting up and running the MA at Birkbeck. As a journalist, he’s written for The Observer, The Guardian, Sunday Times and reviewed books for The Times. He’s been a Man Booker judge, lives in London and on various oceans.