Pete Brown has one of the best jobs in the world. He’s a food and drink writer. He is the chair of the British Guild of Beer Writers, been British Beer Writer of the Year 3 times and also won 3 Fortnum and Mason food and drink awards. Yet, all that seems to do him a disservice. Pete is a fantastic cultural commentator, drawing on history to talk passionately about society.
His first book, ‘Man Walks into a Pub’, is a pub-crawl through the history of beer, and Pete began working on it after discovering the book that he wanted to read didn’t exist – so he wrote it. He’s also published a history of London through the eyes of one pub, ‘Shakespeare’s Local’, and his newest book ‘Pie Fidelity’ aims to reclaim the joy of British cuisine.
We talk about how he has analysed the way he works over the years to get better at writing, also about how he chooses which project to work on next, and about why the pomodoro technique works for him. There’s tips on planning your book, finding the best way to get into a story, and how to find an unexpected joy in the narrative voice. Also, I was lucky enough to chat to Pete in his actual writing room, so there’s a vivid description of that.