Jeffrey Archer Image Credit: Supplied

Jeffrey Archer has topped the bestseller lists around the world, with sales of over 275 million copies in 97 countries and more than 37 languages. He is the only author ever to have been a number one bestseller in fiction, 19 times, short stories, four times, and non-fiction.

His latest novel ‘This Was A Man’ is the seventh and final volume of the Clifton Chronicles.

He will be attending the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature 2017 and answered a few questions for Gulf News ahead of the festival.

Q: What inspired you to start writing?

Archer: It was out of necessity. I’d lost my job and thought ‘Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less’ would make a good story.

Q: Where did the idea for your first book, ‘Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less’, come from? Archer: I’d made a bad financial investment and lost all my money, and that experience gave me the idea.

Q: Would you consider writing an autobiography?

Archer: No. If you read the Clifton Chronicles, you’ll see most of my life.

Q: Who is your favorite author?

Archer: I have several favourite authors, including Alexandre Dumas, Stefan Zweig and John Buchan

Q: Name one novel that you think everyone should read.

Archer: ‘The Count of Monte Cristo’ by Alexandre Dumas. He is a magnificent storyteller. Can you believe he wrote this and ‘The Three Musketeers’ in the same year?

Q: What advice would you could give to an aspiring author?

Archer: Read, read, read — it’s impossible to read too many books. And don’t imagine that because you’ve written the first draft, the book is finished.

For more details about the festival, visit www.emirateslitfest.com.