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QI's sister show researcher from Hazlemere pens second novel
HE USED to be a specialist crime solving policeman working for Scotland Yard. But these days Steve Colgan is rubbing shoulders with comedians like Stephen Fry, Jimmy Carr and Bill Bailey.
The Hazlemere resident’s life has changed rather dramatically since he retired from police work and then his book was endorsed by comic TV star Fry four years ago.
Now, the author of Joined Up Thinking, a book of fascinating facts and trivia, the kind of information you might see on popular BBC 2 show QI, has followed it up with his second penned effort.
A combination of fantasy, fiction and facts, Constable Colgan’s Connectoscope, interweaves bizarre and surprising information about the world we live in using a fictitious version of the writer as a vehicle to link and pull together the wide ranging topics he covers.
The book’s protagonist tinkers a machine together to help him to solve crime; a wonderful steam punkish analytical engine that he calls the Connectoscope.
Powered by a mystic gem found by his father and linked to a component from H G Wells’ original time machine, the Connectoscope allows him to find surprising links between things past, present and future.
In each chapter, the reader is invited to try to find the connections and defeat the villain of the story - a man named Conundrum.
As Freetime sat down to meet Steve he announced that not only has he got a second book out, he revealed he has just now been recruited as one of the researchers on QI’s sister show on BBC Radio 4 - The Museum of Curiosity - this series featuring Jimmy Carr.
So, we asked him how his life has changed since he retired as a member of Scotland Yard’s specialist team, the Problem Solving Unit.
"Life has changed beyond all recognition really, from working in London and going out looking at criminal intelligence and trying to piece how crimes have been committed and finding new ways of solving them," he told us.
"Now a lot of my time is spent mostly at home researching, but also visiting libraries and fascinating places like behind the scenes like National History Museum.
"I got to go behind the scenes at the Wellcome Foundation Library which was amazing I got to hold the piece of paper on which was scribbled the very first drawing of DNA.
"Because of the connection with QI and Museum of Curiosity I’ve been able to meet some amazing people. "
The link to both shows is John Lloyd, their creator. The man behind Spitting Image and producer of Blackadder has become a friend as well as a colleague of Steve’s.
"I’ve been able to meet most of the major comedians on TV like Stephen Fry, Bill Bailey; I’ve got to meet most of them in the last four years," he said.
"Also great authors - Terry Jones, Terry Pratchett and scientists, philosophers and an extraordinary range of people who have enriched my life."
Steve’s second book answers questions like how much does the internet weigh, how did mosquitoes help decide the capital city of America and what humans taste like to robots, among many other.
But if you want to find out, the publication of his book is dependent on receiving pledges.
Steve is signed up to the relatively new and unconventional published Unbound, which pitches ideas and then relies on finding supporters to get the books printed.
To find out more about Steve, his book and how to help him get published click on the links.
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