Tell us a story

LoveReading is thrilled to announce the launch of The Very Short Story Award 2019! If you think you have a story we'll love, click here to find out more and how to enter:

Find out more

Lust for Life Irvine Welsh and the Trainspotting Phenomenon

by John Neil Munro

Biography / Autobiography eBooks of the Month Modern and Classic Literary Fiction

LoveReading View on Lust for Life Irvine Welsh and the Trainspotting Phenomenon

September 2013 eBook of the Month.

An unintentional author and an unintentional international bestseller and film.  How did Irvine Welsh’s novel Trainspotting get written and why did it change literature so profoundly. John Neil Munro is a long-time friend of Welsh and he shows how the novel took shape, consulting some of the key players who had a part to play in the success of the novel.

Like for Like Reading
Carspotting: The Real Adventures of Irvine Welsh, Sandy Macnair
Trainspotting, Irvine Welsh


A 'Piece of Passion' from the publisher...

'John Neil Munro has written several successful music biographies for Polygon, so we had no hesitation in commissioning his account of the whole Trainspotting phenomenon. John Neil is an old friend of Irvine's which adds a special intimacy to the book. Even if you’re not a fan of Welsh’s writing the story of how a white-collar council worker penned one of the most influential books of the twentieth century is astonishing.' - Alison Rae, Polygon Editorial Manager

Sue Baker

Lust for Life Irvine Welsh and the Trainspotting Phenomenon Synopsis

In the early 1980s Irvine Welsh's life was going nowhere fast. His teenage dreams of being a footballer or a rock star were over, and he was stuck in a series of dull white-collar jobs which he despised. He was drinking heavily and experimenting with heroin. The outlook wasn't good. With one last throw of the dice he started writing. His debut novel, Trainspotting, which centred on the day-to-day struggle to survive of a group of Edinburgh junkies, was released in 1993. The reviews were good, but even Irvine's publishers didn't hold out high hopes. Yet, just a couple of years later, Trainspotting, a dazzling collection of loosely connected stories, was voted the greatest novel of the twentieth century in a UK poll. It went on to sell over one million copies in the UK alone and has been translated into thirty languages. The subsequent stage-play adaptation of the book has been produced in nineteen countries, and the film version directed by Danny Boyle became a stunning award-winner, rebooting the UK film industry and helping to launch the careers of a squad of young Scottish actors such as Ewan McGregor, Kelly Macdonald, Ewen Bremner and Peter Mullan. So, how did an unknown writer pen the most talked-about book of a generation? Now, for the first time, the real story of how Irvine Welsh wrote the novel 'that changed everything' can be told. With contributions from Irvine Welsh and many of the key players involved in the book's publication, access to never-before-seen letters and rare photographs, this is the inside story of Irvine Welsh and the Trainspotting phenomenon.

If you loved this, you might like these...

Bella Figura
Jo Malone: My Story
The Life and Times of a Very British Man
More Dashing Further Letters of Patrick Leigh Fermor

All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781846972423
Publication date: 06/08/2013
Publisher: Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited an imprint of Birlinn General
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781846972423
Publication date: 6th August 2013
Author: John Neil Munro
Publisher: Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited an imprint of Birlinn General
Format: Paperback
Genres: Biography / Autobiography, eBook Favourites, Literary Fiction,

About John Neil Munro

John Neil Munro was born in Campbeltown and raised in Stornoway. He studied modern and economic history at Glasgow University then completed a postgraduate journalism course in Cardiff during the late 1980s. His previous publications include The Sensational Alex Harvey (Firefly Publishing, 2002, reprinted by Polygon, 2008), Some People are Crazy (2010) and When George Came to Edinburgh (2010).

More About John Neil Munro

Share this book