Barry Hutchison was born and raised in the Highlands of Scotland. Despite this, he has never once tossed a caber, wrestled a haggis, or gone a-roamin’ in the gloamin’. He’s not even sure what the gloamin’ is, but he imagines it to be a terrible Hell-like dimension where the cast and crew of the film Brigadoonare doomed to wander for all eternity.
An avid reader from a very early age, Barry spent most of his childhood with his nose buried in some book or another, and began writing his own novels when he was 10. His first epic – the mind-blowingly violent Nightwarrior vs The Death Ninjas – has mercifully long since been lost to the mists of time, and very little other evidence remains of Barry’s early writing efforts.
Although just 8 years old when he decided he wanted to become a writer, it wasn’t until Barry was 17 that he sold his first piece of written work. The dark comedy horror screenplay, Curse of the Bog Women, was picked up by a movie producer from New York.
In an attempt to raise money to help fund production a promotional website was created. The website took the form of a community site created by the 67 residents of Glen Lachart, the fictional village featured in the Bog Women script. With features including a weekly online newspaper, bustling forums and even a webcam in a local pub which allowed site visitors to buy real drinks for those in the bar, Glen Lachart Online quickly became one of the most popular sites in the UK, attracting a million visitors every month at its peak.
Despite the success of the site, the movie never quite made it into production, and the rights to the screenplay eventually reverted back to Barry a few years ago.
Shortly after Bog Women was optioned, Barry took three days out of his busy sitting-around-doing-nothing schedule to write a second screenplay, Making a Killing. This was optioned by UK production company, Pilgrim Films, but once again no movie was ever produced.
Disheartened and lazy (but mostly lazy), Barry spent the next several years in a succession of largely meaningless proper jobs, only occasionally churning out a magazine article here and a half-finished sitcom pilot there. It wasn’t until 2007 when, on the advice of long-time friend and fellow writer, Tommy Donbavand, Barry decided to turn his attention to children’s books.
Barry immediately found himself right at home, realising he now had the opportunity to write exactly the type of stories he had always wanted to write, and create all the bizarre, fantastical characters he could ever hope to meet.
In October 2008 Barry signed a six-book deal with HarperCollins to publish his Invisible Fiends horror series for the 9+ age group. The first book – Mr Mumbles – was published on February 4th 2010 in the UK, with various other territories – including Canada, Germany and Australia – publishing the book soon afterwards. Book two – Raggy Maggie – was published in August 2010, with book 3 – The Crowmaster – hitting shelves in early 2011. To describe the whole experience as a dream come true would be a very big understatement indeed.
Barry lives in Fort William with his partner, Fiona, and their two children, Kyle and Mia. He enjoys reading comics, eating seafood and writing about himself in the third person. His biggest fear is that someone will someday discover how much fun his job is and immediately put a stop to it. His second biggest fear is squirrels.
Barry Hutchison will be at the biggest and best Highlands Comic Con, Fort Con 2 in 2017. Find out more about the Fort William convention and Highlands Comic Con.