Author Ken Follett

Here are some interesting facts about Welch author Ken Follett:

  • Kenneth Martin Follett was born on June 5, 1949, in Cardiff, Wales.
  • Follett’s father was a tax inspector.
  • He was barred from watching films and TV by his Plymouth Brethren parents, so Ken found his escape in books.
  • The Follett family moved to London when he was 10 years old.
  • He won admission to University College London, in 1967, where he studied philosophy and became involved in center-left politics.
  • After graduating from college in the fall of 1970, Follett took a 3-month post-graduate course in journalism.
  • He went to work as a trainee reporter in Cardiff on the South Wales Echo.
  • After 3 years, Follett went back to London to work as a reporter for the Evening News.
  • He found journalism to not be challenging and left to pursue work in publishing.
  • Follett became deputy managing director of the London publisher Everest books.
  • He said he started writing books because he needed the extra money to fix his car.
  • Follett had written and published 10 novels before his first success.
  • His first success was the 1978 novel “Eye of the Needle,” which is a taut and original thriller that thrust Follett into the book world.
  • Over 160 copies of his works been sold worldwide.
  • In a change from thrillers in 1989, Follett surprised readers with “The Pillars of the Earth,” a novel about building a cathedral in the Middle Ages.
  • “Pillars” was the most popular choice of the Oprah Winfrey Book Club in November 2007.
  • He was governor of Roebuck Primary School for 10 years, serving as the Chair of Governors for 4 years.
  • In September 2010 Follett, along with 54 other public figures, signed an open letter published in the Guardian stating their objection to Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to the UK.
  • His archival papers are housed at Saginaw Valley State University in Michigan.
  • Follett is an amateur musician, playing bass for “Damn Right I Got the Blues.”
  • He is married to Barbara Follett and they live in a rambling rectory in Stevenage.
Ken Follett playing bass guitar.

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