Eddy Shah has always been at the forefront of innovation in his business and creative life: whether revolutionising the newspaper industry by introducing new technology and journalistic methods at the ground-breaking Today newspapers, changing the way TV programmes were produced with peak-time shows, and now tackling the building industry head-on with his latest business venture building affordable and eco-friendly homes. Now with Second World a high-tech, futuristic action-thriller he delivers another first, taking us straight into the parallel world of today's virtual reality Internet where millions work and play every day.
Writing has been a major part of Eddy Shah's life since he was sixteen and in the 1990s he wrote four successful novels: Manchester Blue, Fallen Angels, The Lucy Ghosts and Ring of Red Roses. Shah spent two years researching and writing Second World; he'd first had the idea for the novel thirteen years ago but it was considered a book ahead of its time so Shah put it aside as he waited for the technology and information age to catch up with his ideas.
Born in 1944 in Cambridge, Eddy Shah was educated at Gordonstoun in Scotland, followed by Haywards Heath Grammar School and despite being thrown out of several schools along the way managed to get nine O levels. He didn't go to University but his lifelong passion for books and reading started when he was very young and he's been writing all his life.
He started his career in theatre and television as a stage manager and progressed to the BBC and Granada as a floor manager working on classic shows such as "Till Death Us Do Part", "Coronation Street" and "Softly,Softly". He then entered the newspaper business with the Manchester Evening News and after being made redundant sold his house to start his own paper and eventually built up a portfolio of 60 newspaper titles.
During this period he introduced new technology through desktop publishing to the newspaper and magazine industries when he launched Today in 1986 and in the process became one of the most talked-about newspaper men of the 1980s earning the soubriquet the "Shah of Warrington" when he became the first business leader to invoke the new Labour Laws to confront the Trade Unions a year before The Miner's Strike. He faced over 10,000 pickets a night for more than seven months and death threats that included a delivery of coffins to his house. He then launched a national newspaper and forced Fleet Street to follow by de-unionising and introducing new technology.
Shah sold his newspaper empire in 1988 and in 1989 set up Messenger TV an independent company which produced several successful prime-time series including "Capstick's Law" . Once again ahead of the pack he was the first to buy a house (Russell Harty's home in Giggleswick) and turn it into a studio. He'd moved to the US to write novels and build a development company. On his return to the UK he and his wife Jennifer moved into the property and leisure business building up a chain of golf clubs and hotels. They now run and own the Wiltshire Golf Country Club and Hotel. His latest business venture is building quality, eco-friendly homes at affordable prices through his new firm Green Ladder Homes. Shah's been observing the housebuilding sector for many years and is intent on shaking it up much as he turned the newspaper industry on its head 27 years ago.
Eddy and his wife Jennifer, a model and actress who was in the original Bond movie Casino Royale, have three grown-up children and are celebrating forty years of marriage this year.