Born in Edinburgh, Irvine Welsh was working for the council and studying for an MBA at Heriot-Watt University when he wrote Trainspotting. Published in 1993, the novel was a hit, and in 1996 was made into a film by Danny Boyle. A sequel is released next month, and an immersive theatre adaptation of the original book runs at The Vaults, London SE1, until 15 January. Welsh’s latest novel, The Blade Artist, was published this year. He is married for the second time and lives in Chicago.