“Like a Scottish Bill Bryson”

Chatterbox Review

I’m now in love with Lochwinnoch and everyone in it and every house, shop, pub and paving stone. Especially the pubs, though.  I was last in the village for the arts festival there and you would be forgiven for thinking I either bribed, hypnotised or drugged the editor of the local newsletter, Chatterbox.   Bill Bryson is my hero and inspiration. I just hope he doesn’t spot this.


Launch: 8 Weeks and Counting

Writing a book, as I’ve discovered, is not even half the story. When you are hammering away at your keyboard, it feels like a solitary occupation but the actual process leading to publication is a collaboration which requires the skills, talents and experience of so many people.  My publisher, Lunicorn – a small independent firm based in Lochwinnoch, is headed by two of the most hard-working and dedicated women I’ve ever worked with.  Lyn and Laura are on duty almost 24 hours a day and since they encouraged me to start writing my little book of memoirs way back in the late spring, have coaxed and cajoled me through nine drafts and to the point where we are now able to talk publicly about the book and start responding to queries from journalists and festival organisers.

Along the way, we called upon the talents of an editor, a proof-reader, a lawyer, a photographer, an artist and a book designer. Next stage is to see the book actually roll off a huge printing press and then  have the file of my manuscript converted into the various formats demanded by Kindle and other e-readers. That requires more people with particular skills.

Up until now it has all felt a little unreal – but reality bit me today when my dentist told me she had seen the book advertised on amazon.co.uk and had pre-ordered it.

As if going to the dentist wasn’t scary enough.





Preface: An Apology

On this website we’ll be adding pictures and video content releated to the book, The Red Light Zone: An Insider’s laugh ‘n’ tell of BBC Radio.  In this post, author Jeff Zycinski, explains – and apologises – for the misleading title of his memoirs of a career in the BBC and commercial radio.


The Red Light Zone? Yes, I know. it’s a bit misleading, isn’t it? I’m sorry if you came across this site thinking it might be an edgy expose of Amsterdam brothels, Edinburgh massage parlours of Lochwinnoch tearoooms (we’ve all heard the stories). But no – it’s all about my book on radio, which is sexy in its own way, of course.

It’s The Red Light Zone because much of my career has been spent in sound proof studios where the red light signifies a live microphone and a reminder not to cough, sneeze, swear or blurt out any honest thoughts about the Government, Opposition parties, Ofcom, the BBC Director General, awards committees, football teams,  and accordionists, But now that I’ve left the BBC, that red light is off and I can say what I like about all of those things.

So let me tell you about how I sold my mind and body to broadcasting and about the people I met, the places I visited and the programmes we made, Friends have asked if this is going to be one of those ‘kiss ‘n’ tell’ memoirs, but I don’t think my air-kissing encounters with luvvies would justify that description. However, there were lots of laughs  so maybe ‘laugh ‘n’ tell’ is more appropriate.

There are movie stars, one car chase and some nudity. Not much sex though.

Again, sorry about that.

The book is published in January 2019, but you can pre-order by clicking the link below to amazon.co.uk.

Buy Book Here