WHEN Leigh man, Keith Houghton penned his first crime novel, little did he think he would become a household name in America.
But the 45-year-old has earned himself a spot in the top 100 Kindle book downloads in the USA with his thriller Killing Hope - a tale which follows a homicide detective in LA and Las Vagas as he tries to trap a killer, who plays mind games to wear him down.
Keith, who repairs computers from his home in Leigh and is also in the top 100 UK Bestsellers chart, said: “I completed the 400-page book in September and was in negotiations with a UK literary agent, but she went on maternity leave and I was stuck.
“I then saw the Kindle market and thought I would self publish there.
“I began promoting it a bit more and it reached 18 in the Amazon chart in America.
“I am the only independent British writer in the top 100 Kindle Book downloads in the USA.
“It is relatively unheard of for an independent UK author to break into the American market, let alone be in both charts simultaneously.
“I have sold more copies than James Patterson and Lee Child and it has been at the number one spot.
“I am in shock but I feel a bit of validation. I have always believed in myself and I had a feeling I would get somewhere one day.”
Keith, who has two children, two step-children and three grandchildren, began writing at an early age and was interested in science fiction, before moving to crime thrillers.
To order a copy, £1 to £2 (depending on exchange rate) visit www.keithhoughton.com or www.amazon.co.uk