Born near Winchester, Dominic Cooper moved to Iceland in 1970, and began to concentrate on writing.

In 1972, he went to live first in Sweden and then to the Isle of Mull in Argyll, Scotland, where he drew inspiration from the landscape and people to write his first novel, The Dead of Winter, published in 1975. This won him the Somerset Maugham Award in 1976.

Little of his poetry has been published, but commenting on the poetic quality of his fiction, he has said: ″By nature I feel myself to be first and foremost a poet ... but poetry for me has always been an essentially private affair and I have never felt any great need for it to be published.″

He has described writing his fourth book, The Horn Fellow, set in Northern Europe around 500 BC, as “perhaps the greatest experience of my life” and its publication as being met “with a mixture of incomprehension and vague ridicule”.

In 1973 he undertook training in horology in Edinburgh and since then he has worked restoring clocks and watches. He returned to the West Highlands in 1985 and soon afterwards built himself a house on a remote part of the North Argyll coast where he now lives.