Workaholic children's author-turned-Victorian crime novelist Jack (Pegg) is one giant nervous tic.
Terrified by the research he's carried out for his murderous scribblings, he's turned into a knife-obsessed paranoid recluse who sees sinister threat in everything about him - from billowing curtains to ruffled bed sheets.
Following a meeting with his flamboyant agent (Higgins) in a Soho restaurant (which ends in Jack suspecting the maitre d' is a deranged psychotic), he learns that a Hollywood movie agent has taken an interest in his ideas for forthcoming tome 'Decades of Death'.
However, the downside is that Jack - who shatters into emotional pieces as soon as he walks through the front door - has to get across north London for the rendezvous.
And there's the small problem of him having no clean clothes, a seemingly solveable situation complicated by his irrationally morbid fear of launderettes.