Doing your research (or not)

This article was originally published on the Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook site. http://www.writersandartists.co.uk/2012/06/crime-writing-doing-your-research/ When you write crime and you’re chatting to people about what you do (say at a party), sooner or later the question always gets asked: ‘You must do a lot of research?’ That’s the point where I look sheepish and shuffle away towards…

Which crime-novel character are you?

Crime novels, eh? I read a lot. I love a lot. True, some people say they can be a bit reliant on cliché. But maybe that’s a large part of why we read them – we know what to expect and we want to sit back and enjoy a thrilling narrative arc with a satisfying…

Keeping the Pages Turning

This post originally appeared here http://www.writersandartists.co.uk/2012/06/keeping-the-pages-turning/ As discussed last time, a crime novel can appear under many different guises. But to truly fit in the genre, it must have one element: tension. Your readers will never forgive you if the pace drags and they’re not compelled to carry on late into the night. Ian Fleming’s famous…

What I read this week (10-16 June)

Catch Your Death, by Mark Edwards/Louise Voss I’ve read a few self-published crime novels recently, and been struck by how indistinguishable they are from many which get mainstream-published. It gives me to wonder how much dumb luck plays in who gets in and who’s out on the street with their lonely kebab, like some strange…

The Seven Deadly Freelance Sins

As a (lapsed) Catholic, I’m obviously quite interested in sin. As a year-in freelancer, I’m also interested in how to make this style of employment work for me. Um…that’s the only link I can come up with for this post. As I’ve said before, I’ve found freelancing to be harder than I had expected. There…

How To Survive A Literary Festival

This article was originally published in Red Herrings, the magazine of the CWA http://www.thecwa.co.uk  The festival season is nearly upon us – no, not Glastonbury or the Isle of Wight. I’m talking about Crimefest and Harrogate (and new addition this year, Bloody Scotland). Who wants to stay in a mud-covered tent when you can sip gin and…