Diary of an author – eBook, Paperback or Audio?

Cards on the table. I love paperbacks. New ones. The smell, the feel. The glossiness of the cover (or mattness – is that a word?). I love being in Waterstones, or any bookshop really, WH Smith being the exception (they don’t know what they are at the moment, do they? Bookshop? Fast Food outlet? Bric-a-brac shop?). Bookshops… Read more »

Diary of an author – wait a bit, want it now?

So now I’m told that, in the new world of agile authoring, I must produce three books a year. Or more, if possible. It’s possible, but is it beneficial? Author Jonathan Kaye completed his debut novel, After the Affair, in three years. He laboured over it, perfected it. I’ve not read it yet, but I… Read more »

Diary of an author – in soundbites

Morse has his opera. Banks has a wider repertoire of taste: everything from Miles Davis to classical, to the Grateful Dead. Is music important in a novel? As a musician myself (I’m a drummer – hey, no drummer jokes, OK? 🙂 ), I was a little surprised recently when I realised that music isn’t strongly represented in the… Read more »

Diary of an Author – in bits (a short bit)

Imagine the scene – build the tension … So, here’s a short bit from the novel in progress, ‘Silent as the Dead’. An armed gunman is stalking a young girl in an underground car park. Outer doors are locked. Two cops outside. Backup (ARU) running late. What do they do? DC Bola Odunsi was a… Read more »

Diary of an author – in bits

I suffer from that annoying condition called bruxism – where your teeth clench involuntarily during the night, rather like the Clashing Rocks (The Symplegades or Planctae?) which tried to crush Jason and his merry bunch of Argonauts during their quest for The Golden Fleece. Sometimes my tongue fills in for Jason and his crew and blood is spilled. It’s annoying to… Read more »

Characters – more important than plot?

I find myself returning to favourite books I’ve read – sometimes often – and which I therefore know very well. It’s not that I want to relive the story necessarily, although that might be part of it. No, the main reason is that I want to spend time with the characters. I want to renew old acquaintances,… Read more »

Just what does ‘Protected’ mean?

The announcement in 2012 of the new UK Protected Persons Service, a National Crime Agency initiative designed to replace the old Witness Protection Program was greeted with a predictable raising of eyebrows and shaking of heads. The idea, as I understand it, was to introduce a more consistent approach to witness protection across the various UK constabularies. Over the summer a… Read more »

Gothic Ghost Story

The next project is just that – a Gothic ghost story. The novella concerns a young woman living in Ireland in the dark days following the Great War. I’ve made a start and here is the opening paragraph. It unnerved me so much I had to stop writing. When I close my eyes I can… Read more »

Life in the glass cube

They’re crammed into a huge glass cube. They can’t move a muscle; ten million others press against them, all fighting for room, all shouting the same thing – it’s hard to hear exactly what because the noise is deafening. Outside the glass, fast-moving shapes zoom in, take a quick look, and zoom away again. This… Read more »

Remembering the Western Front

I don’t know what it is that fascinates me about the First World War – particularly the Western Front and the carnage of the battle which has become known simply by the name of the nondescript river near which it was fought – The Somme. I don’t know what it is. Maybe it’s because my… Read more »