writing

Category: writing

Hello Canada,

 

It’s the year 2020. How lucky am I to be ringing in a new decade with the launch of my debut book? Finally, the gruelling work has paid off—the late nights, the early mornings, the countless hours spent toiling in solitude.

See that red blinking arrow pointing at me? It says: “This way to Easy Street. You’ve made it, baby!”

As a writer of memoir, I’ve experienced the dominoes of fear; fear of starting, fear of failure, fear of telling the whole truth, fear of hurting others. In the big picture of life, I am no stranger to feeling fear and taking action anyhow. I had reached the jumping off point where telling my story felt more important than avoiding my fear of the dark places that could lead.

 

Growing up, I never imagined myself as a writer, but I’ve had a life-long love affair with crafts, particularly appliqué. It started when I was seven years old. My aunt, Kathy, gave me this small wall hanging that she had made with scraps of material and bits of embroidery floss. I’ve always cherished that little cloth picture. Something about its colours and its simplicity, is just so beautiful. And it has emotion. It’s a little work of art.

Swimming with Horses Blog

How did you research your book?

They say that you should write what you know, and I think that this is either good advice or bad, depending on the circumstances. If writers wrote only what they knew, we’d have no Lord of the Rings, no Chronicles of Narnia, and precious little science fiction. (We might not even have the Bible.)

On the other hand, the things you know best are apt to contain the most powerful forces in your life. Why not harness them?

Eleanor Wish got gunned down in Hong Kong.

Eleanor was the ex-wife of Harry Bosch, the LAPD detective at the centre of Michael Connelly’s absorbing series of crime novels, and though her murder was hardly the typical fate of the wives and girlfriends of homicide detectives and private eyes in crime fiction, it’s still true that many women, maybe most, who hook up with sleuth figures don’t find especially happy endings in their relationships.

No, this isn’t a real-estate blog, but the familiar mantra is just as relevant to fiction, where the setting can be as central to a novel as one of the characters. As a reader, I love books that transport me to foreign settings, whether they conjure up memories of places I’ve been before or introduce me to somewhere new. And I’m far from alone. There’s a reason writers like Jo Nesbo, Ann Cleeves, and Mark Billingham are so popular with North American readers, just as Michael Connolly and Louise Penny are beloved in Europe.

Purple Palette for Murder is the eighth book in the Meg Harris Mystery series, which began with the publication of the first mystery, Death’s Golden Whisper. When I started out on this journey with Meg, I had no idea where she would take me. I wasn’t even certain if it was going to be a series. But by the time I finished writing Death’s Golden Whisper, I knew I wanted to continue with Meg and see where life led her.

The Magic of a Backstory

Posted on September 11 by Steve Burrows in Mystery

The spotlight shines on the magician’s stage. In the box lies a lady, her torso sliced in two by a shiny, razor-sharp blade. In the audience, breathing stops. Beads of sweat trickle down temples, palm are damp. Can she have survived her ordeal? Is she still alive? Suddenly, the magician speaks: “Ladies and gentlemen, I’m afraid you’ll just have to wait a while before you find out what happened.”

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