Music strongly influenced my first two novels, in particular the character of Sanjay who, since his diagnosis of terminal cancer, only listens to music by artists who are dead. For me, the best books are like a Motown hit – concise and upbeat, yet with a heart-rending core.
As she's a writer I much admire, I was intrigued to find that Jane was writing a book which featured the death penalty and the last woman hanged in Britain, entitled At the Stroke of Nine O’Clock. This is because I recently completed a novella An Empty Vessel in which my character is found guilty of murder and sentenced to hang.
As we start the second month of social distancing, I’m paying a lot more attention than usual to mental hygiene. I’m trying break the loop of uncertainty and worry about the future, so daily exercise means more than yoga and dog-walking.
A recent article addressed the reality behind so many writers’ lives and I applaud that honesty. Because the opposite – ooh, look at me earning a living from nothing more than my imagination – is in most cases a falsehood.
Crime writing is a broad church, with something for everyone. In my writing career, I’ve been fortunate enough to meet some exceptional authors who have entertained, supported and helped me improve in the genre.