Over the next 8-10 weeks, I'll have some promotional and publishing activity going on. I'm launching a new novel, 'Disappear', in July, and re-issuing 'The Delta Chain' with a slightly revamped cover, an extension of my author name, and setting a special promotional e-book price of .99c. (The paperback will follow shortly.)
Later on, to complete this initial triumvirate of activity, I'm launching my short fiction collection (title tba).
In the spirit of experimentation, and after much research on indie author blogs and websites, we'll see how the pricing and cross-promotion of the titles is working, and I'll post some status updates.
So no idle moments then, no twiddling of the thumbs around here. (I've always wondered what 'twiddling' of the thumbs actually means. According to one dictionary entry, it's a series of twist and turns. Not sure why you'd want to spend time doing that with your thumbs, sounds very 'Deliverence' and duelling banjos to me.)
Here's the lowdown:
In 'Disappear,' a young husband takes what should be a 10 minute walk to a local shop. Never to return. Eighteen years later his body is found on the very same street, the victim of a hit/run driver. Where has he been and why was he returning now, only to die in an accident? His wife, Jennifer Parkes, is called to identify the body...and is confronted by a seemingly impossible fact...
In 'The Delta Chain,' authorities are unable to trace the identities of six drowning victims washed ashore along the coasts of two countries over a two year period. Who were they? Are there others?
In my short fiction collection, a "breaking news" item on TV presents a man with an opportunity to commit an undetectable, perfect murder - one that will deliver personal and financial gains; a daring international cat burglar, who has never been caught, has a stunning plan to steal a fabulous diamond; the little-known forensic science of 'bite-mark analysis' delivers an unexpected curve to a small-town murder investigation; these are three of several stories with a sting that explore the themes of deception, greed, power, crime and the sometimes unexpected paths that can lead to justice.
I've always been drawn to suspense fiction that has an unusual or intriguing element of mystery to its plot and characters, something instilled in me from a very young age. I remember sitting up late on a Tuesday night with my Mum and Dad, watching 60's tv series 'The Fugitive,' with David Janssen as Dr. Richard Kimble, on-the-run from the law,
roaming from town to town, adopting different identities and jobs, while searching for a one-armed man who could prove Kimble's innocence of a murder charge.
On successive Saturday nights, I watched a festival of old Hitchcock films, many of them based on novels and short tales by master storytellers in the thriller genre. As a result, I sought out books by those authors : 'Jamaica Inn,' 'Rebecca' and 'The Birds' by Daphne Du Maurier; 'The 39 Steps' by John Buchan; 'Marnie' by Winston Graham; 'Psycho' by Robert Bloch; 'Strangers On A Train' by Patricia Highsmith; 'The Secret Agent' by Joseph Conrad.
Years later, revisiting some of those books has proved a valuable reminder of just what it was that influenced me, inspired me, entertained me, and set me off on this particular journey - and hoping that a few tricks and techniques in pacing, mood and characterisation, rubbed off.
Rediscovering roots isn't just for blues musos, it helps writers and every craftsman in every field to re-focus and sharpen the skills and the tools of our trades.
Enough blabbing. Time to get back to work. Or - maybe -before that, I'll just dip into an old Hitchcock movie or Winston Graham novel. After all, those guys really knew how to cast a line and reel you in...