Crime In The Spotlight
This week has been incredibly exciting because I was able to take part in one of the most prestigious crime-writing events. Bloody Scotland, founded by Lin Anderson and Alex Gray, celebrates 10 years of bringing crime writers together to discuss their books and craft in front of hundreds of attendees, some of whom have travelled across the world to be part of.
Alongside big names of crime fiction such as Lin Anderson, Ian Rankin, Val McDermid and many more, are several fresh faces on the scene, giving a chance to shine in the Crime in the Spotlight sections just before the main events. Catherine Yaffee (The Lie She Told); Graham Bartlett (Bad For Good) and fellow Hobeck Books author, Maureen Myant, are just a few of the authors selected to read. I was another.
With the event taking place in Stirling I booked my train tickets and hotel, and then spent a week trying to find a suitable piece to read out in the three minutes we'd been allotted. I finally settled on it and practiced every day. I was really excited because my spot was going to be in front of Lin Anderson's panel on the Friday - (I am a big fan of Lin Anderson and have been slowly making my way through her Rhona MacLeod novels - I'm currently on book eleven, None But The Dead ) - so I had to make sure I got this right. I was also hoping to finally meet Ian Rankin, as when I decided to write crime fiction, it was these two stalwarts of the genre that I turned to, devouring their first novels to learn as much about the craft as possible.
And then the train strikes were announced...
With no way of ensuring I could either get there, or back, I was forced to cancel. I wouldn't be reading in front of an audience, I wouldn't be listening to my favourite authors as they talked about their craft, and I wouldn't be able to meet many of the online friends I had made since joining several crime fiction groups. Instead, I would be recording a video reading which would play in front of the 4.30pm Truth and Lies event with Ruth Ware, Lisa Unger and Jane Casey.
And then the Queen died, and the train strikes were called off...
But since then, our cat Tom (who features in my Louise Miller books) needed urgent vet care and so the money used for the train and hotel went to cover his bills, so that worked out for the best in the long run.
I've been watching the events online and have learned so much from each of the authors and I'm hoping that next year I will be able to make it. If you'd like to watch the reading, I've posted the video to my burgeoning YouTube channel.
I will be appearing at Horbury Library on Tuesday 27 September at 2.30pm