Strange Inspiration

I am writing this in a hotel room in Rockhampton. Writing was a portable trade long before technology gave us instant publication. I recently read an interview with popular author Lee Child, who lives in on a large estate in Wyoming with no near neighbours. Some writers prefer an isolated environment, others surround themselves with […]

Pink Floyd and Crime Fiction

Some guidelines are just so good that you must submit. Coming Through in Waves features stories with the title of a Pink Floyd song that capture the mood of the band’s music and are defined as crime fiction. Even better, some of the proceeds going to charity. Six years ago, I featured in Ominous Realities […]

The Myth of Friday 13th

Due to travel the frequency of this blog has slipped in recent weeks. Today is Friday 13th, a date when it is claimed that some people refuse to travel or do anything that is not essential. This is not supported by factual evidence and there is no science behind the superstition. We do not even […]

Remembering the New Adventures

A recent edition of Doctor Who Magazine contained a feature on the New Adventures, published by Virgin Books between 1991 and 1997. Viewing these as the official continuation of the series I waited eagerly for each monthly delivery and delayed my studies to read. They kept Doctor Who alive in those wilderness years and also […]

Embracing new topics

This week I began researching a new non-fiction article. Nothing new there you might think, except that it does not involve the nineteenth century and has no connection whatsoever to Jack the Ripper. In the last decade I have only published one article and one book that were not connected, in some way, to the […]

James Kelly revisited

This week I had the opportunity to write a short piece on James Kelly for a feature looking at the main Jack the Ripper suspects. Kelly, who stabbed and killed his wife, escaped from Broadmoor in 1888, the year of the ripper murders, and remained at liberty until 1927 when he appeared at the gates […]

The Demise of Footnotes

Non-fiction publishers and editors are increasingly moving away from footnotes. As a casual reader I understand this. Notes can interrupt the flow of the work and are often ignored. As a researcher and writer, I am unsettled. My academic training was always to note your sources, and this is still encouraged in education, helping in […]

Six Emotional Arcs?

An academic study in 2016 used computers to assess 1737 fictional works and concluded that they all fell into one of six emotional arcs. These were: Rags to riches (rise) Tragedy or riches to rags (fall). Man in a hole (fall-rise) Icarus, (rise-fall) Cinderella (rise-fall-rise) Oedipus, (fall-rise-fall) Of these Cinderella, Oedipus and the Man in […]

Real Stories Please

We are now in an era, for both books and television, where the activities of real people have the popularity of fiction. Audiences want their entertainment to be authentic and that means increasingly disregarding invented tales for something they consider genuine, even if it is bizarre and unlikely to be approved by a conventional editor. […]