This week I was pleased to be included in the Murder and Machinery anthology from Black Beacon books. This will be published in early 2021. My inspiration for the story comes not from science-fiction but Charles Dickens.
When I was a child, I read Oliver Twist, a rare 2nd edition that somehow found its way to my mother’s bookshelf. The 52nd chapter, Fagin’s Last Night Alive, instilled a life-long opposition to capital punishment. It is perfectly written and, given that Dickens opposed the spectacle of public executions, a good example of a writer influencing the beliefs of his readers.
By coincidence I am finalising another story that touches on the theme of executions and, looking back, see that four of my published stories do the same. The great writers of the past still reach out to their unworthy imitators.
Paul Williams is a writer of fiction and non-fiction best known for his Jack the Ripper Suspects: The Definitive Guide and Encyclopedia.