One of my readers made a comment to me a few years ago about how much he liked novellas. Ideal he said, for a plane or train journey. So for some time I’ve been toying with the idea of writing a series of stories of less than 30,000 words but with a new character and in a different genre.
I have always liked the detective stories of the 40s and 50s so I have created Frank O’Brian, an American Private Investigator working in New York in 1946. He has trained as a lawyer, worked for the Office of Strategic Service – the forerunner to the CIA – during WWII and after being demobbed become what is known colloquially as a gumshoe.
My intention is to write exciting stories with enough twists and turns to keep the reader guessing as to who has committed the crime. Also, of course, there’s the added benefit of writing a story without mobile phones, computers, e-mail and the rest of social media. What a heavenly time it must have been! The first story is now available on Kindle. The second is ready to be published and a third is in the pipeline.
I hope you enjoy the first one.
Buy a beautiful bone china mug created by the renowned Barbara Davidson Pottery of Larbert. Barbara’s husband, Brian, was a great fan of Paul’s books and it had been his idea, in the last few months of his life, that they should create a series of mugs of Paul’s book jackets. Barbara remembered this and has worked with us to create the first mug! And she came up with the above strapline.
The nights are getting longer, the days shorter (a bit self evident) and the weather is becoming colder.
It means the fire is lit every evening and the central heating is on around 16.00 – I’m warm blooded, you see. Really I was meant for sunnier climes!
But the Scottish climate never fails to amaze – was a beautiful sunny day so Dorothy and I decided to do another stretch of the West Highland Way. This is a 96 mile walk from just north of Glasgow to Fort William. Lots of people walk it in a week.
Dorothy and I decided to do it in short bursts and started in 2011 !!. We may well get into the record books as the longest elapsed time to completion. And at the rate we are going the last part may be with zimmer frames for support.
As my excuse I tend to be book signing every weekend during the summer months. But the other reason is we only walk on sunny days when there are no midges. So yesterday was perfect.
We drove to Tarbet and took the ferry to Rowardennan.
The weather was warm and sunny, the ferry small and cosy, the free coffee more than acceptable. We met a very nice Scot called Peter. Peter now lives in New Zealand but had returned to Scotland to visit family and friends. As we (i.e. Dorothy) had forgotten a camera, Peter kindly took our picture as we got off the ferry at Rowerdennan.
From there we walked to Inversnaid – 7 miles! It was a case of up hill and down dale, walking through the woods.The walk was exhilarating and at the end of the 7 miles we had a glow of achievement. I know, I know! Not much of an achievement, not when compared to my sister-in-law, Patricia who can climb a Munro (hill over 3,000ft) before breakfast. Or Nick and Ruth yomping 20 miles through the desert in Mayhem.
Still, Dorothy and I enjoyed the day, we are now over a third of the way with only 62 miles to go.
Anyway, I’m out and about most weekends from now to Christmas. Please take a look at my schedule on the website and if you have the time, I hope to see you at one of the events.
This is the time of year to sit in the garden, in the shade, having a glass or two of Pimms, or a glass of wine – any colour.
You see what good fiction I am able to write when I can dream up such a scenario?
The reality? Freezing cold, shivering with a blanket over the shoulders, the BBQ alight under an umbrella (to prove what a hardy race we are), a hot toddy to hand, with only one redeeming feature in the whole scenario – a good book.
For those of us who are discombobulated by the weather (for those who don’t know the word is the antonym of combobulated) we have a special offer. To help you get through this long, dreich ( a great Scottish word) summer, we are giving a free copy of The Seventh Circle this weekend. Just CLICK HERE to get your copy.
The story won’t help with the burnt meat, the lousy weather, the noisy and grumbling kids unable to go out and play but it will take you on a roller-coaster of a ride where the end is, as always, a happy one.
I’d be delighted to see you as I am out and about at events this summer. Over the next 6 weeks I will be in Banchory, Stranraer. Perth, Wigtown, Stewarty, Stonehaven, Keith, Peebles, Chipping and Shrewsbury.
Enjoy what’s left of your summer and remember. On the Continent the temperature has been soaring into the high thirties even the low forties. Which is far too hot. Damn, there’s no satisfying some people. Or is it that I am becoming a grumpy old(ish) man? Heaven forbid!
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