A fresh approach to crime fiction

Paper trail

Last week I said I needed to sort the notes and scraps of paper that litter my desk. Like most problems in life, there’s an IT solution. In this case it’s Scrivener, which is software for writers that can help to organise, record and write from within the same programme. It’s a word processor, database and
index system all in one. And it will format your manuscript for loading onto Kindle and other
eReaders for those who want to self-publish.

I know a number of writers who use the software, so after seeking some opinions online, I installed the trial version on my PC and set the program running. The moment I looked at the screen I knew this wasn’t for me. I got the concept of having everything in one place and easily accessible, but there was too much going on. It wasn’t organised the way I wanted it to be. I went through the tutorial to see if there was anything to dispel my initial feelings, tried the program, but I couldn’t take to it.

It’s the same as books. Some people will like a book, others will not.

desk

 

So, I’m sticking with pen and paper for the moment.

I have eight notepads on my desk, plus Post It notes, a To Do pad, and of course, my laptop. There are at least another three notepads within easy reach, more Post It pads in the drawer, and enough scrap paper to cover every internal wall in the house. That should be enough to keep me going.

 

The eyes have it

opticianI enjoyed reading ‘The Optician’s Wife’ by Betsy Reavley. It’s described as ‘a
compelling, psychological thriller that unpicks what goes on behind closed doors and reminds us that sometimes the worst crimes can take place closer to home than you think.’ It’s different, it’s well written and it packs a punch at the end, so I’ve no problem recommending it.

So, what do I read next? Any suggestions?

 

First impressions

I started my inventory with a visit to Fisher’s Fables, the blog that helped to launch Kent Fisher and No Accident. While primarily a fictionalised version of real situations and events, the characters at Downland District Council were all fictitious. I wanted to keep a record of them all in case I need them in future books.

I’d forgotten how many interesting characters I’d created. There was the hippy Head of IT who was worried about chafing his toes in his sandals, the sultry HR officer who teased Kent with innuendo, and a deadpan Facilities Manager.

“What does a Facilities Manager do?” Kent asks.

“I manage facilities.”

“What’s a facility?”

“Everything’s a facility.”

“So, you manage everything?”

“As long as it’s a facility, yes.”

PinboardI’d almost forgotten how much fun I had writing Fisher’s Fables. Then I came across the gems that feature on Danni’s Motivational Pinboard. I’ve now added this to my newsletter, The Tollingdon Tribune, so I can have a new mantra each month, starting with this classic.

If you want to read more of Danni’s pearls, along with background
information about the characters, the writing and the settings, and a dip into my environmental health archives, then subscribe to the email
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