This is one of the beliefs that defines Kent Fisher.
But does everything have a cause and effect? Does anything happen by chance?
When I first thought about writing crime fiction, I left nothing to chance. I immersed myself in TV dramas and crime novels, analysing what worked and why, what I could and couldn’t achieve, but most importantly what I liked and didn’t like.
A huge fan of Columbo, Inspector Morse and Miss Marple, I imagined my crime stories on prime time television, watched by families that enjoyed a complex plot, which could keep them guessing until the unexpected ending took them by surprise.
While not averse to gritty themes, I wanted to entertain people, not make them feel uncomfortable.
But with bookshops and TV schedules bulging with crime fiction, could I create a detective that stood out from the crowd? More than that, could I create an authentic world for him to live and work in?
And if I could, would anyone be interested?
After several false starts, three mediocre novels and numerous rejections from publishers and agents in the UK and USA, it didn’t look like it. Titles like, Too Many Secrets and Too Many Memories sounded like romantic chick lit not murder mysteries. One agent rather liked the idea of an environmental health officer solving murders, read the whole novel, but turned it down because the characters didn’t leap of the page.
Not one to dwell in the past or accept defeat, I took a chance and made one final bid for glory. No Accident had an unusual murder, disguised as a work accident, for Kent Fisher to investigate. I might as well have called it No Chance because I couldn’t work out how Kent could solve the murder.
Disheartened, disillusioned and doubting my abilities, I put the unfinished story aside and abandoned my dream of becoming a crime writer.
And that’s when I discovered that sometimes, the only way to hold on to your dream is to let it go.
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