1. book ten
Which is the only title the poor thing has right now. The working title has always been The Red River, but as I mentioned in my last update, nobody has any real love for that and it will most likely change before publication. But anyway! Book Ten is the reason I’ve been absent from here for the last couple of months, as I’ve been racing to hit the end of February deadline (which I ended up going over, but only by a few days). The first draft went off to my editor earlier this week. It’s always a strangely anti-climactic moment: you wrestle with the book; you dream of finishing it; and when it actually happens … it kind of feels like nothing at all.
But it’s good to get it sent. As always, I’m expecting there to be changes in the next draft (if nothing else, there are a couple of bits I know I personally want another run at), but in general I think it’s okay. Or at least, I’m not unhappy with it for this stage in the process.
90,000 words, anyway. Serial killers. Grief and love. Stories within stories. Twists and turns. Tears before bedtime. You know the drill by now.
2. I know who did it
It’s a real pleasure to report that I Know Who Did It will be coming out through Pegasus this September in the US, with a new title – The Reckoning On Cane Hill – and, as you can see to the left there, a nice new cover. From my point of view, Pegasus have been fantastic to work with, previously publishing both Dark Room (as The Murder Code) and The Nightmare Place, and I’m thrilled they’re going with this one too. The title change, if you’re interested, may be the first time anybody’s been worried I might be confused with O J Simpson.
I’m also very pleased that it has been taken on by Lithuanian publisher Sofoklis, who liked the book so much that they took The 50/50 Killer too. (IKWDI is a sequel to 50/50, although both work as standalones). I’ll post more about that as and when I know more detail.
3. a night of crime
I had a great time attending this evening down in London in February, as Orion gathered ten of its crime writers together and let them loose in a swanky room full of journalists, bloggers and – we’re all adults here, so let’s be frank – a vast amount of booze. It was a really fun event. As part of it, all ten of us were required to give a one minute pitch about our latest book. And as what might be described as the opposite of an act of kindness, these pitches were filmed. Shotsmag Confidential has the videos, along with a comprehensive report on proceedings. Thanks to everyone who organised it and everyone who came along.
4. some interesting links
There have been several that I’ve failed to take note of over the past couple of months, but here are a few.
I really enjoyed this article on disguised drinking dens. It resonates with that sensation we all have from time to time that there are secrets hidden in the cities around us. Because, of course, there are.
This is an older article on the Tamám Shud mystery, but new to me. A year or so back, I moderated a panel on how realistic crime fiction was, and I broke it up by presenting the authors and audience with strange and bizarre scenarios and asking them to decide whether they were real or made-up. This was one of the examples I used.
This long read on the ‘death of a troll’ is intriguing, twisty and very much worth your time.
And finally, this article on the unsolved case of the Long Island serial killer is fascinating and disturbing in equal measures, and a good piece of true crime writing.