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Penance by Jane Risdon: I really enjoyed this one, Jane Risdon isn’t an author whose books I’ve read before, but I loved this ghostly Christmas tale. This one also gave me goose pimples, but they were mostly caused by a feeling of dread as Gabrielle looks for his missing wife and daughters. Christmas should be a time when families get to spend precious time together, and yet Gabrielle missed these special days, putting work first, leaving him full of regret. There’s something sinister about reading a story based around Christmas and the big man himself, especially when a crime's committed. I was impressed with how well-written this short story was, the author creates a spooky atmosphere with an undercurrent of tension and unease, but ultimately it’s a touching story that pulls on the heartstrings.
What I hadn’t expected was the cathartic effect my writing would have on me! During my time with the police, I had to witness and deal with the worst of what society is capable of. In fact, my own life was put in serious peril on nine occasions – I’m outliving a cat! And, as one advances through the middle and later years of life, I have found that I am naturally less resilient. Things I would have shrugged off in my thirties sometimes replay in my mind and make me shudder.
I enjoy wandering with my camera. Sometimes I use the locations I visit, for my stories, other times I just enjoy taking photos and making memories.
I thought I'd share some photos with you. Every year I spend a lot of time taking photos of gardens, woods, villages, churches, cathedrals, and other places and items of interest.
Writing from memory should be easy, you'd think. After all, we all have memories, and putting them down on paper or onto a computer screen should simply be a case of organising one's thoughts, and getting on with it
Undercover: Crime Shorts is once again featured - 14th September 2022 - on the global author podcast, The Authors Show, where I chat to my fab host, Linda Thompson, about writing my collection of short stories, and the inspiration for them.
My friend and I were invited to spend the week from the end of July to early August, during the time the Regatta runs. We were given full board and lodgings in return for light duties such as cleaning guest bedrooms and changing their sheets. Once we'd finished our chores the day was ours as long as we returned in time for dinner.
The Innocence Project is a non-for-profit organisation, based in New York, New York, USA, committed to exonerating individuals who have been wrongly convicted - through the use of DNA testing - and working to reform the Criminal Justice system to prevent future cases of wrongful conviction.
And it is that surprise at the end of the story that I try to give my readers. I want them to sit back like I have when I've written the end, and say, 'Cripes, seriously?' I never expected that!'