Hello lovely people. One of my favourite things is the idea of the seven deadly sins especially when this is incorporated into fiction. Enter Lawless and the Flowers of Sin...A book I have been waiting for for years! So without further ado I'm going to hand over to William Sutton to take you on a Slothful ride through crime fest!...
Hello, hello, I’m William Sutton, author of Lawless and the Flowers of Sin, published by Titan Books. To celebrate, I’m touring blogs sharing my sinful thoughts.
Sloth - “You done the time, now do the CrimeFest #2”
The hard way to improve in crime writing is to read and write, read and write until your eyes hurt and your hand aches. The slothful way is to go to CrimeFest. Meeting lovely people, discovering new writers, discussing linguistic analysis at the bar. I enjoyed Bristol CrimeFest so thoroughly it was sinful. I’ve signed up for next year already. Aside from sitting around with people, eating, drinking and making merry (shout out to Titan Books’ publicists, my editor and other writers), there was sharp chat in the panels below.
I recommend the great crime festivals, Harrogate, or Bloody Scotland , to any writer, or reader, where you can slothfully improve your crime thinking without even opening a notebook.
Bristol sends me into a creative brain sphere. On the train there, I met a social worker whose stories were darker than Lawless and the Flowers of Sin: murder, incest, police corruption. It gave me wonderful insights to share with our Murder at the Theatre workshops at the New Theatre Royal, followed by Portsmouth Writers' Hub Murder at the Café. Sardonic, witty, revealing, here are the criminal pearls I picked up.
(I’ve been slothful enough to divide it into two blogs. Here is Day 2 For dodgy attribution of quotations, I apologise: my hand-writing’s illegible since recent eye operations; it wasn’t too good before either.)
CrimeFest Day 2
Debut Authors: An Infusion of Fresh Blood
“All the characters are composites of people I know. People don’t see the bad in themselves. They don’t say, Oh, I’m the arsehole in Tenacity.” JS Law
"The best way to deal with bad reviews? Sit down next to them in the pub, and say 'Why did you write that?'" Matt Johnson
"Teaching someone in the army to write is a real accomplishment." JS Law to Matt Johnson
“A feeling of loss propelled me to write.” Sarah Ward
“What is a nice person like you doing in a genre like this?” Laura Wilson to Anja de Jager
Using Real People: How Do You Combine Fact and Fiction?
“I read The Times for three months on either side.” Alison Joseph (writing about Agatha Christie) “If it’s spontaneity you’re after, I’m out of here.” David Ashton (Conan Doyle, William McGonagall, R.L. Stevenson)
Audience question: “Is there an unease about writing real people that you might be manipulating them, modernising them?”
“Graham Greene said that all writers must have a sliver of ice in their heart.” Peter Guttridge (Great Train Robbers).
“They’re not writing fictional characters, they’re writing friends and family and traducing them.”
“We assume that this fiddling with people is negative, but it can be the opposite.” Andrew Taylor (Edgar Allan Poe)
Once Upon a Crime: Long Long Ago
“How do you keep the research under control?” “My editor says, this is lovely, Shone, but...” Shona MacLean
“The stark differences in 19th Century Edinburgh are like Mexico City now. The New Town, the Old Town.” Oscar de Muriel
“Don’t write what you know, write what you’d like to know about.” Linda Stratmann
Call The Cops: Why Do We Love Reading About Our Girls and Boys in Blue?
“She’s a big fat lass with a face that scares the horses.” Quentin Bates
“Why a theology student? Because he doesn’t really believe in anything.” Ragnar Jónasson
“A homicide cope, and strangely enough, as soon he arrives in the Faeroes, there’s a murder.” Chris Ould
“With every novel you’re trying to solve the problems of previous books, seeking a mix between literary and crime.” Susie Steiner
What’s So Funny? Humour in Crime Fiction
“Incongruity is the essence of comedy.” Ruth Dudley Edwards
Comedy = tragedy + time? “When Paul Daniels died, I thought, ‘Ooh, that’s tragic,’ but I didn’t say it for three months.” Nev Fountain
How many characters should you have?
“Start off with a few. End with less.” Nev Fountain
On Grantchester: “I write it, then they take all the jokes out.” James Runcie
“We all know in this country you can’t get published if you kill a dog.” Ruth Dudley Edwards
“I don’t read crime. I don’t like panels.” Douglas Lindsay
Check out William Sutton on:
Don't forget to check out the other stops on the blog tour and the book is out NOOOOW so go and grab yourself a copy!