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Greater Minds: Anthony Horowitz on writing Sherlock Holmes

Anthony Horowitz was commissioned to write a Sherlock Holmes novel. His afterword described the process of planning a mystery novel. He starts with who murders whom and why, and works outward from there. He developed ten rules to be faithful

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Posted in Greater minds, Wednesday Pontification

Fiction review: Hand of God by Philip Kerr

Let’s get one thing straight: I couldn’t care less about football. I’m one of the very few Englishmen who looks blank when someone asks me what team I support. When England get knocked out of the World Cup, I breathe

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Posted in Book review: fiction, Wednesday Pontification

Greater Minds: James Ellroy

 James Ellroy claims his mother’s murder is key to understanding who he was but not who he is. His obsessions kept him happy when he was a homeless drug addict, then he channelled them into creating fiction. Ellroy claims to

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Posted in Greater minds, Wednesday Pontification

Inspirations: The pitchfork murder

In 1945, Charles Walton was murdered with his own farming tools and pinned to the ground with a pitchfork. There are many rumours occult involvement, but no evidence. The prime suspect was his employer, Alfred Potter, but evidence was circumstantial.

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Posted in Inspirations, Wednesday Pontification

Greater Minds: The Simple Art of Murder by Raymond Chandler

Chandler critiques the ‘English formula’ of mystery fiction, based on puzzle solving, and credits Dashiell Hammett with a more realistic tradition. Hammett and Chandler started a distinctively American tradition in which the police were corrupt and the detective owed a

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Posted in Greater minds, Wednesday Pontification

Inspirations: Who put Bella in the Wych Elm?

Like all the best mysteries, it started when four boys went trespassing in a private forest one night. When they came across a pollarded wych elm, the dense branches looked like a good place for bird nests so up climbed

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Posted in Inspirations, Wednesday Pontification

Greater Minds: Mysteries

I’m starting the Wednesday pontifications with a subseries I’ll call Greater Minds. I’ll be taking various articles, podcasts or anything else that looks relevant to writing, and discussing what I’ve learned from them. The discussion is not intended to summarise

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Posted in Greater minds, Wednesday Pontification
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