Blog post from one mildly-crazed ‘Murder She Wrote’ Festival Director in Tasmania’s Huon Valley aka Dr L.J.M. Owen It’s 4.33 am. I’m working. Not on another crime fiction novel, but on a crime fiction-themed literary festival. “Why?’ I hear you ask. The answer is, ‘Cause I a little crazy! On reflection, in 2014
I first contacted the FBI in September 2018, when research for my new book, None Shall Sleep, was in full swing. None Shall Sleep is about two teenagers – serial killer survivor Emma Lewis and US Marshal candidate Travis Bell. Recruited by the FBI to interview juvenile killers, Emma and Travis are drawn into an
My background is forensic science – specifically forensic anthropology, think Dr Temperance Brennan from the TV series Bones. I still work with the police, often focusing on image analysis these days, comparing suspect images to a person of interest, this could be a suspect or another person the police wish to identify for operational reasons.
The photographer Diane Arbus once said, “A photograph is a secret about a secret”. I think that’s what has always drawn me to photographs of all kinds, in particular portraits of people and especially the old black and whites. I have languished in op shops, staring into the faces of relatives whose relatives have consigned
Whenever I’m engrossed in a ripping yarn of murder, mystery and mayhem, I love spotting the devices the writer has used to keep me turning the pages. My all-time favourite device is a spine-tingling heterotopia, where the characters are trapped in one place. I’ve long loved heterotopias, but only recently discovered that there’s a word
Setting is vital to crime stories. As a child, I read Agatha Christie’s murders on the Nile and the Orient Express and in Mesopotamia, joining millions of readers who first experienced the world in crime novels. They didn’t just whet my appetite for travel, they also showed what life was like for Agatha Christie’s privileged
I’m half way through writing my second novel and, despite the devastation around the world to our lives and our economies (and the cancellation of my debut book tour), I’m staying hopeful. I’m hopeful that there will be a medical cure for this terrible coronavirus, with the latest tactics focusing on testing existing drugs while
I was determined that I would never fall in love again. In 2013, Igal, the man I was in love with, ended his life. I’d lost several other people in my life within a few years. Two and a half years later, I was still reminding myself every day of the pain of losing him.
Two things happened to me in 2019. My first novel, Present Tense, was published, and I turned 70. So, when Sisters in Crime suggested I blog about becoming a late-onset writer, I thought I should share lessons learned along the way. Based on limited experience (one book does not an expert make), here are ten
Last year, I was house-hunting. I looked at a million houses and most of them were too small or pretty grotty. Then I looked at one house – also small and slightly grotty – and in the current tenants’ study there was a Scarlet Stiletto certificate on the wall. I resisted the temptation to read
Jacqui, who is shortlisted in this year’s Scarlet Stiletto Awards and a winner of both a Scarlet Stiletto and a Silver Stiletto, reflects on the journey. The road to the Scarlet Stiletto Awards is a series of moments. The first moment is when you have a tickle of an idea. A thought, a word, an