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Friday
Apr262013

CSI Gateshead - a resounding success!

Last night I took part in CSI Gateshead, an event that replicated CSI Portsmouth, the brainchild of crime fiction writer, Pauline Rowson. The idea was to examine the relationship between crime fact and crime fiction, to discover how authors research their work, to find out how much consultation goes on between crime writers and ‘real’ detectives, and to dispel some commonly held myths.

Pauline, Matt Hilton and myself were joined by former police investigators: my partner, Mo, an ex-Detective Inspector in Northumbria Police’s Serious Incident Squad – whose knowledge and expertise feeds into my novels – and former forensic expert, Ian Gillard. To keep us all in check and facilitate the event was Senior Library Assistant, Sue Horton, who did a great job.

The topics covered were varied, all authors agreeing that research was an important consideration when writing. We all want to get the detail right – crime fiction readers expect a high level of authenticity – but that procedure should never be seen to get in the way of a good story.

I’ve appeared at many events lately and this one ranks as one of the best and most interesting. Thanks to Helen Eddon who organised and publicized the event so well, there was a huge crowd of enthusiastic crime fiction readers waiting to hear what we had to say and take part in the Q & A afterwards.

The evening ended with a book signing. The feedback I got then – and later on Twitter – was hugely positive. Readers had enjoyed the panel discussion immensely and were keen to hear more about events like these. So congratulations Gateshead Libraries for hosting the event and thanks to all who took part. CSI Gateshead is on the map.

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