THE LYME REGIS MURDERS: AUTHOR Q&A with Andrew Segal #interview


Today's guest is author Andrew Segal! His book THE LYME REGIS MURDERS and he is here today to talk about his new book and what surprised him about the whole process of getting published. 

Welcome to The Writer's Life!  Now that your book has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process.  Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning? When did you come up with the idea to write your book?

I've been writing, as a hobby, for over twenty years. I started writing horror short stories with titles like, Cat and Mouse, Licence to Kill, Beads of Blood, Death Zone, Crossfire and others. They went down well at the writer's group I joined, so over the years I wrote more. A couple of years ago, an Irish publisher indicated they'd like to promote some of my work, and so ten of my short stories in a book called Beads of Blood came onto the market to mainly five star reviews. I now have about forty short stories under my belt and my present publishers, Happy London Press, have indictated they'd like to produce a number of further books of ten short stories each.

Following on from the short stories I produced several books of tales in verse for very young children. I had three, beautifully illustrated. Clarissa the Clown, Roberto the Robot and Majesty the Magician, although not yet published, have proven to be winners with youngsters. These are not yet publsihed, but Happy London Press are interested in promoting them.

I then turned to crime thrillers and wrote The Lyme Regis Murders, now published. Lyme Regis is an ancient Jurassic town on the South Coast of England. Sleepy towns don't usually produce murders or murderers. Or do they? With its beaches of ancient fossilized rocks and the small likelihood of a major crime in this sort of community, I decided I had the ideal backdrop for my little tale. The rocks are an potential weapon for any killer to use.

Who is your publisher and how did you find them or did you self-publish?

My publisher is Happy London Press. I met Clare Newton, the proprietor, through her husband Michael Taylor, at a netwroking group we both attend. Mike is a graphic designer who produces my annual Christmas cards and gifts, sent out to my contacts and clients. I'm a professional insolvency practitioner, dealing with the untangling of peope's personal and or corporate problems.The profession provides a rich source of characters and anecdotes upon which to draw for one's fiction. Once introdeuced to Clare I found she liked what I'd written, and we worked well together.

Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published?

I was principally delighted with the response I got from people I'd asked to read and comment upon the book.

Do you believe a book cover plays an important role in the selling process?

A friend of mine won a number of prizes and many accolades for his first and only published book. Despite the praise, the book's title was uninspiring and the cover misleading. In sales it did badly despite being an absolutely first class piece of literature. The cover counts, the title counts. Then, of course, the content has to grab you. But if the cover doesn't make you want to buy the book in the first instance the book will end up dead in the water.

How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers?

As this was my first crime thriller it took a great deal of planning, thought, review and sweat over whether I had it right. In the end it was a rewarding experience because I believe it all worked. Positive comments from readers were a help. The only tip is to start writing if you have the germ of an idea and wait to see if it takes on a mind of its own.  

What other books are you working on and when will they be published?

I've already written a follow up to The Lyme Regis Murders, with the same principal character, the private investigator, Tammy Pierre. It's called, The Black Candle Killings. Publication is some way off as Lyme Regis has only just emerged. I'm also planning a third in the series and have started work on it.

What’s one fact about your book that would surprise people?

Hard to say. They may be surprised by my main character. Tammy Pierre is one of the few female private investigators I've come across. She's six feet tall, mixed race, mixed religion, amoral, a smoker of panatellas and a drinker of too much vodka. She's a lover of classical music and literature, an expert in krav maga, the Israeli system of self-defence. She has an Israeli occasional boyfriend, who's also her martial arts coach. She's in a live-in relationship with Ginny Jones, her PA, but thinks nothing of betraying Ginny, when it suits her to. She's all woman, and knows it; and further, she can take on any man in any situation.

Finally, what message are you trying to get across with your book?

I think the message is that an amoral person can live a highly moral life. That infidelity is not an indication of a basically wanting character. That even the toughest of people, men, women, if they have feelings, they're not afraid to show them or to express them. When Tammy is employed to investigate a triple murder she finds the situation leaves her close to tears. But her emotions don't impede or preclude her from doing the job she'd been employed to do, which is to find the killer.

Thank you again for this interview!  Do you have any final words?

Nothing comes to mind immediately, but If my comments require elucidation or any sort of follow up please feel free to ask me.

Meet the Author

A contract killer changed my life
The encounter inspired me to become a Crime Thriller writer.
He was a contract killer, and he was in my car!
I’d been lost, looking for West Thurrock in Essex, and asked a little old man in a shabby coat, on the opposite side of the road, the way. He offered to show me if I gave him a lift, and whilst I make it a rule never to give lifts to anyone I don’t know, I reasoned, he could hardly be a contract killer, could he. Could he? Of course not.
As we drove he casually informed me that he’d, ‘Done it for the Kray’s, mate.’ That would have been the notorious East London gangsters he was referring to, known to kill, or have killed, without conscience.
Once I’d dropped him off and recovered my composure, I realised I was looking at fodder for a short story. What then followed was a raft of short stories, including, ‘I am a Gigolo,’ something I told my wife when I first met her, and which almost ended our relationship before it had begun. That title is now the heading for a book of short stories.
Jokingly, over lunch, I told a fellow professional I’d once been a contract killer, and devised a story. He believed every word, and left me at some pains to disabuse him. That title, I am a Contract Killer, now heads a further collection of short stories.
Writer of scary short stories and full-length novels like The Lyme Regis Murders.
It’s been a fascinating journey… I hope you’ll want to share with me.


Weekly Blog:
AnchorFM Podcast:—Andrew-Segal–Part-1-e4homt/a-aibjav
Podcast Reading:

Inside the Book

Can innocence ever be an incentive to murder?

A quiet seaside town is thrown into turmoil. Tammy Pierre, London based private investigator, accompanied by her sometime lover, Israeli art dealer and martial-arts coach, Dov Jordan, has just been brought close to tears by police photographs shown to her by an hysterical Eleanor Goldcrest, at the home of three innocent toddlers whose brutally murdered bodies have been found on the beach at Lyme Regis.

Wealthy financier, Eric Goldcrest, alarmed that his partner of three years, together with the local police has him nailed as guilty of murdering the children, now retains Tammy to prove his innocence and find the real culprit. But has his involvement in all this been misinterpreted?

In this investigation, with no apparant motive or forensic evidence, Tammy’s skills will be tested to the limit. In a twist that muddies the waters, Eric Goldcrest, laments that he’s simply never made it clear to Tammy about his position in the family and his relationship with the children, all of which have been assumed by the investigation.




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