Some updates and an small whinge

Hey ho, my salty sea dogs. She Who Must Be Occasionally Taken Out In Public And Warned Not To Bite Anyone and I went along to see Pirates of the Caribbean part the third on Saturday. Not bad. Certainly a great improvement on the second instalment, and hell of a dark for a Disney film. Then, just to make sure we got our fill of that there big city entertainment our good friends Maurine and Dave took us out for a curry, then along to see Derren Brown at the Music Hall. And very good he was too -- we've never seen a live magician before* and it was all clever, impressive stuff.

And emboldened by this getting-out-of-the-house-athon I'm off to a couple of other places soon too!

For example, tomorrow (which will be Wednesday, unless I'm very much mistaken... which happened last week: I lost a whole day. I've searched and searched, but I still can't find it. The only thing I can figure is that it's fallen down the back of the couch and been eaten by the Missing Sock Monster.) I'm going to be in Warwick, for an evening of fun, frivolity and fruit-flavoured jellies with one Mr Mark Billingham and a Mr Peter James as well.

It's 7.00pm at Warwick Library (Barrack St, Warwick, CV34 4TH) and tickets cost a paltry £3.50. £3.50? For three crime writers? A BARGAIN! Mr Billingham's worth £2.45 on his own! And you can own one of these fine tickets by popping into Warwick Books, or giving them a call on 01926 499 939.

And as if that wasn't enough, I'm also going out on tour again. No, not the USA, this time it's much more exotic than that!

Tuesday 12th of June:
In the William Patrick Library, Kirkintilloch, at 8.00pm I'll be going elbow to elbow with the ever lovely Alex Barclay and the almost as lovely Michael Marshall.

Wednesday 13th of June:
I'll be at the Crosby Civic Hall in Waterloo, (Crosby Road North, Waterloo, L22 0LQ) at 7.00pm, trying no to get on the wrong side of Val McDermid and her bionic knees by pinning all the blame on Michael Marshall (again).

Thursday 14th of June:
It'll be the turn of the Laing Art Gallery (New Bridge Street, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 8AG.) from 6:00 - 8:00pm. Where you can see Val, Mike and I going head to head in a jam donut eating contest. Or failing that reading from our books, talking about stuff, and answering questions such as: what's the capital of Venezuela?

I'm looking forward to it. It's nice to be on the bill with five authors whose work I really enjoy reading. Plus there should be opportunities aplenty for going out for something to eat and buckets of lovely wine.

And speaking of whine:

I fell across an article from the Shetland Times newspaper, which is a cross between a review of my readers' group event on the Tuesday and the big public event on the Wednesday, with a little bit of interview thrown in. And I was delighted to see I'd been grossly misquoted.

I know there's always a risk you run when you talk to journalists, that what ends up in print bears little relationship to what you've actually said, but it always comes as an unpleasant surprise to find this kind of bollocks:

"I don't believe any decent writer has any need of writing workshops or courses and certainly not any of the vast array of self help teach yourself to write books that are on the market nowadays. "
Well, there it is in quotes, so I MUST have said it. Only I didn't. This is what we in the trade call, 'a lie'. What I actually said was that I haven't ever been to a writing workshop, or read any of the self-help writing manuals**.

But thanks to the Shetland Times's reporter (freelance), I now come off like an arrogant toss-pot. Lovely. Thank's Laura -- I appreciate it. And the really fun part is that during the interview and afterwards, she was telling her partner that she was probably going to be in one of my later books as a Hard-faced bitch reporter. Which should have given me some sort of hint where this was going.

For the record: I only put people in my books if I like them.

Here endeth the whinge.

* Though obviously we've seen a few dead ones.
** Other than Stephen King's ON WRITING, which I quoted from at the time.

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