Life has been hectic since I last wrote this diary! In late June I travelled down to Devon, staying in lovely Dartmouth for a week and soaking in the atmosphere. While I was there I must say I found plenty of new ideas for future Wesley Peterson books...including a long (and steep) walk through some thick woodland on the way to Agatha Christie’s summer home, Greenway. I signed copies of THE DEATH SEASON at Torbay Bookshop and talked at Totnes Bookshop while I was there as well as paying a visit to Dartmouth Library (where the librarians are plotting another of my Murder Mysteries for 2016 – keep an eye on my events page for details closer to the time).
As soon as I arrived home, I launched into another Murder Mystery evening at a local library and a book signing at Stockport Waterstones. It was lovely to chat to so many readers there about my books and copies of THE DEATH SEASON were selling fast.
Not long after that I had a few days’ break in Tallinn and I must say I fell in love with the city. The old town was stunning, the people friendly, food and drink excellent...in fact I couldn’t fault it with its Scandinavian atmosphere and its well preserved medieval heart. There was a medieval festival going on while we were there with early music and a market with everyone in costume. We discovered a wonderful bar called Hell Hunt and a fantastic little restaurant called Porgu in an ancient cellar which I’d recommend highly to anyone thinking of going. My first words when we touched down again in Manchester were ‘when can we go back?’ As always I was looking for inspiration (for a short story at least) so you never know, Tallinn might feature in a future work.
One of the most exciting events of the month was my visit to Harrogate for the annual Theakston’s Crime Writing Festival. It was my job this year to write and present the Murder Mystery Dinner (on a Sicilian theme in honour of Montalbano’s creator, Andrea Camilleri). As I’m a Montalbano fan, I found this great fun and devised a mystery entitled Murder in the Lemon Grove which featured four potentially murderous characters – a formidable Sicilian widow, her impressionable son, a glamorous archaeologist and a dodgy tourist guide. I was blessed with four brilliant actors – Daphne Wright (Natasha Cooper) who deserves at least one Oscar for her performance!; Cath Staincliffe who excelled as the glamorous Francesca; Stewart Bain (of Orkney Library) who was wonderful as the Signora’s son; and Jeremy Trevathan (of Pan Macmillan) who gave a bravura performance as Marco, the nefarious guide. Many thanks to the actors who brought my script to life in such a fantastic way and great thanks to Ann Cleeves for organising the whole weekend!
On 18th August I’ll be repeating Murder in the Lemon Grove at Waterstones in Wilmslow, Cheshire so if you missed Harrogate, tickets will be available soon (see the events page for details).