Hi Everyone, it’s been a while …
I can’t really start this newsletter without mentioning the Crime Writers’ Association Dagger Awards. They took place on October 24th at the Leonardo Hotel, London City (right next to Tower Bridge and the Tower of London, which Mrs Craven and I were delighted to explore as it’s a part of London we don’t get to that often). Anyway, the great and the good were wined and dined and after dinner speeched before the irrepressible Barry Forshaw began the night’s proceedings. The Puppet Show was up for the final (unannounced) dagger of the evening, the Gold Dagger, but was on a incredibly strong shortlist. I genuinely didn’t think it would be my year and spent the seconds when they shortlist was being read out practising my clap-and-nod-and-pretend-the-right-book-won look. But, to my amazement it won. I can’t actually remember much of what happened in the next five minutes but I know my speech was semi-incoherent with the main feature being my Cheshire-cat grin. Anyway, here’s a few pics of the night.
Above: Me, David Headley (agent) and Krystyna Green (Commissioning Editor, Constable)
Below: a couple from the Hachette office lobby the following morning.
And finally, there was a fair bit of press coverage. Here’s the link if you want to read the local one, which includes a cool pic of Bracken, my real life inspiration for Edgar …
This was a massive win for me (the great Don Winslow himself congratulated me!) and for my publisher, particularly on the heels of five other competitions the book was shortlisted for but didn’t win, including losing out by one vote to Ian Rankin at the Amazon Publishers Readers Awards at the inaugural Capital Crime (made even more annoying as my wife and I were eligible to vote but hadn’t bothered).
Anyhooo, enough of all that – we have book news to get through. First up, the paperback edition of Black Summer is out very soon (December 12th) and as you can see from the revamped cover, there’s an incredibly cool competition to enter.
Hot on Black Summer’s heels are the republished Detective Inspector Avison Fluke books. Some of you may have read the Caffeine Nights’ editions – these have been re-edited (they are both 8,000 words shorter) and have spanking new covers. Very Val McDermid did I hear you say? Unsurprising as the same guy designed them :) They’re both out on January 9th.
Next up, and we’re well into 2020 now, is the third in the Washington Poe series: The Curator. It’s out on June 4th and can be preordered now. And I’m warning you, it’s easily the darkest one yet … Advance copies will be going out at the start of next year and I could well be running a competition for subscribers so stay tuned if you want an early peep.
A quick bit of news about Washington Poe 4. It’s now in the system with a working title of Dead Ground. My agent says it’s a ‘Tilly novel’, which I’m sure will please a lot of you. It’s also the book that has Tilly try to explain the rules of Muggle Quidditch to Poe. Fingers crossed that doesn’t get cut during the editing process.
While we’re on Poe, I may as well tell you that as per every year, I’ll be beginning the new novel, Poe 5, not due until 2022, on December 1st. It has a working title of The Botanist and is my nod to the great locked room mysteries of the past. Think you’ll enjoy it. And if Dead Ground is a Tilly novel, then I suppose The Botanist could be called an Estelle Doyle novel. It’s certainly the biggest role she’s had yet.
And it’s been a busy year for my agent as well with foreign rights sold to publishers in Japan, Taiwan, Denmark, Holland, Spain, Russia, Estonia, Greece, Hungary and Sweden to name but a few … Some of these are out already and it’s been fascinating seeing what their cover designers have come up with. Here are a few examples.
That’s all folks, and if I don’t get the chance for another newsletter this year, please do have a great Christmas and New Year. See you all on the other side.