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Murder In Slow Motion by Rebecca Muddiman (Interview) @RebeccaMuddiman #Crime #BookFour #Interview

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Hello everyone and welcome to another brilliant interview here on Always Trust In Books. Today I have Rebecca Muddiman here to talk about the fourth instalment of her crime series featuring DI Gardner and DS Freeman. Talking to crime writers (or any writers/authors) is a lot of fun. I really enjoy hearing the inspirations behind their work and Rebecca gives us plenty of great answers in this post. If you haven’t already checked out Rebecca’s crime series then you can pick up the latest instalment Murder In Slow Motion on Goodreads or on Amazon for the kindle (or e-book). I will share a few details about Rebecca and Murder In Slow Motion and then we will go to the questions.

About Rebecca Muddiman

My first novel, Stolen, was published in 2013 and was one of the winners of the first Northern Crime Competition. I also won a Northern Writers’ Time to Write Award in 2010 for the same book. My second novel, Gone, was released in January 2015 and my third, Tell Me Lies in March 2016, both by Mulholland. The fourth, Murder in Slow Motion, has just been released.

I’m currently working on a historical novel called Devotion which is based on the life of philosopher Peter Abelard.

I have a degree in Film and Media from the University of Sunderland and an MA in Creative Writing from Teesside University. As I collect courses like other people collect stamps, I also have qualifications in Film and TV Production and Music Management, and have done several short courses including Crime Scene Investigation and Criminology.

I have lived and worked in Holland and London, and in 2002 I travelled around the USA on Greyhound bus. One day I will write about that.

I also have two dogs – both lurchers – who are extremely naughty but extremely adorable too.

Murder In Slow Motion {Synopsis}

Katy Jackson is missing, last seen at her neighbour’s house.

DI Gardner and DS Freeman think Katy’s boyfriend, Andrew, is overreacting. She’s been gone just a few hours. But next door there’s evidence of a struggle and blood throughout the house.

When they realise Katy’s neighbour is police officer Dawn Lawton, and that Dawn is missing too, it becomes impossible for Gardner to put his personal feelings aside, driving him to put his own career on the line as he tries to find his friend.

As Gardner and Freeman unravel both Katy and Dawn’s secrets, they discover neither woman’s life is what it seems. And when everyone has something to hide, how do you know who to trust?

Rebecca Muddiman Q&A

Thank you Rebecca for taking some time to answer a few questions about your latest novel Murder In Slow Motion. Could you give us your own personal overview of what we should expect in within?

It’s the fourth book in the series but can be enjoyed as a standalone too. In some ways it’s similar to the other books as the case causes tension for the characters Gardner and Freeman – they’re currently at a stage in their relationship where they mostly irritate each other. But, without giving anything away, in other ways it’s quite a different book. It’s also, in some ways, my favourite of the series as the subject matter of domestic abuse was important for me to write about.

What was your initial inspiration for the Gardner and Freeman series?

The first novel, Stolen, was partly inspired by some of the high profile missing children cases such as Madeleine McCann. I wasn’t planning to write a series at the time and Gardner was a much smaller role. But I started to like him and kept giving him more things to do until it became his story as much as Abby’s, the missing child’s mother. And then in the second book I introduced Freeman, who was also supposed to be a one off but ended up returning too. I think, maybe, I get too attached to my characters!

How does it feel to be on the fourth instalment of a series?

It’s strange. It doesn’t feel very long ago that Stolen was published so it feels slightly impossible to be on book four already. I’d also had a break from writing the series after finishing Murder in Slow Motion. I wrote a standalone and am now working on something completely different. But I re-read the book before it was published and it was like meeting old friends. I find writing the characters (if not the plots) much easier now because I feel like I really know them.

What sets Murder In Slow Motion apart from your other novels?

Someone pointed out to me that there’s something that sets Murder in Slow Motion apart from most other crime novels – but I can’t say what it is without spoiling things! But it’s also different to the others in the series in that it brings one of the supporting characters to the fore. Although all the books, including this one, have a case for Gardner and Freeman to investigate, they also focused on the characters personal lives. Gone was very much about Gardner, and Tell Me Lies was about Freeman. This time it’s Lawton’s turn.

What sort of challenges did you face when writing Murder In Slow Motion?

It took a long time to work out the story. I’d wanted to write it as the second book but couldn’t figure it out. The subject matter – domestic abuse – was important to me and I really wanted to get it right. But sometimes it was hard to write and the research was often hard going.

Did you always know you were going to become a crime author?

I always wanted to be a writer but for a long time I thought it was something that other people did. But once I figured out that wasn’t true and started to make a go of it, it was screenwriting I wanted to get into. I studied it at university and wrote lots of bad scripts that I never sent out. But then I started reading crime fiction, almost exclusively for a while, and one day decided to have a go at writing my own crime novel. It took a few attempts to get it right though. My first go was terrible and I never sent it out. The second was a comedy-crime which no one would publish because it didn’t fit into any category. It was my third book that was finally published.

Are there any authors that directly influence your writing?

That’s quite hard to answer. I think readers might be able to see influences in my writing more clearly than I can. Although, discovering Raymond Carver was a revelation. I’m allergic to flowery writing and when I read Carver I saw how you can be terse and very direct and still write beautiful stories. But I think I’m a long way from writing like Carver and sometimes go too far the other way to avoid purple prose! But I’m always striving to get better.

How long does it take you on average to write a novel like Murder In Slow Motion?

It depends. I can write quite quickly once I know what I’m doing. I think the first draft of Murder in Slow Motion was written in about three months. But the planning takes much longer. As I said, I wanted to write this story as the second book but I just couldn’t work it out. In the end I think it took about three years to figure things out. And then, of course, comes the editing stage. The first draft is usually 90% nonsense so it takes a while to shape it into something good.

Can you tell us in five words what being a writer means to you?

Intense anxiety but also amazing.

If you had to pick another genre to write within, which would you pick?

I read quite a wide range of genres so I’d like to have a go at a few others. At the moment I’m writing a historical novel set in twelfth century France, based on the life of philosopher Peter Abelard, which is obviously very different to my previous books! But I’m also keen on dystopian novels so would quite like to have a go at that too.

Do you celebrate finishing your novels?

I might give myself a couple of days off or buy myself some new books, but I tend to just dive in to the next project. I usually have a couple of things on the go at once but one will be my main project. So when one is done, the other gets bumped up to the number one spot and I start thinking about what comes after that.

Have you got a hobby/activity you do to wind down from all the writing?

A lot of my hobbies are writing related so I don’t wind down from the writing much at all! I read a lot, go to the cinema and theatre, so my brain is often whirring with new ideas. I am trying to learn Danish but it’s quite hard so not exactly relaxing! But I suppose walking my two dogs and swimming are the things that help me wind down the most.

Finally, have you read a book/article recently that you would personally recommend to the readers of this post?

I discovered Liane Moriarty last year so have been binge reading all her novels. They’re all brilliant but I think my favourite is What Alice Forgot. I also really enjoyed No Dominion, the third in the Plague Times trilogy by Louise Welsh. And I’m currently reading Romantic Outlaws by Charlotte Gordon, a biography of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley, which is fascinating.

Thank you to Rebecca Muddiman for taking the time to answer some questions about her latest novel Murder In Slow Motion. This was a great interview opportunity and Rebecca definitely made the most of her answers. I haven’t had a chance to read Murder In Slow Motion yet but talking about it has certainly made me want to add it to the TBR. Keep an eye out for a review in the future and thanks for stopping by to check out this Q&A.

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2 thoughts on “Murder In Slow Motion by Rebecca Muddiman (Interview) @RebeccaMuddiman #Crime #BookFour #Interview

  1. “they’re currently at a stage in their relationship where they mostly irritate each other” …is there a stage where you DON’T mostly irritate each other?? Oh ya, maybe like the first year or so. LMAO!!! I love that she was influences by Raymond Carver! Definitely something I would like to check out! Thanks for a great Q&A.

    Liked by 1 person

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