Tom Callaghan Guest Post
Welcome everyone to my stop on this weeks blog tour for An Autumn Hunting by Tom Callaghan, published by Quercus Books. An Autumn Hunting is a blazing new thriller which puts Akyl Borubaev in the run. I am really excited to get into this novel as it sounds like it is treading plenty of new ground. Tom has written a piece about starting out as a writer and has given advice to those who want to try their hand. I hope you enjoy the post and make sure to check out all the other blogs on this tour for plenty more information.
23.08.2018 / Quercus Books / Crime-Thriller / Hardback / 336pp / 978-1786482365
About Tom Callaghan
Born in the north of England, Tom Callaghan was educated at the University of York and Vassar College, USA. An inveterate traveller, he divides his time between London, Prague, Dubai and Bishkek.
About An Autumn Hunting
No sooner has Akyl Borubaev been reinstated as an Inspector in the Bishkek Murder Squad than he’s suspended for alleged serious crimes against the state.
After an attempted assassination of a prominent minister goes spectacularly wrong, Akyl is a fugitive from his former colleagues and involved with one of Kyrgyzstan’s most dangerous criminals.
On the run, caught up in a illegal scheme that can only end badly, it’s time for Akyl to take a stand for everything he believes in.
Guest Post – Getting Started by Tom Callaghan
I was living and working in Qatar – very possibly the most boring place in the universe – and I’d get back to the shared flat I was living in, surf the net and stare at the ceiling.
I’d been to a writing seminar given by Mark Billingham in Dubai, and I decided it was now or never. I’ve always loved crime fiction, hard-boiled noir for preference, and so that was always going to be the kind of book I’d write. But who needs another crime book set in NYC, or LA, or Miami? Kyrgyzstan was and still is an unknown place, with a lot of problems, crime, corruption, poverty, two revolutions in less than ten years – what more could a crime writer ask for? As for the plot; (whispers) I made it up.
I sat down every evening, and did my best to write 500 words, with the weekends off. Finally, I sent the first three chapters to novelist Trevor Hoyle, the first writer I’d ever met, back in my home town of Rochdale. Trevor wrote back saying that when I came to visit, he’d poison my beer, dump my corpse in a reservoir and claim my manuscript as his own. He also suggested I send it to his agent.
Everything happened very quickly from then on. Tanja agreed to be my agent, took the book to Quercus, who made an offer on a two-book deal, and I signed on the dotted line.
Now, with four books under my belt, and a fifth almost complete, I realise how lucky I’ve been, both with an incredible agent and a supportive editor and publisher. I don’t have a pinboard full of rejection slips, or tales of how no-one thought I had any promise. But despite the lack of a ‘struggle’, I’d still like to offer a little advice to anyone wanting to write.
- Read all the time. Write all the time. Love the genre you want to write in, but read other things as well.
- Edit what you write, but not to the point where you kill it.
- Ask for criticism, not praise. Praise gets you nowhere in trying to write better.
- The passive is not your friend, nor is Latinate language.
- Don’t tell people the plot. Share it only on the finished page.
- Listen to what your characters tell you is going to happen next. If you surprise yourself, you’ll possibly surprise the reader as well.
- Believe in yourself, but not blindly.
- Ignore any or all of the above, and get on with it.
Thank you to Tom Callaghan for writing an excellent guest post for us all to enjoy. Starting out as a writer is drastically different for everyone who gives it a go and Tom is imploring us to think outside the box and is offering solid advice on how to do so. I love it when people share their wealth of knowledge on a subject because so many people can benefit from one person’s words. Tom Callaghan is writing bold and exciting thriller fiction because he let his creative side loose. We are all capable of brilliant things so don’t hold yourself back. I hope you enjoyed the post and share your thoughts about the post in the comments.