Archive for the ‘true crime’ Category


In 1950s, book, books, crime, crime story, murder, mystery, New Zealand, reader, real-life, teen, true, true crime, violence, writer on November 14, 2011 at 7:46 pm

Peter Graham new book is out. It is called, So Brilliantly Clever.

It is a true crime story that took place in 1950s New Zealand.

One of the teen perpetrators went on to become an acclaimed crime writer and a documentary was made about her life after the memorable event.

The comment made about the announcement of the book is what attracted my attention though and what made me write this post.

This is what the comment by Fred says, “Does all this attention to a long ago crime really serve any worthwhile purpose or is this just another example of exploitation for monetary gain?”

The key words here for me are: “serve any worthwhile purpose”.

It made me wonder about the general purpose of a book on true crime. What is it really for?

To inform the public? To make them more knowledgeable about the criminal mind? To dispel some misconceptions? To bring to light some new evidence or obscure facts about the perpetrator(s) or the victim(s)?

I cannot answer this question because I am not a true crime writer and don’t know anyone personally who is.

If you do or you are one, I would be happy to know your thoughts about this. Drop us a line.

The reason I used to read true crime books it was to discover more about the criminal mind and get to know more about the facts of a crime and the perpetrators, but I am a voracious reader of anything to do with criminal psychology. However, I have never read anything by a simple true crime writer.

All my true crime books had been written by criminologists and I have to say that aside from some comments to attract the middle-class readership, I have learnt a  pretty good deal, but never enough or a lot about a particular perpetrator.

Books, like any other art form, are subject to marketing, therefore they have to cater for a particular readership.

As I have often said in these pages, true crime writers, in my opinion, suck up to the middle-class who can’t cope with the idea of a human being committing such a serious crime and feel the need to keep a safe distance between themselves and the criminal in the ludicrous attempt to keep up the notion that only a certain type of person or group can act so savagely.

Now, the next question that this little paragraph brings to light is this, why is it that true crime writers’ goal is to please the middle-class?

Where do true crime writers come from?

I believe they come from all sorts of background, from police investigators to private detectives, from investigative journalists to criminologists. So how come their goal seems to be so similar?

This is the question I will try to answer in another post.

Crime Watch: So Brilliantly Clever: New Zealand author takes a detailed look at a decades-old crime.


In author, book contract, chances, comfort zone, cretivity, crime, decision, dilemma, efforts, exercise, exhilarating, final, Forbes, opportunities, published, realization, risk, true crime, venues on October 25, 2011 at 7:43 am

True crime writer Victoria Pynchon ponders about new venues open to authors  and the new opportunities in her article in Forbes. 

“To move out of my comfort zone. I can take more chances”  

“Whether or not we choose to, the realization that we authors can go it on our own is exhilarating.

We can take more risk and exercise our creativity. We’re assured that our efforts aren’t limited to signing a traditional book contract. Whether or not our books find adoring editors, we know our work will get published.”

The dilemma and final decision of a seasoned and well-recognized author.

What about the not so well-thought of authors, the ones who haven’t yet broken through the agents and publishers’ interests. Is self-publishing still a valuable option for them?

It depends on what one’s main goal is. If it is to get published and see one’s efforts in print, then it certainly is. If it is to be recognized and valued and appreciated as an author then the recognition of an agent or publisher is still important.

I am aware that these aren’t novel thoughts. Considerations like these have been knocking about in writers’ head since the e-book appeared on the scene, but for me it is still the main reason that keeps me writing and subbing to that elusive agent/publisher who will eventually tell me they can see and feel magic in my words.

via True Crime Writer Ponders Career Change in eBook World – Forbes.


In 2011, 22 years, 50 Great Writers You should Be Reading, author, Author's Show, crime, dick, force, happy reading, Ken, Lang, murder, nominated, police, rape, robberies, sensation, true crime, Walking Among the Dead, winner, writer on October 21, 2011 at 7:39 am

Here’s a dick to author story courtesy of Ken Lang, the latest true crime writer sensation.

Lang has been nominated a winner at the The Author’s Show 2011 “50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading” for his first book Walking Among the Dead.

The book features stories of rape, robberies and murders that Lang dealt with  in the course of his 22 years in the police force.

Happy reading everyone.

True Crime Author, Ken Lang, Named “50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading”.


In ABC murders, Ackroyd, Agatha, book, cases, Christie, crimes, Fair, famous, Frankfurt, Holgate, Inspiration, Mike, murder, mystery, personalities, popular, real-life, Roger, scandals, tragedies, true crime, work, writer on October 13, 2011 at 9:58 pm

“Real-life crimes, scandals, tragedies and murders either influenced the work of Agatha Christie – the world’s most popular mystery writer – or affected the lives of many famous personalities involved in her long and brilliant career,” writes the History Press.

“In Agatha Christi’s True Crime Inspirations, Mike Holgate reveals how Christie adapted real-life cases – both local and national – for her fiction.”

“Discover how The Queen of Crime’s fertile imagination was fuelled by the exploits of Jack the Riper, which became the inspiration for the serial killing s in The ABC Murders.

And this is only a small sample of all the goodies you will find in Holgate’s book.

Roger Rapaport tells us that  “Stranger Than Fiction: Agatha Christie’s True Crime Inspirations” (The History Press) by Mike Holgate is well researched. Did you know it was Lord Mountbatten who came up with the plot twist for “The Murder of Roger Ackroyd”?”

So what you’re waiting for? Go out and buy it.

via Frankfurt Book Fair: Beyond the hype – and via



In Andrew, book, Cain, crime, David, Deborah, detective, E., Ellroy, James, Jim, Klevan, Moggach, Peace, Thompson, thriller, true, true crime on October 9, 2011 at 9:48 am

“I think that the crime genre is the perfect tool to understand why crimes take place, and thus tell us about the society we live in and the country we live in and who we are.”

I can only agree with Peace. The way to go is to draw inspiration from true crime because nothing is more interesting, inspirational, compelling, “unbelievable”.

Think about it. James E. Cain, Jim Thompson, Deborah Moggach, Andrew Klevan James Ellroy. To me every book by the above authors makes up for a hundred books on any detective/thriller story. They just don’t grab me the way a true story does. The reason?

I can’t say a hundred per cent, but I think it is because nothing is scarier than real life.

via Writers should focus on true crime, says David Peace | Books |