Andrew Girle's Blog

Crime and Speculative Fiction Blooking

Posts Tagged ‘crime fiction’

Still writing!

Posted by Andrew Girle on January 6, 2013

My apologies – I have not posted on here since my dismal failure at Not-No-Wri-Mo.
I was stuck at the car dealership on Wednesday, waiting for the diagnosis of a ‘funny squeak’ in my 6 month old car, so I used the five hours to stamp out 1200 words in the Fireballs’n’45’s storyline.

And came up with an idea for a t-shirt… line drawing of a fedora pulled low over a canine muzzle, with the caption “Pitt, Detective. When it’s time to see a dog about a man.”


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Editing is boring

Posted by Andrew Girle on July 23, 2012

I have my novel, No Working Title, open with my editor’s notes side by side with my manuscript.

I’m up to chapter 6 out of 22.

And here I am, on wordpress. Cause, meet effect.

Before you throw rocks at me, I’m fully aware that the work NEEDS to be edited, and every comment so far has moved the story to a better place. But MAN!



*stampy feet*

*deep breath* Now that is off my chest, it is back to the editing.

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I hate mobile phones

Posted by Andrew Girle on April 15, 2012

At least, mobiles (@Cellphones in the USofA) and what they have done to tension in crime fiction.

Our hero is stumped, she cannot connect that last piece of the puzzle, and if she doesn’t work it out in the next five minutes, the villain will escape.

Problem? Of course not. Phone a bloody friend. Arrange backup, sort out a roadblock, check with the forensic experts, whatever.

That is how it works in the real world, folks.

But the whole idea of thrillers is the THRILL, and that comes from tension. And real tension takes time to develop, it has to fester and bubble and rise like bile in the back of your throat until it stops you thinking about anything but turning the page and when you finally do you realise you haven’t been drawing breath and the resolution lets you BREATHE …

And mobile phones destroy that.


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The bug is back

Posted by Andrew Girle on March 26, 2012

For months now my two stories (magic/crime mashup going under the working title of ‘Grimnoires and Gumshoes’; and a sci fi adventure under the working title of ‘Broken Angels’) have languished.

All that changed last week.

As a result of another driver being too lazy to stop at a stop sign, my car is off the road for a while. This means I have gone back to the tedium of public transport. That has given me plenty of time to scribble notes, and over the last couple of days I have hammered, beaten and pounded a couple of thousand words into the Broken Angels universe. Serious second-writing will be required, but that is ok – the core storyline has progressed. I am getting somewhere!

And somewhere in the back of my head, I can hear the whispers of the Grimnoires and Gumshoes cast, muttering amongst themselves about being ignored. Sometime soon, their story is going to jackhammer its way out of my head and onto the screen as well.

Welcome back, bug!

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Three projects on the go!

Posted by Andrew Girle on December 24, 2011

Finalising the (final?) edit of my contemporary crime fiction, No Working Title …

Two chapters of the grimnoires and gumshoes mashup done, with the story line pretty thoroughly mapped …

Three chapters of a science fiction tale done (no magical fireballs, but there is a leggy dame!).

And there I was thinking that I had not been doing any writing in the leadup to Christmas!

For those of you who are religious – a Merry Christmas to you. For those of you who are not, a safe and enjoyable weekend to you.

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Site tidy up

Posted by Andrew Girle on October 9, 2011

I have begun a rewrite of No Working Title and so have removed it from view on here. I have also deleted some other pdf material, so if you go to click through and find a dead link, please notify me and I will do my best to sort things out.


Happy writing!

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A heist story

Posted by Andrew Girle on October 29, 2010

An interesting subgenre of crime is the heist story – think of the Wyatt novels, or The Italian Job (particularly the original one with Michael Caine). In a fit of avoiding that damn butterfly, I tried my hand at a flash fiction heist story… and here it is

A is for alarm…

Which frankly, can be a problem for sensitive ears when they go off. Particularly if that happens to be just as you are opening someone else’s door. A jewellery shop door, to be precise.

B is for burglary…

The technical term for breaking and entering. And will someone do something about that damn alarm?

C is for cop cars…

Which no doubt are spinning their wheels and gunning their engines in their haste to come here and look at me breaking and entering and setting off alarms.

D is for diamonds…

Which were supposed to be on the other side of this door. The door with the alarm. The door which I was told did not have an alarm.

E is for exit…

Stage right. Feet, do your thing!

F is for truck…

Actually, for a word that sounds like truck but I’m already in enough trouble and kids might read this.

G is for guard…

And also for his best friend, German Shepherd…

Which have *ahem* trucking big teeth.

H is for ‘how the hell did I get into this?’

Actually I don’t need to ask. Freddy the Fence gave me the tip on this place, and promised ten grand in small used notes if I got the satchel of sparklers.

I is for idiot…

That would be me. Next time I do my own homework on a job and don’t trust someone with the name ‘Freddy’. Particularly when it comes to alarm schematics.

J is for jump…

Right over this perimeter fence. Lucky I’m still in shape, and that damn dog can’t climb fences.

K is for kick…

Just like that security guard just did. Kicked a panel clean out of the fence and let his dog through.

L is for lungs…

They’re burning. I might be in shape but sprinting and jumping fences while being chased by a dog the size of a bus is not my idea of a good time. It isn’t, really. Stop looking at me like that!

M is for my BUTT…

The dog just bit me on my BUTT! I think I just lost the pocket off the back of my jeans! It’s funny, my lungs don’t hurt anymore, and I think I just broke the sound barrier.

N is for Nissan…

Which is my car. Conveniently parked in the shadows just here. Keyless entry is a wonderful invention, and now I am safe inside, and rover the butt-biting pocket shredding *ahem* trucker is futilely barking at my window.

O is for… well, it is IN ‘donut’

Which is what I did when I dropped the clutch and shoved the pedal not just to the metal but clean through the firewall. A murky grey cloud of tire smoke was all the guard saw of my car, and even if he did somehow get the number plate, it didn’t matter – I borrowed it off a council bus.

P is for pain…

I think my butt might be bleeding on my car seat covers. My wife will not be happy about that.

Q is for quiet…

Quietly drive away. Don’t attract attention, don’t do anything silly. Cops only pay attention to people doing silly things, especially when they are on the way to break and enters. Break and enters with alarms. Alarms that I didn’t get told about.

R is for revenge…

Freddy and I are going to have a little chat. Actually, there won’t be much conversation, not a lot of need for talking. He’s going to get the message, one way or another.

S is for setup…

I was set up.  I was meant to trigger the alarm. I was meant to draw off the guard and his dog. While I am ducking and weaving all over town, someone else is probably inside that place right now, lifting the satchel of sparklers. Which means that S is also for sucker…

T is for tables…

Which I am going to turn. Driving carefully I return to the scene of the crime. That is what criminals do isn’t it? And look at that – running out the door that I went to all the trouble of opening, is a little ferret faced guy, holding a satchel. A satchel full of my diamonds, undoubtedly.

U is for eunuch…

Oh I know, don’t pick on me. Eunuch starts with an ‘e’. But ferret face here probably doesn’t know that, and the knife I am holding between his legs kinda has all his attention anyway. The satchel comes off his shoulder easily, just like I expected it was not very heavy. A few hundred grand in diamonds doesn’t weigh much.

V is for victory…

Vae Victus, dude.

W is for wave…

I wave goodbye to ferret face. I’m not using all my fingers.

 X is for X-ray…

Which is how you prove the diamonds are real.

Y is for yell…

When I realise that they are fakes.

Z is for Zzzzzz

What I should have been doing all night instead of trying to make crime pay.

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Genre mashup

Posted by Andrew Girle on October 18, 2010

I can’t draw to save myself. I have subsequently discovered the sketch conversion capability in photoshop and similar programs, which is pretty handy as it means I can turn a digital photo into a ‘sketch’.

How is this relevant to writing, I hear you ask?

Well, if I want to drop little illustrations into my stories, now I can. Likewise, if I want to do a trailer but use my own imagery rather than risking copyright infringement, now I can.

Last but not least, I have an idea for a short story (yes, that bloody butterfly has fluttered past again) that may just need to mash up crime genre, graphic novel and haiku.

*sigh* someone pass me the bug spray will they?

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Some randym thoughts

Posted by Andrew Girle on October 13, 2010

Up until now Vampires (vampyres, blood sucking broody types etc etc) seem to have been the flavour of the month (well, last decade or more actually!). From a writing point of view, that tells me they are poison to try and copy or write as a genre, because there is just SO MUCH out there. And then I wandered over to one of my subscriptions here and find that Fallen Angels are the next big thing.


Except… what is the difference between a Vampire and a Fallen Angel? Biblically, not much. In YA – apparently fallen angels are good guys who did something wrong and lost their wings (like a grounded pilot?). But Vampires in the recent years were all ‘bad guys trying to repent’ which approaching the same moody angst thing from the other side.


So what does that revelation mean to me? My next detective character is not going to be a vampire. Or a skeleton. Might be a werewolf (because of all the lame jokes I can write in).

/stream of consciousness off.


Be good!

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Does a continuing character need a continuing nemesis?

Posted by Andrew Girle on September 28, 2010

Holmes had Moriarty. Kay Scarpetta had Temple Gault. All through crime fiction our favourite continuing characters have continuing nemeses.

But do they have to have them? Cannot our gumshoes walk the mean streets and face enough danger without acquiring some kind of fantastic super-enemy? Characters should be human, and humans don’t acquire enduring enemies – cartoon heroes do.

Or am I wrong?

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