I had a very pleasant and efficient security consultant from Isis Security come round earlier this week to check the locks on our doors and windows (reassuringly he found little new that we needed to add), but it was interesting that, in conversation with him, we found that his experience of real-life criminals (or feral toe-rags as he had a tendency to call them) and my understanding of criminal behaviour gleaned pretty much exclusively from books and from speaking to specialists at Thriller School and elsewhere, brought us on to common ground.
One of the great things about any kind of fiction is that it can take you to places you might never get to see, into situations you might never get to encounter, and into the minds of individuals you might never get to meet – or, indeed, want to meet. Reading and writing crime fiction is a risk-free way of experiencing the world of the transgressive, the wounded and the wounding, and gaining a better understanding of what it is to be human, and what it means to behave morally – or not…
This is part of what we will be exploring at Thriller School in Oxford next weekend.
Do come along and join us at Thriller School, and add your voice to the conversation about what makes for good crime fiction – and how to write it yourself.