It happened years ago when we were sailing up the beautiful River Fal in Cornwall. A bend in the river, and suddenly there it was – an exquisite white house sitting high on the bank. Immediately my writer’s mind was whirring. I could imagine the vast airy rooms inside it, the high vaulted ceilings…the people who lived there.
The woman would be an artist and her work would hang everywhere in the house. The man would be a rich Cornish businessman. They would be a high profile party-loving couple who moved in the top circles.
The kernel of an idea for a book was there but at that time I had no idea where it was going.
It was some time later before I thought about my story again.
The Next Piece of the Jigsaw
Standing on the quay by the Maritime Museum in Falmouth, we were looking out at the sea of bobbing yacht masts, and the luxury yacht edging its way carefully into the marina below us.
We watched fascinated as the skipper carefully maneuvered his vessel through the maze of protruding hulls. With expert precision he turned the huge yacht, and skilfully reversed it into the narrow berth.
I have no idea why the big white house on the Fal suddenly came into my mind, but it did. In that moment I saw the rest of my story falling into place. The man of the house would make his fortune building expensive yachts like this one.
But my book would start with his death – suicide or murder? My detective, DI Sam Kitto, wouldn’t be sure.
Magazine editor Loveday Ross would get drawn into the mystery when she interviews his artist wife. Loveday’s involvement would cause friction between herself and her policeman partner, Sam.
…And that’s how my long short story, A Cornish Vengeance, came about. It was published three years ago, but I always felt it had more development potential.
Turning a Short Story into a Novel
Last year I revisited A Cornish Vengeance, and the story was re-jigged. New characters and plot lines were added, more exciting twists and turns were written in.
The story was taken in a very different direction. And the ending was completely changed.
Sam is not in a good place. The drunk driver, who was jailed years earlier for causing the death of his adored wife, Tessa, is being released from Exeter Prison.
Still full of vengeance, Sam waits outside the gates for the man to emerge. Seconds later the man lies dead before him.
But who killed him?
Was it Sam?
I hope you enjoy the new story…but don’t just listen to me. Go on…read A Cornish Malice for yourself. Just click the link on the website.