Something a little different today. First, news about Murder Squad, the group of six Northern crime writers which was set up almost fifteen years ago and is still going strong. I've been a member from day one, along with Margaret Murphy, whose brilliant idea it was, Cath Staincliffe and Ann Cleeves. More recently we've been joined by Kate Ellis and Chris Simms.
We're keen to remain in touch with our readers, and with that in mind, we're organising a giveaway, a bundle of six books, one by each of us. Details are on the Murder Squad website.
I'm also one of a large group of authors taking part in a "Get in Character 2015", a fund-raising campaign for CLIC Sargent, a charity focusing on young people with cancer. It's one of those "bid to have your name in a story" auctions. A short story due to become part of an ebook in my case, given that my next novel is already completed.
Whilst I don't have any close links to CLIC Sargent, I do know that cancer is a scourge that affects each and every one of us in some way, through the suffering of loved ones even if not ourselves. Having worked with charities, and in particular the hospice movement, for many years, I know that there's always a risk of compassion fatigue setting in as regards fund-raising efforts, but not having been involved in one of these auctions before, I thought it was a worthwhile thing to do, and I am optimistic that the involvement of such stellar names as Lee Child, Nicci French and Peter James will lead to a real boost to this charity's funds.