Baby’s Got Blue Eyes
L M Krier
Genre: Crime thriller > serial killer
Release Date: Feb 2015
Someone is dumping bodies on DI Ted Darling’s patch and he’s not happy. Ted’s a good solid copper, in an old-fashioned way, with an excellent clear-up rate. He’s not at all like your average cop and has his own unique way of dealing with any prejudice his differences bring him. No heavy drinking, no failed marriage, just a steady, long-term relationship. He and his partner have cats, not kids.
But this serial killer seems to be running effortless rings round Ted and his team. Every promising lead just takes them up another frustrating blind alley.
Then it starts to get personal …
Not every writer knows this
Let me begin by saying I can’t tell you how to write. We all do it differently. It would be presumptuous, and wrong, of me to suggest that my way is better than yours. Instead I’d like to share a few practical tips I’ve learnt over the years which have proved useful. Things not everyone knows, specially when they are just getting going in writing.
I started out in the Dark Ages, before computers, training as a journalist in the early 1970s, when everything was on typewriters. If you were lucky, you might have an electric one, although I’ve worked in offices where they were all manual and even, on one small local newspaper, one where journalists had to provide their own typing machine.
When the millennium came around, I decided to retrain as a copywriter/copy editor and that meant also coming to grips with computers for the first time in my life, strange though that may sound.
You all save everything, right?
I thought newspaper deadlines were punishing until I encountered the wonderful world of advertising. As a freelance copywriter, a typical conversation with a client may go something like this:
Client: We need copy for a new catalogue. X patches of X words each. You’ll have the brief by end of play Monday, we need the copy by Friday.
Me: (Picking myself up off the floor having fainted at the impossibility of it) It’s a bit tight, but I’ll be happy to do it for you (mentally doubling the bill). But I must have the brief on Monday.
Monday: No brief, lots of promises. Repeat daily until way past my bedtime on Thursday, when the brief finally arrives. Needless to say, the deadline is still end of play Friday. I do it, because I’m a masochist like that. They don’t like it. They want more ‘blah, blah and blah’ (none of which was in the original brief).
They graciously extend the deadline to Monday. I do it again. They don’t like it. And a couple of times more. Then we get to the bit which is relevant to you as a writer, believe me. After long consideration, they preferred the first version after all. Let’s go with that.
So, here we come to the nub. Did I save the first version, and if so, where the heck is it?
Save everything. Always. Everywhere.
Back in the paper days, a writer would pen something, hate it, screw it up and throw it away. Of course, in time, that would be the version they would decide was the best to date, now lost forever. Now we’ve largely gone paperless, you can save everything you write, and you should do. It’s a valuable learning experience.
Whenever I start a new book (I’ve now written and published nine and jointly written two others) I first create a new folder with the working title. I try to write at least a chapter a day and I save each one as a separate file within that folder. The title will be either the chapter number, if I already know where it’s going to fit in, or a keyword or two, ‘First victim’, ‘Second post-mortem,’ ‘Kick-trick’ (that’s a little peculiarity of my detective). I save everything starting with a date and, because I write a lot, I use the format YY/MM/DD. Every time I make changes, I save again with the current date, and I always begin each writing day by reading and editing what I wrote the day before.
Once I have a few chapters, I start a new file, ‘First draft’, and start to collate them there. From then on, I make all changes on this document, so the individual chapters are still there for me to go back to, should I need to.
Then I save everything. Obsessively. Repeatedly. To USB stick. To external hard drive. Emailed to myself. And to Dropbox. Dropbox is wonderful. You can set it up so that everything you write is automatically saved there without you having to do anything. That way, in theory, you never lose anything you’ve sweated blood to produce.
My house is set up so that, in the event of a fire, even half asleep, I can grab dogs, car keys and external hard drive as I rush out of the front door. My writing is about the only part of my life which is remotely tidy and organised. It’s a method I hope you may find useful.
ABOUT L M KRIER
Retired journalist, freelance copywriter and copy editor Lesley Tither writes under various pen names for different genres. Already well known for travel memoirs as Tottie Limejuice, Lesley also writes crime fiction under the name L M Krier.
Lesley’s first crime thriller, ‘Baby’s Got Blue Eyes’, was published in February 2015, followed by ‘Two Little Boys’ in June 2015. Books 3 and 4 in the DI Ted Darling series, ‘When I’m Old and Grey’ and ‘Shut Up and Drive’ are now available and Book 5 in the series will appear later in 2016.
“Sell the Pig” is the first in a series of travel memoirs describing how Lesley, writing as Tottie Limejuice, decided to make the move from the UK to France to start a new life, taking with her an 89-year-old mother suffering from vascular dementia. The story continues in three further books, ‘Is That Billinge Lump?’, ‘Mother, Was It Worth It?’ and ‘Biff the Useless Mention’. A fifth book in the ‘Sell the Pig’ series is scheduled for release later in 2016.
Her first children’s fiction book, writing as L M Kay, will be published later in 2016. ‘The Dog with the Golden Eyes’ is an exciting children’s crime thriller.
Lesley also writes under the collective pen name of Jilli Lime-Holt, together with authors Jill Pennington and Janet Holt. Their first joint book, Take Three Birds, was published in December 2014.
Lesley is a former journalist, working as both a criminal court and coroner’s court reporter. She also worked as a case tracker for the Crown Prosecution Service, and for a firm investigating irregularities in offshore finance. Her other jobs have included owning and running a holiday riding centre and acting as a ‘charity mugger’, lying in wait to sign up shoppers for a wildlife charity.
Lesley’s interests centre around nature and wildlife and encompass dogs, wild camping and organic gardening. She lives in the Auvergne region of Central France and holds dual French/British nationality. Her current dogs are two rescued border collies.
Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13476159.L_M_Krier
Signed first edition of Baby’s Got Blue Eyes