Today crime fiction author Neil Broadfoot stops by to talk about his latest release No Place to Die. It was published in paperback on the 7th of April. If you have any questions for Neil about his work do, please leave them in the comments below and I will do my best to get them answered for you. If you have read and reviewed any of Neil’s books, please drop by Amazon and Goodreads and leave a review.
No Place to Die by Neil Broadfoot
Blair Charlston swapped the stock market for salvation – and now he’s making a killing.
Once a controversial venture capitalist, Charlston reinvented himself as a personal and business development guru after surviving an attempt to take his own life when a business deal went disastrously wrong. So when he decides to host a weekend retreat on the outskirts of Stirling for more than 300 people, Connor Fraser is drafted in to cover the security for a man who is at once idolised as a saviour and hated as a ruthless asset stripper.
For Connor, it’s an unwelcome assignment. He’s never had much time for salvation by soundbite, and Charlston’s notoriety is attracting the attention of reporter Donna Blake, who’s asking more questions than Connor has answers for.
But when an old colleague of Donna’s is found brutally bludgeoned to death, and the start of Charleston’s weekend of salvation becomes a literal trial by fire, Connor must race to unmask a killer whose savagery is only matched by their cunning.
Neil Broadfoot worked as a journalist for 15 years at both national and local newspapers, including The Scotsman, Scotland on Sunday and the Evening News, covering some of the biggest stories of the day.
Falling Fast, which was shortlisted for the Dundee International Book Prize, is the first in the Edinburgh-set McGregor and Drummond series of thrillers.
His new Stirling-set series, which begins with No Man’s Land and features close protection expert Connor Fraser, has been hailed as “tense, fast moving and bloody” and “atmospheric, twisty and explosive” with a “complex cast of characters and a compelling hero”. No Man’s Land was longlisted for the 2019 McIlvanney Award.
As a husband and father of two girls, Neil finds himself regularly outnumbered in his own home. He is also one of the Four Blokes In Search of a Plot, a quartet of crime writers who live write a story based on suggestions from the audience. The Four Blokes have appeared in England, Spain and Scotland.
Keep up to date with news on Neil’s books by signing up to his mailing list at http://eepurl.com/gISGZr
In conversation with Neil Broadfoot
Can you tell us a little about your publishing journey, please?
I’ve always wanted to be a writer, which is why I became a journalist, so I could work with words until I got a book deal and managed to get published. Life got in the way a little and the book ambition got sidetracked by kids, marriage and job, until I remembered a promise I made to someone very dear to me and determined I would get published. So I wrote my first book, Falling Fast, which then got shortlisted for both the Bloody Scotland Book of the Year award and the Dundee International Book Prize. That led to my three Edinburgh-set McGregor and Drummond series, before I moved onto the Striling-set Connor Fraser series
How do you decide who to dedicate your books to?
This is probably one of the hardest parts of writing for me! When you’re writing, it’s just you and the keyboard, but the truth is, you don’t write a book alone. There are people there, friends, family, spouses, who support you while you work. So there are always people to thank. My first book was always going to be dedicated to my gran though, it’s a promise I made her as a child that I was determined to honour.
What was the inspiration behind your latest release?
Like most of my books, No Place To Die started with a single idea. In this case, it was the first line of the book. I was writing something else entirely, and that line just popped into my head. I wrote the scene and then followed the story where it wanted to take me.
This time, Connor has been drafted in to protect a financier turned self-help guru, who is hosting a weekend retreat at a hotel just outside Stirling. Things very quickly go south and, as the bodies begin to pile up, Connor finds himself in a race against time to unmask a killer who will go to any lengths to protect their secrets.
Do you find it hard to let your characters go when you finish writing the book?
Not really, as I never really let them go. When I finish a book, the volume gets turned down on them a bit in my head, but Connor, Jen and Paulie are always in the background, suggesting new ideas. One of the great things about writing a series is that you go with the characters on a journey, seeing them grow and evolve with every book.
What was your favourite read of 2019?
Tough question. Last year was a bumper one for great books,from Craig Russell’s The Devil Aspect to Douglas Skelton’s exemplary Thunder Bay (don’t tell him I said that!). It’s hard to pick a single book, I loved a lot of books for different reasons.
Who is your favourite author?
Ooooft, this isn’t getting any easier! I grew up on Stephen King and Conan Doyle, so they’ll always be close to the top of the list, while William McIlvanney introduced me to crime writing with the Laidlaw trilogy. And I’ll always make time for Craig Russell, Douglas Skelton, Tony Kent, Ian Rankin and a slew of others.
Was there a point in your life that a book helped you get through, if so which one?
Not a specific point because I’ve always been a massive reader, so books have been a constant presence in my life, through good times and bad.
Is there anyone that you would like to mention and thank for their support of your writing?
Firstly, my family, who put up with me sitting at the computer for hours and then travelling around the country to talk about my books (back when we were allowed to do that!). One of the best things about the crime writing community is the friendship it brings with it. I’ve made lots of true friends since being published – Douglas Skelton (don’t tell him!), Derek Farrell, Ed James, Craig Russell to name a few. They’ve all been there with advice and encouragement, and I owe them a debt of thanks for that. And also, this would all mean nothing if no-one was reading the books, so I’ve got to say thank you to the readers!
If you had the power to give everyone in the world one book, what would it be and why?
The collected Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle. After all, Holmes is where the heart is.
What are you working on now?
Currently editing Connor Fraser 4 – The Point Of No Return, which will be out in September. After that, it’s on to Connor 5, which digs into the past of Pauli King. I’m really looking forward to writing that, it’s the book I’ve been building towards since I began the Connor series.
Lastly, do you have any questions for your readers?
I guess I want to know what every writer does – what do you want to read more of in my work?
Thanks to Neil Broadfoot for taking time out to talk to us today.
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