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‘Ice-pick-sharp, packed with intrigue, action and spine-chilling suspense. Devour will keep you gripped from the very first page’ Kathryn Fox

Larkin's Latest

Welcome to my blog, Larkin’s Latest. News on thriller authors and great books to read, the writing process and festivals, incredible people I interview and exciting story locations, courses I run, and things that make me laugh!

Pay the writer

April 20, 2015

If you don’t like a bit of Hollywood swearing, then don’t listen to this YouTube clip of Harlan Ellison’s rant about paying writers. Or rather, about how often writers are asked to do work for free. There are few who can rant as well as Ellison, and even though this clip made me smile, he is absolutely right. Why is it okay to ask an author to write something and not pay them for it? As Harlan says so eloquently, would you go to a petrol station and fill up your car, expecting not to pay, or ask a surgeon to operate for free? Naturally we are all happy to donate our time and skills for a good cause. That’s a given. But why would the managers of indie band, Garbage, ask a photographer to let them use a photograph he took of them for free when they have sold 17 million albums. Read the story in The Guardian about the photographer making a stand, here. Creative works, be they paintings or novels or photographs or music, bring such joy and inspiration, firing up our imaginations and taking us to another world. Surely that’s worth a bob or two?

> Read More

Always wanted to write crime fiction?

If you live in or around Sydney and have always wanted to write your own crime fiction novel, then join me on Thursday 11 June when my five week evening course kicks off on Crime and Thriller Writing at the Australian Writers Centre.

Here is what some of my students have to say:
 “I really enjoyed getting a personal perspective of crime and thriller writing from a presenter that has “been there and done that.”  The course was logically put together and covered a lot of very useful information. L.A. Larkin is a fantastic presenter.  She has great subject knowledge and was able to get everybody involved in the various discussion points. It was a fantastic course that was well worth undertaking.” Liam Saville
 “No matter how well progressed you think you are with your writing, there is always something valuable to learn, and the thriller course really lays it all out for you in both a practical and inspiring way.  My ideas really developed on this course.” Kerry Rogerson
> Read More

Always wanted to write crime fiction?

If you live in or around Sydney and have always wanted to write your own crime fiction novel, then join me on Thursday 11 June when my five week evening course kicks off on Crime and Thriller Writing at the Australian Writers Centre.

Here is what some of my students have to say:

“I really enjoyed getting a personal perspective of crime and thriller writing from a presenter that has “been there and done that.”  The course was logically put together and covered a lot of very useful information. L.A. Larkin is a fantastic presenter.  She has great subject knowledge and was able to get everybody involved in the various discussion points. It was a fantastic course that was well worth undertaking.” Liam Saville

“No matter how well progressed you think you are with your writing, there is always something valuable to learn, and the thriller course really lays it all out for you in both a practical and inspiring way. My ideas really developed on this course.” Kerry Rogerson

> Read More

Having fun as Jekyll and Hyde

January 22, 2015

I’m having fun playing Jekyll and Hyde. With my writing, anyway.
A few weeks ago I was in the middle of a line edit for my new cozy mystery novel, Monty And Me, available in hardback for Christmas this year. The primary narrator of the story is a dog called Monty, who teams up with trainee detective, Rose Sidebottom, to help solve his master’s murder, and this is the start of a great crime-busting partnership. The story is fun and sad, whimsical and inventive, an escapist read for young and old and for anyone who wonders what their dog really gets up to when they’re not around. Monty brings the humour and the pathos to the story and he is my Dr Jekyl.
Today, I am working on my new suspense series, an action thriller starring resilient and resourceful investigative journalist Olivia Wolfe. As Wolfe struggles to uncover the truth about a mysteries death in Antarctica, a Russia army deserter and an Afghan warlord running a drugs trafficking ring from prison, Wolfe’s professional and home life is threatened by a vicious cyber stalker. I am working on this cyber stalker at the moment – my Mr Hyde. There’s nothing funny about this character. I have to go to a dark part of my imagination to find the right voice for somebody with so much hatred, so I can translate this into the written word.
It gets complicated when I’m inside the stalker character’s head and I have to switch back to the lovable dog character, Monty, as happened yesterday when I was asked to compose an email from the canine super-sleuth. Perhaps I have two very different sides to my personality, but I enjoy the chance to move between terrifying thrillers with high stakes and equally high body-counts, to a gentler, humorous world in which dogs do so much more than fetch balls and a shy young detective gets a second chance to prove she has got what it takes. It keeps my writing fresh, and me excited. And I’m not alone. Spencer Quinn writes the Chet And Bernie Mysteries and, also, thrillers as Peter Abrahams. JK Rowling and Robert Galbraith is another example. Or James Rollins and James Clemens.
Time to get back to my writing. To my dark side.
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