In his short story collection Everyone Worth Knowing (Circuit Breaker Books, June 1, 2021), author Jeff Richards explores the stories of everyday acquaintances through the stories of 17 male protagonists.
I believe that music—especially rock and the blues—influenced this collection. Could you talk a little more about how music has informed your writing, and this book in particular?
Four of the stories in this collection are based on the lyrics in songs. For instance, the title for Riding the Fences comes from the Eagles song “Desperado.” The story itself follows closely the lyrics and theme of the song. Happiness comes from the John Prine song “All the Best.” Both are about the break-up of a marriage. One of the other stories is based on Jimmy Thackery and the Drivers’ “Cool Guitar.” I interviewed Jimmy for a magazine article and this is what he said about that song: “It sounded like, you know, it came from an old blues singer and it had a great twist, a great hook, ‘I’m gonna sell the bitches car./And buy myself a cool guitar.’ You know the guy gets even with the lady for throwing him out of their apartment. And, of course, I thought either this will be a big hit or I am going to be in big trouble with the National Organization of Women. But the real idea, when you listen to the lyrics, is that the guy singing the song is the asshole and he admits it at the end. And fortunately people get this. I think more women than even men.”
Today I have an interview with, and would like to welcome, Jer Adrianne Lelliott who, along with Ramiz Monsef, narrate Lady Killer.
I’m delighted to be joining the Blog Blitz for Trust Me by K. J. McGillick, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources, with a short Q&A. First though, let’s see what the book is about.
About the book
‘Accused of pushing a boy to his death in a failed suicide intervention, DCI Doug Stirling is suspended from duty. Attacked in the media and haunted by the boy’s smile as he let go of Stirling’s hand, he must look on helplessly as an incompetent colleague intent on destroying him investigates the boy’s death, supported by the vindictive Deputy Chief Constable, McDonald.
Weeks later, an anonymous call leads the police to a remote location and the discovery of a burnt out car containing the body of an unidentified man who has been savagely murdered. Short of experienced senior investigators, ACC Steph Tanner has no choice but to take a professional risk. Throwing Stirling the lifeline he needs to restore his reputation, Tanner appoints him as SIO to lead the investigation.
But with no witnesses, no forensic evidence and more theories than investigators, Stirling’s investigation has far too many ‘loose threads’ as he uncovers a complex, interwoven history of deception, betrayal and sadistic relationships. Was the victim connected to the crime scene? Is the murder as complex as it appears? Or is there a simpler explanation?
Still traumatised by the boy’s death and with time the enemy, does Stirling still have what it takes to bring the killer, or killers, to justice before McDonald intervenes?
Things are already difficult enough when DC Helen Williams joins the investigation, a determined woman who seems intent on rekindling their past relationship. And is Ayesha, the beautiful lawyer Stirling has grown fond of, connected to the murder somehow?’
Ray Britain’s debut novel was released just a few days ago and here’s Ray to tell us more.
Who is Ray Britain?
A fair question. I was a police officer in the United Kingdom with a varied career in uniform and detective roles and completed my career in a high rank, but the investigation of crime and the camaraderie amongst detectives remained my preference. As a Senior Investigating Officer (SIO) I led complex crime investigations, some of which engaged discreet national capabilities. For many years I was also a police Negotiator. Continue reading
Welcome, Mike. First of all, please introduce yourself and tell us what you like to do when not writing.
I began writing at a very early age, and eventually went on to study English and American literature in the university setting. I got a Master of Arts in English from Binghamton University, Binghamton, NY at the age of 24, and went on to become a full-time professional writer in 2001. When I’m not writing, I love to get into the other areas of the arts: concerts, visual arts, and so on. To to stay healthy, I run and work out.
What was your inspiration for Miles of Files?
In Miles of Files, a young man find out that his boss is stealing from the company retirement plan, but not in a traditional embezzlement: he’s actually created these fake employee files, to make it look like he’s paying out benefits to former employees. The germ of the story is based loosely on an experience of my own: I once worked for a company that “froze” the company retirement plan for a year, so no one could take funds out or even put funds in. That was an unnerving experience. Continue reading
Welcome, Lee. In your own words, please tell us about your book
The story starts on a lovely Easter day at Sunday school! God’s Easter Miracles highlights God’s love and provision to His children. The lessons learned are not only about Jesus’s resurrection, but also awareness of treating children with Autism with love and respect, taking care of God’s creations, and most importantly, accepting Jesus Christ as your savior. Continue reading
I’m very pleased to welcome Barb Taub, a firm favourite in the world of writing and blogging.
In halcyon days BC (before children), Barb wrote a humor column for several Midwest newspapers. With the arrival of Child #4, she veered towards the dark side and an HR career. Following a daring daytime escape to England, she’s lived in a medieval castle and a hobbit house with her prince-of-a-guy and the World’s Most Spoiled Aussie Dog. Now all her days are Saturdays, and she spends them traveling around the world, plus consulting with her daughter on Marvel heroes, Null City, and translating from British to American.
That’s some bio, Barb. Anything you can add? And you kind of answered the next part of my question which was going to be, what do you enjoy doing when you’re not writing? But maybe you could elaborate 🙂
I’ve always thought of myself as a writer. Although I was a journalist when younger, and had a syndicated humor column in several American newspapers, the financial realities of raising four kids who had unrealistic expectations — they thought they should eat EVERY day, sleep in actual beds, and wear clothes—meant that I spent many years on the Dark Side (HR professional). You can’t believe how much money employers are willing to pay you to fire people. Continue reading