Book: Crime Fiction for Beginners by Gervase T.M. Shorter
categories: Book, Space, Battle, Aliens, Mysticism, Lotus Position, Shaman, Mayas, NKVD, Waltz, Cavalry, Marquess, Nouveau Riche, Science Fiction
Gervase T.M. Shorter about this book: ‘Crime Fiction for Beginners’ is about four would be writers, but it´s really more about what they are writing than about the writers themselves and it includes five excerpts from each of their four novels , enough to let the reader follow and become interested in each of the four plots. The excerpts are a mild parody of each genre and each of the plots is intended to be just a bit different from what you´d expect.
The writers are totally immersed in what they´re writing; it´s more real to them than their rather dull lives and it was my original intention to express this by having each excerpt follow straight on without a break from my description of its author´s daily life but I realized that would be too confusing for the average reader so, partly to avoid any confusion and partly to emphasise indirectly that this is a jokey sort of book, the four different genres are all printed in different fonts from the Times New Roman used for the main story. Maud Jackson´s Regency romantic novel is in a copperplate script, Hector Treadgold´s science fiction epic and Gregory Scofield´s cold war thriller are in two different ultra modern fonts and I wanted to have the novel about mystical experiences in previous lives that Juliet Transom is writing in long hand printed in the green ink she uses but this proved impracticable so her excerpts are in a modern kind of handwriting but in black on white.
The framework of the book is the investigation by an attractive young woman detective and her younger male sidekick into a publisher´s murder. The four authors´ writing is seen from three different angles. To the authors themselves what they are writing is brilliant and they themselves are undiscovered geniuses. To the publishers the authors are just time wasters and their work is worthless because it has no commercial value. The police aren´t interested in literary quality, only in the abrasive relationship between authors and publishers. For them the authors´ importance is as potential suspects.
‘Crime Fiction for Beginners’ is five novels in one. It was the first novel I ever wrote and I had great fun writing it. In fact I probably enjoyed writing it more than any of the three other novels I wrote later though writing in a completely different style for each of the five novels was quite a challenge.
what to read next: if you read and liked this book...
Other books by Gervase T.M. Shorter