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  • Barbara Copperthwaite

‘I love the moment when your character does something completely unexpected’ Crime thril

Every week a best-selling writer of crime/psychological thrillers shares their secrets and top tips. This week it’s debut crime thriller author Trevor Wood.

I spent a lot of time walking around taking photographs of places that I wanted to use. It’s amazing what the camera reveals that you haven’t noticed with the naked eye.  

Tell us about yourself…

I’m a very late starter to this novel writing lark – I’m 61 and when my debut novel, The Man on the Street, has just been published. It’s about a homeless veteran who sees a murder but no-one believes him, and is set in my home city, Newcastle. I’ve lived there for almost 30 years and consider myself an adopted Geordie, though I still can’t speak the language. In previous incarnations I’ve been a successful playwright and have also worked as a journalist and spin-doctor for the City Council. Prior to that I was in the Royal Navy for 16 years joining, presciently, as a Writer. I’m a huge music fan, still dragging my ageing limbs to Glastonbury most years, and to get out of the house once a week I’m a volunteer cook at the People’s Kitchen, which feeds hot meals to over one hundred homeless people six days a week.

How do you pick character names? Do any have special meaning to you? 

The protagonist in The Man on the Street is called ‘Jimmy’ and is named after a couple of people who came up in my research for the book. The first was a well-known face in the city, a homeless man who was regularly seen around town, often riding on the Metro. Sadly, he died a few years ago, but he was such a character that his story resonated with me.  

The other ‘Jimmy’ was the writer of a book called ‘The Veterans’ Survival Guide’ which is a raw, disturbing and profound warts-and-all biography written by a former soldier called Jimmy Johnson. After enduring two tours of Northern Ireland, in which he saw some horrific things, Johnson ended up with terrible PTSD which saw him spiral downwards, ultimately committing murder twice. I’d commend the book to anyone interested in the subject…TO CONTINUE READING CLICK HERE

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