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  • Barbara Copperthwaite

PhotoFiction: Sarah Ward’s #writing inspirations @sarahrward1 #authorinterview #crimefiction

Authors reveal the images that inspired 100,000 words

THIS WEEK: Sarah Ward

Sarah Ward is the author of two DC Childs novels, In Bitter Chill and A Deadly Thaw set in the Derbyshire Peak District where she lives. Her third book in the series, A Patient Fury, is out in September. On her blog, Crimepieces (, she reviews the best of current crime fiction published around the world, and she has also reviewed for Euro Crime and CrimeSquad. She is a judge for the Petrona Award for Scandinavian translated crime novels.


Sarah says: I’m inspired by all sorts of things. Snippets of conversations, memories from my childhood and experiences of those around me. I rarely draw directly from the original source of inspiration, I just allow my imagination to tease over what I’m thinking about and concoct a scenario along the lines of: ‘What if…?’.

The best crime novels aren’t just plot and character driven though. Talking to readers in libraries and bookshops, it’s clear that many crime novels are chosen because of where they’re set. Location plays an important role in my books and the Derbyshire Peak District has lots to places to inspire. I’m forever taking photos of buildings and places that I pass through and they often trigger something in what I’m writing.

My second book, A Deadly Thaw, opens with the discovery of a body in a disused mortuary situated amongst woodland. The place is fictional, I call it Hale’s End, but inspired by buildings requisitioned during the first world war to use as hospitals… TO READ THE INTERVIEW IN FULL, CLICK HERE

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