Crime festivals, Cornwall and covers…

July and August have been incredibly busy. From 17th-20th July I went to Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Festival in Harrogate. The festival is legendary amongst the crime fraternity and I’ve been desperate to go for years. This year the planets aligned and I boarded a train from Bristol to Harrogate via Leeds and spent a long weekend indulging in crime, crime and more crime.

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Someone taking a reading break at Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Festival, Harrogate 2014.
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My stash of freebies (top row and bottom left) and the books I bought – Rubbernecker by Belinda Bauer which won Crime Novel of the Year and The Long Fall by Julia Crouch.

I went to as many talks as my stamina allowed and my stand out talks were the discussion between Sophie Hannah (who is very lovely and who I was lucky enough to be introduced to the night before her talk) and SJ Watson (a bit of a psychological thriller hero of mine)

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Sophie Hannah in conversation with SJ Watson

and the Domestic Noir panel featuring Julie Crouch, Helen Fitzgerald, NJ Cooper, Cath Staincliffe and Chris Ewan.

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From left to right: Julie Crouch, Helen Fitzgerald, NJ Cooper, Cath Staincliffe and Chris Ewan

Julia Crouch is also a bit of a psych thriller hero of mine – and goes to a kick ass bootcamp in Brighton with my sister – so I queued to get her new book ‘The Long Fall’ signed and say hello. The Long Fall and The Lie (my second novel) are vaguely similar in that they both have a past thread about travelling and a present day thread about revenge so I’ve forbidden myself from reading it until I’ve finished my edits. Roll on 30th September.

Talking of which, I went off to Cornwall on my own last week so I could get my head down and dedicate every waking moment to editing The Lie. The photos I posted on my Facebook page may have given the impression that I spent the week stuffing my face with cream teas and going for picturesque walks but, in actual fact, I spent the majority of my time in a damp, dark cottage with no wifi feeling as claustrophobic as my characters (I think that’s a good thing – I was obviously immersed in the story).

Beautiful Polperro, a fishing village in Cornwall
Me trying to walk off all the pasties and fudge I ate.
And re-fueling with a cream tea! (and making the most of the cafe’s wifi so I could check my email and reconnect with the real world).

I sent the first 30,000 edited words to my UK editor Lydia earlier this week and she LOVED them (phew!). Now ‘just’ 70,000 words left to edit and I’M DONE! (and I’ll celebrate with my body weight in champagne and Hotel Chocolat!).

The last two months also saw the publication of my short story ‘The Missing Girls’ in WOMAN magazine and my story ‘You’ll Be Dead by Dawn’ in short story collection Sunlounger 2. The latter had a lovely review by book blogger Emma Lou.

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The Missing Girls – short story by CL Taylor in WOMAN magazine
Review for my short story 'You'll Be Dead by Dawn'
Review for my short story ‘You’ll Be Dead by Dawn’

And, one final piece of news, yesterday my agent sent me the cover art for the German version of The Accident. My German publisher Piper have done an AMAZING job. I love the cover – it’s so vivid and eyecatching. The title “Träum was Böses” apparently means ‘Have a Bad Dream’ which I think fits nicely with the whole coma storyline. I can’t wait to receive a copy so I can put it on my shelf with the UK, US and Polish versions. Alas I have to wait until November to share it with you.

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