UBC’s Summer Crime Writing Workshop
With William Deverell
This will be an interactive class, with lots of to and fro, but I shall be waiving the requirement for an opening chapter – instead we’ll work on that during the week. Plan to have fun. Here’s the full program:
The Blog: May 27
On Suspects, Villains, and Masturbation
Six weeks ago, I wrote: “Next week, hopefully, advice from the master in creating the ideal suspect…” Okay, but, things got out of hand. It would take a terabyte of information to explain why and how – the end result is that I have taken in four homeless strangers threatened with eviction.
This is how I found them, behind bars, loo0king for a new home
So far, they have done an admirable job of keeping process servers from the door. Widgeon’s solicitors in England have finally found some supposedly hotshot Vancouver counsel willing to stifle my right of free expression. I know this guy. Ballentine J. Bingham, Esquire. A loudmouth. Sadly for him, his registered letters and writs of summons don’t make it past the “Premises Protected by Attack Dogs” sign.
The Blog: April 13
More Hot Murder Tips
Well, three weeks have gone by and not one word from the so-called “leading Canadian counsel” whom Horace Widgeon retained to shut down this blog and put me on my beam ends (see posting March 19). I suspect the touchy old scold blanched when he heard the fee. Leading counsel don’t come cheap, even out here in the colonial backwoods. There go all his advances for his next twenty novels.
So I presume I’m free to re-embark on the project I began on this blog a few months ago, before Mr. Widgeon’s untimely intercession, of passing on to budding writers of crime fiction many of his delicious tips and techniques. All for free. No annoying ads. Yeah, I’m talking to you, Facebook.
I can’t remember where I left off, so let’s return to the beginning, the creative process, and again I take delight in gently lifting a quote from The Art of the Whodunit.
“Know where you are going. No mystery writer may successfully embark upon a cruise across the dark waters of murder without knowing the port at which he must ultimately disembark. One plans, one outlines; one builds a skeleton on which to hang flesh.” (This grisly metaphorical combo is, I feel, Widgeon at his finest).
The Blog: March 19
Widgeon Wakes Sleeping Dogs
Creator of the Inspector Grodgins Series
18, Vicarage Lane
March 18, 2013
Dear Mr. Deverell,
Many days have I struggled to still my indignation at your impertinent public response to my sincere offer to accept an unrestrained apology in settlement of issues between us. But at the risk of offending my solicitors, who advise I let sleeping dogs lie while their writ plods its way through court, I cannot let your canards go unchallenged.
Let me say firstly I am proud to bear the name of the great Horace of Caesar’s time, whose satire was intended for social abuses, not personal attacks and ridicule.
The Blog: March 5
A Response to Horace Widgeon
Thank you for inviting me to publish in my blog a full and unequivocal apology for whatever I said that ails you.
May I call you Horace? And perchance were you named after the great Roman poet and satirist? By intriguing coincidence he was also a How-To’er, whose The Art of Poetry, unlike the bulk of your output, is still in print, and which famously mocked the worthless creations of the literarily inept: “The mountains are in labour, and a ridiculous mouse will be born.”
Ah, but satire, as I submitted in my last posting, is not your bag, is it?
Not to rub salt, old stick, but you may remember my using that very quote in my syndicated review, some years back, of your twenty-third Inspector Grodgins mystery, Blood on the Remainder Table, in which I had a little fun with your cliché-driven sentences and fussy literary mannerisms.