Helen Smith will be appearing on panels at Malice Domestic (3 May, USA) and CrimeFest (16 May,UK)

Tuesday, 15 April 2014


Since the demise of Google Reader, I'm still trying to find a suitable place to follow and read blogs. Does anyone use Bloglovin? My blog is on there and you can use the site to read the latest posts from my blog and others. Let me know if your blog is on there.

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Monday, 14 April 2014

What Are You Working On? #amwriting

I met Matthew Clemens at a crime writing convention called Bouchercon in Albany, New York last year; we were on a panel together and we have stayed in touch. He is a prolific, successful author of original mysteries and movie tie-ins (CSI and Dark Angel included) and a charming man. If you’re interested in writing tips or simply getting an insight into the life of a writer, please check out his blog. Matthew sold his first short story in 1992, the same year he left his day job. He has been writing professionally ever since.

Matthew is currently collaborating on an experiment called Fully Exposed with his friend and fellow writer Kristi Belcamino where they discuss their daily lives as writers and push themselves to achieve more – not just word count, but trying to stay healthy and sane by walking every day, for example.

Matthew was recently tagged in a blog hop. Scroll down to April 8th to see his answers about what he’s currently working on. He tagged me with the same questions. Here are mine:

What are you working on?
I’m working on the third novel in my Emily Castles mystery series. Its predecessor, BEYOND BELIEF, was published earlier this year. There are also two novellas in the series, so this will be Emily’s fifth outing as an amateur sleuth. I have also been making notes for a new time travel series that I will write once this book is finished.

How does your work differ from others of its genre?
My books are set in the present day but they have an old-fashioned, Golden Age feel. They’re very jolly and very British, but the humour is deadpan and slightly surreal. I don’t think there’s anything else out there with quite the same mix of ingredients.

Why do you write what you do?
I’m hoping to entertain people with these books. Reading a fun mystery can be a great way to escape from the cares of the day, and I hope that people who have discovered the Emily Castles mystery series will look forward to the next installment of Emily’s adventures with a smile.

How does your writing process work?
I plan each book so that I know how it develops and how it will end before I start it. But I always find myself making adjustments as I go along – giving more time on the page to someone who was only going to be a minor character, and so on. I like to refine the text as I go so the manuscript is fairly polished when I have finished it.

If you'd like to answer these questions on  your blog or on the comments section below, feel free to tag yourself and leave the link so I can read your answers. I'm also tagging Donna Fasano and Susanna Calkins. They are two very talented writers who I like very much.

Donna Fasano writes romances (with nearly 4 million books sold worldwide to date) and, though I have read her books, I have never met her. I hope I will get the chance to do that one day.

Susanna Calkins writes historical mysteries (with her second book due out later this month). We have met a couple of times and I will see her again at Malice Domestic at the beginning of May. Can’t wait!

Thursday, 10 April 2014

CrimeFest: The Contemporary Cosy: Is There Still Life In The Golden Age? #CrimeFest14

I’ll be on a panel at CrimeFest in Bristol next month.

Friday 16th May
The Contemporary Cosy: Is There Still Life In The Golden Age?

Christopher Fowler, Helen Smith, Martin Walker and Jill Paton Walsh,  moderated by Christine Poulson.

You can find more information about the programme and participants here.

You can book tickets here.

Friday, 4 April 2014

Three Sisters: Goodreads Giveaway

If you're a member of Goodreads, you can enter to win a paperback copy of Three Sisters, the first Emily Castles mystery. Please add the book to your bookshelves at Goodreads.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Three Sisters by Helen  Smith

Three Sisters

by Helen Smith

Giveaway ends April 08, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

Update: Thanks to everyone who signed up for this. A copy of the book is on its way to Teressa P whose name was selected by Goodreads staff. I'll be doing more giveaways via Goodreads and this blog in the next few months so please check back here for details.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Facebook vs Google+

Are you on Google+? Where’s a good place to hang out? I’m finding my Facebook page really frustrating because Facebook only shows my posts to a small number of people who have joined the page—if I want more people to see them, I have to pay to promote the posts.

I’m thinking of posting links to interesting items, photos etc. on Google+ instead. Do you have any thoughts or advice?

Google+ widget: