This week I’m back in writing mode, and I’ve started on the journey that will produce the third book in the Inspector West series, for release in the second half of 2015. I’m also working on a second series of shorter stories with a working title of The Walsh Files, and thought I’d offer you an insight into the development of some of those stories. I’m not sure how long each story will be yet but it should be fun finding out.
Some kids are born into families of great wealth, and they are destined to a pleasant life with all the material comforts money can buy. Pat Owens had not be born into one of those families. His old man had pissed most of his earnings up against the wall of a small room at the back of the pub, before he’d pissed off forever. His mother barely earned enough to pay the rent and keep Pat, and his two brothers, clothed and fed. Pat Owens knew what it was like to go without from direct experience of the condition. As a small boy, he had been filled with envy over all the things the other kids at school had that he didn’t. After the non-event of his tenth birthday, he’d decided to take matters into his own hands in order to get access to those things other kids’ parents gave them. He’d started honourably enough with a paper round on his second-hand bike. By the time he was thirteen, he had invested in some money earning assets that enabled him to supply the kids that had some money, but not a lot, with pirate copies of the latest music CDs. That had been a good gig while it lasted. As a fifteen year old, he’d ventured into buying and selling stolen goods, having discovered the financial rewards associated with being a middle-man. A lot of things happened in the back shed that year that his mother never knew about. In his final year of high school, he’d managed a small team of like minded boys supplying a range of illicit substances to the kids who had money, lots of stuff and very little excitement in their lives. While those rich kids had gone on to university, Pat Owens had found himself enrolled in a different kind of learning institution, where they provided the complete residential experience but didn’t hand out a fancy piece of paper at the end of the course. While serving his time, Pat had mixed with people who were only too happy to pass the time by transferring a wide range of life skills, and introducing him to a network of useful contacts. After his release, he had completed an apprenticeship as a butcher with the father of a friend he’d made inside. He’d also completed another apprenticeship of sorts, in his spare time, with the father of another friend, as a locksmith. He didn’t have any paperwork for that qualification. By day, he had butchered carcasses that arrived in unmarked trucks and left as dressed meat in refrigerated trucks with bright signage. By night, he’d opened doors into other people’s houses, as part of a team that fed stolen valuables into a pipeline servicing a clientele that didn’t like to pay the full price for anything. If only things had stayed that way. Unfortunately, all things in life change, including the sophistication of home security systems. To be continued…..