Morning, Noon and Night are Mr. Bartram's latest books in the Colin Crampton series.
Q: Tell us a little about the Crampton of the Chronicle series
A: When I sat down to write a crime mystery series two years ago, I spent ages trying to think of an original way to portray a private eye or a cop. But everything has been done in those areas. Then it hit me. I'd spent my life as a journalist. I'd make my protagonist a journalist, too. So Colin Crampton chases his stories - and killers - as crime reporter on the fictional Evening Chronicle in 1960s Brighton. A lot of readers have told me that having a reporter rather than a cop as the hero gives the books a fresh feel.
Q: Which authors inspire you?
A: When I was 14, I came across a copy of The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes in a second-hand bookshop. I was hooked from the first story, Silver Blaze. In the seventies, as I was broadening out my reading of crime fiction and thrillers, I enjoyed writers such as Alistair MacLean, Desmond Bagley and Victor Canning. One of the all-time greats I admire is Raymond Chandler, for his sheer ability to pack a punch in a single sentence.
Q: What are you working on next?
I've just started writing the fourth full-length Crampton novel which is provisionally called Murder Hot Off the Press. But I've spent the first half of 2017 writing the first Crampton trilogy - Murder in the Morning Edition, Murder in the Afternoon Extra and Murder in the Night Final. It's been hard work, but I've thoroughly enjoyed doing it. Each book is a self-contained unit, but the mystery continues from one to the next.
Q: Tell us a little about yourself?
A: I started work as a reporter on a local newspaper in my year between school and university. After I graduated from the London School of Economics I went straight back into journalism, with a job as a reporter in London. It wasn't actually in Fleet Street, but my office was in Ludgate Hill, a continuation of Fleet Street! I went freelance early on in my career because I wanted to have more choice in the work I did. Since then, I've written thousands of articles for newspapers and magazines and pursued stories in locations as diverse as 700 feet down a coal mine and Buckingham Palace. I wrote 21 non-fiction books, including five ghost-written, in areas such as biography, current affairs and how-to titles, before turning to crime writing.
Q: What's one piece of advice you would give aspiring writers?
A: Keep at it. People who write books are the people who sit at their laptops doing it - not the people who sit around talking about it.
Q: What's your favourite season?
We have four seasons in England - winter, winter, winter and, by far the wild and wettest, summer. I love all of them!
Q: Who do you imagine is your reader?
A: I first started to write crime fiction when I couldn't find a book I really wanted to take on holiday. So now I try and write the kind of book that cozy mystery fans would like to read while they're lounging around the pool. Or even in it, if they can find a way to waterproof their Kindle!
Q: Where is the Crampton Morning, Noon & Night trilogy available?
A: Just head over to Amazon where you'll find the books ready to download to your Kindle. For all my other titles, check out my website at www.colincrampton.com which gives pointers on where to find the books.
Q: How can readers find out more about you?
A: It's that website, again! www.colincrampton.com.
Peter Bartram is offering Murder in the Morning Edition free - but be warned you won't be able to stop at just one mystery.
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