August 24th, 2011

red carpet

Shirley Wells and her favourite chauvinist!

Today I'm pleased to welcome the British crime writer Shirley Wells, celebrating the release of her new book Dead Silent.

Shirley and I bumped into each other (very amicably!) at Carina Press and we're both members of the lively and fascinating Not Your Usual Suspects blog. Great to see a fellow Brit author here today!

Now over to Shirley:

First, a huge thank you to Clare for inviting me to her lovely blog. Thanks, Clare!

I write crime and mystery novels and, recently, I was asked which characters I preferred to write about - the goodies or baddies. The question pulled me up short because although my books have introduced murderers and serial killers, I couldn’t think of a single truly bad person.

The so-called bad guys in my books commit murder occasionally, yes, but if questioned, friends and neighbours might claim they were the nicest, most helpful, trustworthy people one could wish to meet. The line between good and bad, in my books at least, is a very thin one. I believe we’re all flawed. We all have our good points and bad. Who knows, perhaps some of us could be driven to murder?

That’s what I enjoy most, playing with characters and seeing how far they need to be pushed to commit a crime.

That’s not to say I don’t enjoy writing about the goodies. But are good people truly good? Let’s face it, we all consider ourselves good people and would be amazed if someone thought us selfish, moody, conceited, angry or capable of committing dark crimes.

My favourite character of all is the shining knight in my latest release, Dead Silent. Private investigator Dylan Scott is the so-called good guy so let’s take a look at him. Does he have flaws? Oh my, yes. First off, he’s a chauvinist. He firmly believes no woman on earth should ever be allowed to even see a set of car keys. He’d win any Bad Husband Award hands down. No contest. He was dismissed from the police force on the say of an habitual criminal who claimed he used excessive force during an arrest. Is Dylan still bitter about his spell behind bars? You bet your life he is! Having said that, his heart’s in the right place and if anything happened to a family member or friend, Dylan’s the man I’d turn to for help.

What do you think? Do you like your characters clearly defined? Do you prefer your good guys to be squeaky clean and your baddies truly evil? Or do you believe, like me, that the line between good and bad can be blurred?

Thanks for having me, Clare!


Having had several hundred short stories, ten serials and ten novels published, Shirley Wells is finally getting the hang of this writing lark. She’s lived in Orkney, Cyprus and the Cotswolds, and now lives in Lancashire, UK, where the Pennines, with their abundance of great places to hide bodies, provide the inspiration for her popular mystery novels. She shares her home with her husband, two dogs, two cats and any other stray animals that fancy being pampered. Connect with Shirley via her website, follow her on Twitter or find her on Facebook.

Her latest Dylan Scott mystery, DEAD SILENT, is available from Carina Press, Amazon, Barnes & Noble and all good e-book retailers.


Back to Clare:
If you want to catch up on more of Shirley's writing - and Dylan Scott's adventures! - the first book in this series is Presumed Dead. Find the details of all her books on her website HERE, but Presumed Dead is also currently on special at Carina Press at $0.99c.

I'd dash over there, if I didn't already have it LOL.