Secure your place NOW on the November 2012 Crime Fiction – Making it Real, weekend workshop designed for writers interested in learning more about the police, their procedures and practices. There will be time to immerse yourselves in case studies and to bring along your very own questions to be answered. Check out the Autumn 2012 Workshop page for more details.
For more information, contact me via e-mail at –
It seemed a long time coming but when it did finally arrive, it flew.
From a personal point of view, the weekend far exceeded my expectations. To top it all, I met a great bunch of people who were attentive, keen to learn and better still, keen to share their knowledge and help their peers.
What I’m talking about is the very first Crime Fiction – Making it Real weekend workshop, held at the West Yorkshire Police Training and Development Centre.
Delegates came to Wakefield from as far away as Avon and Somerset, Devon, Essex, the big city – London and Northumbria as well as places closer to the venue.
But don’t take my word for how good it was, read some of the feedback received –
Barbara – Just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the course.
I wanted a general overview of the police and procedures which I think you covered very well. Even if you don’t use a lot of it in the writing, it is useful background to get an idea of how a whole police station would operate. The stuff on the Major incident teams and crime scenes etc was very useful. I guess writers are also interested in dialogue so discussing interviews etc was also helpful. I also found the stuff on who certifies death, the role of the coroner etc helpful. The stuff on serious criminal, like rapists was very good as was the discussion of forensic profilers. t skimmed through the CD and it will be an excellent resource for us.
We were quite a demanding audience and you handled the questions very well. I really did enjoy it. A big part as well is the other attendees and I got a lot out of talking to the others in break times.
Caroline – Thanks for a terrific course and for your individual attention with my plot, really appreciated. A great weekend and I am now energised and armed to complete the book hopefully with my cop facts right.
CJ – I wanted to thank you for a very stimulating and informative weekend. I learnt a lot and especially valued having my specific questions all dealt with. Overall, it was a fun weekend and a great experience and I will recommend it to other crime writers. I could tell you put a lot into organising everything for us and it paid off big time.
Gareth – I’d like to thanks you so much for an amazing weekend. I felt so fortunate to meet you and so many wonderful people. The course was very informative. The main strength of the course was you. You were clearly knowledgeable and presented the information in a friendly, easy to understand way, but, above all, your great sense of humour made it so much fun.
Ian – It was a great course thanks,
Jan – It was brilliant. I’ve done over 20 OU courses and about 13 summer schools – and this has to be up there with the best of them. I really enjoyed the whole thing.
It was exactly what I needed to convince myself that non-police personnel stand a chance of writing crime – both from the point of view of the information received (and thank you so much for the DVD, it’s excellent) and from being able to meet with published authors and non-published authors in a friendly and supportive atmosphere. I thought it did exactly what it said on the tin – it explained the structure and routines and left me in a much better position to track down my own information, and to know what level of information I need to include.
It was obvious so much thought had gone into the whole weekend. I also felt the tone was exactly right. Serious subjects, but tackled in an intelligent and light-hearted way, which was just the right balance for me. I’d be back like a shot for further courses
Linda – Just a quick line to say how much I enjoyed and appreciated this weekend. I think you covered every question I thought I might ask and covered a good many I didn’t even know I needed to ask! You surpassed all my expectations of what might be got out of the sessions, and I think I will be referring back to the information on the DVD for a long time to come.
Lesley – Firstly thanks for the workshop, you obviously did a lot of hard work to produce it. I thoroughly enjoyed the weekend. I got a lot from it and learnt things I didn’t know. In fact I have created a new main character for my next book from those who are co-opted onto the enquiry (more later). T he DVD of information is an excellent resource. Weekends like this are as much about talking to other people during the breaks and in the evening as about the workshop itself and we had plenty of time for that.
Maggie – You often don’t realise what you want to know until you know it and it provokes further questioning! I was open to consuming new knowledge that I could utilise along the way within my writing. I think I gained a new perspective through the course. At the time I felt that being informed about the different uniforms was not necessary – in hindsight I feel that it was totally in context with the rest of the content once I had done the two days. It helps that you can take notes of thought provoking ideas rather than have to scribble everything that is said down and miss the overall aim/ambience. During the course it was thought provoking and I am sure many of us have come away with some ideas for plot lines. All in all I would definitely recommend this course to anyone considering it. Meeting the variety of people that were there was also interesting, some of us will definitely stay in touch and thus we are able to widen our network of contacts/writers/new friends. 10/10!
Paul – I enjoyed the weekend immensely and it was tremendous value for money. The extensive CD alone was worth the workshop fee and it contains everything the crime writer could wish for. I think you provided a very good ‘walk through’ of what actual happens at the scene of a major crime and the different roles etc. In conclusion it was an excellent experience
Sheila – I got loads from the course. Lots of little gems will stay in my mind for further use. I love anecdotes from people’s working lives, details that you will never get from a manual such as the spitting prisoner in a cage in a van. The role play on tracing a wanted bod taught me how to think investigation.
Tom – I found the weekend most useful and the content and materials we subsequently received will prove valuable reference sources for crime writing. I got all the factual material I needed – and more. In fact I would suggest you were over-generous in how much info you released.
Wanda – I just want to say how much I enjoyed the weekend, and I certainly learnt a great deal. I am also delighted with the CD. You have been very generous with your knowledge, time and information and I am sure that I will now have a much better idea on how to proceed with my crime novel.
Anyone interested in signing up for the second workshop, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
For those of you not sure of what you missed, take a look at the original post for the Crime Fiction – Making it Real workshop.