Mystery author Rosie Claverton is here today as part of a virtual book tour with Goddess Fish Promotions. She’s touring her new novel Binary Witness.
Rosie will be awarding to randomly drawn winners during the tour one of the following items: a "@" pendant, an engraved Floppy Disk Keyring, a Cardiff City Typographic Mug, a £10 Amazon voucher, and 3 Binary Witness e-books. To be entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To be entered for more chances to win, feel free to visit other tour stops and enter there, too.
Rosie Claverton grew up in Devon, daughter to a Sri Lankan father and a Norfolk mother, surrounded by folk mythology and surly sheep. She moved to Cardiff to study Medicine and adopted Wales as her home. Her short film "Dragon Chasers" aired on BBC Wales in Autumn 2012. Binary Witness is her debut novel from Carina Press. Currently exiled to London, she lives with her journalist husband and their pet hedgehog.
Welcome, Rosie. Please tell us about your current release.
Binary Witness is about agoraphobic hacker Amy Lane and her reluctant cleaner ex-con Jason Carr hunting down a serial killer in Cardiff. It is the first book in The Amy Lane Mysteries.
What inspired you to write this book?
I was keen to turn my hand to crime fiction, as it's one of my favourite dramas, and I love crime-fighting partners. When thinking of unlikely double acts, I struck upon the idea of a gifted hacker who is unable to leave her apartment relying on a streetwise partially-reformed criminal to gather evidence for a police investigation. And what better first case than serial murder? I also wanted to set a book in Cardiff, because I love Wales and I wanted my work to reflect that passion.
(Amy hacks the forum)
Bryn flipped open his notebook over his fingers, worn wedding ring outside the shield of soft black leather. His ex-wife must be speaking to him this week. He read out the web address as she typed, and it loaded in seconds.
“Band fan forum. Nu metal.” Generic BB template, basic customisation—poor effort. She could’ve knocked together a better site in fifteen minutes.
She could feel Jason leaning over her shoulder and tried to control her urge to tense, to move. He was a big guy, intimidating, a skinhead with old-fashioned tattoos wound around both his arms. But he could’ve been any guy, really. It didn’t take much to spook her.
Out of the corner of her eye, she watched him scan the text, tongue slightly protruding from between pink lips. He scratched absently at a smattering of light brown stubble on his chin—he was probably one of those guys who had a five o’clock shadow at midday. His dark brown eyes flickered across the screen faster than she expected. The educational attainment of the prison population wasn’t exactly renowned.
“Crash and Yearn? They’re more punk pop.”
Bryn looked at him with amusement. “This is what you bring to the table, boy?”
Jason scowled at him. Amy felt like the referee on some bizarre American wrestling show.
“The original post is down,” Amy said, scanning the forum. “Not the ‘dead naked girl’ types. I’ll find the archive—you got that before it went dark?”
Her simple yet thorough methodology for profiling and password trawling involved a lot of social networks and a bit of hacker’s intuition. The old science fiction trope of advanced technology seeming very like magic unfolded before her audience.
What exciting story are you working on next?
I've just finished editing the second book in the series, Code Runner. Jason is framed for murder and Amy must work to prove his innocence. But when Jason is broken out of a prison van, the guards murdered, he goes on the run from the police, the gangs, and the criminal mastermind who orchestrated his downfall.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I've always written stories - from nursery school, my supposed "news" was full of crocodiles on the beach and burning buildings. But I've been working on my professional writing career for about eight years now. I started out in novels, gave them up as useless, concentrated on my screenwriting efforts, and then drifted back to novels. I'm a bit of a writing gadfly!
Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
I have a full-time day job as a psychiatrist, so I work a 9-5 with some evenings, weekends and night shifts for variety. I have to be very disciplined with my remaining free time, trying to write a little every day. I have to make the most of my train commutes and the hour or two in the evening before my husband gets home. My family will always come first, and it can be a difficult balance when I'm on a deadline.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
Folks suffer a lot in my work. I love a bit of rough and tumble, particularly if it results in stitches and plaster casts, and I had to keep a record of all Jason's injuries throughout the novel to ensure the continuity! It's nice to patch them up later with some TLC and a cup of tea.
As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I consistently wanted to be a doctor from a young age, with a brief phase in my teenage years when I wanted to be an anthropologist or linguist (for which I blame Daniel Jackson from Stargate SG-1). Writing for a living always seemed like a dream too distant to consider but having two careers was never something I anticipated!
Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
One of my most valued causes is the accurate and sensitive portrayal of people with mental health problems. By writing a character with agoraphobia and depression who is also a complex human being with strengths and weaknesses, I hope to shed some light on these debilitating diseases - and combat the stigma of having a mental health problem.