In fact, make that a large phew!, a sigh of relief of some resonance.

The reason - the first reviews of The Balance of Guilt have come back.

In my experience, the time between the release of a new book and starting to get feedback on it is one of the most nerve wracking in a humble author's life.  All this effort has gone into plotting, planning, writing, re-writing, and re-writing the thing once more, not to mention the discussions about the cover, the blurb, the marketing, all that stuff, and at last the book is finally out.

Then... all... Read more

Island life

I'm back from my little travels, so prepare to be blogged at once more.

When I do go away, I rarely go far.  Have I mentioned I'm scared witless of flying? I know it's sad, I know it's illogical, I know it's the safest form of transport, I know all that, but fear defies logic, or mine does, anyway. 

I don't like the take off, I can't bear the landing, and the bit in between I don't care for at all.   And the fear has got worse, rather than better as I've grown older, so these days I... Read more

A favourite hobby

I've been doing this for years, but it just gets better and better.  I think that's probably because it helps me so much with writing the tvdetective books.

And before you start to wonder what Hall's going on about now, I'll tell you.  It's the simple pleasure of people watching.

I'm often asked where my ideas for characters come from.  The answer is a range of sources. Some are born of pure imagination, others take parts from people I know, have met, or hear or read about.  But often I find an element to make a character from the delicious... Read more

A beautiful relationship

As a 70's pop song might have it - in the style of Hall - it's a love thing, and it's growing, showing no signs of slowing, just keeps going.

Ok, I'll stick to writing books...

But, the point is this - we go everywhere together.  Rarely do a few minutes pass without me stealing an admiring look at the other half of the partnership.  The subject of my adoration plays it a little cool - as they're wont to do - and just sits there, loftily, probably secure in the knowledge of its own beauty, but I think it... Read more


A question arrives - why did I choose to set the tvdetective series in Devon, and specifically Plymouth?

Like many a good question, it sounds simple but requires a fair chunk of thought and a longer answer.

The first and most straightforward reason is that I'm familiar with the city, after living there for almost ten years.  Some authors like to invent whole towns and countries, even universes, but I think there's plenty to go on in this strange world of ours, so I prefer to stick with what we've got.

It's more than just knowing a place, though. The... Read more

Late guilt

I'm sorry, I'm sorry, even if it's not my fault, I'm sorry.

I have been assailed with emails wanting to know where The Balance of Guilt is (that's literally, not metaphorically).  Amazon is telling you it's not in stock yet, as is whichever bookstore you've ordered it from.

The answer is, I'm told, that there was a problem at the printers.  Some technological, or mechanical issue, apparently - I'm just hoping it wasn't a quality filter going off and an alarm sounding, saying warning, warning!  We cannot possibly inflict this book on the public.

It is frustrating, I know, because... Read more

More Balancing of Guilt

Sounds painful, but is in fact a little update to a previous post, when I was feeling like a child waiting for Xmas Day as I counted down to the publication of The Balance of Guilt.

I've now flipped to feeling more like a new father. The finished book has arrived, and I'm going through the immodest but frankly irresistible "carrying it around with me everywhere" phase.

I'm not sure if other authors suffer this - it's not a question I've yet been sufficiently brave to ask any! - but I just can't help keeping a copy in my bag,... Read more


I tend to think of the summertime as equivalent to a holiday from work - it goes so remarkably quickly, compared with the rest of the days of the year.

However, there is one compensation, which is now upon us. Being the keen and astute observer of the world that I am, I noticed almost immediately that the month has turned to September.

It's my favourite of the year's dozen offerings, and for a range of reasons.  Firstly, it's still relatively warm and the weather can often be clement.  It might be my skewed memory, but I seem to recall... Read more

Dartmoor musings

I was looking for a new walk on Dartmoor yesterday, which started me thinking about the importance of the moor in the tvdetective books.

It was never a conscious decision to make Dartmoor such a feature, it just arrived in the series, which I suspect is because of my attachment to the wonderful wilderness.  I got to know it well during my days covering the environment, and came to see it as the heart of the south west, both geographically and emotionally.  Given that, I suppose it was inevitable the moor had to feature.

So, what does it add?  Well,... Read more