A Murder-Free Christmas is set in December 1992 shortly after the conclusion of Best Served Cold. It was originally intended to be a kindle short but I realised that a book with Christmas in the title was unlikely to sell other times of the year so I cancelled it, forfeiting my right to use Kindle pre-order for a year, but I’m not too upset about this. I introduced a scenario at the beginning involving DS Thomas Fox’s past, which will have a bearing on the main novel story arc. I also realised that producing a paperback version would be counter-productive cost-wise and being an NHS office cleaner I hardly have an abundance of spare cash. I sell very few paperback editions of my books, but I like to produce paperbacks as my grandma likes my books and she hasn’t got a computer or a Kindle.
I had one DI Lyle Christmas story, Wishing on a Star, which I published on my blog for Christmas 2013 so I meant to include this one along with A Murder-Free Christmas.
Then I got the idea for Prescription for Murder and decided to participate in National Novel Writing Month (Nanowrimo to the initiated). I completed on Day 15 with around 53,000 words. That novella took a lot of research into pharmaceutical and prescription drugs related matters, but I learnt a lot. As well as a murder investigation I also explored the emotional dynamics of the relationship between DS Fox and his boyfriend, James Lyle, in light of the encounter Thomas has in A Murder-Free Christmas and the revelation it forces him to make.
The final story, The Dare, features James Lyle at just sixteen, on a school trip. This story has a coming of age dimension as well as a supernatural flavour and was initially published in the Shadows & Light anthology, collected and edited by my good friend, Andrew Scorah to benefit the work of Women’s Aid and to highlight the issue of Domestic violence.
The title A Winter Murderland was not my idea. I asked my friend, John Holt, to design a cover for me and I had suggested the Winter novellas, but what he came up with was even better so I went with it.
However please note that despite the winter flavour these stories can be enjoyed any time of year and The Dare is actually set in the summer of 1987.
Please feel free to check out the book for yourself. Until 10th February 2015 ALL DI Lyle Kindle books are priced at 99p/99cents on Amazon.