Scottish crime writer Val McDermid is a leading light of “tartan noir”, though she spent many years living in England and one of her best known characters – the kick-boxing private investigator Kate Brannigan – is from Manchester.
Asked what she meant by tartan noir, the Fife-born, Edinburgh based writer has described it as a tradition started by William McIlvanney’s 1977 novel Laidlaw: “[It] encompasses a wide range of work, from apparent rural douceness to raw urban savagery. But it seems to me that all of us who write from that Scottish sensibility have common underpinnings that draw us together and distinguish us from our English, Welsh and Irish colleagues.”
She is joining us to answer your questions in a live webchat at 1pm on Wednesday 25 March. Post your questions in the comments below about anything in her life or career, and she’ll try and answer as many as possible.
Harrogate International Crime Writing Festival are running a competition…
Award-winning crime writer Val McDermid is a Number One bestseller, translated into more than 30 languages, with over two million copies sold in the UK and over 11 million worldwide. She has written 27 bestselling crime novels and has also published a retelling of Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey and an exploration of forensic science, Forensics: An Anatomy of Crime. Val will be in coversation with the brilliant Sara Paretsky. We can’t wait to see this perfect pairing on stage together!
To celebrate Val’s appearance at this year’s festival we have a fantastic competition running. To be in with the chance of winning an signed advance paperback copy of Val’s The Skeleton Road answer this question:
Phyllis had a deft way with the horrific, creating images that seared their way into the reader’s brain. This week, we lost a legend.
Just before her 90th birthday, PD James invited me to take part in an event she was organising at the Bodleian library in Oxford. At dinner afterwards, she admitted she was writing, but not an Adam Dalgliesh novel. I asked her why not. “Because I don’t want to die in the middle and have one of you lot finish it,” she said, a wicked twinkle in her eye.
Wicked twinkle … PD James. Photograph: Linda Nylind for the Guardian
An Evening with Queen of Crime, part of Books on the Tyne festival
Sunday 30th November 2014
6pm – 7.30pm
Newcastle City Library (Bewick Hall)
33 New Bridge Street West
Newcastle upon Tyne
£10.00 / £8.00
An Evening with Queen of Crime, 30 November 2014
Award-winning crime writer Val McDermid in conversation with Gail-Nina Anderson rounds off Books on Tyne ‘On the Edge’. Psychological thrills don’t get more thrilling than in Val’s world so hold onto the edge of your seats tonight at our grand finale!
Café at city library will be open for the purchase of drinks.