John is one of the new Libraries Champions based in England, Scotland and Wales, appointed by The Crime Writers’ Association in Summer 2018.

The trio take over from Ruth Dudley Edwards, the CWA’s very first Libraries Champion. The new champions are John and fellow crime writers Priscilla Masters and Jan Newton.

Cilla lives in Staffordshire and writes about DI Joanna Piercey and coroner Martha Gunn. John, who lives in Dumfries and Galloway, is the creator of the DCI John Blizzard and DCI Jack Harris series. Jan Newton, like her character DS Julie Kite, is based in Mid-Wales.

Key elements of the Libraries Champion role include linking libraries who want crime writers as speakers with the CWA’s local chapter convenors; encouraging libraries to spread the word about the Crime Readers’ Association; supporting libraries under threat via social media where appropriate, while remaining apolitical; seeking further ways to build closer links for the good of libraries and CWA members and including independent libraries in our efforts wherever appropriate.

Martin Edwards, Chair of the CWA, says: “Creating the role of Libraries Champion was an important and practical signal of our commitment to and support for libraries. Ruth has done sterling work in building closer relations between libraries and CWA members nationwide, and we’re now moving into an exciting new phase of the programme, as Cilla, John and Jan seek to build on those firm foundations.”

John can be contacted on 07889 554931 or at deangriss@btinternet.com

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I am editing the first draft of a new Jack Harris novel at the moment and my big preoccupation is pace.Learning how to write a narrative with the right pace is one of the most crucial writing skills. Get it wrong and you are jeopardising your chances of success. Get it right and you are onto something.In this case, there are some sections where characters are repeating what others have already said in other passages.Deleting some lines has removed such sections, eradicated the slowing of pace…See More
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