Readers of crime fiction are voracious. Too much is never enough.
For this reason, despite the recession, novels involving blood and guts and murders and detection are still selling decidedly well.
Crime readers are also hugely loyal. Once you launch a character, or a series or a brand that they like, they stick with you.
But the best thing about crime readers is that they love to get involved. Not for them the simple consumption of fiction. No chance, they want to get up close and personal with the very people who write the stuff. They love book signings, and author talks and interviews and they make the best audiences, lively with laughter and rippling with probing questions. I don't think I've ever done an event that ran to time. They just want to know ...well...everything.
So you can imagine how much I'm looking forward to this weekend's festival of crime writing in Harrogate. It's gonna be a blast.
For one thing there are some very big names in attendance: David Baldacci, Lee Child and the most successful of all British female crime writers (no not me) Martina Cole to name but a few.
And amongst all this star studded entertainment, I will be in the throngs, asking questions and thrusting my favourite books under the noses of my favourite auhtors for a scribbled signature.
And on Saturday 23rd at 2pm, I'll be speaking myself, taking part in a panel called Legal Eagles, which will find me alongside three other lawyers, MR Hall, Francis Fyfield and Martin Edwards who use their legal experience to pen court room dramas. It's stellar company and I'm delighted to be asked (and bricking it naturally).
Later that night I'm hosting a table at the black tie supper. I hope that my guests aren't expecting a figure of literary weight. I tend to laugh very loudly, swear far too much and neck wine like I'm at the last supper...
So if you live near by, or don't mind the journey to a gorgeous little town, why not pop in? I promise you it will be well worth it.