Friday, 11 August 2017

Win a signed book by me and a doodle by Ava

Competition time again.

This time, you can be in with a chance of winning a signed copy of the third Carter Blake book The Time to Kill (aka Winterlong). You'll also get some nice chocolate and an inspirational doodle that my more-famous-than-I'll-ever-be daughter Ava has kindly contributed.


To enter, all you have to do is make sure you're signed up to my Readers Club by midnight UK time on Friday 25th August. The lucky winner will be randomly picked from the whole list (so if you're already a member, you're automatically entered) and contacted by email.

Go here to sign up!

I'll happily dedicate the book if you desire, and post it with the other goodies to wherever you are. It's open to anyone, anywhere in the world. Good luck!


Friday, 4 August 2017

Top five writing tips

I'm appearing at the excellent Bute Noir lit fest this weekend - come and say hello if you're on the island!

In the meantime, here's a summer repeats. A while ago the excellent tartan noir author Michael J. Malone asked me to contribute my top 5 tips on being a writer to his blog. Head over there to check out some of the other great advice, and see below for what I said:



1. There’s no secret formula

The best preparation for being a writer is to read a lot and write a lot. Everyone says this, but that’s because it’s true. Like all writers, I started out as a reader. I always enjoyed creative writing at school, but reading widely helps you to work out what sort of stories you want to tell.  The other biggie is to take it seriously. If you want to write for a living, you have to treat it like a real job and show up for work, even on the days you don’t particularly feel like it.

2. You need a system, but everyone has a different one

I used to work in fits and burst, writing loads one day and then not doing anything for weeks at a time while I pondered all of the wonderful books I wasn’t writing. I had been told that a serious writer needs to write 1,000 or 2,000 words a day, and that seemed like an impossible task to fit in amongst all of the other responsibilities and distractions of everyday life.

My breakthrough came when one of my friends suggested just writing 500 words a day. That let me focus on a manageable goal, but at the same time, the words started to build up fast: 500 words a day, six days a week is 3,000 words. In four weeks you have 12,000 words. In six months, you have a first draft of a novel.

Everyone’s different when it comes to laying the groundwork. You don’t necessarily need to painstakingly craft your 3 act structure or write detailed biographies of every major and minor character. Stephen King doesn’t plot at all. James Ellroy constructs elaborate 300-page plot outlines.

They both write great books. Me? I try to plot in advance as far as possible, knowing that I’ll improvise a lot on the journey.

3. You need to put yourself out there

If you want to maximise your chances of somebody publishing your work, you need to let people know about it. Submit stories to magazines and competitions. Blog and tweet. Go to literary festivals and chat to authors and publishers in the bar. Do everything you can, because you never know what’s going to help.

The breakthrough for me was one of the things that took the least effort: I posted a few of my short stories on the HarperCollins Authonomy website (now sadly departed), and against the odds, it resulted in a contact from the agent who now represents me.

Even now I’m published, I think it’s important to make sure I’m as visible as possible, which means doing festivals, library events, guest blogs, interviews and basically never saying no to anything that gives me an opportunity to reach new readers.

4. You can learn from every writer

I’ve been inspired and motivated by so many writers. Not just crime writers, either: SF, historical, graphic novels, literary, horror, non-fiction. Listen to established writers and work out how their suggestions chime with your own methods and experience.

And you don’t just learn from the nuggets of actual writing advice like…

Try to leave out the part that readers tend to skip.” (Elmore Leonard)

Whatever it takes to finish things, finish. You will learn more from a glorious failure than you ever will from something you never finished.” (Neil Gaiman)

Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.” (Stephen King)

…but you learn just as much by reading authors in the genre you aspire to work in and beyond. If you read enough, you’ll start to notice things you can learn from, like a clever plot twist, or the way dialogue can do the heavy-lifting on character development, or a really amazing opening line.

And you can also learn from not-so-good books, from the flat-out terrible, to the ones that almost work but don’t quite. You start to see the pitfalls to avoid. And even if you think a book just plain sucks, you can still learn from it by working out what made it suck, and then not doing that.

One of the best pieces of advice I got came from comic book writer Mark Millar. At one of his events he spoke about knowing a lot of people who said they were writing a novel or a screenplay, but what they were actually doing was sitting around in coffee shops with a laptop talking about writing a novel or a screenplay. It reminded me of the sign Harry Bosch keeps on his desk: Get off your ass and knock on doors. The writer’s memo should be the opposite: Sit your ass down and write some words, something like that.

5. It’s the best job in the world

The most pleasant surprise is that my dream job really doesn’t disappoint. You have to love writing, of course, because there’s a lot of that to do. But all of the other stuff is so much fun too: events, signings, working with publishers on making the book better than you thought it could be, seeing early proofs of the cover, walking into an bookshop or library and seeing a real-live book with actual words you made up inside it.

I’ve done a lot of different jobs: some which I’ve enjoyed, some I’ve hated. All in all, I would have to say being a writer is substantially more fun than real life.



Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Not the Booker Prize 2017



Don't Look For Me is on the (extremely long) longlist for the Guardian's Not the Booker Prize 2017. If you'd like to make me very happy by casting a vote for me, here's how:


***


All you have to do is cast your vote in the comments below the article.

You need to choose two books from the longlist, from two different publishers, and accompany those choices with a short review of at least one of your chosen books. It would also be very helpful if you could include the word “vote”.

Here is a template for submitting your vote for the Not the Booker shortlist. Using this template will ensure your vote is properly structured and won't be discarded!



[yourusername] - Vote # 1 - [Book title only]*
[yourusername] - Vote # 2 - [Book title only]*


[A review of one of the two books. We're looking for something like 100 words, give or take, but we're very generous regarding the word count. Only one review is required, but we'd love to hear your thoughts on the second book too.]

[Anything else you want to tell us, including a review of your second book. We'll read it all, I promise.]

The review should be something above 100 words long, although as our happy and glorious terms and conditions state, we don’t promise a perfect count. Please just make it look like you care.
It’s that easy. So let’s get voting. You’ve got just over a week. The deadline is 23.59 BST on Monday 7 August 2017.


***

Always nice to be on a list, and I believe this is my first mention in the Guardian, which is nice.

If you're looking for another choice for your second vote, June Taylor's Losing Juliet, Jay Stringer's How to Kill Friends and Implicate People and Derek Farrell's Death of a Devil are also very good shouts, but there's loads of good stuff on this list, which is kind of the point, I suppose.




Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Fringe elements

Quite naturally for me, I'm appearing on the fringe of things a couple of times over the next few weeks.

First up, I'm excited to be part of the special Two Crime Writers and a Microphone podcast recording at the Harrogate festival this Friday:



Steve Cavanagh and Luca Veste play 'Two Truths and a Lie' with top crime writers A.K. Benedict, Elle Croft, Mason Cross, Julie Cohen and Isabel Ashdown for their popular podcast Two Crime Writers and a Microphone.

Watch live from The Incident Room studio!

Click here to book tickets [SOLD OUT]


...and in August I'll be appearing as part of Blackwells Bookshop's Writers at the Fringe event running alongside the Edinburgh festival:



Now in its tenth year, Blackwell's Writers at the Fringe brings you once again the best in Scottish writing.  Every Thursday during the Festival we invite a selection of Scottish performers to give us a taste of their work.

New and unpublished works of literary art stands alongside established novelists, from folk music to contemporary fiction and all that is found in between.

Thursday 24th August
Sara Sheridan
Peter Ross
Natalie Fergie
Daniel Shand
Mason Cross


The event is free, click here to book your ticket

For more information or if you would like a signed copy of any of the books because you can't make it to the event, please contact Ann Landmann on 0131 622 8222 or ann.landmann@blackwell.co.uk

Check out my events page to see where else I'm going to be, including Bute Noir, Oban and Bloody Scotland.

Hope to see you over the summer...

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Presumed Dead - cover


Book five has a title and a very sexy cover. I think this is my favourite UK cover yet - it's really different to the previous ones, but does a brilliant job of selling the story.

See below for a taster of what the new book is about. Presumed Dead will be published in the UK on 19 April 2018, and you can preorder the trade paperback here (I'll post links to ebook, audio when they become available):



THEN

Fifteen years ago, an unidentified killer terrorised northern Georgia, killing hikers with two shots from a pistol, before disposing of the bodies along the remote trails and in the rivers in the vicinity of Devil Mountain.

The killer was never brought to justice.

NOW

Carter Blake has returned home for the first time in many years. The visit stirs old memories, including a girl from school who vanished without a trace.

Blake runs into the mother of the girl, who mentions a case she's come across in Georgia, where someone is convinced their relative is still alive, fifteen years on.

Adeline Connor was the Devil Mountain Killer's last suspected victim. She vanished without a trace.

So why is her brother so convinced she's still alive?

Thursday, 6 July 2017

On Cussin'

Summer rerun time!

Here's a piece I wrote earlier this year for the excellent Shots blog on my take on the use of 'adult language' in fiction.

As you might expect, the following contains naughty words, so if that's not your thing, probably best to skip this one.

***




"I'd like to thank you for avoiding foul language in your books."

I've done a lot of library talks, but this was the first time I'd been lost for words. I was pleased the lady in the front row was happy, but I was a little bemused, too. I'm not the kind of writer who peppers every line of dialogue with cuss-words, but I don't shy away from them either. A moment of panic gripped me. Did my publishers sneakily purge my books of profanity before printing them?

When I got back home I leafed through The Samaritan, the book she was talking about. Nope, the four-letter words were all there, present and gloriously incorrect. Intrigued, I went back to the Word file containing the final copy edit of the book. I put the word "fuck" into the search box. 35 instances. How did the lady in the library somehow miss 35 fucks? The only explanation I could think of was that my use of F-bombs is so surgically effective that nice old ladies don't even notice them. That, or she read a completely different book and got me mixed up with another author.

The episode got me thinking about swearing. It's well known in the crime writing world that you can jot down grisly murders and torture scenes to your heart's content and no one bats an eyelid, but if you use a bad word, it's a major turnoff to certain readers. I once sat in the audience at a hilarious event with Chris Brookmyre and Mark Billingham where they read out some of their one-star Amazon reviews. Hands down, the thing that will get you a bad customer review quickest is too much swearing.

It seems to be a particularly big turnoff for the American market, along with blasphemy. I've often thought this is odd, since I learned to swear mostly from American movies. It's a genuine phenomenon though, to the point that some of the biggest names such as Lee Child and Harlan Coben avoid swearing almost completely. Jack Reacher has a bodycount that's easily into triple figures, but he has yet to use the F-word after 21 books.

Having established that there were 35 fucks in The Samaritan, I decided to check the rest of my back catalogue. It turned out that was the high-water mark. The Killing Season, my debut novel, has 29 fucks. The Time to Kill (Winterlong in the US) is down to just 24 fucks. My latest book Don't Look For Me has a minuscule 13 fucks, and for the first time none of them is a motherfucker.

Golly gosh, I thought. Or words to that effect.

The stats showed I was cursing less with every book. Was this an inexorable trend? Would there soon come a day when I would literally not give a fuck?

I wondered about the reasons for this. Perhaps I'm subconsciously toning myself down in hopes of appealing to a broader market. Or perhaps the fuck-count is related to the type of story I'm telling. The Killing Season and The Samaritan both feature law enforcement officers as major characters, which probably leads to an increase in salty language.

I asked some of the writers I know for their views. Steve Cavanagh, who swears like a sailor in real life, has a fuck count of precisely zero across three Eddie Flynn books. J.S. Law, who actually is a sailor, was asked to tone down some of the naval language in his submarine thriller The Dark Beneath. Some writers are okay with avoiding the swears, some take glee in turning the pages blue.

The bloggers and readers I asked were mostly sanguine - the majority were fine with swearing as long as it's not so frequent or gratuitous that it gets distracting. Even when asking seasoned crime fiction readers though, one or two admitted that they really don't like swearing. One even said that she stops reading if she sees bad language.

I thought more about how I use swearing. As I said, I don't go out of my way to include it in dialogue, but when a character wants to curse, I go ahead and let them. I think I could probably write a book with no swearing if I had a gun to my head, but I know there would be a line or three that just wouldn't ring true. No muscle-headed, tattooed thug in a dive bar ever told anyone to "screw off". One character gossiping to another about her "bang buddy" just sounds wrong, because "bang buddy" isn't a thing people say.

I don't think there's a right or wrong answer to this. Personally, I like a thriller to include so-called 'bad' language, but it doesn't offend me if a writer leaves it out, as long as it's done tastefully. I very rarely notice the absence of F-bombs in a Reacher novel, for example. On the other hand, I relish reading a literary outburst of profanities wielded by a master like James Ellroy.

In the end, it's up to the individual writer. If you like your characters to swear, go for it. If it's not your bag, feel free to leave those tools in the box. But personally, I'm sure as heckfire going to keep cussing when the situation calls for it.

I like to think the fact that my language didn’t bother the nice lady in the library means I’m getting the balance right.

Monday, 3 July 2017

Don't Look For Me - American cover and release date


Tada!

My US publisher Pegasus has once again delivered the goods - I love this.

Don't Look For Me will be published in the States in hardcover and ebook on January 2nd, 2018.

If you'd like to preorder, it looks like you can only do so at Amazon for the moment, but I'll link to B&N and Indiebound as soon as it shows up there.

Preorder the hardcover edition

Preorder the Kindle edition


Watch this space for a UK cover reveal of the 5th book, very soon...

Monday, 12 June 2017

Bute Noir and Bloody Scotland



I'm going to be appearing at a couple of festivals later this summer; one old, one new and I can't wait.

First up, Bute Noir, now in its second year, and running 4th - 6th August. I'll be appearing on two panels: Americana with Steve Cavanagh and SJI Holliday, and State of Emergency with Steph Broadbribb. Apart from that, I'll be hanging around all weekend and checking out some of the other great events with Alex Gray, Denise Mina, Craig Robertson, Luca Veste, Caro Ramsay and many more.

The lineup is excellent and ticket prices are a steal - check out the Bute Noir website for more.

After a signing at Waterstones Oban on Saturday 19 August, I'm delighted to be appearing at Bloody Scotland for my fourth year running, this time with US bestseller Chris Carter. Our panel is called From Tinseltown to Sin City, it's on Saturday 9 September, and you can book tickets here.

As always, Bloody Scotland has a fantastic lineup including Ian Rankin, Simon Kernick, Lynda LaPlante, Val McDermid and Denise Mina, so if you're thinking about going, you definitely shouldn't hesitate - download the full brochure here.

I'll also be at Harrogate in July, details to follow of what should be a very fun event on Friday, and will add be adding new events to my website as they're confirmed/

See you on the road!

Thursday, 1 June 2017

After the storm...

So it all began when I attended parents night last week.

While you're waiting to speak to the teacher, the school encourages you to look through your kid's folder to see their work over the past year. While browsing through my older daughter Ava's portfolio, I found an amusing example of feedback about the school that was entirely typical of Ava. I took a picture, tweeted it the next morning, and then things went a little nuts.



I thought I would blog about it, because it's been one of the weirdest things I've been involved in, having something your daughter wrote becoming a brief internet sensation.

I sent the tweet before heading into a meeting, thinking fellow parents would find it amusing. During the meeting, my phone was buzzing regularly, so I put it on silent. I'd forgotten that I had turned off all notifications except new followers, so that wasn't even the retweets.

When I got out, it had been retweeted over 3,000 times. Considering my previous most popular tweet probably got 60 RTs, this was a little surprising. My wife had texted saying journalists wanted to get in touch. I tried to find some of them in the replies and got lost. The Glasgow Evening Times did a story on it, then the Huffington Post and the Independent. I decided to cap it off by buying Ava some ice cream and tweeting a pic, thinking it would die down now the story had a beginning, middle and end. It didn't stop. By the evening, she had made Teen Vogue.

The next day it got even wilder. The Daily Mail and the BBC wanted to talk to me. The Sun and the Mirror and TES ran stories on it. Ava's note got a mention in Time. I was interviewed by the New York Daily News. Patricia Arquette and George Takei weighed in. We were offered a slot on Australian breakfast TV (unfortunately it clashed with going to see KISS, sorry). For a while it was the number one most read story on the BBC website.



By midnight Friday, it had been retweeted over a hundred thousand times, and liked by over half a million people. Most of the reaction was great, but as you'd expect from something seen by millions of people, there was a little negative stuff too.

A surprising number of people were utterly outraged that I would even consider grounding a bright young girl for speaking her mind. I had thought that the words 'ice cream' appearing in a musing about punishment would signal that I wasn't entirely displeased, but I would probably have given it more thought if I'd known hundreds of thousands of people were going to be reading it. Then there were the Truthers, who posited that I had invented the whole thing to get RTs. One hilarious pundit went so far as to carry out amateur graphology to highlight small inconsistencies in Ava's handwriting, which proved... I don't know... that there was a second eleven-year-old on the grassy knoll? Or maybe just that she sharpened her pencil.

As someone else pointed out, it was interesting that almost everyone doubting the note's veracity was a male of a certain age. I think that's telling. It's the same unlovely part of the male psyche that spawns Birthers and 9/11 Truthers and Moon Landing Deniers: the need to be the one to see through the big illusion, to be more clued-in than the sheeple. Some of them seemed really angry at the suggestion an eleven-year-old girl could be smart, articulate and funny all by herself.

But the overwhelming majority of the replies were very positive. Most people ordered me to buy her ice cream, and maybe a car, and definitely enroll her for law school. Depending on their location, people suggested she run for UK prime minister, or president of the United States, or secretary general of the UN.

It was hard to keep up, since the notifications, to put it mildly, were a little more frequent than I'm used to.



So why did it blow up so big?

I think a big reason is that it struck a universal chord. Whoever you are, wherever you live, it's likely that at some point in your educational career, you were punished as part of a group for something you didn't do. It's also funny that a young girl was so outraged she went and looked up human rights law and applied it to her complaint.

It helps that anyone who has, or knows, or can remember being, a smart eleven-year-old can identify with this. I was like this at that age, bashing out polemics on the injustice of having to wear school uniform, or not being allowed to see Terminator 2 in the cinema, and I didn't have access to Google.

But mainly, Ava had a solid point, albeit expressed in an amusingly over-the-top way. The Twitter storm prompted a really good academic piece on collective punishment in school by international childrens' rights expert Professor Laura Lundy, which is worth a read.

Ava's teacher, to his immense credit, was very amused by her feedback, and the way it's gone viral. Ava herself was kind of bemused by the reaction. Excited at first, mildly disappointed when I broke it to her that internet fame doesn't bring riches, and now she's pretty much over it. But she says it was worth it for the ice cream.





Wednesday, 17 May 2017

The Killing Season - 99p UK Kindle deal


Just a quick update to say that the first Carter Blake novel, The Killing Season has been selected for the Start a Great Series 99p promotion on Amazon in the UK, so if you don't have it yet, now's the time to remedy that situation!

Lee Child said it was "My kind of book", Lisa Gardner warns "Prepare to read all night", and even a certain former President of the United States said it "looks terrific". Still don't know if he got around to reading it.

Get it on Kindle here for 99p


As usual, the deal is being price matched at the other ebook retailers, so you can also get The Killing Season is 99p on your preferred platform:

iBooks

If you want me to let you know when there's a deal like this, or just get occasional updates when something happens, sign up for my Readers Club and you'll get a heads up. 

Happy reading!

Saturday, 13 May 2017

Don't Look For Me launch, and some reviews


Belatedly posting some pics from the Don't Look For Me launch evening at Waterstones.

It was a really good night, with a great turnout even though there was competition elsewhere in town from Stuart MacBride and Chris Brookmyre. Neil Broadfoot did a fantastic job on the questions.

The new book has picked up some nice reviews so far:

"Another gripping release from Mason Cross in what was already an excellent series."

- Keith Nixon, Crime Fiction Lover

"This fourth Carter Blake book is a well-plotted and tension-filled tale, delivering more twists and turns than the Hampton Court maze and is packed with memorably drawn characters"


"If you're a thriller fan who packs a summer blockbuster as a holiday read then don't leave home without this."

- Peterborough Telegraph

"Mason Cross has succeeded yet again in delivering that pace and drive and character and story all in one neat package that sweeps you up and carries you along for the duration, never allowing you back down until you are sated by the ending and wishing you could go back and start all over again. A five star read."


Next up... Crimefest, where I'm looking forward to appearing on a couple of panels and particularly doing a drinks reception with two of my very favourite Steves: Mosby and Cavanagh.






Wednesday, 3 May 2017

UK Giveway - Don't Look For Me



In the UK? Want to win a signed copy of Don't Look For Me?

Click to register for the Goodreads giveaway on the handy button below!




Goodreads Book Giveaway

Don't Look For Me by Mason Cross

Don't Look For Me

by Mason Cross

Giveaway ends May 06, 2017.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway



Thursday, 27 April 2017

The Time to Kill - UK Kindle deal


Just a quick update to say that The Time to Kill has been selected for the Mayday weekend 99p promotion in the UK, so if you don't have it yet, now's the time to remedy that situation!

Get it on Kindle here for 99p - offer ends Monday.


*edit to say eagle-eyed reader Sue got in touch to report that the deal is being price matched at the other ebook retailers, so you can now buy The Time to Kill for 99p on whatever device you prefer:

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Don't Look For Me - publication day


The fourth Carter Blake book: Don't Look For Me is published today in the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. You can get it in all formats from the usual places - links below for your preferred online book emporium.

The advance reviews have been fantastic, and Simon Kernick says it's "A fast-paced, high octane thriller".

I hope you like it too - if you do, I'd love it if you could take a couple of minutes to leave a review on Amazon or Goodreads.
 
You can also let me know on Twitter or Facebook what you thought of it, and since it's being released at this time of year, you can let me know if you find the hidden Easter egg...


Trade paperback (large format)

ebook

Audio
Audible  




Don't look for me.

It was a simple instruction. And for six long years Carter Blake kept his word and didn't search for the woman he once loved. But now someone else is looking for her.

He'll come for you.

Trenton Gage is a hitman with a talent for finding people - dead or alive. His next job is to track down a woman who's on the run, who is harbouring a secret many will kill for.
Both men are hunting the same person. The question is, who will find her first?

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Giveaway winners

The Goodreads giveaways to win signed copies of The Time to Kill and The Samaritan have closed, and they got a really amazing response.

The winners are Kristen from Staten Island, NY and Marion from Courtenay, British Columbia. Congratulations Kristen and Marion, and thanks to everyone who entered.

If you want to find out about future giveaways and exclusives, keep an eye on the blog or sign up to my Readers Club for occasional, non-spammy updates.



Thursday, 13 April 2017

Ett Långt Spår Av Blod (The Killing Season - Sweden)




I love seeing translated versions of my books and this Swedish edition of The Killing Season (or A Long Trail of Blood) from Modernista is a particularly beautiful hardback edition.

If you're in Sweden, you can pick up a copy when it's published on 22 April.

Trevlig läsning! 







Saturday, 8 April 2017

Book giveaway time


There are a pair of Goodreads giveaways running at the moment to win signed UK paperbacks of The Time to Kill (aka Winterlong in America) and (The Samaritan).

These giveaways are open worldwide, and it only takes a second to register to win by clicking on the handy links below, so what's stopping you?



Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Time to Kill by Mason Cross

The Time to Kill

by Mason Cross

Giveaway ends April 16, 2017.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway




Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Samaritan by Mason Cross

The Samaritan

by Mason Cross

Giveaway ends April 16, 2017.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway

For more news, competitions and exclusives, you can sign up to my Readers Club with a couple of clicks. No spam, scout's honour.

Thursday, 6 April 2017

Don't Look For Me - trade paperback

One of my favourite things about being an author is getting to see and touch the completed product for the first time. So here in all its orangey glory, is the trade paperback edition of Don't Look For Me.  

The cover people at Orion have done another stellar job on this one, and I'm so pleased to have a brilliant jacket quote from one of my big influences as a thriller author - Simon Kernick.

As it happened, I got my first copy in the post on an unusually beautiful day, so the new arrival got some fresh air and sun. 

If you want one of these babies, you don't have long to wait. It's published on 20 April in the UK, and you can preorder from Amazon, Waterstones and all good bookshops.














Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Aye Write and Ian Rankin and Orkney Library

I haven't updated in a while, mostly because I've been busy writing the fifth Carter Blake book (Five? How did that happen?), but also because I've been busy on lots of other fronts.

For starters, last month I had the pleasure of chairing Ian Rankin at Glasgow's Aye Write festival. Ian is such a natural storyteller that he made my job very easy, and the hour flew by. We covered a lot of ground, from Rebus's recent healthy(ish) lifestyle change, to a French translator deciding that a Wizard of Oz reference meant that Rebus must be a fan of AOR giants Toto and Kansas. Glasgow Royal Concert Hall holds a slightly bigger audience than I'm used to...



But it was a brilliant crowd, and they had some great questions. It was nice to catch up with Steph Broadribb (aka Crime Thriller Girl) and Karen Sullivan of Orenda Books afterwards.

After that, I got to visit a radio station for the first time and Cat Gibson interviewed me about the books live on Camglen Radio - you can listen again here. She even let me pick a record to play halfway through, I went with Dead Flowers by the Stones. I think Rebus would have approved of that over Toto's Africa.

Audio-wise, I also appeared on my favourite podcast - Two Crime Writers and a Microphone. It was great to chat to my fellow authors Steve Cavanagh and Luca Veste, and we discovered Luca's darkest secret -

he's never seen Die Hard.

I know. That's what we said. Don't worry, it's now rectified.

The following week, I was able to sign the northernmost copies of my books so far when I visited the famous Orkney Library to talk to their crime fiction group.

It was a hastily-organised event since I was going to be in Orkney anyway, so I was really impressed with how quickly they were able to pull everything together. I had a great evening chatting to readers, and even had time to sign some copies in the Orcadian Bookshop, and do some sightseeing.






Other stuff...

There's a nice American review of The Samaritan here:

I love that the detective in this story was a woman. It’s so much easier for me to relate to stories where there are strong female leads. Introducing the mysterious Carter Blake was a great touch because I kept trying to figure out whether or not he really was the serial killer. Once I started the book, I honestly could not put it down. When the ending came, it completely shocked me because it wasn’t what I expected at all.


And I'm published in Sweden, in a gorgeous hardback edition from Modernista



The big thing on the horizon is, of course, the publication of Don't Look For Me on 20 April. The official launch is going to be on publication day at Waterstones Argyle Street in Glasgow at 7pm. Ace tartan noir author Neil Broadfoot is going to be chatting to me about the new book, and there will be wine and all the usual launch festivities. If that sounds good and you're going to be in Glasgow on that day, you can register for free tickets here.

If you can't make it to the launch, keep an eye on my events page to see where else I'm going to be in the near future. More to be added soon, but I'll be at East Kilbride Library on 12 April, Cambuslang Library on 25 April, and Crimefest from Friday 19 - Sunday 21 May.

If you can't make it to an event, you can still buy a copy from your chosen outlet right here:




UK pre-order:

Trade paperback (large format)

ebook

Audio



Don’t look for me.

It was a simple instruction. And for six long years Carter Blake kept his word and didn’t search for the woman he once loved. But now someone else is looking for her.

He’ll come for you.

Trenton Gage is a hitman with a talent for finding people – dead or alive. His next job is to track down a woman who’s on the run, who is harbouring a secret many will kill for.

Both men are hunting the same person. The question is, who will find her first?

"Mason Cross is a thriller writer for the future who produces the kind of fast-paced, high octane thrillers that I love to read." - Simon Kernick


Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Don't Look For Me - book launch

It's almost that time of year again...




Book Launch for 

Don't Look For Me

Thursday 20 April, 7pm
Waterstones Argyle Street, Glasgow




Join Deanston Award shortlisted author Neil Broadfoot (Falling Fast, All the Devils) in conversation with Mason Cross for the official launch of his new novel Don't Look For Me, published by Orion Books.

Don't Look For Me sees manhunter Carter Blake on the trail of an old ghost from his past, in an adventure that will take him from the bright lights of Vegas to the Arizona desert.

There will be a reading, a Q&A and a signing. More importantly, there will be free wine. The event is free and all are welcome.

You can register for free tickets at Eventbrite.