#GuestPost by CS Duffy, author of the Dark of Night series @csduffywriter #CrimeFiction
I’d like to welcome Claire Duffy to Short Book and Scribes today with a guest post all about Ted Bundy! As CS Duffy, Claire is the author of the Dark of Night series, part three of which will be published on 24th May.
Ruari is on his way to confess his love for best friend Lorna when he discovers that she has gone missing.
Lorna was writing a blog about an infamous Scottish serial killer Stuart Henderson who is currently on death row in Texas. When Lorna’s body is discovered in the Campsies, Ruari sets out to retrace her last steps in the hopes of finding her killer – but somebody has beaten him to it.
Forensic psychologist Amy Kerr has been watching Alec McAvoy for months, certain that he is the so-called Dancing Girls Killer who evaded capture in London five years previously. Now he has struck in Glasgow, she is determined to close the net around him – until Ruari gets in her way.
Dark of Night is a fast paced, twisty thriller heavily laced with black Glasgow humour in which no one is quite who they seem and guilty is in the eye of the beholder.
Authors are often asked where we get our ideas from, and all too often the answer is “I wish I knew!” For once, in the case of my Glasgow thriller Dark of Night, I know exactly where it came from..
Many years ago, I found myself working on an oil refinery in Ohio in the States (long story, would fill another post…) and I got to be friendly with the one other woman who worked there (if you’ve ever wanted to feel like a supermodel, just be one of two women working at an oil refinery with 698 Midwestern men…). One night, she and I went for a drink and she told me a story that very possibly changed my life.
It happened to her aunt, in the early seventies. The aunt was the middle of five sisters, and, unmarried in her late twenties, was worried that she had been left on the shelf. She was working in a launderette just outside of Seattle, in Washington State, and one day the most dreamy guy came in and chatted her up. Drop dead handsome, charming, clearly well to do – she couldn’t believe her luck. So much so that she turned him down the first few times – but he persisted.
After a few weeks, she finally agreed to a date and he took her to dinner at a fancy restaurant just outside the city. He was the perfect date – attentive, funny, apparently completely taken with her. She felt like Cinderella finally at the ball — and thought that surely this Prince Charming was her reward for having spent so many years as the perpetual bridesmaid.
However. After dinner, he drove her home, and she was halfway through imagining her way through their entire wedding when she was suddenly hit with the most violent bout of food poisoning she had ever experienced. He barely managed to pull the car over before she pretty much fell out the passenger seat and violently threw up at the side of the road. Utterly mortified, she slunk back into the car afterwards and wasn’t shocked when there was no mention of a second date a few minutes later when he dropped her off.
And so she did what – admit it, now! – we all do in such situations. She blamed herself for blowing it. She waited in hope for him to come into the launderette again. She gathered her girlfriends for top level strategising sessions for ways to engineer a second chance. She found increasingly tenuous reasons to visit the area of the city where he told her his offices were. She cursed the dodgy scallops that had ruined her chance at happy ever after.
Luckily, she happened to meet her husband just a few weeks later, and that was that.
Until around ten years later.
She was home one evening, watching the news, when there he was.
He had been arrested.
For the murders of 30 women.
It was Ted Bundy.
Far from ruining her life, those dodgy scallops saved her from a fate, quite literally, worse than death.
To this day I can remember the tingles I felt when I heard the story. The drama of the close call. The fascination of how she had spent an entire evening in his company and still hoped he would call. The horror of her hoping to run into him for a second chance – while he was most likely murdering other women.
I knew I had found my first novel.
Ooh-er. What a lucky escape! Thanks so much for such an interesting guest post, Claire.
C.S. Duffy writes psychological suspense thrillers with a healthy dose of black humour. Her background is in film and TV. She has several projects in development in Sweden and the UK, and her thriller feature Guilty will be shot summer 2018 in Canada. She is the author of Life is Swede, a thriller that was originally written as a blog – leading several readers to contact Swedish news agencies asking them why they hadn’t reported the murder that features in the blog. Dark of Night is her first novel.
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