Book Jacket

 

rank 5919
word count 18847
date submitted 02.05.2010
date updated 18.11.2013
genres: Fiction, Thriller, Crime
classification: universal
incomplete

The Van Gogh Scam

Roy Munday

Residents of a care home are facing eviction. Their only chance of salvation - create a Van Gogh masterpiece and sell it in a scam

 

Danny Roberts’ art career is going nowhere.
He’s penniless; his wife has walked out on him and he’s a crap teaching job in the Three Elms care home - whoes owner is quietly murdering the residents to gain their remaining assests to solve her financial problems.
A group of misguided residents, unaware that they are being quietly killed off and led by ex-conman Alfie Edwards, come up with a plan they believe will rescue their home from bankruptcy.
If Danny can fake a long lost Van Gogh painting, it can be used in a sophisticated scam and raise the millions needed to rescue the home. Danny Roberts is horrified at the suggestion, but eventually is persuaded by Alfie, and the scam is set in motion.
Oh, and just one of the problems to overcome. First, they’ve got to steal the original Van Gogh’s famous Sunflowers painting from London’s National Gallery!
This story moves at a pace through both the low and the high end of the international art world where the provenance of a piece of art is everything and where everyone is willing to bend the rules in order to gain either prestige or money.

 
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tags

, adventure, art, art world, comedy, conspiracy, corruption, fiction, money, murder, painting, thriller, van gogh

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chapter 1

CHAPTER ONE

 

London, 2009

                           

 

Our ref: 3E.N/894C                     

                                   

 

22nd February 2009

 

To: Mrs Gloria Mitchell, Manager

The Three Elms Care Home

Elms Road

Putney

London

 

Dear Mrs Mitchell,

 

    Thank you for coming to see me on the 12th to discuss your business account. I found the meeting very useful as it helped to clear up some outstanding issues, particularly those relating to your future business plan. We discussed your failure to keep up with the monthly payments agreed to when we arranged your present loan of £135,000 in December 2007. This was for a period of one year and I agreed to review the arrangement at the end of that period.

I have now completed a thorough review of your account with the bank and have come to the following conclusion. As we both discovered, the business has been operating on a small profit margin for the past eighteen months, often showing a deficit. As agreed in our loan facility of 18th December 2007, any future extension of this loan would be dependent upon the present loan being repaid by 31st December 2008. However this has not happened and, together with interest, the sum of £105,310 is now outstanding.

Though you explained the reasons for not being able to meet these strict conditions, I have nevertheless reviewed your latest business plan and though you say that you expect a growth in income over the next six months, I do not believe that this will constitute sufficient funds to clear this amount. 

The bank is sympathetic in that your business is about caring for the elderly and the vulnerable, and it is not the bank’s wish to take any precipitous action that would distress your residents. However, I must request that the sum of £35,000 be paid into your business account by close of business on 31st March 2009. If this obligation is not met, we will have no alternative but to commence immediate bankruptcy proceedings against you to recover the outstanding loan in full.

 

Yours truly,

 

Derek Blake

Account Manager

 

 

Gloria Mitchell crumpled the letter up into a tight ball, then tossed it into the waste bin by the side of her desk. The contents of the letter seemed to suck the life from her exhausted body. She had just lost another battle in her private war to keep the home solvent and a roof over the heads of the residents. She had dedicated the last fifteen years to the business. Oh yes, it had begun with such promise – she and her husband Gerry had, through sheer hard work and numerous bank loans, made it into a profitable business while providing a home to people in real need. Then, two years ago, with the business starting to fail, Gerry, unknown to her, had struck up a cyber relationship with some young thing he’d met in a chat room on the internet. Looking back now, it amazed her how he had managed to find the time to conduct this ethereal courtship. But it had finally culminated in him walking out to start a new life with her, running an English restaurant in bloody Benidorm of all places, while she was left with a messy divorce, twenty-odd vulnerable people to care for, and a drink problem she refused to accept was a problem.

It was to the bottle of 75% proof vodka she kept in the drawer of her desk she now turned to – her best friend, as she termed it – and poured a generous measure, gulping it down in one go. She checked the time. It was 9:10 a.m. As the vodka burned its way down her throat, it magically replenished her dwindling reserves of energy. She got up from her desk, walked to the small medicine fridge and opened it. She took out two 40 mg ampoules of diamorphine that was supposedly for the purpose of helping residents cope with severe pain, but over recent months she’d been secretly building up a stock for another purpose.

Closing the fridge she then found a new syringe, tore off its packaging and carefully pierced the first ampoule with the needle. Holding it up to the light, she slowly filled the syringe with its deadly contents. She repeated the process with the second ampoule. Then she quietly pocketed the loaded syringe and left her office, locking the door behind her.

As she made her way through the carpeted lounge, nodding to the residents and exchanging bland pleasantries as she went, dressed in her starched white uniform, she was the epitome of a professional care home matron. Aged fifty, hair regularly dyed black to keep away the advancing grey streaks, she had once been an attractive woman. Now her figure was putting on bulges of weight and her face, when cleaned of its daily mask of make-up in the privacy of her bedroom, showed increasing signs of ageing and the effects of a reliance on alcohol.

She walked down the corridor, past fading framed prints, to room 24. After checking that she wasn’t being observed, she gently knocked. Without waiting for an answer, she opened the door and entered the room.

Ninety-two-year-old Mavis Holden was putting the finishing touches to her dressing, ready to hobble to the residents’ lounge to join her friends and watch the morning’s fisticuffs on the Jeremy Kyle television show. Mavis Holden had lived an unremarkable life working in accounts for a small manufacturing company based in Hounslow. She was of the generation that had no aspirations in life other than getting through each week with enough money to live on and pay the bills. Having never had the courage to leave home when young, due to a domineering father who needed her financial support, she eventually found herself the only provider for her ageing parents. She’d become trapped, and when her parents had died she finally had time to look at herself in the mirror, only to discover that it was too late to make dramatic changes to her own life. Then one day she was also too old to look after herself, and had moved to the Three Elms.

Morning, Mavis, greeted Gloria cheerfully. Just popped in. Only you’re due for your flu jab. 

Mavis’s expression turned to one of puzzlement.Oh, thought I’d had it few months back? You sure, Matron?

I’m very sure, Mavis, she reassured. ‘Won’t take a moment. And you know it’s for your own benefit. We have to be especially careful this winter, what with that awful swine flu that’s going around. We’ve been told to take extra precautions. Don’t want you catching that this winter, do we? she smiled.

Institutionalised to cooperate with whatever was requested of her, Mavis acquiesced, allowing Gloria to gently sit her down in her chair and roll up the sleeve of her hand-knitted cardigan. While keeping up a disarming patter, Gloria pulled the loaded syringe from her pocket, rubbed the vein just above Mavis’s elbow and administered the needle.

There now, Mavis, won’t hurt, I promise... she cooed, as if pacifying a young child. Just sit back and take a deep breath. Just… a… small… prick…. Mavis gave a little wince as the needle entered her grey skin. Gloria now dropped her condescending tones, and the smile on her face was replaced by the look of a murderess as her thumb administered the massive dose of diamorphine.

Five seconds later she withdrew the syringe, placed it back in her pocket and rolled Mavis’s sleeve back down. Then she turned to leave the room, saying over her shoulder. ‘Best you take it easy for the next fifteen minutes, Mavis. Just sit in your chair and I’ll have a nice cup of tea brought in. Like a compliant child, Mavis Holden did as she was told and sank back into her comfy chair to await the nice cup of tea that would never come. Mavis Holden was dead within half an hour.

 

                       *                           *                              *

 

At the time this murder was taking place, Danny Roberts climbed reluctantly from his bed, padded to the window and gingerly peeped out at the damp and grey world before him and uttered, ‘Bollocks! The world was full of greyness. The weather, his mood, his life’s achievement and his future prospects: grey, grey, nothing but fucking grey.

A look at his face in the bathroom mirror was no more inspiring. He rubbed a hand over his stubbly chin and decided he could get away another day without shaving. He opted to wash the sleep from his eyes and drag a comb through his mop of black hair. Breakfast was a piece of toast and a cup of coffee he drank while driving his fifteen-year old battered Volvo Estate through the damp streets of Putney, South-West London.

Danny Roberts life was also a mess. Aged forty-two, it seemed that for the past five years he’d been going through an early mid-life crisis that promised no end. His career as an artist was definitely going nowhere. His marriage had failed and his estranged wife was forever chasing him for money he didn’t have.

Twenty minutes later, he nosed the old Volvo through the rusting back gates of the Three Elms care home and squeezed it into a parking space. Dressed in his usual brown leather jacket, Denham jeans and mangy trainers, he climbed out of the car and immediately noticed the black private ambulance discreetly reversed up to the back door, sandwiched between the foul-smelling rubbish bins. Gloria was standing to one side, gently sobbing into a handkerchief as two black suited and expressionless funeral directors quietly wheeled out the body of Mavis Holden, zipped up in a body bag. Danny recalled that this was the second time he’d witnessed this scene over the past six months. Through light rain he climbed the steps, wondering if it was one of the residents he knew – perhaps someone who came to the art class he ran for the home. He stood next to Gloria and asked quietly, ‘Who’s passed away?’

    Lovely little Mavis, sobbed Gloria, now dabbing her eyes. She’d been complaining of not feeling well, last few days. When she didn’t come along to the TV lounge, as she always did of a morning, I sent Rita to see where she was. Found the poor soul dead in her chair. As sudden as that. Doctor was called, but nothing he could do. Then she said matter-of-factly. She was ninety-two of course, and in declining health. 

As soon as the ambulance doors were closed, Gloria turned and entered the home to return to her office and carry on her usual routine. She would officially break the news of Mavis’ death to the residents at lunchtime; by that time, word of it would have filtered through the building and would make her task that much easier.

Danny followed her to the office and when the door was closed, and seeing that Gloria was suddenly composed, broached a delicate subject.

    Gloria. My last pay cheque for two hundred and fifty pounds bounced. The bank returned it. Gloria, I’m flat broke –’

    Oh, sorry about that, Danny, interjected Gloria easily, absently shuffling papers around her cluttered desk. Yes, the bank has been on the phone to me. Said they’re introducing a new computerised payment system. Apparently it’s having teething troubles. They said it should be sorted within the next week. Through a thin smile, she continued. Even residents’ monthly fees have been affected the same way – net result is, when I pay my bills, the system for some silly reason thinks I’ve no money in the account and bounces all my cheques. Real nuisance,’ and with a shrug and a reassuring smile. ‘You’ve no need to worry. The bank has assured me they’re dealing with the problem. Sorry, Danny. I suggest you leave it another week or so and then represent it.

Danny would have liked to have pursued the issue more forcefully, but the truth was he couldn’t afford to upset Gloria and lose this crap job. He depended upon the lousy wage, plus the two other art classes he taught at a local college, to keep his head above water in between selling one his paintings. Instead he found himself giving a resigned nod, and quietly withdrew, wondering if he could get through the next couple of weeks without money.

As soon as she was alone, Gloria opened the file on her desk belonging to the late Mavis Holden, picked up the phone and punched in a number she had earlier underlined. When it was picked up the other end a voice quickly said.

Good morning, Gillman and Sutton, solicitors.’ With her voice suddenly very business-like, Gloria said.

Gloria Mitchell here. Matron of the Three Elms care home. One of your clients, a Mrs Mavis Holden, was a resident here. Had been for the past five years. She dropped her tone to indicate a degree of sadness. She quietly passed away this morning after a short illness. After several more perfunctory exchanges, Gloria came back with. ‘Mrs Holden had me put the following request into her file, the fact that she’d rewritten her will about nine weeks ago, and I sent it to you. She led me to believe that as she had no living relatives and she wanted the home to benefit from any remaining assets she might have at the time of her death. On the other end, the secretary carefully took details, and Gloria finished the call by saying. ‘It would be appreciated if Mrs Holden’s will could be executed speedily, only I have to cover her cremation expenses. Goodbye. 

 

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zan wrote 1437 days ago

The Van Gogh Conspiracy
Roy Munday

I love your plot. Very inventive of you to come up with such a scam! The prologue is nicely done with Van Gogh's descent into another period of madness. Some pretty intensive research must have gone into this part. Nicely done and I could easily carry on reading your complete upload if I had the time. May this gain enough visibiity here to enable you to find an agent/publisher. Much impressed and happy to back.

AuthorTom wrote 1442 days ago

Backed with confidence! Tom Ryerson (Carnal Wreckage)

Bocri wrote 1450 days ago

03 May 2010
18:46

As a devotee and admirer of all things relating to Vincent van Gogh I was impressed with the wealth of detail that appears in the relatively long first chapter. The writing is confident and competent without descending into a 'Not many people know that' litany. Van Gogh is misspelled in many instances but that can be remedied by proofing.
The comedic element, in the care home, kicks in in the second chapter and we have a different but nonetheless capable voice for the narrator. Due to only having three chapters on display I assume that the two themes will dovetail. BACKED. Robert Davidson. The Tuzla Run

Roy Munday wrote 1451 days ago

I love books that have letters in them because it's like having your nosiness satisfied. There's something very cosy and yet suspenseful about this. It's the sort of thriller I read. But I found the prologue a hold-up. Could the information it contains not be woven into the story? Sorry if that sounds insensitive. I got rid of my prologue for similar reasons. Brilliant. Backed. Lynn


Lynn. Many thanks for your comment. And it's not insensative. The reason I've joined this community is to get people's responses, either good or bad. I'm totally new to this process and am still finding my way around. Many thanks again. Roy

Linda Lou wrote 783 days ago

THE VAN GOGH CONSPIRACY
ROY MUNDAY
Hullo Roy. You are a dedicated historian, one of the reasons I enjoy writing about someone I have never really thought about beyond the art that he created. Your MS gives an inside look a this personality and the way Van Gogh interacted with those around him. Very good and easily starred. Please consider my non-fiction and thanks for that. LLL

D K Willis wrote 1276 days ago

Roy, This is a terrific idea and it is well executed. I can't help but think that an enterprising producer would snatch up the film rights to this in a hurry. I think it would translate to the screen beautifully, and that would hopefully encourage more people to read the book. I hope your book gets the recognition it deserves. Backed with pleasure.

DK WILLIS
THE THIEF ON THE CROSS

Tom Balderston wrote 1320 days ago

This is a great story-line. Some question on the plausibility of an owner taking the assets of nursing home residents. One, they generally have little, and their family is waiting for whatever is left. The family also watches owners very closly, especially those with money. But this should be engaging. Quite a caper.
Tom Balderston
The Wonder of Terra

DP Walker wrote 1406 days ago

Hi Roy
This is a great idea for a plot - thrilling, entertaining and quite humorous at the same time. I love the cover but are you allowed to use it? Just a thought. Copyright and all that. You've managed to create a book with loads going on, but it's a smooth read at the same time.
DP Walker
Five Dares

Jayne Lind wrote 1408 days ago

Roy - I seldom gush on this forum, but this is outstanding, incredibly interesting, and very well written. I hope it gets published and sells lots of copies! Really good. Jayne

Raymond Crane wrote 1421 days ago

Your pitch needs some working on - there are some errors - but i LIKE it so I'm backing it - please have a look at my books - thank you and good luck !

Su Dan wrote 1423 days ago

you idea to begin with a letter is a good one. it sets up something real and serious. very good good work...
su dan...read SEASONS...

Barry Wenlock wrote 1425 days ago

Hi Roy, I enjoyed reading some of your book, which I thought sat nicely in the great British comedy genre, as well as being a thrilling read.
Vincent van Gogh is a very popular artist. Your story deserves to be popular, too, although perhaps not quite as popular as him.
Backed and on my shelf.
Best wishes, Barry
Little Krisna and the Bihar Boys

Elizabeth Wolfe wrote 1426 days ago

Your cover is great - I'm a big Van Gogh fan. This is a fun thriller with interesting twists in the plot. BACKED - Elizabeth Wolfe (Memories of Glory)

Famlavan wrote 1429 days ago

To say that this has a comic element to it also has a lot of depth and knowledge.
Thought the Van Gogh almost pre-teach was very good, engaging and entertainingly informative. I thought the structure of this book was very good as was the style it was written in. – Great story well told. – Good luck.

Burgio wrote 1432 days ago

VAN GOGH CONSPIRACY
This is a clever idea for a story: a nursing home in financial trouble, a starving artist, a mix of older adults whose lives are in danger . . . I like the way you begin this with Van Gogh. It sets an interesting tone for the whole story. I also like stories that present older adults in a positive light and this story does that well (with the exception of Gloria). I pictured a movie as I read it with aging Hollywood matrons staring in it. I’m adding this to my shelf. Burgio (Grain of Salt).

lionel25 wrote 1435 days ago

Roy, your prologue was interesting and powerful enough to sweep me into the first chapter. Nothing to fault in those two sections.

Shelved with pleasure.

Joffrey (The Silver Spoon Effect)

Roy Munday wrote 1436 days ago

Hello Rosalind,
many thanks for your positive comments on The Van Gogh Conspiracy. Much appreciated. Will take a look at your book, though it will be a few days. Am very busy with my own art project at the moment.
Best wishes, Roy

Delightful idea, and you've done some research. It was great to have the Prologue, too. the dialogue runs along nicely in Ch 5. Well done - amusing. A couple of typos in 2 - goes for go and draw for drawer.

Good Luck. Heartily backed
Rosalind
Good for Him - another easy read but not such fun

Lara wrote 1436 days ago

Delightful idea, and you've done some research. It was great to have the Prologue, too. the dialogue runs along nicely in Ch 5. Well done - amusing. A couple of typos in 2 - goes for go and draw for drawer.

Good Luck. Heartily backed
Rosalind
Good for Him - another easy read but not such fun

zan wrote 1437 days ago

The Van Gogh Conspiracy
Roy Munday

I love your plot. Very inventive of you to come up with such a scam! The prologue is nicely done with Van Gogh's descent into another period of madness. Some pretty intensive research must have gone into this part. Nicely done and I could easily carry on reading your complete upload if I had the time. May this gain enough visibiity here to enable you to find an agent/publisher. Much impressed and happy to back.

A Knight wrote 1437 days ago

Excellent premise. It gripped me right from the start. Vivid descriptions made this incredibly believable, and this was supported by some excellent and believable characterisation. It's quirky and funny, without descending into the absurd, and makes for a fresh piece in the genre.

Fantastic work.
Abi xxx

Eveleen wrote 1440 days ago

Murder in a care home. Well, it happens in real life too, backed, hope you've time to read mine.

yasmin esack wrote 1441 days ago

Your short pitch does nOT do this fine work justice
backed with pleasure
Wonderful!
Best

AuthorTom wrote 1442 days ago

Backed with confidence! Tom Ryerson (Carnal Wreckage)

eloraine wrote 1446 days ago

The pitch pulled me in and carried me effortlessly through, well written. Backed. E.Loraine Royal Blood Chronicles book one

Roy Munday wrote 1446 days ago

Thanks for you kind comments, Harold. Hope to have the next chapter up by next week. Many thanks. Roy

Hi Roy, What a great read! I like the opening chapter. It hooked me and I didn't stop until the end of chapter 3. Well written and I look forwarded to the remaining of the book. I back it. Harold Alvin (ICON)Wesley

wespollet wrote 1446 days ago

Hi Roy, What a great read! I like the opening chapter. It hooked me and I didn't stop until the end of chapter 3. Well written and I look forwarded to the remaining of the book. I back it. Harold Alvin (ICON)Wesley

mando wrote 1447 days ago

Love this premise! Cannot wait to read more of this. Backed.

Niobrara Kardnova wrote 1448 days ago

Fascinating stuff here! I started reading this book because of the intricate plot described in the pitch, but you really sucked me into Van Gogh's life story. I'm sure that photograph Mille took with her will come back into play somewhere, but I would read this for your descriptions of the art world alone. Lots of desperate characters and lots of craziness. A pleasure to read!
Niobrara Kardnova (The Trouble with Wives)

Roy Munday wrote 1449 days ago

Unless you are going to bring the artists into the story intermittently as you go along, I agree with Iva P. The prologue doesn't seem to add to the actual plot. The story itself is great and carries you along, eager to find out what happens next.
As a lot of people only ever read the first few paragraphs (you'll find out why as you go) they need to grab the reader and be representative of the work as a whole. The murder of Mavis would be the best place to start - that would grab the reader for sure - the letter can be revealed later.
Good luck with it. Sylvia.

Many thanks for this suggestion, Sylvia. Yes, I agree that one has to grab the reader from the start, and I could see the book starting as you suggested. I'll submit further chapters to authonomy over the coming weeks before making a final decision over the prologue. Best regards, Roy

Sylvia Lumley wrote 1449 days ago

Unless you are going to bring the artists into the story intermittently as you go along, I agree with Iva P. The prologue doesn't seem to add to the actual plot. The story itself is great and carries you along, eager to find out what happens next.
As a lot of people only ever read the first few paragraphs (you'll find out why as you go) they need to grab the reader and be representative of the work as a whole. The murder of Mavis would be the best place to start - that would grab the reader for sure - the letter can be revealed later.
Good luck with it. Sylvia.

Melcom wrote 1450 days ago

You have obviously carried out a lot of research for this book, which adds to the interesting plotline.
You have a wonderful writing style one that engages the reader from the start.
The idea that this takes place in a care home has to be unique.

Happy to back this one.
Melxx
Impeding Justice

Roy Munday wrote 1450 days ago

This is a silly, fantastic premise - I love it! Can't wait to find out what happens. (Oh, there is a small typo in your pitch - it should be "whose", not "who's) BACKED -Elizabeth Wolfe (Memories of Glory)


Hello Elizabeth. Thanks for pointing out the typo error.
Best regards, Roy

Elizabeth Wolfe wrote 1450 days ago

This is a silly, fantastic premise - I love it! Can't wait to find out what happens. (Oh, there is a small typo in your pitch - it should be "whose", not "who's) BACKED -Elizabeth Wolfe (Memories of Glory)

Bocri wrote 1450 days ago

03 May 2010
18:46

As a devotee and admirer of all things relating to Vincent van Gogh I was impressed with the wealth of detail that appears in the relatively long first chapter. The writing is confident and competent without descending into a 'Not many people know that' litany. Van Gogh is misspelled in many instances but that can be remedied by proofing.
The comedic element, in the care home, kicks in in the second chapter and we have a different but nonetheless capable voice for the narrator. Due to only having three chapters on display I assume that the two themes will dovetail. BACKED. Robert Davidson. The Tuzla Run

Iva P. wrote 1450 days ago

Hi Roy! I began to read your book and I will back it or not after reading more chapters. The first thing that occurred to me was that you should consider dropping the prologue. I read it impatiently, wanting to get to the real story – that of the care home. You really don’t need to include van Gogh’s bio (it still reads like a bio despite your effort of dramatizing it with dialogues). To readers interested in art a glimpse of Vincent’s life adds nothing new. The others certainly know he was a famous painter and that should be sufficient for the time being. I’m sure there will be more about him later in the story.

Iva P.
Fame and Infamy

Maggie P wrote 1450 days ago

Hi, I liked this a lot, the way you begin in the past, setting the scene nicely for what follows. I look forward to reading on, good luck with it, maggie P.

Julia Rhodes wrote 1450 days ago

The Van Gogh Conspiracy is a very well planned and brilliantly written book.
It is very clear that the a lot of thought has gone into the detail.
I enjoyed reading it very much and thought the whole premise was excellent.
Very well done.

Amylovesbooks wrote 1450 days ago

This is good. The Van Gogh history was nicely done, and I enjoy your writing style. The only fault I can see is that there isn't more of it to read! Backed with pleasure.

Amy
Love Match

Jim Darcy wrote 1450 days ago

This reads really well and is crying out to be made into a screenplay! It would be hilarious! The dry humour complements the pathos and means that we can't hate Gloria and the rest, even if we feel we ought to. Dialogue convinces and your background on van Gogh shines. Great bank holiday read. Thank you.
Jim Darcy The Firelord's Crown
only spotted one typo centuary should be century?

Roy Munday wrote 1451 days ago

I love books that have letters in them because it's like having your nosiness satisfied. There's something very cosy and yet suspenseful about this. It's the sort of thriller I read. But I found the prologue a hold-up. Could the information it contains not be woven into the story? Sorry if that sounds insensitive. I got rid of my prologue for similar reasons. Brilliant. Backed. Lynn


Lynn. Many thanks for your comment. And it's not insensative. The reason I've joined this community is to get people's responses, either good or bad. I'm totally new to this process and am still finding my way around. Many thanks again. Roy

Roy Munday wrote 1451 days ago

I love books that have letters in them because it's like having your nosiness satisfied. There's something very cosy and yet suspenseful about this. It's the sort of thriller I read. But I found the prologue a hold-up. Could the information it contains not be woven into the story? Sorry if that sounds insensitive. I got rid of my prologue for similar reasons. Brilliant. Backed. Lynn


Lynn. Many thanks for your comment. And it's not insensative. The reason I've joined this community is to get people's responses, either good or bad. I'm totally new to this process and am still finding my way around. Many thanks again. Roy

lynn clayton wrote 1451 days ago

I love books that have letters in them because it's like having your nosiness satisfied. There's something very cosy and yet suspenseful about this. It's the sort of thriller I read. But I found the prologue a hold-up. Could the information it contains not be woven into the story? Sorry if that sounds insensitive. I got rid of my prologue for similar reasons. Brilliant. Backed. Lynn

lizjrnm wrote 1451 days ago

My kind of novel - backed with pleasure!

Liz
The Cheech Room

PATRICK BARRETT wrote 1451 days ago

Highly original plot with obvious movesinto TV or film. The characterisations will be vital but you seem to realise that and are doing OK. Well done. Paula Barrett (Cuthbert-how mean is my valley)

soutexmex wrote 1451 days ago

Welcome aboard, Roy. This website will improve your writing craft, if you allow it. I'll be your second comment. You have to think of your pitches as your sales tool to grab the casual reader's eyes. The short pitch works. With the long pitch, break it down into smaller paragraphs so it reads faster. You may wanna end it with one succinct question to pique interest. Perfecting your pitches is how you climb in ranking to gather more exposure and comments to better your novel. The writing is good so I am SHELVING you.

Though I have been a very active member for over a year, I can still use your comments on my book when you get the chance. Every little bit helps. Cheers!

JC
The Obergemau Key

SusieGulick wrote 1451 days ago

Dear Ron, I love your premise for your story. :) Your letters posted are pretty impressive. I suggest you finish your story & get it on authonomy, then use whatever suggestions you want to implement, after it's on. Before I began to read your book, I was prepared by your recap/pitch,which was very well done. Your story is good because you create interest by having short paragraphs & lots of dialogue, which makes me want to keep reading to find out what's going to happen next. I'm "backing" your book to help it advance - this will help yours & mine move up on the charts. :) Could you please return the favor by taking a moment to "back" my TWO memoir books, "He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not" & my completed memoir unedited version? "Tell Me True Love Stories," which tells at the end my illness now & 6th abusive marraiage." Thanks, Susie :)
p.s. Remember: Every "backing" you do moves your book & the other person's book closer to the top. :)

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