Robert Craven - Author
Behind the Author
Irish author Robert Craven has always been passionate about writing and storytelling. He is an independent author of seven novels. One was a number one download on KOBO. He's self-motivated and driven to produce quality fiction. His personal blog and stories can be found on ABCTales.com. An active member of the writing community,
he writes regular features for Writing.ie.
Novels: The Eva series:
(Amazon.com / Smashwords / Kobo.com)
·(2020) Eagles Hunt Wolves - Winner of the Firebird 2021 book award
·(2016) Hollow Point
·(2014) A Finger of Night
·(2011) Get Lenin
(2018) The Road of a Thousand Tigers – best seller on Kobo.
(2017) The Mandarin Cipher
(2021) A Kind of Drowning
Zombie Bites - Red Rattle Books
Kobo Writer’s Life Podcasts - Podcast 117.
**** #TheDoctorWillSeeYouNow ****
in conversation with Dr Jacky Collins 2020
The Voice of Get Lenin
A KIND OF DROWNING
The man standing at the funeral in bubble-gum pink hair is P.J. Crowe. His career as a detective is in tatters - he's facing dismissal, vilified by the press and his wife's about to leave. Lying low in a small seaside town he spots a ‘Help Wanted’ ad in the kitchen of a local café. It offers him an escape from the public and his spiralling mental health - and it's where Thea Farrell worked – until she was found dead at sea.
And herein lies the problem: Thea was an Olympic medallist, silver for swimming and Crowe’s burned-out synapses are starting to join the dots – it wasn't his case, but his cop’s senses tell him that Thea wasn’t the drowning kind.
And the suspect may well be in the congregation.
©Robert Craven 2021
Sleep had eluded Crowe. Past cases had forced their way into his head, denying him rest. Fighting the rising sensation of being overwhelmed, he folded up the sofa bed and put the kettle on. From the cupboard, he took out a jar of instant coffee. He looked up at the clock on the wall. 3am, the midnight of the soul, the time when death usually came knocking. The clock with “Time for tea” in cheery cursive tried its best to bring some colour to the beige banality. The smoke alarm battery offered an object to rotate on the kitchen table in tight circles. When he got bored with that, he paced out the room; fourteen paces long by six paces wide. After several mulling circuits, Crowe sat and smoked, he drank the cold milky coffee, and spun a cheap red plastic lighter. The remains of last night’s meal, a large single of chips from the take-away, lay folded on the table. Its greasy smell lingered in the pokey kitchen. Some of it remained cloying in his beard.
Crowe shut his eyes, but no matter how hard he tried, the past unfurled like a ghost appearing at the banquet. He pictured the Internal Affairs members around the kitchen table like an instant replay, he inched his hand protectively toward the crumpled chip bag.
“What were you thinking, Garda Inspector Crowe?” asked Crowe’s superior, Chief Superintendent Dáithí O’Suilleabháin; – the ramrod-straight Cork man who strode through the office everyday like he was lining out for an All-Ireland final.
Beside O’Suilleabháin, the head of HR, Stephanie Townsend had sat angular and ironed into her sombre suit.
“Hardly Champions League now was it, Inspector Crowe?” said Townsend.
The tapes had been rolling. Her withering gaze didn’t flinch as Crowe had said his piece at the top of his lungs.
Sitting beside him was his Union Rep, Harris, who was making a careful study of his long thin spired fingers as the hearing became a spectacular one-man train wreck. He sat silent.
Crowe had got the gist from Townsend’s cool reply – Government front bench reshuffle last week, new Minister of Justice; Noirín Gartland; keen to make her mark; Sees herself as a new broom dealing with old male archetypes in the force. If Inspector Crowe had behaved appropriately and not lost his temper, his name and face wouldn’t be appearing from here to Timbuktu.
Crowe knew it. Harris knew it and O’Suilleabháin knew it too. THE BIG MACHINE had spoken, and in the space of a week after that informal investigation, the resolution was swift and brutal. He was out, suspended without pay for three months. He had needed cash; he had needed a phone.
He had needed to talk to Quigley.
Crowe shut his eyes, forcing himself into the now. His vision was watery when he opened them again.
“Well, that went well,” he said out loud.
The Real Story
The great Jazz bass player, Steve Swallow once observed his career was 50% listening, 50% playing, like this discipline, writers too should immerse themselves; inhabit the world of reading and writing. Steven Spielberg always watches John Ford’s seminal work, ‘The Searchers’ before loading a strip of film, every writer too should have a ‘go-to piece’ for preparation; as in the words of the great American poet Kenneth Koch, “You can’t lose anything of yourself by being influenced by a poet, no matter how strong. All you can do is learn from him [or her] how to do it. Just like by imitating the hand movements of great pianists.” Like Mr. Swallow, I listen and write and listen and write and listen and write, only after careful preparation. Like all good bakers, we work to avoid flat cakes…
My best seller, THE ROAD OF A THOUSAND TIGERS was a no 1 download on Kobo.
You can find this and my KOBO books here @KOBO
His latest novel EAGLES HUNT WOLVES is OUT NOW!
photo - courtesy of Ger Holland http://www.gerhollandphotography.com/