The Elisenda Domenech Investigations Series by Chris Lloyd #BlogTour #GuestPost

Delighted to be the next stop in The Elisenda Domenech Investigations Series blog tour. For my stop a have a great guest post by Chris Lloyd.

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Author Information

Chris was born in an ambulance racing through a town he’s only returned to once and that’s probably what did it. Soon after that, when he was about two months old, he moved with his family to West Africa, which pretty much sealed his expectation that life was one big exotic setting. He later studied Spanish and French at university, and straight after graduating, he hopped on a bus from Cardiff to Catalonia where he stayed for the next twenty-four years, falling in love with the people, the country, the language and Barcelona Football Club, probably in that order. Besides Catalonia, he’s also lived in Grenoble, the Basque Country and Madrid, teaching English, travel writing for Rough Guides and translating. He now lives in South Wales, where he works as a writer and a Catalan and Spanish translator, returning to Catalonia as often as he can.

He writes the Elisenda Domènech series, featuring a police officer with the newly-devolved Catalan police force in the beautiful city of Girona. The third book in the series, City of Drowned Souls, is published on 6 February 2017.

Website: http://www.cityofgooddeath.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/chrislloydbcn

Five Favourite Ways to get Ideas

 

It’s quite difficult to pin down how I get ideas, in much the same way as actually getting the little tinkers is. They’re not always the most cooperative of beings, so when I think of my favourite ways of getting ideas, there’s always that disconnect between the ways I’d like to get them and how I actually do get them. I’ll let you work out from the following which ones are which.

 

  1. Any time I can’t get a hold of pen and paper. I might have mentioned elsewhere on this blog tour that I’ve got a rubbish memory, so I have to write down everything that comes to me, otherwise it’s lost in the blink of a thingumajig. So I’d just like to thank my imagination for being most active when it’s physically impossible for me to note any of its fervid musings down. Best place/worst culprit for this is the shower first thing in the morning, when my subconscious is working overtime and the thoughts come jumbling into my head far too fast for me to remember them all. The number of bestsellers that must have disappeared down the plughole doesn’t bear thinking about. Other good places are the cinema or watching live music. Unfortunately, the cinema-owners/bands on stage take a rather self-centred view when I ask them to stop for a mo while I look for a piece of paper.

 

  1. I think it’s this switching off other day-to-day thoughts and either being lost in my head or being transported by something completely different that opens the door to ideas. The secret is to be receptive to them and allow them time to swirl around in my brain. I sometimes get a mental image of some scruffy old-timer (that’s me) panning for gold in a western movie, absently whooshing bits of rock around in a pan of water before ending up with a glittering nugget or two. Often, sitting at my desk and allowing my mind to wander without worrying too much about getting words on screen can do that for me. I’d like to say walking has the same effect, but that’s not always the case; I end up getting distracted by all the sights and sounds and smells around me – they’re all useful for flavour but they’re not strictly the ideas I’m hoping for. Oddly, driving is better. I think the fact of having to concentrate on traffic frees my mind of normal day-to-day worries and opens the door to ideas. It’s just a question of knowing what does that for you and putting yourself in the position for it to happen.

 

  1. A way of getting ideas that I’ve found really useful is to sit on my own in a café and people-watch. It’s in that environment when people often reveal themselves: how they look for a table, the fuss or otherwise in sitting down, how decisive they are, how they talk to the waiter. Then, what they do if they’re on their own (they’re most probably writers watching everyone else), and how they interact with their companions if they’re not alone. If they’re near enough to catch a snippet of their conversation, something in that might trigger a train of thought in me, but I prefer it if I can’t hear them. That way I can imagine their world, their conversation and their thoughts without real life getting in the way. It’s wonderful for discovering not just characters, but what those characters’ stories might be, and for setting off a thread in my mind that can lead to a plot, or at least a strand or a character, for a book.

 

  1. For practical reasons, the next one’s a bit harder for me to do, but if you set your stories in a real place, there’s nothing better than actually going there and pounding the streets, picking up on the feel of the place you’re writing about. My books are set in Girona, in Catalonia, so I can’t get there as often as I’d like, but when I do, I spend days roaming the city, looking at shops and restaurants, squares and alleys, soaking up the atmosphere and imagining the stories that could take place there. I find it important to know where my characters buy their bread or sit for a coffee, who they might see, the smells they’d get and the conversations they’d have. That all helps not just to cement their characters and to picture scenes, but it opens the flood gates to all sorts of ideas. Just one small moment of something I’ve seen can send my mind waltzing off down some exciting new avenue. I think people there have got used to some foreign bloke wandering around taking pictures on his camera and stopping every two minutes to write something down. And when I can’t get there, I look through my notes and photos at home and let my memory take over – it’s surprising how many new ideas can come to you in quiet moments of retrospection, even with a memory like mine.

5. The middle of the night. This sort of brings me back full circle. I suppose it’s natural that at night, when your mind begins to switch off from the day-to-day reality, it opens itself up to ideas, but that’s not always so convenient. I also find the hardest thing is to know when to allow my mind free rein and let it wander through the thoughts that come into it, and when to stop and write down the ideas before I lose them – it’s a fine line that’s not always easy to get right. And why haven’t I included this in the first point about when I can’t get to pen and paper? That’s because I’ve rigged up a small book light on the bedstead and keep a notebook on the bedside table so I can write everything down – I know that if I don’t do it, I’ll have a memory in the morning of what a brilliant idea I’ve had, but no clue whatsoever what the brilliant idea was. And if you ever need any more proof that writing is fundamentally wrong for you, then that’s it.

 

 

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Summary:

An intense and brilliantly realised crime thriller set in the myth-soaked streets of Girona

 

A killer is targeting hate figures in the Catalan city of Girona – a loan shark, a corrupt priest, four thugs who have blighted the streets of the old quarter – leaving clues about his next victim through mysterious effigies left hung on a statue. Each corpse is posed in a way whose meaning no one can fathom. Which is precisely the point the murderer is trying to make.

 

Elisenda Domènech, the solitary and haunted head of the city’s newly-formed Serious Crime Unit, is determined to do all she can to stop the attacks. She believes the attacker is drawing on the city’s legends to choose his targets, but her colleagues aren’t convinced and her investigation is blocked at every turn.

 

Battling against the increasing sympathy towards the killer displayed by the press, the public and even some of the police, she finds herself forced to question her own values. But when the attacks start to include less deserving victims, the pressure is suddenly on Elisenda to stop him. The question is: how?

 

Information about the Book

Title: City of Good Death (Elisenda Domènech Investigations #1)

Author: Chris Lloyd

Release Date: 13th July 2015

Genre: Crime Thriller

Publisher: Canelo

Format: ebook

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25897153-city-of-good-death

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B010MALNYY

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Summary:

Be careful what you dig up… 

Still recovering from the tragedy that hit her team, Elisenda takes on a new case. Except it’s not new. On an archaeological dig by the coast a body is uncovered, seemingly executed with a spike thrust through the base of the skull – an ancient tribal ritual. It soon becomes clear that this body is neither ancient nor modern, but a mysterious corpse from the 1980s.

Assigned to the case along with her team, Elisenda soon uncovers a complex world of star archaeologists, jealousy and missing persons. They find a dark trade in illicit antiquities, riddled with vicious professional rivalries. And even though she’s staying close to the crime scene, Elisenda is also never far from enemies of her own within the police force.

Just as the case seems to become clear it is blown wide-open by another horrific murder. Elisenda must fight her personal demons and office politics, whilst continuing to uncover plots and hatreds that were long buried. How far will she go to solve the crime? Is her place in the force secure? And can she rebuild her life?

The atmospheric second crime thriller featuring Catalan detective Elisenda Domènech, for readers of Val McDermid and Ann Cleeves

 

Information about the Book

Title: City of Buried Ghosts (Elisenda Domènech Investigations #2)

Author: Chris Lloyd

Release Date: 30th May 2016

Genre: Crime Thriller

Publisher: Canelo

Format: ebook

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30288458-city-of-buried-ghosts

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Buried-Ghosts-Inspector-Domènech-Thriller-ebook/dp/B01FDKKTBG

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Summary:

When a child disappears, the clock starts ticking
Detective Elisenda Domènech has had a tough few years. The loss of her daughter and a team member; the constant battles against colleagues and judges; the harrowing murder investigations… But it’s about to get much worse.

When the son of a controversial local politician goes missing at election time, Elisenda is put on the case. They simply must solve it. Only the team also have to deal with a spate of horrifically violent break-ins. People are being brutalised in their own homes and the public demands answers.

Could there be a connection? Why is nobody giving a straight answer? And where is Elisenda’s key informant, apparently vanished off the face of the earth? With the body count threatening to increase and her place in the force on the line, the waters are rising…

Be careful not to drown.

The stunning new instalment of the gripping Elisenda Domènech crime thrillers for readers of Ian Rankin, Henning Mankell and Andrea Camilleri.

 

Information about the Book

Title: City of Drowned Sould (Elisenda Domènech Investigations #3)

Author: Chris Lloyd

Release Date: 6th February 2017

Genre: Crime Thriller

Publisher: Canelo

Format: ebook

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34106761-city-of-drowned-souls

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B01N7Y2NDN

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