D.E. Meredith has had a varied career, from running the press office for the Red Cross to working as a consultant on media relations for Greenpeace. More recently, she has turned her hand to writing The Hatton and Roumande Mysteries series which includes Devoured and The Devil’s Ribbon. She will be taking part in the Endeavour Press Crime Fiction Festival.
With an anthology of short stories just out and a major crime festival happening in less than two weeks’ time (Saturday October 15th in Shoreditch Town Hall), Killer Women are going from strength to strength.
But just who are The Killer Women?
Established just over a year ago, and founded by top crime writers, Louise Millar and Melanie McGrath, Killer Women is a collective of sixteen crime writers, most of whom live in or near London, who pen everything from domestic noir and psychological thrillers to horror and historical crime.
Together, we’re creating a strong brand and a unique voice. By offering innovative events, debates, interviews, talks and workshops, Killer Women is able to help us forge a closer bond with our readers, as well promote our own work.
Co-founders and bestselling crime writers, Melanie McGrath and Louise Miller, came up with the idea for Killer Women partially as a social get-together but also to pool resources. Many of the writers teach, others write features or review crime novels for major newspapers, whilst others are experts in PR and marketing. Meanwhile, nearly all of us are on social media. And social media has changed everything.
Readers and writers are now connected like never before. The writing world is more democratic and interactive, and a consortium like Killer Women means that readers can get to know the work of authors at a deeper level and discover new writers along the way.
Killer Women makes commercial and consumer sense.
On a more personal level, writing novels for the most part is a solitary experience. It’s quite rare for writers to meet up and just chat about being a writer – the highs and the lows, the good and the bad – without agents, editors and publishers being involved. Killer Women has been an opportunity for us to bond, to as work as “colleagues”, to share ideas, to pick each other’s brains and to forge friendships with other writers along the way.
Whilst there are lots of other writers’ groups for authors, many of them large, important networks like the Crime Writers Association, for example, the beauty of Killer Women is it’s small and we’re all local to each other. In a tube ride, a few stops or less, we can meet informally over a glass of wine and just chat about whatever takes our fancy – almost like an old fashioned salon. It makes the whole experience more personal, more satisfying and more real.
“The key to Killer Women is that we all know each other,” says Melanie McGrath. “That means that our discussions and events feel warmer and more integrated. This isn’t just a support network. We’re friends.”
For More on The Killer Women Crime Festival:
Together we’re organising a day-long Festival of Crime Fiction and Drama at Shoreditch Town Hall on Sat 15 October. As well as some of the top names in crime writing (Mark Billingham, Martina Cole, Ann Cleeves (Vera, Shetland) , Paula Hawkins, Val McDermid, Kate Summerscale (Suspicions of Mr Whicher), SJ Watson (Before I go to Sleep)) we’ve got real life detectives discussing how they go about solving murders, including former Senior Investigating Office David Swindle who set up Operation Anagram to capture serial killer Peter Tobin, and DCS Jackie Sebire, who headed up the investigation into the ‘holdall’ death of M16 officer Gareth Williams; Dr Shubulade Smith, head of Forensic Psychiatry at the Maudsley who assess some of the most dangerous criminals in the capital.
We’ve also got actors David Morrissey and Douglas Henshall chatting about the relationship between actors and writers with Mark Billingham and Ann Cleeves, screenings, workshops with bestselling writers, agents and editors, cocktails, a Murder Mystery, competitions and more.
And all in the amazing Shoreditch Town Hall, including in the Council Chamber where the 1889 inquest into Jack the Ripper’s last victim, Mary Kelly, was held.
There’s more on Killer Women here: http://www.killerwomen.org
You can see our full programme for the festival here: http://www.killerwomen.org/killer-women-festival-programme-2016/