So, here's the thing! I've had some complaints. I know, how awful is that? Well, when I say complaints, that should really be in the singular. Someone said Hoddesdon and Cheshunt Police Stations were in Hertfordshire and not in Essex (I knew that, but not by much), and that Chigwell police station came under the Met (oh dear), and that they couldn't even read my books because they were georgraphically incorrect! What's the world coming to!
I didn't realise that fiction had to be factually correct! I thought fiction was made up. Yes, I could put some facts in there if I wanted to, but if I'm not mistaken - and I have been mistaken many times believe me - fiction is made up, that's why it's called fiction, isn't it? Or have I got that wrong? Here's a definition off the good old Internet: The class of literature comprising works of imaginative narration, especially in prose for; works of this class, as novels or short stories: detective fiction.
So there we are! If I say Hoddesdon and Cheshunt Police Stations form part of the Essex Constabulary, then that's the way it is. After all, it's my story, isn't it? Maybe I should put a caveat at the beginning to prepare readers. Something along the lines of: County boundaries have been moved slightly, police stations have been re-allocated between Police Forces, distances modified, the time taken between two points on the map have been altered to accommodate the storyline, the characters aren't real - WHAT? Sorry, I didn't mean to say that. Of course the characters are real, it's me that isn't real.
Also, somebody said in a review that there's no train station at Maldon (Essex, not Australia) (I checked - it closed in 1939! The nearest station is Hatfield Peverel, then you've got to get a taxi! Ha, who'd have believed that?), and that even if there had been a station at Maldon, Harlow and Maldon would be on different lines! Now that's sloppy on my part! I take full responsibility for that glaring error. I've written to British Rail telling them that they should re-open Maldon train station forthwith, and move the railway lines slightly so that the good people of Harlow can get a shorter journey to the barren wilderness of Maldon. So, that was easily solved. Those who now read His Wrath is Come can rest assured that the train station at Maldon is open for business again - albeit aslightly overgrown - and there is a special platorm (No.13½ I believe) at Harlow station, which caters for passengers travelling to that glorious idyll - Maldon.
But here's the thing! When does fiction ever have to be factual? As far as I'm concerned, it doesn't. Now, you might say that I'm creating a fantasy world (defined as: imagination, especially when extravagant and unrestrained). if I don't put police and train stations in their right place! I have a rebuttal witness, none other than Val McDermid - she of Wire in the Blood! Oh yeah! She created a totally new place called Bradfield, whereas I only moved a couple of county boundaries and re-opened a delapidated old train station. Not only that, I made up the murders! I know, you think Essex is crawling with serial killers. Well, I hate to diappoint you. Yes, there are a lot of strange people in Essex, and a few of them are serial killers, but I've overegged the pudding by one or two rotten eggs! Right, that's it! More fiction to write. Toodle pip!
Hi, I'm Tim Ellis - I write a lot and I hope you enjoy what I write.