After careers in journalism and academia, I began writing crime novels to weave my interests in history, politics, philosophy, and anthropology into stories that unlock unique locations to members of the general public. My particular interest in Timor Leste (East Timor) stems from regular visits to the country since 2010. Over the years I have been involved in various activities including media development, agricultural communication, and nutritional initiatives.
The East Timor Crime Series pits modern policing methods against traditional beliefs in demons, witchcraft, ancestral spirits, and animal totems that are still strongly held today in different parts of the country.
Photo: President Jose Ramos Horta of Timor-Leste receives copies of The Crocodile’s Kill and The Sand Digger’s Skull.
Some places have a special way of capturing your imagination on several different levels. Timor-Leste (East Timor) does that to me.
Frustrated Ambitions, (co-authored), Cambridge Scholars Publishing, Newcastle Upon Tyne, 2019
The struggle over U.S. policy toward Chile, (co-authored), Cambridge University Press, New York, 2015.
Second book in the East Timor Crime Series comes out in April, 2023. You can pre-order on any online book retail site or direct from Coffeetown Press (US). An agnostic Catholic priest and an old woman believed to be a witch become key to FBI Agent Sara Carter and her Timorese police colleague, Vincintino Cordero, … Read more
Babies are being abducted from their homes in the mountains along East Timor’s southern border with Indonesia. Local villagers believe the babies are sacrificed in order to appease ancestral spirits disturbed by development projects encroaching on traditional land. FBI Agent Sara Carter, on secondment to INTERPOL, is assigned to investigate the case which is suspected … Read more
Recent writing tips
At its best, descriptive writing is thoroughly enriching; at its worst, it’s a flight of fancy that gratifies the writer but bores – and perhaps annoys – the reader. Good descriptive writing is a discipline. It requires close observation and careful word choice. It must always serve its essential purpose which is to take the … Read more
Tension – or ‘keeping the pages turning’ Tension in novels is usually constructed from the way characters – big and small – confront situations. Let’s focus for a second on two of those words: ‘constructed’ and ‘small’. By ‘constructed’ I mean that each element of tension needs to be carefully thought through so that it … Read more
I bet you’d remember at least some of these ‘people’ and probably three or four: They’re all characters in books – characters. The plots of the books that feature those characters are harder to recall. Why? Because readers tend to remember characters more than they remember plots and that, in turn, is because people relate … Read more