Exeter Quay – Featured Photos for August 09, 2023

Exeter Quay – Featured Photos for August 09, 2023

The quay in Exeter features in the Devonshire Mystery, Accomplice to Murder, both in the present day story and in the past via a cold case. These days it’s a jolly place to spend a Sunday afternoon, especially when there’s a jazz band playing and people dancing in the street. Mrs C and I had a relaxing afternoon strolling along and checking out the cafes and eclectic shops, and I hope you enjoy the photos.

Stone setts make up the road here, and you can see a building was probably once a warehouse – more on that below.

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Behind the Scenes – Featured Photos for July 24, 2023

Behind the Scenes – Featured Photos for July 24, 2023

Trying to get back into a working routine after the loss of our lovely Labrador, Lottie, I tackled the mass of papers and folders and notebooks that were cluttering my desk and lurking in drawers.

A lot of them could safely be thrown out, but only after I’d checked them in case they held nuggets of wisdom. I came across a few good ideas that I’ve filed away in the bulging folder that’s unimaginatively¬† labelled ‘Ideas’, but I was more interested to find some early scribblings about characters and story elements that you might recognise.

Here’s the moment when a certain person came into being:

Inspector Trenchford, named after a local reservoir, didn’t make the cut because I thought I might refer to the reservoir, and I think the place is mentioned in the books.

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Exmouth – Featured Photos for June 27, 2023

Exmouth – Featured Photos for June 27, 2023

Like a lot of people, we tend to visit certain places near our home regularly, and we forget that there are so many parts of Devon we could explore.

I haven’t been to Exmouth often, but it was a perfect day to visit the coast, so we packed a picnic and off we went. I hadn’t realised that the beach was so long and the sand so soft. The sun was blazing, but I didn’t take my photos until later when it clouded over and the skies looked more dramatic.

I hope you enjoy the results.

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Writers Assemble – Featured Photos for June 21, 2023

Writers Assemble – Featured Photos for June 21, 2023

I don’t go to many writing conferences, partly because many of them are abroad, but the Self Publishing Show Live has become a fixture for me.

Run by bestselling author Mark Dawson, the conference is a great chance to learn more about writing and all that goes with it. Above all though, I value the chance to meet and talk with other writers. Much of my working life is a solitary affair, so it’s great to share experiences with like-minded friends old and new.

As always, I came away feeling inspired and motivated, but also slightly overwhelmed at all the possibilities. It was an enjoyable trip, and I shall miss the company of other writers, but it’s good to be back in the green spaces and quiet lanes of Devon. It’s good, too, to be back at my desk and working on the next Devonshire Mystery. The second draft is going well, and I think fans of the series will really enjoy it.

Me on the South Bank of the Thames, and once again I’ve managed to make it look as though I have a tiny antenna on my head.

I hope you like the pictures, and please note that you no longer have to sign in to see all the photos, but you do need to be registered and sign in to comment.

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Cooling Off by the Water – Featured Photos for June 14, 2023

Cooling Off by the Water – Featured Photos for June 14, 2023

June is hot, but it’s cool by the reservoir.

Sue and I took Lottie for a stroll in the shade by the nearby reservoirs.

It’s a perfect place for a walk on a warm day, and Lottie was like a new dog, sniffing everything as she trotted along the bank.

I hope you enjoy the pictures, and please note that you no longer have to sign in to see all the photos, but you do need to be registered and sign in to comment.

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Under the Boardwalk – Featured Photos for May 29, 2023

Under the Boardwalk – Featured Photos for May 29, 2023

Warm days mean trips to the seaside – easily achieved in Devon.

Sue and I popped to Teignmouth recently, taking advantage of the quiet before the tourist season.

It was a lovely day, and I took a few snaps of the pier, including some from underneath as I’m often fascinated by how things are put together.

I hope you enjoy the pictures, and please note that you no longer have to sign in to see all the photos, but you do need to be registered and sign in to comment.

Lottie didn’t come with us on this trip. She likes the sea, but it was a hot day and we were going to be treading the town’s pavements – an activity that she doesn’t particularly enjoy – so we left her dozing at home. Here’s a photo of her in the environment she likes best:

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A Spring in My Step – featured photos for May 2023

A Spring in My Step – featured photos for May 2023

Spring has finally arrived in Devon, and in the Campling household we’re enjoying it immensely.

Here are some nice photos of the Teign Valley, my home as well as the location for the fictional village of Embervale in the Devonshire Mysteries.

Mrs C and I have been busy in the allotment, and Lottie is able to sniff her way through the fields, enjoying the sunshine without getting too hot. The fields and hedgerows of Devon are a delight, crammed with wildflowers, and the birds are in full song.

I’m getting into running in a way that I never thought possible, so there’s a picture below of me biting into a post-run flapjack. But don’t worry, the rest of the photos are the landscape pictures that many of you know and love.

I hope you enjoy the pictures, and please note that you no longer have to sign in to see all the photos, but you do need to be registered and sign in to comment.

Lottie still going strong

Enjoying a flapjack to celebrate my fiftieth ParkRun. It has taken me a while to notch up those runs, partly due to the pandemic in the middle, but I’ve finally made it. On the first run I couldn’t get far before walking, and my leg muscles felt like they were made of lead, but I can now run 5K in under 30 minutes and that includes a couple of hill climbs. I love the inclusivity of ParkRun, with all ages, shapes and sizes taking part and many people taking the time to encourage others with a clap or a ‘Well done’. It’s no wonder that Dan Corrigan likes a good run; it does me the world of good. read more…

A Dartmoor Exploration

A Dartmoor Exploration

Although we’ve lived on the edge of Dartmoor for more than 25 years, there’s still plenty to explore.

On a recent drive onto the moors we decided to pass the usual tourist hot-spots and keep going, letting the road take us where it may.

After a short while we found a small parking space at the side of the road, so we parked up and picked a likely looking direction for a stroll. It was a lovely part of the moor, with stunning views of wooded valleys and a glimpse of the village of Widecombe-in-the-moor in the distance. At least, I think it was Widecombe, but we were pleasantly disorientated, wandering without a map.

There were Dartmoor ponies and sheep, and I don’t think we met another soul until we returned to the car park. After our walk we went in search of a cup of tea, but all we could find was a pub, so we popped in for a quick half of local ale. Dan and Alan would’ve approved!

I hope you enjoy the pictures.

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Sherlock Holmes and Exeter ComicCon – Two Very Different Devonshire Experiences

Sherlock Holmes and Exeter ComicCon – Two Very Different Devonshire Experiences

I’m a big fan of Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, so I jumped at the chance to see a production of The Valley of Fear at Exeter’s Northcott Theatre.

It was a wonderful night, with the audience on the edges of our seats. Below is a snap of the set, which the actors moved around to show all manner of different settings, from stagecoaches, to trains, to towns, to houses. Very clever.

We had great seats and I loved every minute. And yes, if you’re wondering, the title of my book, Valley of Lies, is an homage to that story.

The stage isn’t raised, so there’s a pic of me standing in front of it. Below that, if you sign in, you can see our photos from the Exeter Comic and Gaming Con which we went to just for fun. It was only my second con and Sue’s first, and we had an interesting time.

I hope you enjoy the pictures.

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Moody March – A Mysterious Devonshire Landscape

Moody March – A Mysterious Devonshire Landscape

Sometimes the Devonshire Landscape can be sunlit and inviting, at other times it can be mean, moody and mysterious.

Not much need for me to say more about these pictures of the Teign Valley in March. Spring was ready to start, but the winter wasn’t quite ready to let go. Cue, the wettest March since the eighties, and for England, that’s really saying something.

I hope you like the photos and can imagine Dan and Alan battening down the hatches or retreating to the Wild Boar for a pint of Jail Ale by the roaring fire.

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A Walk in the Devonshire Woods

A Walk in the Devonshire Woods

We visit a nearby wood every now and then, and this one, Bearacleave Wood, is the inspiration for Brandle Wood in The Devonshire Mystery, Mystery in May.

Perhaps you can imagine Dan and Alan marching along the meandering woodland paths in the search for clues.

The view from the edge of the woods shows Haytor on the horizon, and that tor is mentioned in Accomplice to Murder.

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