The Crime Writers’ Association

Margery Allingham Short Mystery Competition 2014


Alan Orchard

Death On The Line

Alan Orchard was born in Bishop Auckland in 1961, and from an early age found escape and release in creative writing. In his teens, influenced by the works of authors such as John Wyndham and Arthur C. Clarke, he began writing short stories in the science fiction genre. At the age of twenty Alan completed a horror novel which – with the exuberance and naivety of youth – he circulated around the major UK publishers, only to receive the inevitable avalanche of rejection slips. A career in accountancy ensued, but his love of writing rambled on in the background, with the production of short stories, poetry, and – like most aspiring writers – several partly written novels which still gather dust. In the early 1990’s, one of these short stories won first prize in ‘The Sid Chaplin Short Story Competition’, and poetry has been published in ‘The Northern Echo’.Alan recently completed a first draft of a ‘cosy crime’ novel set in the 1960’s. This work owes much to the style and spirit of Margery Allingham and Edmund Crispin; for whom he has fond regard as exemplary writers from the golden age of crime fiction. He currently live in the north-east of England with his wife, Jacqui, and cat, Nutmeg.

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