The Crime Writers’ Association

What if? by D B Carew

Hello, my name is Derrick and I write under the name D.B. Carew. I’ve been a member of the Crime Writers’ Association and Crime Readers’ Association since 2013. I thought I’d share a bit of the story of how I came to be introduced to the CWA/CRA.


About ten years ago, I found a cell phone while running on a snow-covered trail outside Vancouver, British Columbia. While trying to connect the phone to its owner my mind started asking ‘what if’ questions. What if the phone belonged to someone I’d be better off not contacting? What if the phone was evidence in a murder investigation? By the end of my run I knew I had the beginning of a story, a story I was interested in developing further, to see where it would take me.


My day job involves working as a social worker at a provincial forensic psychiatric hospital. A work colleague told me about the CWA’s Debut Dagger and we made a commitment to each other to make a submission to the contest. I kept working on my entry and eventually I was fortunate enough to be shortlisted for the 2013 Debut Dagger with my submission, Fighting Darkness: The Killer Trail. Finn Clarke went on to win the award that year with her wonderful entry. For my part, I had an amazing experience travelling to London with my wife, and attending the CWA Dagger Awards banquet in July, where one of the highlights involved meeting other shortlisted writers from the US, the UK, Ireland, and Canada. By the time I returned to British Columbia, I was a proud member of the CWA and CRA.


I went on to complete my novel, and The Killer Trail was published by the remarkable NeWest Press in May 2014.


My follow-up novel is titled The Weight of Blood and it will be published on 1 November 2020, again with NeWest Press. This story finds the protagonist Chris Ryder, a social worker at a forensic psychiatric hospital, being assigned to a patient named Marvin Goodwin who is charged with the murder of an ice cream vendor. The more Chris learns about Marvin, who is on the autism spectrum disorder scale, the more he begins to question whether Marvin committed the crime, and the more Chris finds his own life in danger.


Read more about D.B. Carew here.

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