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The Real Life Setting of DECEPTION

I think this blog will be interesting for those of you who have read DECEPTION: A Love of Lies, and those of you who write. This is all about the establishment of the setting of the novel. Although the novel is fictional, the location itself is very real – with some slight twists.

The DECEPTION woodlands and its surroundings

I put out a post on my Instagram – showing off the locations of where my book DECEPTION is based.

Here are those photos and the post if you missed it:

DECEPTION woodlands - the road leading to Eve's
A view of the road that leads to Eve’s home. The very road where Billy follows her home.
DECEPTION woodlands first scene
The opening scene – Billy watches Eve walking her dog.
DECEPTION woodlands
The lining of trees, one of which Billy climbs up… those who have read my book will know why he does and what happens 🙄😬

Some background…

These woodlands are out the back of my childhood home. I used to love going down there with my friends to play all sorts of games, build bases and simply explore. And because I spent about 70% of my childhood there, I knew the woodlands like no one else.

Why my childhood woodlands?

I did consider creating a fictional woodlands for the story, but it wouldn’t have been the same; I needed an authentic woods to base my novel around.

I needed to know the woodlands like the back of my hand. Otherwise I would have been drawing a layout for the woodlands on a piece of paper and using that as a map to plot out Billy’s moves. But that wouldn’t have worked, and I wouldn’t have been able to go into the details that I manage to go into in the book about the woods.

The woods drive the story and characterisation. They allow the reader to become the protagonist, Billy Allen, and to really understand the mindset of Billy.

For the story to work I needed to know so much about the woodlands:

  • How they smell
  • How they look in different seasons
  • Where the trees are
  • Where there is or isn’t coverage from trees or hedges
  • Where the quieter parts of the woodlands are
  • Where people actually walk their dogs
  • How the woodlands made me feel
  • Where the pathway runs through the woods
  • Where you could realistically hide

That’s why I decided to choose my childhood woodlands – I had literally explored EVERYWHERE.


Thanks for reading guys. Hopefully this gave you some insight into how I wrote DECEPTION and how I decided on the characterisation and setting for my novel.

If you want to see the woodlands in action, then why not check out DECEPTION?

The 5* psychological thriller that won’t let you look at passing dog walkers the same.

“Through the stark and leafless trees, I see her.

I remember the first day I saw her; an instant attraction. I think she’s beautiful. She has such pensive blue eyes; they remind me of a blue sky right before the sun descends. Every time I see her I want to talk to her, I want to get to know her, and I want to be her friend.

She usually completes the lower woodland walk in six minutes and forty-two seconds; she misses the deeper woodlands and goes home, I believe.

I walk down the road at the same speed as her. She reaches the crossroads at the bottom of the road, looks both ways, and then jogs across into the garden of a house. I stop walking and concentrate on which house is hers.

I can’t stare too long but I am intrigued already, I will come back.”

—————————————————–

Reviews for DECEPTION

“This is a beautifully written gem of a psychological thriller, very creepy and atmospheric.”

“Be warned, though; this is an unsettling read at times, especially if you’re reading it in the dark just before going to bed.”

“A psychological thriller that leaves you breathless.”

“If you are looking for an edgy, addictive read, this is it!”

Read DECEPTION on Kindle

“DECEPTION” and “Alive” free today and tomorrow – stay home, stay safe, keep reading

Stay at home, save lives

This won’t cure coronavirus, but I do hope it will provide some respite from all that’s going on.

We may be in lockdown, but this is a chance to get your head into a book and have a break from all the stress surrounding the current situation.

This is a global issue, which is why my novels ‘DECEPTION’ and ‘Alive’ are free to download from Amazon on Kindle today and tomorrow.

If you enjoy reading psychological thriller novels, or you know someone who does, let them know about these free books. It might give them the relief they need from everything.

DECEPTION: getBook.at/DeceptionTJBlake
Alive: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/B01GZ86SU6/

#StayAtHomeSaveLives – read, people! 📚👌

Coronavirus – Stay Safe and Read

We’re in unprecedented times, every single one of us.

Here in the UK there have been rumours of a lockdown in the coming days; some of you may already be in self-isolation. Across the world we’ve already seen the devastation caused, but let’s not forget – many people and nations HAVE recovered and are getting through this. An official lockdown is unlikely and isn’t something to fear. Just try to stay calm and be reassured that lockdown doesn’t mean, ‘you will be stopped from leaving your house at all,’ it actually alludes to the precaution of leaving your home unless it’s essential.

It’s important to remember that to get through this we need to stick together and push on. Respect the advice we’re being given and respect each other.

Being on lockdown isn’t a punishment, it’s an opportunity to slow the spread of the disease and protect vulnerable people. You don’t need to panic. Try to stay calm.

Stay safe, be careful and respect each other.

How will you pass the time in self-isolation?

Reading?

We’re all in the same boat here. There’s TV and films we can watch, but for how long before filming is suspended or there’s no one to operate the schedule.

But one thing that will last, books!

Here’s a retweet of mine recently that got me thinking:

Books are a great way to pass the time. They’re also a nice way to detach yourself from your surroundings. That’s the key to this – ensure you aren’t stressing about the after effect of the Coronavirus (our economy and way of life), and to entertain yourself whilst keeping yourself and those around you safe.

By reading, you will have thousands, if not millions, of books available to you.

Money is tight for all of us I’m sure in light of Covid-19. But books are affordable, particularly eBooks.

I want to help

You may know or not, but I’ve written some books. you can see those books here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/T-J-Blake/e/B00C2TFFJ8/

This isn’t a sales pitch, but if you enjoy psychological thrillers then do take a look at my novels. I will be trying to make them available for free – to give you guys something to do whilst in isolation.

Also, I have been trawling back through previous book reviews. You can see some of my 3+* star reviews of books I’ve read previously – my recommendations for you below:

Top rated books I’ve read recently

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides = 5* 

Sweetpea by C. J. Skuse = 4*

Believe Me by JP Delaney = 4*

The Taking of Annie Thorne by C. J. Tudor = 4.8*

I am Watching You by Teresa Driscoll by = 3.7*

Have you got a book recommendation?

Then please do comment on this blog below. Hopefully we can put together a great list of books for us all to read.

Book Review: “The Silent Patient” by Alex Michaelides

A classic British psychological thriller

Is it odd to call “The Silent Patient” a British psychological thriller? Well it seemed very British to me, it screamed psychological thriller, and it’s a novel that I think we’ll all be reading for many years to come.

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

The plot

Based on Alicia Berenson, a famous painter who is married to fashion photographer, Gabriel, she has it all. That is, until, one evening, she shoots her husband five times in the face. Since the crime, Alicia decides to earn her name as The Silent Patient – she refuses to talk, completely.

Many psychologists attempt to get her talking, but with no such luck.

Theo Faber, a criminal psychotherapist, has always wanted the opportunity to work with Alicia and get her talking. The opportunity to work with Alicia presents itself to him, and that is the start of a journey for Theo.

But the question remains, will Theo manage to get Alicia to reveal why she did what she did?

Meticulous, smart, unputdownable, suspenseful

I’ll try not to ruin this one for you.

It’s hard because all I want to do is admire the clever writing, which I can’t do without revealing something about this book… but I mustn’t.

So, what can I say about this one without ruining it?

It’s easy to read. I found it really simple to get through. You’re able spectate the story and let it unfold. You can really focus on what is going on and analyse each character as they’re introduced and as they develop.

It’s worth mentioning you will be very paranoid reading this, suspecting everyone and everything.

The plot is intriguing. As you can see above, the plot is different.

Straight away there’s doubts about a seemingly perfect relationship. But then what if it was a happy relationship, then what? How does an innocent man get killed? Worst of all, why did his wife kill him? It’s all too much.

There’s layers to this book. The main plot line is great, but there’s layers to this one. Great layers, like a Victoria Sponge!

You will feel on edge at time. Sometimes you can feel a chill down the spine reading this one. It’s intense at points.

For someone who can’t talk, Alicia as a character is fascinating. There’s so much to her, she’s an enthralling character who you can’t help but admire and be terrified of.

It’ll leave you gobsmacked. Well, I was on the bus when I was left reeling at one particular moment… and that’s all I can say on that.

A great read, my first 5 star novel in some time!

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

‘Familiar’ Progress – First Draft

T. J. Blake’s “Familiar” Progress

It’s been a while since giving you guys one of these updates on my not so secretly titled novel, “Familiar”.

Now that you know the name of my next novel, I can start opening up a little more about the novel and what you can expect once it’s released.

This psychological paranormal thriller is due for release this year. The first draft is nearly complete and ready for the editing phase, but there’s still work yet.

Don’t judge me too critically on the excerpts I will be sharing with you over the coming months, it is work from my first draft; it’s far from perfect.

Here goes:


The floorboards creak under her weight. Vibrations reverberate through her feet, skulking up her ankles. The drapes in front of her sway. The noise beyond them mounting.

Remember what you rehearsed, Arabella tells herself.

The drapes part. A beam of light swivels, locking onto her.


 

What can you tell from this small piece of content? Would love to hear what you guys think what this novel will be about and who the main character is.

More excerpts of “Familiar” to come

Familiar - coming 2020

New Year. New Book. New Title.

For most of 2019 I referred to my next book as the ‘untitled but secretly titled novel’. Today I can FINALLY reveal the name of my next novel – which is coming in 2020!

Familiar – coming 2020
Familiar - coming 2020

 

For the living, it’s closure.
For the departed, it’s the last chance to expose the truth.

 

I will be keeping you guys up to date on the progress of Familiar throughout 2020. Still to come; release date, book cover and blurb.

Thank you to all of you for your support over the years and I can’t wait to see what you all think of Familiar once it’s released!

DECEPTION: A Love of Lies FREE to Download This Black Friday Weekend!

DECEPTION FREE to download on Amazon today!

For the first time since its release, DECEPTION: A Love of Lies will be FREE to download on Amazon for eBook and Kindle.

But only for this Black Friday Weekend!

DECEPTION Black Friday Deal - Free eBook on Amazon

Are you a psychological thriller reader?

So am I, this is why I wrote DECEPTION. It’s dark, it’s detailed, it’s gritty, it’s disturbing.

Reader reviews on Amazon for DECEPTION:

“Be warned; this is an unsettling read, especially if you’re reading it in the dark just before going to bed.” 5 stars

“You need to be a fan of psychological thrillers for this to work on you, but if you are, then I highly recommend Deception.” 5 stars

“With Deception: A Love of Lies, T. J. Blake has once again created a story of normal surroundings with a mysterious character.” 5 stars

“This author knows how to mess with you. I had a hard time figuring out who was doing what and why. That kept me turning pages until 3 in the morning.” 5 stars

Grab your free e-copy buy clicking here – this link will take you to your local Amazon site.

For the first time my novel has been stocked in a book shop

Unbelievably, this is the first time since publishing my first book back 2013 that I’ve managed to get a physical copy of my book stocked in a book shop.

One Tree Books in Petersfield, Hampshire is that book store.

DECEPTON in One Tree Books on the Local Authors Book Shelf

It’s a real honour for me.

I’ve been writing and publishing my stories for many years now. So why has it taken so long to get my book into a physical store?

Getting my novel stocked in a book shop

A change in mindset was key – be confident

A big part of it did come down to confidence. When you first start out as a writer, you (well I did anyway) doubt your ability. I think that’s just a normal trait to have. You wonder if you’re a good writer and whether your stories are worth telling and worth reading.

It’s only recently with experience of publishing and great reader reviews that I’ve learned that I am indeed worthy of having my novels stocked in book stores, and I have more confidence in myself and my books.

I haven’t tried to achieve this before, so the change in mindset was key as it pushed me to explore my options.

Making contact and following the process

By contacting the book shop, I explained that I’m a local author who has written a novel (called DECEPTION), which is based in the local area of a town nearby called Haslemere.  I mentioned that it would be a great opportunity for me, but also a nice proposition for them as a business to stock and sell a book by a local author.

They then came back and said they would like to stock the book. Then it was easy enough to complete the steps to make it happen.

So I ordered a bunch of copies, provided them with more information about the book and its RRP, went in to the book shop and dropped off the copies of DECEPTION.

Not every bookstore you approach is going to be a local one to you. But don’t disregard those small, independent book shops.

If you’re an author looking to get your book into a local bookstore, then most definitely approach your local book shops.

Nearly get run over

I’M JOKING, PLEASE DON’T! So this didn’t actually contribute to DECEPTION being stocked in One Tree Books, but I thought it was quite funny on reflection.

One Tree Books - T. J. Blake

If you’re in the Surrey/Hampshire area of the UK any time soon, then why not drop into One Tree Books in Petersfield? You can grab a copy of DECEPTION and a coffee (they have a cafe)!

Untitled yet secretly titled novel progress – 36,883

I just finished writing a scene in my untitled but secretly titled novel. It didn’t take long at all and it was almost as if I barely had control as the scene unfolded; as if entirely by itself.

It prompted this post on my socials:

Holy moly, there was some intense writing yesterday.

Fast pace, creepy, foreshadowing, gore, mystery – that was all rolled into a couple of pages of the book.

I’m making slow progress through this first draft, but it’s coming along nicely.

It’s different to DECEPTION, but I hope that it’s as well received.

To give you some insight into this book…

It’s a paranormal, psychological thriller following a famous psychic medium called Arabella. The story is focused on her life, particularly focusing on her ability to communicate with those on the other side.

However, there is a darkness to her and what she can do. She may be able to talk to her ‘friends’, but not all is as it seems.

This story offers a unique take on spirits and their presence and the signal of their presence. There is also the added twist of a murder mystery, unwanted fame and how complex we are as people.

That’s all I can tell you for now. There is no official synopsis, title or cover, but they are coming.

Let me know your thoughts on this. Does it sound like something you would like to read? Is there anything else you would like to know about this story?