Spotlight: The Cunning Man by John Yeoman

Looking for clever, fast-paced historical mysteries? Here you’ll discover seven ‘impossible’ crimes, locked room puzzles, passion and riddles galore. Enjoy these lusty crime stories set in Elizabethan England where a ‘cunning man’, Hippo Yeoman, must solve devilish cases to save his friends’ lives, or even his own.

This anthology of short historical mystery stories is a world ‘first’. It’s not only a joy to read in its own right, but it’s also a ‘fictorial': a collection of crime thrillers packed with clever but unobtrusive tips that show you precisely how they were written, to help you write your own stories! They will appeal equally to avid readers of historical crime and students of creative writing who want to enhance their story or novel writing skills, in any genre.

Can you find the culprit before Hippo does? Challenge your own detective skills, enjoy a thundering good read in settings that are wholly authentic to 16th century London, and discover – while you read – how to write a great story!

Praise for The Cunning Man

“Why has no one done this before? The Cunning Man entertains and informs in equal measure, embedding instruction in story telling technique within gripping historical mysteries. The ingenious puzzles will keep you guessing, the droll asides will make you smile, and the tips on writing will boost your own technique. What’s not to like?” -Michelle Spring, co-author (with Laurie R. King) of Crime and Thriller Writing: a Writers’ and Artists’ Companion

“If you want a tale with idiosyncratic characters, paced to keep you turning pages, and laughing out loud, read this. In addition, if you want an insiders’ look at the writer’s art, DO read this, the first “fictorial,” designed to give new and emerging authors, (well, any author come to that), an understanding of the craft behind the magic of stories that are finely-written. Footnotes found throughout the book bring up “commentaries” that explain the how and why of the writing. I’ve never seen this done before. It’s a brilliant concept.” -Diana Holdsworth

“The author did an amazing job of placing me firmly in the 1597 Elizabethan era, with his sense of place and proper dialogue. He has created a fun read that’s both entertaining and educational. Both readers and writers alike will enjoy this book, with its clever plot line and pop-up notes that not only teach aspiring writers what to include in their own work but also allow the average reader a peek behind the curtain – something they normally would never know. It isn’t easy to create a new class of fiction, and in my opinion this author hit a home run.” -Sue Coletta

About the Author

Dr John Yeoman, PhD Creative Writing, is a total rogue. His first adventure when leaving Oxford university with an MA in English literature was to host a witchcraft cabaret in a London cellar. This so enchanted him with devilry that he took up a career in public relations. Across 42 years he has edited a newspaper, chaired a big PR consultancy and trained several thousands of people to write for fame, fun and occasionally fortune.

For fifteen years he ran Britain’s largest self-publishing business and earned up to $1.4 million annually from his own living room. (Oh, thou of little faith! If you’re skeptical, send him a nice email and he’ll point you to its accounts at Companies House.)

He founded Writers’ Village in 2009, now one of the world’s largest short fiction contests. It’s no coincidence that its blog is titled the Wicked Writing Blog and it hosts guest posts every week from every best-selling author who is not ashamed to show their face there.

He lives in central England with his wife Celia, a dynasty of children and a tortoise. His passions include Jacobean literature, heirloom vegetable gardening and antique wines.

The villain should properly be addressed as Dr John Yeoman, MA Oxon, MA (Res), MPhil, PhD, FSRS. But you didn’t want to know that, did you? Quite right. After all, in the time you’ve wasted reading his biography here you could have been enjoying his novels which are triumphs of entertainment.

For more information please visit John Yeoman’s website, and follow him on Twitter