Pen Names

Hello all,

I’m debating on whether or not to us a pen name for my crime novels. You see, way back in 2001 when I made my first sale, I used the name Richard Lee ( In 2009 a publisher of my second novel, The Last Church convinced me to use my real name. Although I announced the name change to my massive Ning group, MySpace and Twitter, not a lot of people took notice and The Last Church didn’t sell as well as it should have with the Richard Lee brand. I had no idea about branding back then. Now, I do. In 2015, I returned to write under the Richard Lee brand and some comments I got were:

I wondered what happened to you.
Welcome back, Dude. 
Missed you.
Are you still writing?

My books now sell in several languages. Richard Lee wrote horror and science fiction (usually blended together). 

Now that I’m writing crime, ( I decided to switch to my real name, and start crime fiction branding (no idea how to do that). But, now I’m thinking that a pen name would be in order. What if I become super famous? So whacko could easily track me down, like they do with some YouTube content creators. 

So, I need your help. I’ve come up with a list of names. Which ones do you think are best?

Blogger doesn’t do polls, maybe I need some add on. Oh well.

1. Lee Kingsman

2. Lee Yates

3. Lee Webb

4. Lee Kain

5. Lee Feron

6. Hunter Stone

7. Clive Maxwell

8. Quinn Mathis 

That’s the list. What do you think sounds the best? 

Or do you have a better suggestion? I’m all ears. 



Crime Writers Week of Events

 Damn these look good. 


Crime Writers Week

See you there! I’ve signed up.  

Have you always wanted to write a thriller? This is the event for you.

ProWritingAid’s Crime Writer’s Week is a series of events all geared towards crime writers. Whether you’re crafting a police procedural, a whodunnit, or a good old-fashioned mystery, you’ll learn how to keep readers turning pages.

Attend live sessions with bestselling authors, including Karin Slaughter, Lisa Gardner, Ian Rankin, Peter James, Fiona Cummins, and more.

Crime Writer’s Week is jam-packed with events for crime authors. Get insider publishing advice from the Deputy Publishing Director for Crime Fiction at Simon & Schuster, attend workshops on writing and editing your novel, and learn from real police advisors to help make your book truly authentic. 

As a Crime Writer’s Week participant, you get access to:

  • Training, workshops, and Q&As specifically curated for crime writers
  • Daily networking events where you can meet other like-minded writers
  • Our dedicated closed Facebook group, just for Crime Writer’s Week participants

And it’s free to register!

Monday’s Sessions

The Elements of a Crime Novel: From Planning to Plot
Presenter: Bestselling Author Leigh Russell

Every genre requires a unique approach, and crime writing is no different. In this session, internationally bestselling crime author Leigh Russell will take you through the key elements of the crime writing process.

Crime Writing: Secrets of the Genre
Presenters: Anne Hawley and Rachelle Ramirez of Pages & Platforms

Do you have an idea for a crime novel but don’t yet know how to structure it? Got some bad deeds, clues, and some scenes that don’t really work together or entertain? In this webinar, you’ll learn the crime story essentials.

Sign up for Crime Writer’s Week now
Tuesday’s Sessions
Crime Scene Management, Police Interviewing, and Covert Tactics
Presenter: Police Advisor Graham Bartlett

Retired detective, bestselling author, and advisor to over 80 crime novelists and TV writers, Graham Bartlett can help your WIP ooze authenticy. Learn how the police use mobile phones, vehicles, CCTV, and social media in their investigations, as well as authentic police interview techniques. 

Insider Advice on Getting Published
Presented by: Katherine Armstrong, Deputy Publishing Director, Crime & Thriller Fiction at Simon & Schuster

This session is intended to demystify the publishing process for writers, give advice on how to get published, and answer any questions you might have about traditional publishing.

How to Edit Your Crime Novel with ProWritingAid
Presented by: Hayley Milliman, Head of Education at ProWritingAid

It doesn’t matter how many hours you spent meticulously crafting your crime novel’s plot. If your writing isn’t clear and effective, your readers won’t engage with it. That’s where editing technology can help. In this workshop, we’ll dive into how to use ProWritingAid to make key edits to your crime manuscript.

Wednesday’s Sessions
The History & the Mystery: Selecting and Creating an Authentic Setting for Crime Fiction
Presented by: Fiona Veitch Smith

Author Fiona Veitch Smith will share tips on how to research and build your historical story’s world and the importance of selecting the right investigator within the constraints and possibilities of the period.

Thriller Writer Panel Discussion with Steve Berry, Lisa Gardner, Ian Rankin, and Karin Slaughter
Presented by: International Thriller Writers (ITW)

Author and ITW Executive Director K.J. Howe will be hosting four of their members for a lively discussion around the joys and pains of writing thrillers. Expect great tips and life lessons from these popular writers as they discuss their writing journeys so far.

Common Police Mistakes Made by Crime Writers and How to Avoid Them
Presented by: Police Advisor Graham Bartlett

Graham will be back again to share the most common errors that authors get wrong in their crime novels. Who really runs a homicide investigation? When does a missing person report become a murder enquiry? Find out the answers to these and many more bloopers that could spoil your next bestseller.

Thursday’s Sessions
Debut Dagger Awards Longlist Announcement
Presented by: Crime Writers’ Association

For over two decades, the CWA has been encouraging new writing with its Debut Dagger competition for unpublished writers. The submissions are judged by a panel of top crime editors and agents.

How to Market Your Self-Published Crime Novel
Presented by: Nick Stephenson, Author and Founder of Your First 10k Readers

Marketing your book comes down to mastering three key things: traffic, conversions, and scaling up. With the right systems in place for these three things, you can grow your readership and sales without spending your entire day “worrying about marketing.”

Interview with Author Fiona Cummins

Fiona Cummins is the award-winning author of Rattle, The Collector, and The Neighbour. We’ll be chatting to her about breaking into the world of crime writing, and what it’s like to see her fourth book, When I Was Ten, being adapted for television.

The final day of Crime Writer’s Week is available to ProWritingAid Premium subscribers only. We’ll be hosting an editing deep dive, an interview with bestselling author Peter James, and finishing the week with a police expert Q&A. 

If you don’t have ProWritingAid Premium yet, don’t worry! Crime Writer’s Week participants will receive an exclusive discount in their confirmation email when they sign up.

Sign up for Crime Writer’s Week to receive your discount
Friday’s Sessions
How to Edit Your Crime Novel
Presented by: Hayley Milliman, ProWritingAid’s Head of Education

As nice as it would be, writing your crime novel isn’t over when you type “The End.” In fact, the actual work is just beginning. During the editing process, your novel will go from rough first draft to thrilling final manuscript. In this workshop, Hayley will walk you through the most important edits you should make to ensure your book is publish-ready.

Interview with Author Peter James

Peter James has become synonymous with plot-twisting page-turners. He has won over 40 awards for his work and achieved 17 Sunday Times Bestsellers to date. Learn from the master what it takes to write gripping crime novels that keep readers hooked.

Police Advisor Q&A
Presented by: Police Advisor Graham Bartlett

This is your chance to bring YOUR questions about police work and crime scene investigations to Graham Bartlett, retired detective, bestselling author and advisor to over 80 crime novelists (including Peter James).

Sign up once to get access to every event

Click the button below to register for all of the events above. You don’t have to attend every event, or attend live—we will record all of the webinars and send out a replay the following day. So, even if you are not able to make certain dates/times, it’s still worth registering to get the recordings.

Sign up for Crime Writer’s Week now

Funny AF

Over at #Reddit, I stumbled upon a Tictok thread. 

It was a rabbit hole of the abyss. 

Some things cannot be unseen, like Barbie III. 

However there was this video that cracked me up. 

I’ve posted it here for you. I walked the madness of TicTok, so you don’t have to. 

You’re welcome. 



 This is good.

There is nothing to fear but fear itself. #motovation

Find your path. The choice is within you. #inspiration #mindfulness


For Fantasy Writers

 This even has ended. 

Fantasy Writing Master Techniques

Everything you need to add depth and texture to your fantasy stories

Next week, ProWritingAid is hosting its first ever Fantasy Writer’s Week, a series of events with fantasy experts who will help you develop and strengthen your writing process. To get you in the fantasy-writing mood, we’ve collected our best fantasy writing articles together in this newsletter. 

Writing a fantasy novel isn’t easy. With far-reaching plots, large character casts and vast worlds that you’ll build from the metaphorical ground up, there’s a lot to consider before you start writing. 

This can be daunting, but don’t worry! Keep reading to find detailed guides to help you create convincing characters, immerse your reader in your world and even create whole new species. We also get into the nitty-gritty of outlining and plotting your novel. 

Whatever stage of the fantasy writing process you’re at, there’s something here for you. 

Our first ever Fantasy Writer’s Week will be jam-packed with events for fantasy authors. With live sessions with fantasy writers TJ KluneAngela J. FordDavid Farland, and Stephanie BwaBwa, a world-building workshop, a complete World Anvil software walkthrough, and four fantasy writing workshops, don’t miss this event if you’re passionate about fantasy.

Participants will get access to:

  • Training sessions, workshops and Q&As specifically curated for fantasy writers
  • Daily networking events where you can meet other writers
  • Our dedicated closed Facebook group, just for Fantasy Writer’s Week participants

If you love writing fantasy, this is the event for you. 


Miss me?

Did you miss me?

Probably not, judging by the amount of comments I get.  LOL

I must apologize for not being on here as much as I should, I’ve been fuck-arse busy with work, my own mini school here in Japan and editing Death World. Not going as fast as I’d like. Also, I’m searching for an online place to write instead of using my trusted scrivener as I now write in two or three locations with my Mac (11 years old), desktop (at home) and the work laptop (a low-end Dell–cheap bastards. It died on the second day, and I only used it for a few hours). The Quill looks great but no prices have yet been supplied.

Some monthly subscription fees are sky-high.

Some of the free ones are dodgy i.e. the blog hasn’t been updated in a few years. I can’t trust that my work would be safe there.

I know use Goggle Docs, or ZOHO docs, or even, Readsy.

And I’ve used all of them, and Word, also Word Online (not 365).

ZOHO was the best. Reminded me a little of Pages.

So, yes, I could use them. But I like new things, or new ways of doing things.

I have an idea of where to start for Death World 2.


Holy shit, that sentence brought a flood of ideas. I just wrote down the best on a sticky note and placed it under the desktop notepad’s plastic sheet.

Best investment ever.
UPDATE: I have been using The Quill for a few months now and it saves well and is distraction free writing. It’s great. 

Because of one author in the UK


Because of one author in the UK

So, I have been writing for many, many years. In my teenage years I was too much into sex, drugs and rock n roll. Nothing too heavy. This was New Zealand way back in the 80’s. From 14-24, I barely wrote a word. A few short stories here and there. Stories that moved into a box and stayed there. I still have that box of work, but it is inaccessible as the storage key is lost and the government owner apartment in run by people who don’t give a shit. (Gee, I thought I was over losing that box. Guess not.)
Recently, I listened to R. R. Haywood’s awesome book, A Town Called Discovery. And I noticed something. To confirm, and because I loved the book, I bought Extracted and listened to that (Review soon). I would like to thank R. R. Haywood for showing me something many books and YouTube videos couldn’t.

How to move up to the next level. The thing that stalled me at the small press. It’s a little thing, but to clean requires a lot of work and, at times, a heap of rewriting.

Fucking glue. Sticky words to be precise. What Mr. Haywood showed me (and a bunch of books never mentioned or brushed over) what a sentence could be. I’ve now started noticing this in other books. Mostly thrillers. So, I wrote a short story. I over-wrote and self edited. Then I opened Pro Writing Aid and hit sticky sentence review. 70%. That’s bad. But I did over-write on purpose. The program highlighted all the sticky words. This is thinking cap time. Rewrite and cut and repeat. I got sticky down to 27%. Lost 600 words of the short story. Subbed it. Sold it. Yay me. That’s 76 short stories now.

Also, Pro Writing Aid link is an aff link. Get 20% off, here. Help me pay for my human editor 🙂

I have a lot of work to do in my Death World novel before I sent it out to agents.

On a positive note, book 2 is brewing in my head. I have worked out the opening (it’s a flash back but important), and I have a rough idea of a large chunk of the book. Still working out what happens from there.

I got the title (may change in the future but for now): Death World One Eight Oh.

Or Death World 180.

Why one eight oh? You’ll need to read book one to find out.

It’s the thing that ties the two books together.




A king gift for ya’ll


“Stephen has written a new short story, “Laurie,” which is available now as a free download exclusively on You may download and/or print the story for yourself or to pass along to others, but may not charge any money to share it.”

I have lost a lot of faith in King and his ability to horrify me. The movies do a good job (IT), but his books seem to wane from the midway point and I often close the book–and curse. Can one outgrow an author that gave many hours of joy? An author whom held the attention of this fella from the age of 10? 

For those who still rock out on King and (Koontz)

Here’s the link to King’s present:


 I built another website on one of the free building sites, zoho docs. I’ve used them before for writing but never for building the website. is still around and will stay that way. This is the Richard Lee site. is the new site for the crime writing side. Check it out. It also has a blog.