Recently on my blog I reviewed Finding Suzy, which delves into the real-life crime and investigation case of 25 year old Suzy Lamplugh, an estate agent who went missing in July 1986 and has never been seen since. Written by David Videcette, it is a thought provoking, compelling read and you can read my thoughts about it here.
Today, David is my guest. Welcome David, thanks for chatting to me today. Can you please tell everyone a bit about yourself?
I’m an investigator, security consultant and writer. My background is in criminal investigation, having spent decades in the police, the majority fighting organised-crime and terrorism as a Scotland Yard detective.
It’s clear the Suzy Lamplugh case meant a lot to you as does the need to resolve it. When you’ve experienced the worst sides of human nature, is it hard to see the good in people?
We’ve probably all heard the phrase ‘humans are inherently good’? Yet many philosophers have struggled to understand why we humans inflict the most unspeakable acts on each other.
I believe most people are born ‘good’. If someone collapses in front of your eyes in your local high street, it’s a natural reaction to rush to their aid. But what of those who use the occasion for criminal gain? What motivates those people who see it as an opportunity to steal a bag from someone in obvious distress? And what of those who look the other way?
It’s these questions that have always fascinated me in any crime I’ve investigated, including the case of missing estate agent, Suzy Lamplugh.
Most people can live together in large scale societies, even when they strongly disagree. But whereas bees and ants may instinctively cooperate and work together for the common good, humans are often self-interested. First and foremost we will look out for our own safety. After that come motivations to maintain reputation, social standing, and material wealth. Underpinning all of that will be animalistic desires and drives, placing us in direct conflict with others.
I can’t counteract human nature. Untangling people’s real motivations in any interaction is what makes investigation so fascinating and cold cases so challenging to solve.
As a writer, how does writing fiction compare to writing to non-fiction?
Although all of my books are rooted in real cases, I am bound by the Official Secrets Act, which barred me from writing factual books about my time in the police. Instead, I began by writing crime fiction as a cathartic exercise. My first two books are thrillers: The Theseus Paradox focuses on the London 7/7 bombings and The Detriment unravels the Glasgow Airport attacks.
I write using my memories of experiences, so you get the pure raw emotion and intensity on the page. All of my books put the reader front and centre. You experience the action in real time, as I did.
My third book, Finding Suzy, documents my real-time hunt for answers in a true crime case I’ve worked on since returning to civilian life. I’ve spent five years reinvestigating the mysterious disappearance of missing estate agent Suzy Lamplugh. Because people don’t just disappear…
And finally, the question I love to ask all writers! For anyone thinking of becoming a writer, what advice would you offer?
Writing is just like anything else we do – the more you do it, the better you become. Never give up.
If you’d like to know more about David, you can find him at the links below:
The DI Jake Flannagan crime thrillers based on real events (in order):
The Theseus Paradox (ebook): www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B015UDFYQ6
The Theseus Paradox (paperback): www.amazon.co.uk/dp/099342631X
The Detriment (ebook): www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07227XS4G
The Detriment (paperback): www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0993426336
True crime investigation/non-fiction:
Finding Suzy (hardback): www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0993426387
Finding Suzy (paperback): www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0993426379
Finding Suzy (ebook): www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0999M1FJ4
Amazon author page UK: www.amazon.co.uk/David-Videcette/e/B015UNLEN8