Bestsellers with Northern Rivers as a backdrop
CRIME writer Greg Reed likes the Northern Rivers area of NSW that much, it's the backdrop for all of his many books.
Prolific is a description that comes easily when describing this author, who writes under the pseudonym CT Mitchell.
Twenty-five ebooks in 30 months mean he's no slouch at the writing desk, and nine of those murder mysteries have been bestsellers on Amazon in the US and UK.
Greg came late to the writing world. At 57, he branched out into writing short novellas.
He has 12 under his belt so far, with his first, Rejection, set at Southern Cross University in Lismore where his main character Detective Jack Creed tried to stop a mass shooting.
Breaking Point, renamed Murder Secret, was his first novel and centred on five murders over a decade between Kingscliff and Pottsville.
"My readers are definitely 55-plus, with a lot retired,” he said.
"Mostly women and retired. A lot live in the United States.
"With 10,000 regular readers of my weekly emails, I'm learning a lot more about seniors.
"I get a fairly good feeling of who they are.”
Greg also visits retirement villages on occasions to talk about his books and dealings with criminals, and to give books away.
While he'd love to be a full-time writer living on the north coast, he's not there yet, despite the thousands of ebook sales.
"I work as a real estate manager based in Brisbane and work throughout Queensland and Northern NSW,” he said.
"I've been going to Cabarita Beach for 20-plus years.
"I just had a weekend in Bangalow.”
Unlike Greg, his fictional characters get to live permanently in idyllic towns like Cabarita, Hastings Point, Pottsville and Bangalow.
"I always think of Cabarita in the old days when there was a petrol station and the old shops,” he says.
"The Cabarita community is probably a bit annoyed that I'm ruining their tourism (with the pretend murders).
"I always had this fascination with crime figures.
"Later on, my reading and TV watching focused on the British murder mysteries.”
Greg's latest Creed book features a barber from Cabarita who goes missing.
He's been leading a double life.
If his books were ever made into a TV series, Greg would like to see Australian actor Bryan Brown or a similar personality play Creed - on reflection, maybe someone a bit younger.
Greg says the lead character is loosely modelled on himself, and he's keen to see his characters known all over the world.
"I picked up a publishing deal with a group called Juggernaut Books in India,” he says.
"They have an online platform. They like the short books so people can get them on their mobile.
"They're a new platform for promoting books and they've done about a million-odd books in 12 months.
"I've also picked up a literary agent in the US, and I've got a UK publisher.”
So the plot is coming together nicely, with Greg maybe on target to achieve international success.
Find Greg's books at ctmitchellbooks.com.