RC Bridgestock; Robert and Carol are one of the most promising crime writing team in Europe today.
Truth be told, they know more about crime than most people.
Carol had two children and was looking for a change in career from hairdresser and fancied working in an office. However her dad an office worker himself tried to put her off as he thought she would be bored ‘Finally I joined the Police as a support worker and it was everything I wanted – working in an office but there was always something to do and never a dull moment,’ she says.
Bob had joined the Police as a young man. ‘I kept being picked on by the local officers, I’d heard the saying ‘If you can’t beat them, join them.’ After a particularly unpleasant experience (he was bitten by a dog handlers dog) I thought I’d better join them.’ He laughs. He signed up for 30 years and by the time he met Carol he was a Detective.
Meeting at work, they quickly realized they were on to someone special.
‘Despite our track record in personal relationships after both our marriages had broken down and against all the odds we trusted each other immediately.’ She remembers. ‘That trust never waived.’ Bob agrees.
Getting together proved to be the start of a healing journey for them both. ‘Bob worked hard and hardly ever took a holiday and often couldn’t even take his day’s off,’ Carol remembers. ‘When he became a SIO (Detective Superintendent, Senior Investigative Officer), working on a murder case and serious incident the children and I would lose him to the family of the victim for the duration.’ On one day he gave evidence in three different murder trails that he was in charge of in a Crown Court – one of the cases had seven defendants who all had different Barristers. But Carol knew it was the only way, and supported him the best she could.
In their book titled Deadly Focus Jen gets Jack Dylan’s suit out in the middle of the night when he gets called out and puts fruit in his briefcase… Some say she is ‘too good. But this is exactly how Carol was. ‘It’s exactly how it needs to be.’ Bob says. ‘We are a team.’
The authenticity of the characters and police methods in Deadly focus are so compelling, laymen and police have commented on it.
They confess the books are to some degree autobiographical. ‘The cases are fictional but Bob is just like Jack and Jen is exactly like me. ‘Well in book one, two and three she is, I can’t vouch for the rest. You will have to wait and see,’ Carol smiles.
Writing together has proven to be the icing on the cake for both of them. A new venture to work on together after spending so long apart and a chance to revisit their past.
Carol feels writing has helped her deal with the psychological trauma in particular the fact she was bullied in her workplace by her immediate female boss.
Writing about it made her realize how much it had affected her. ‘It has taken me three books to work it out of my system.’ she confesses and adds ‘I can smile about it now.’
Bob agrees. For him it was an undetected murder playing on his mind. He was in charge, the pathologist got it wrong. Possible evidence was missing and the offender is still at large. ‘It was one out of 26 murders I took charge of in the last three years of my thirty year police career, and I have come to terms with the fact I couldn’t have done more than I did.’ He says.
Writing together was Bob’s idea and when they retired from police work he enrolled them both on a course. ‘He wanted something we could do together.’ says Carol.
Bob laughs ‘Well the reason I didn’t want to go alone is that Carol can type quicker.’
In Bob and Carol’s world there is not much time for leisure as they have three more novels planned, Carol is Chair of the Wight Fair Writers’ Circle, Bob is a member and Bob is at the moment helping the well-known scriptwriter Sally Wainwright with background and police procedure on her new police television series. ‘We are enjoying our selves, it’s like a breath of fresh air Carol says.’
R.C. Bridgestock are authors of the crime thriller ‘Deadly Focus’ and ‘Consequences’. The Publishers are Caffeine Nights Publishers http://www.caffeine-nights.com. The books are dedicated to victims of crime.
Want to know more about Bob and Carol? Visit their website
The Wight Fair Writers’ (www.iowwritingircle.co.uk) each year organize two writing competition to raise money for a charity and try to inspire all age groups to enter. Their next competition is the ‘Crime & Intrigue’ short story competition and the launch will involve a mock crime scene, police dogs and the firearms team – all who will come and take fingerprints to make into badges too for the children of the 1st Godshill & Rookley Cubs on Wednesday 7th March.
Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed and look forward to your comments. Please come back next month for another installment of Inspirational Lives and feel free to contact me with your story via my e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Best wishes – Maggi 🙂
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