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Following in the footsteps of giants

As some you of you will know - my plan is to turn my attention to writing a Victorian detective story of my own. Not all writers can move painlessly from non-fiction to fiction (or vice versa) and it remains to be seen whether I manage the leap or fall into the chasm of failure.

Leaving that to one side, the inevitable problem that I face is that there will be comparisons made between my detective (no I'm not writing a pastiche) and the great detective himself. Being a devotee of said Holmes (with three non-fiction titles concerning the creation and his creator under my belt) means my situation is even worse as my knowledge of the Holmes stories is likely to influence what I write.

I have agonised over this (probably a lot more than I should have) and have finally decided to not worry about it. I shall get my story out of my head onto the page and assess it then. To try and do so beforehand is the way that madness lies.

I have also comforted myself with the knowledge that Sherlock Holmes was, to a certain extent, following in the footsteps of Poe's Dupin. So I am, in a way, facing the same problem that Conan Doyle did himself.

In any event this is all in the future as my third non-fiction book is not yet on the shelves.

A.