My first forays into crime writing were short stories, including ‘Fresh Bait’ which was published by Artemis Press and has since been reprinted many times in high school texts.
Two early crime novels are now in my bottom drawer! In 1996 I began writing books for children and young adults, resulting in more than 70 titles published by Penguin Random House, UQP, HarperCollins, Pearson and Macmillan Education. My books for young readers have won awards and been published overseas.
However, I continued to write adult crime fiction for my own enjoyment while publishing books for a younger audience. When I entered my novel, Trust Me, I’m Dead in the 2018 CWA Debut Dagger Awards, I was delighted to be shortlisted. This led to a two-book deal with UK publisher, Verve Books. The sequel to Trust Me, I’m Dead is Dead and Gone, and Verve has since published the third in the Judi Westerholme series, Mad, Bad and Dead.
Trust Me, I’m Dead was longlisted for the CWA John Creasey New Dagger Award 2020 and the NZ Ngaio Marsh Best Debut Novel award.
I’ve also written crime and mystery fiction for younger readers. My middle grade crime novel, Dying to Tell Me, was published in the USA by KaneMiller and was a VOYA Top Shelf pick. I republished it in Australia. My YA crime novel, Bone Song, was published in the UK by Ransom Publishing.
While I have started a fourth Judi W book, I’ve also written a series starring homicide detective, Mal Forrest, and my latest novel, The Trouble With Lou, focuses on a private investigator. These will hopefully find a publisher in the future.
My research leads me into all sorts of places. The Coroner’s court, newspapers, road trips, and a variety of YouTube videos and books. You can find just about anything on YT! I also continue to learn from all the crime podcasts I can listen to now.
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