‘The Disappearance of Jeremy Meredith’ started with a setting and an atmosphere in mind. The characters and plot elements were then created to fit. I wanted a story in which an unexpected visitor arrives at Oscar's house in the middle of a storm, involving a disappearance, a touch of romantic tension, and with the solution to it all hidden in a clifftop manor on the Breton coast. The idea of an overheard conversation with a verbal clue that later linked to a physical key required a lot more thought and fine-tuning. It had to be just right because this element is the means of making sure the reader is actively involved in the investigation and faces the same challenge as Oscar.
This was my answer to the question asked of every contributor to Flame Tree Publishing's anthology, Detective Thrillers: "What was the inspiration behind your story?"