Author Matthew W Harrill

Current Events – Inspiration for your story

Current Events

Current Events – Get inspired by the Media!

When I was at school, one of the courses I studied was Economics. I was privileged to have a very canny teacher by the name of Conrad Snook who kept his finger on the pulse of current events in the financial and political arenas. He knew that at a certain time, whatever was #trending (no there were no hashtags back in 1993) would more than likely be used as case studies for the final exams.

So one day he just had us bring in all the daily newspapers (for you, the fibre-broadband internet generation, we used to have it all printed on paper and sold in places called ‘Newsagents’) and we went through all the relevant stories. A year or so later, every single article appeared in the final exam.

current events

Have a look at current events today

As I am writing this, the whole FIFA shambles is coming to a head. For anybody not in the know, FIFA, the international governing body for Football (or ‘Soccer’ as its known in the colonies) is being investigated by multiple bodies, many of its highest executives arrested and facing extradition to the US. Sponsors are less than impressed, a great many people are potentially in trouble. Its head, Sepp Blatter is facing all sorts of pressure to resign, but will probably walk away instead with another term as the organisations head after the election on Friday. Current events are fantastic subject material.

If you are writing a story involving political intrigue, corruption, a shadowy organisation that appears ‘above the law’ (my own ARC: Anges de la Resurrection des Chevaliers is such a body, and one not without its own fair share of corrupted individuals), you would be wise to take down all the reports, save as much material as possible, research the history of the corruption.

Stories like this are never as good as they are as they are happening. History will record fact, but now you get opinion, and that means points of view that are not necessarily correct. When are characters in books ever always correct all of the time? Frailties and vulnerabilities make them human, make them interesting.

Find the Horror in everything

current event

When researching current events and an article involving zombie-like cannibalism crops up, you can guarantee I am on it straight away. As a writer, you will always have source material you are interested in, even if you aren’t going to be using it directly.

In this case, there is so much more to consider regarding this article. The drug used – what is its history and what else has happened involving it? The individual – does he have form? An interesting background? It all adds to the flavour.

Even everyday anecdotes are worth recording, down to a single line of text. As you are developing a story, you will have current events to draw upon. Be selective though. The information can build up and might not always be relevant. Stories that live in the now can really immerse the reader. They feel realistic for them, as they do for you.



In case you were interested, I am creating an increasing number of ARC items in my shop, including Steve the squiggle.


Review for Hellbounce

Overall, a great story with a clever and well thought out plot. Interesting characters. A thrilling adventure, which was believable, despite the supernatural element. Definitely induced plenty of ‘I can’t put this book down’ too.I loved the beginning of this book, which introduces us to Dr Eva Ross, a psychotherapist, dealing with a very twisted individual with Borderline Personality Disorder. It certainly had an impressive Silence of the Lambs feel to it at this stage.

Later the story progressed into something resembling Clive Barker being let loose with the Bible. As a huge fan of Clive Barker and currently attempting to complete my challenge of reading the entire Bible within a year, I really enjoyed the whole demons, Hell and biblical scriptures aspect of this book. It was approached in an in-depth and descriptive way that had it feeling unnervingly believable.

I also loved that part of the adventure took me to Egypt. It is a place very close to my heart, as it is the only place I have travelled to outside of Europe, and I loved it so much I went back there two years later. I enjoyed being taken back to the hustle and bustle of the bazaars, and imagining the beautiful colours and intense smell of spices.

I highly recommend this to all horror fans. I didn’t find this story scary, but I did find it very interesting, exciting and somewhat intense at times. There are some gruesome scenes of a graphic nature, but they are well placed as part of the storyline and not just there to shock.

This felt like a book written by a very experienced author. Very impressive, and I would be surprised if this is not a huge success.