How a novel begins.

The last stop – how a novel happens.

Berlin Diary – Summer 2012.

How it started.


I walked into the sunshine from the old East German airport, still called Schönefeld. (Beautiful Field). It shouldn’t still exist. It had long ceased to be fit for purpose and is now being renovated. Back then it was truly awful. Late evenings, when the charter flights to Istanbul and the beaches of the Black Sea and Turkish Riviera leave, it  was a hellhole. It takes one back to the days of the terraces at football matches. You have to hope that the direction in which you are being pushed, will take you to the right departure gate.
That day in 2012, was much calmer. A young woman approached me and asked for €3 for a subway fare. She was dressed OK, not fashionable, but tidy. I tried to help her, but she was so distracted that she ignored my advice.
When I arrived at my apartment, I immediately sat down and tried to commit to paper, what a twenty-something woman was doing outside an international airport, with no money, no credit card, just a few stray tears in her eyes. I think she was Polish. I called her Maria.

A frantic woman in the shadows doesn’t attract attention.

Published by:

Clive La Pensée

The Last Stop is Clive's latest Berlin Thriller. Soon out through my new publisher, BNBS. How often has Clive been asked if the action in his latest novel, is autobiographical? He has lost count. But the voyeurs among his readers want to know if he did all those things, or just thought them, which would be bad enough. “You are unlikely to find an agent or publisher, so make sure you enjoy what you are writing. That way, you will get some reward from the exercise,’ is the mantra in the writing business. Do crime writers have to be criminals? Does J K Rowling have a broomstick licence? Did Clive have to do all the seedy clubs in Berlin to build his super-heroine Maria, the linguist from Poland, bent on revenge? Or was he just having fun? Clive finds fiction writing more rewarding than writing about the history of beer, which is where he started. The history of beer made money by turning a hobby into an earner, whereas fiction has been nothing but a cash sink, and is likely to remain so. But the point of fiction writing and reading is to have safe adventures, from your armchair. The author gets a bigger thrill than the reader, because being in charge of the action is special. Is The Last Stop autobiographical? Download the ebook or paper copy from Amazon and judge for yourself. His next novel 'Someone tell me what is going on!' takes the PoV of a 19 year old lesbian and her promiscuous friend Millie. Autobiographical? There's a thought. It should be ready to buy in November, so get ready to find out.

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