James Ellson

Location: Hayfield, Derbyshire
About me...

I used to be a police officer, starting in London and finishing as a DI at Moss Side in Manchester. When I left the police I started writing and have been writing ever since. Six manuscripts including a memoir, From Cop to Coppicer. After 10 years of trying, my debut novel was published in 2020 – a crime thriller called The Trail.
I now wear two hats; in addition to writing, I run a smallholding. I live in the Peak District with my wife. We’re self-sufficient in fruit and veg, and keep chickens and bees (turkeys at Christmas!). My passion is fruit trees, especially apples.
I’m also a keen mountaineer, and an experienced public speaker.
I may be available at short notice, it is always worth contacting me if you have been let down.

About my Talk...

I will bring a projector and laptop with my talks on PowerPoint. I will need a screen / wall to project onto.
I can also deliver talks ‘stand alone’ which is often required for After Dinner and Luncheon presentations or where the venue is not suitable for presenting an illustrated talk.

My talks can be delivered as virtual presentations – zoom etc


£75 Plus mileage costs from my home in Hayfield, Derbyshire SK22; the nearest town is Glossop and I’m prepared to travel 90 minutes, possibly further depending on the size of audience and appropriate travel expenses.

My Contact Details:

07958 930049

Cops and Notebooks

This talk looks at both my police career and writing career  and the links between the two.

After school, university, and a gap year cycling from Miami to Caracas for charity, I joined the police.  I was a police officer for 10 years in London before transferring to Manchester, finishing as a Detective Inspector at Moss Side.

After the police I started writing, first a memoir, and then crime thrillers. My debut novel The Trail was published in 2020.

This talk is suitable for schools, colleges, or a general audience.

Trevor Allen, Head of Sixth Form, Leicester Grammar School  writes “James’s story is an interesting one delivered in a highly engaging way. Students would have been particularly struck by his determination to get his book published, his advice about writing, his love of reading and his sound advice about university and life beyond. This was a session we will look to repeat in the future, hopefully, with James being able to speak to us live rather than through a screen”.



The Long Road to Publication

After leaving the police, it took 10 years for me to write and publish my debut novel, a crime thriller called The Trail.
It wasn’t for lack of trying!
This is the story of that long road.
The talk covers my writing journey from magazine articles on mountaineering, to an MA in Creative Writing, to published author. I will discuss my attempts at the various routes to publication (traditional / independent / self-publishing / hybrid). And highlight the route which worked for me.

Reviews for The Trail:
“intelligent and pacy thriller” (Paula Hawkins, Girl On The Train)

“a stunning debut from an exciting new addition to the world of crime fiction” (Stephen Booth, Cooper & Fry crime series)

Living Sustainably: 15 Steps to Self-Sufficiency

I wear two hats, smallholder and writer.

Farlands smallholding in the Peak District includes a large vegetable garden, an orchard, chickens and bees (and turkeys at Christmas!). I have a particular passion for apples and currently grow over 50 cultivars. We are self-sufficient in fruit and veg.
Our tag line is a greener, more sustainable way of life.

• A fully illustrated talk which is both informative and inspirational.
• Covers fruit and veg, and also poultry and bees.
• Full of ideas on self-sufficiency and sustainability
• There is (a little) philosophy, humour, poetry, and quotes from the self-sufficiency guru John Seymour, and Henry Thoreau’s novel Walden.
• Some content is likely to surprise, and may even shock!

James Ellson Contact Details:

07958 930049

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