Iain McLaughlin

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Sherlock Holmes

You should have deduced that this page would be here.


I suppose like most people of my age, Basil Rathbone was my first Sherlock Holmes. I've seen countless iterations of Holmes since but Rathbone retains a special place in my heart. What does this have to do with my Holmes work? Not a lot, except that after finishing playing Holmes in movies he went on to play Holmes on radio, and that's where my first Holmes stories appeared, on radio for Imagination Theater.

The Cursed of Brokenshore

The Beast of Hyndford

The Mysterious Case


The MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories Part III: 1896-1929

The Sherlock Holmes short story I mentioned last week is in Volume 3 of... THIS! The MX Book of New Sherlock Holmes Stories, There's a lovely article about it on the Radio Times site here. My story, The Hopkins Brothers Affair, was co-written with my usual partner in crime, Claire Bartlett.

The Further Associates of Sherlock Holmes

This is an interesting one for me, writing from a perspective other than that of Dr Watson. My interest is in how others view Holmes and Watson, and how others perceive both men and their talents.

The Strangest Cases of Sherlock Holmes

This is a collection I'm editing for Thebes Publishing for release in Spring 2018.

Sherlock and Elementary have brought Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson into the 21st century. Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce took them into the Second World War to stand as firmly against Hitler as they did against Professor Moriarty. Robert Downey Junior’s Holmes remained in his Victorian setting but strayed far from Conan Doyle’s saturnine figure. Each of these was different from the classic Victoria Holmes of Conan Doyle or more faithful adaptations, but each manages to be genuinely Sherlock Holmes.

There is an essence of Holmes and Watson that stick with the characters whatever the location and situation… and that is where the Strangest Cases of Sherlock Holmes arrives.

There will be 10-12 short stories, each of them as different as you can make them, not only from each other but also from the Sherlock Holmes we know… except that it needs to still be Sherlock Holmes. In can be contemporary, in a historical setting other than late Victorian London – choose your period in time, choose your location. Are Holmes and Watson elderly? Are they women? Are they still privileged men from an empire that rules half the world?

Don’t be constrained by Holmes canon. Take them where your imagination wants, play with the format, play with the characters, twist them around a bit – twist them around as much as you want. We want YOUR take on Holmes and Watson.

We are opening our doors to submissions for this anthology from professional writers and from untried new talent. Stories will be no more than 6,000 words. Please send a short synopsis of your idea rather than the completed story to thebessubmissions@gmail.com by the deadline of August 15th 2015. The selected submissions will be informed within 4 weeks. Please do not send complete stories at this stage, they will not be read.

Russel D McLean, Cavan Scott and Daniel McGachey are the first authors confirmed for this anthology. Release your mind, set Holmes and Watson off on their Strangest Cases. The game’s afoot – but the rules of the game are in your hands.