Saturday, 22 December 2018

Don't Come For Me (Nancy Kerr book 3) What would you do if you were charged with your boyfriend's murder, but you knew he wasn't dead?



That's the situation Nancy Kerr finds herself in in Don't Come for Me. 

Here's an extract -


Prologue
You're in the bathroom late at night when you hear a noise coming from outside the door, and there's this tiny part of you, the product of centuries of genetic programming designed to make you fight or flee, that thinks there's someone inside your house. 
Somebody waiting for you outside that door.
Panic sucks the air out of your lungs.
Your dread of what's outside that door places an icy hand on your shoulder.
All kinds of scary thoughts are going through your mind. Different permutations of what's outside the door.
Has someone broken in and they're going through your stuff?
Is someone there determined to do you harm as they have in the past?
There's this tiny voice inside your head telling you not to be so silly. You're imagining things. After what happened before that's understandable, but you can't let fear rule your life. Be the boss of you.
When you open that door, you'll feel ridiculous when you see that nobody's there.
There is no bogeyman waiting.
You open the bathroom door, confidently to prove you don't care; that you've mastered your irrational fear. Not tentatively like you want to, so you can turn on your heels and slam the door shut. Just an inch so you can get a peek at what's out there.
In a few seconds, you're going to be laughing about this. To feel a fool.
With your heart beating in your ears, the door swings open and right away, you see that you were right to be worried.
Both chairs are upturned in the living room and the TVs been pulled out of its brackets. Your boyfriend's nowhere to be seen.
You go into the kitchen and there's a knife on the floor and a pool of blood. You're trying to take all this in as your heart thumps against your breastbone on stereo.
That's when the police turn up, threatening to break down the door if you don't open up.
Surveying the scene you know that they're gonna think you killed him...
My name is Nancy Kerr and I'm not a murderer. Since my parents were murdered I've come close a few times, but I've never done the deed.
I did tattoo the world RAPIST across the stomach of one of my parents' killers. But to me that was justified, righteous revenge because when I walked in on those monsters that’d killed my parents, they raped me and left me bleeding to death on the kitchen floor of my childhood home. What happened caused me to have a breakdown and I ended up in a psychiatric hospital where I was in the land of the zombies for fourteen months. I have no memory of most of what happened there. When I was released, I tracked down the men responsible for my parents’ deaths and discovered I had an aptitude for detective work. Since then, I’ve helped track down the madman responsible for abducting sex workers from Glasgow’s streets.
But, hey, that's another story.
Accused of my boyfriend Tommy's murder, I need to prove my innocence. It won't be easy. Confronted by the same scene as the police, I would think I was guilty too. And, Tommy's still missing, presumed dead; murdered by me.
The clock's ticking.


Chapter 1
Detective McAskill pounded a meaty fist into the table, but I barely blinked. He'd done it so many times before it’d lost its dramatic effect. He was a short, dough ball of a man with ruddy cheeks that looked like a kid had scribbled them on with a colored pencil. His shirt sleeves were rolled up to his elbows, revealing pasty, podgy arms more used to lifting pints than weights. Sweat came down in rivulets from his brow and his nostrils flared like a racehorse’s every time he hit the table. Apparently, the police aren't allowed to beat confessions out of suspects these days, but I can tell McAskill hankers for the good old days.
I was seriously worried about his state of health, and I was the one accused of murder.
”We will find him, you know that, Kerr. No matter where you've put his body."
This time it was Detective Cullen who up until now had been playing the good cop, who spoke.
Cullen was a tall man with a fine head of lustrous black hair and steady eyes. He was the one I needed to watch because everything he did or said was measured unlike Cullen who was one step away from being a knuckle dragger.
Not for the first time, I gave them my spiel. "I didn't put his body anywhere, because he's not dead and I certainly didn't kill him. And while you're wasting time with me you could be out looking for him."
Convinced I'd killed him, they were doing nothing to find Tommy. Instead, they were checking out possible burial sites, including my parents’ garden and allotment. I still hadn't been able to sell the house I grew up in. Nobody wanted to buy a house where two people were murdered. Or maybe the rose bushes in the garden put them off, as mum always said they took a lot of looking after all. Whatever the reason, in a way I was glad: all I had left of my family were memories and most of them were in that house. Sell the house and I would be giving away another part of them and I didn’t have enough parts of them left. They say you’ll always have your memories as if that should console you, but it doesn’t. All you want is the impossible – you want your loved ones back.
The police were wasting time; precious time that could be the difference between finding Tommy alive or chopped up into pieces and packed into a suitcase, then dumped in the River Clyde.
The last time I'd seen him he'd been in the living room watching TV and I'd gone to get a shower, expecting him to come in and join me. I heard banging and when I came out there was a puddle of blood and a knife and he was gone. Then the police showed up.
Of course I'd told them my story many times, but they weren't buying it. The police thought they'd met a killer dumb enough to kill someone, hide their body and then lay in wait for them with the murder weapon. If this wasn't such a nightmare I'd have been insulted.
Even when my lawyer Drew Bennett put it in the same terms, the line of questioning hadn't wavered. This wasn't so much a whodunit as a shedunit. My reaction strayed between astonishment and bewilderment. Part of me wanted to cackle at the absurdity of it all, whilst the other half wanted to demand to see the hidden cameras. Well, this had to be some fly on the wall TV show where any minute now an over made up host would jump out and say "Gotcha" and everybody would laugh, except me.
Detective McAskill shoved his gargoyle face within inches of mine. "You do know we can charge you with murder even without a body?"
Rather than move away, I moved my face closer to his. I was tired and scared, but I refused to be intimidated. "I told you, Tommy's not dead. I didn't kill him. He's missing. And we're wasting time here. You need to find him."
I couldn’t hide the desperation from my voice.
McAskill scrunched up his face. "Not the same old story. It's getting boring. Go on, hen, tell us the truth. Get it off your chest."
He lowered his eyes when he said chest. His colleague gave him a nod and he sat down.
"Look, Nancy," said Cullen, clasping his long, slim hands together the same way a bank manager does before he turns you down for a loan. "We know you and your boyfriend argued. He lied to you about his past. It's understandable you'd be upset. That you'd want to give him a piece of your mind, but things got out of hand. Hey, it happens. We've all been there. Haven't we Pete?" He glanced over at McAskill who smirked.
"You were in the kitchen chopping up some carrots, or maybe you were using the knife to clean the food from the plug hole. My wife makes me do that." He made a face. "Damn annoying I can tell you. Maybe he made a sudden movement and you put out your hand, forgetting the knife was in it. Accidents happen, don't they, Nancy?" His gaze was steady. "And that's what happened. Isn't it? You didn't mean to do it. A court will understand. They'll be on your side, especially considering what happened to you in the past."
He sounded so convincing he almost had me believing what he said was true.
"Now's the time to speak up, Nancy. Continue to deny it and you could get 20 years when you’re convicted. Tell us everything and we'll put in a good word with the judge. You could get less than 10 years. Be out in less than five." His voice was low, seductive. “Get on with your life.”
I took a deep breath, something I'd been doing a lot since they'd arrested me. Losing my cool wasn't going to help me or Tommy, but we were wasting time here. "I told you what happened. Someone took him. They must have because he was gone when I came out of the shower. He wouldn't leave me; not without telling me where he was going."
I gave Cullen a despairing glance. "It's just as I told you. When I came out of the bathroom, there was blood on the floor and the knife. He was nowhere to be seen."
My heart was thundering against my chest. They had to listen to me. He needed their help. The longer they took to start looking for him, the more chance he'd end up dead. If he wasn't already. But one thing gave me hope that he was alive: surely if killing him was the intention of whoever took him, they'd have killed him in the flat and left his body, not set it up to make it look like I'd killed him.
Eyeing each man imploringly, I said, "You've got to try and find him. Please." Maybe I could appeal to their compassion.
While they were wasting time with me anything could be happening to him, especially if his past had come back to haunt him. Tommy had been part of a four-man Special Forces team given the top secret mission of assassinating an Iraqi politician who'd been helping terrorists. The mission failed when they were betrayed by a colleague and Tommy and his remaining comrade, Eric were faced to fake their own deaths after a bounty was put on their heads. Now it looked like they'd found him. Not even being given a new identity had saved him.
McAskill sneered. "We'll find him alright. Wherever you've put him. We'll find the poor bastard and nail you. So, you can cut out the little miss innocent act. Better folk than you have lied to us and been found out."
My hackles weren't so much as raised as standing to attention. I'd had enough of this bullshit. "You can't seriously think that I killed him?"
The way Cullen and McAskill exchanged bemused glances, you'd have thought we were standing as the rain bounced off the sidewalk and I'd insisted it was clear blue sky.
"How could I get the better of someone like him? You must have read his file? He's a highly trained, Special Forces soldier. He's 6ft 2 and even if you stuck Naomi Campbell's legs on me I'm titchy. And I'm not a crack soldier. I design the crappy inserts that fall out of newspapers and magazines when you're trying to read them." I paused, not wanting them to catch them on a lie. "Well, did until they fired me. But, back to Tommy, the guy who's missing, the man you should be searching for because some mad bastards have taken him. They must have because when I went for a shower he was there. When I came out he was gone."
McAskill got up and walked around the small, airless room. There wasn't a bare light bulb swinging from the ceiling but there might as well have been because the heat was oppressive. On one of the hottest summers on record, I'd worked in a hospital laundry and unluckily for me I'd been lumbered with operating the steam press. It was that type of oppressive heat in this room.
McAskill gave me a dirty big grin as he produced an evidence bag. An object I knew very well was inside.
"For the purpose of the transcript, I'm showing Miss Kerr a Taser," said McAskill.
Shit. I'd forgotten all about that.
Since I’d been raped I'd been carrying it for protection.
Cullen eyed me intently, his watery eyes gleaming. "Have you seen this before, Nancy? Answer yes or no."
Damn, what could I say now? Deny it and they'd find my prints all over the thing. Admit it was mine and I was screwed. They'd think I'd used it to subdue Tommy. And, it was an illegal weapon. But denying it was mine might make me look even guiltier.
I turned to my lawyer for guidance. He was too busy examining his expensive manicure. He'd been lumbered with me because I didn't have a lawyer and he was visiting a client at the time and he despised me for it. Apart from one interjection, he'd sat there impersonating a stuffed dog.
I was about to tell him I'd be better off with a stuffed toy as my legal representative, when he finally deigned to speak.
His voice was as smooth as chocolate. "Go on, Nancy; tell these nice gentlemen what you told me. Some kind, considerate individual got you that as a present. You'd no idea it was real and you certainly have never used it, nor would you know how to." He stopped talking and gazed over at each detective in turn, grinning broadly. "Christ, guys. My client's an office worker, not Steven Seagal."
McAskill glowered. "Let your client answer the question, Mr. Bennett. This isn't some tacky TV cop show where you get to butt in and show how smart you are. Save your showboating for the jury."
Throughout this exchange, Detective Cullen sat there with a neutral expression on his face. He'd probably realized a long time ago that his colleague was an idiot and easily riled.
McAskill turned to me, face as red as a Glasgow tourist coming off a flight from Malaga. "Miss Kerr, does this Taser belong to you?"
My throat was so dry I had to sip some water from the paper cup in front of me. The water was lukewarm and tasted like it’d come from a puddle. I genuinely had no idea what I was going to say before the words tripped out. "Yes, it's mine."
McAskill made an hmm noise and I wished I could grab the Taser and make him dance. "I bought it to protect myself after my parents were murdered and I was left dying on the kitchen floor. I was terrified the men who'd attacked me would come back and finish what they started." Then I added to rile McAskill. "Your lot never caught them, you know. They're still out there."
I couldn't hide the venom in my voice. Nor did I want to. I was seething that after all I'd been through, I was the one being treated like I was some kind of lowlife when I'd done nothing wrong. Why couldn't they see that I'd been set up?
Cullen's neutral gaze shifted to something approaching sympathy, whilst McAskill eyed me wearily.
"I'm sorry for what happened to you, Nancy," said Cullen. "I genuinely am. And my condolences for your loss." He sounded genuine. "But Tasers are illegal in this country. We'll have to add possession of an illegal weapon to the list of charges, although I'm sure in your case, a jury will be sympathetic. But, then with a murder charge, that’s the least of your worries.”
That's what I was worried about.

Copyright Jennifer Lee Thomson, 2018 

To buy Don't Come for Me 
   Oneclick   

An extract from Throwaways (Nancy Kerr book 2)

Throwaways is the second Nancy Kerr book to feature crime-fighting duo Nancy Kerr and Tommy McIntyre.*****Out Now****


Traci just wanted to go home to her daughter.

As the ball gag cut off her cries for help, Diane tried to steady her breathing. If she didn’t, she’d suffocate. She sang Somewhere Over the Rainbow in her head and imagined she was in the kitchen singing along with Kyra as they washed the dishes; little Kyra standing on a stool so she could reach the sink, her wee sleeves rolled up so her top didn’t get wet. But, no matter how hard she tried to tune everything out one thought was trapped in her head: she’d never see her daughter again.

“It’s good money,” Traci had chirped as she’d flicked a strand of hair behind her ear. She was platinum blonde today. “All we need to do is put on a girl on girl show, lez it up a bit and we’re onto a big score. It’ll be fun.”

She made a gesture with her hand as though she was counting money. “From what I’ve heard this punter is seriously loaded, and not shy about throwing his cash around either.”

The prospect of a big pay day was tempting, but Diane had never done anything like that before. With her, a blowy down a dark lane and a wee car ride to the back of a disused warehouse was more her usual. She’d never done any lezzy stuff, but she couldn’t afford to turn this job down. Not with her Kyra needing some shoes.

Despite the protests in her head, she said, “Okay, sounds good. But, how did you find out about this gig? Do you know the guy?” She’d long since learnt that if something sounded too good to be true, it always was.

Traci shook her head. “Nah, but a friend of mine vouched for him.”

“Who’s your friend?”

Her question made Traci smile, but it wasn’t a friendly smile. “If I told you that, doll, what’s to stop you cutting me out and doing the gig yourself?”

There was an implied threat in her words. Diane knew she’d get rag dolled if she crossed Traci. She’d seen her in action enough times; once she’d dragged another girl along the pavement by the hair because she accused her of stealing one of her punters. The other girl had screamed like a banshee, but nobody had gone to help her. You looked after yourself on the streets and never got involved unless you wanted your face rearranged. That was rule number one.

#

Traci hadn't been capable of battering anyone the last time she'd seen her. Her ginger hair (he must have ripped off her wig) had been hacked off. Tufts of it stuck out, reminding Diane of one of the hairdressing dolls Kyra was always playing with. She called it Angel, but it was the ugliest thing she'd ever seen, especially after Kyra had cut off its hair with nail scissors when she’d been out of the room.

What Diane wouldn't give right now to have the doll on her lap whilst Kyra used her best lipstick as blusher.

A tear trundled down her cheek. Nobody was ever going to find her. She'd die here, alone in this damp, dark room, with rats that were as big as cats scuttling around. She’d starve to death and then they’d eat her, gnawing on her face first; sharp, jagged teeth tearing into skin and bone. She’d seen that in a movie once. All she'd been given to eat was bread that was only fit for the birds and milk that smelled funny. She’d thought about not drinking it, but with nothing else to drink she was always glad when she saw the plastic cup.

When he brought the food, it was the only time he removed her gag. He'd leave her for five minutes then return to replace the gag. If she resisted he'd inject her with one of those needles he always carried. Pain would scream through her veins and then she’d be out of it. She’d wake up with a raging thirst and tendrils of hair sticking to the sweat on her face. But then there were worse things than being injected…

Chapter 1

As a division of labour, it didn't come more unfair than this. As Tommy sat in a comfy car, heater up full bung, sipping a Starbucks and leisurely munching on a cheese and onion bagel (with extra fried onions), I was standing outside, shivering my barely covered butt off, as the wind whooshed up my skirt and the rain came down like nails.

This was summer, in Scotland.

Huddled in a doorway, in a scraggy blonde wig, and my best Pretty Woman outfit, I'm already soaked to the skin. And, I know it won’t get any better because there are men who will pull over in their cars and ask how much I charge for a blow job or full sex.

As downward spirals go, this was bad. At least it would have been if I hadn’t been out here to catch a killer and not because I was reduced to turning tricks for a living.



You can get Throwaways from Amazon
   Oneclick   




I know I don't have to say it, but all text is © Copyright Jennifer Lee Thomson 2018
Any breach of copyright and I'll send Nancy round.
Be warned: she carries a Taser and has a seriously bad attitude:)

WHAT WOULD YOU DO TO GET REVENGE? Hell To Pay (Nancy Kerr Book 1) is out NOW



An extract from Hell To Pay (Nancy Kerr book 1)


She took a few more steps into the living room and walked straight into hell…



Chapter 1


I’m cold, colder than I’ve ever been in my entire life and I don’t know why. Slowly, I open my eyes, tentatively at first because even opening them a fraction feels like someone's shoving red-hot pins into them. The light is so bright.


What’s with the light anyway?


Has Michael wandered in, blootered on some poncy new beer and left the light on, after collapsing in a heap onto the bed?  I’ll brain him if he has. I’m no good to anyone when I don’t get my eight hours.


Pulling myself up in bed, I reach out my arm to nudge him awake so I can give him a right mouthful. My hand finds empty space.


Where is he?


My eyes sting as I prise them open – it’s as though there's been an accident with false lashes and I've glued my eyelashes together - and that’s when I realise I’m not in our flat. The reason I’m freezing is because I’m wearing a tracing paper thin hospital gown: the kind that shows off your backside when you’re being whisked off to x-ray.


A tidal wave of panic hits me and I jerk into full consciousness.


What’s happened to me?


I try to remember, but my brain’s all bunged up as if the top of my head's been removed and the cavity filled with cotton wool.


My arms are bandaged up. Have I been in an accident?  If I have, I don’t remember. Maybe I hit my head.


I take in my surroundings. If I’m in hospital, it’s no ordinary one. For one thing, my room’s more like a cell. There’s a bed and a table bolted to the floor, but no personal stuff: photos, or cards, or stuffed animals from people wishing me well. Does anyone even know I’m here?


I grope for a call button to get a nurse, but there isn’t one. What the hell? This place is a prison.

Staggering out of bed, I fight the wave of nausea and dizziness that make me want to yell at the world to stop moving because I want to get off the carousel. The tile floor is stone cold and there are no slippers by the bed. My feet are ice blocks. Why don’t I have any socks or tights on? 


Before I reach the door, there's a jingle of keys, then a key scrapes in the lock. Holding my breath, I brace myself for what’s coming.


A woman I don’t recognize with brown hair tied back in a ponytail appears. She’s dressed in a nurse’s uniform and there’s a small smile playing on the edge of her lips.


"Good, you’re awake, Nancy."


She sounds pleased, as if we’re bosom buddies, when I’ve never seen her before in my life.


"Where am I?"


My voice comes out as a rasp as though my throat’s been sandpapered down.

The nurse puts a hand on my shoulder. "Let’s get you back into bed, Nancy."


I do as she says. I’m worried if I don’t lie back, I’ll faint.


"You’re in Parkview Hospital," she says, as she fixes the pillows so I can sit upright.


I know all the hospitals in Glasgow, but I haven’t heard of that one. I ask her what kind of hospital it is and she tells me it’s a psychiatric facility. The reason I haven’t heard of it, is because they don’t publicize it. Perhaps because it’s full of nutters they want to keep away from society. The prospect terrifies me because that would mean they must think I’m cuckoo. Why else would I be here? 


I suck in my breath. When I ask her if this is a nut house, she presses her lips tightly together as she tells me no one refers to psychiatric hospitals in that way any more. Suitably chastised, I mumble an apology not because I think one’s needed, but because she’s the one with the keys.

"Why am I here?"


I’m dreading the answer, but I need to know. I don’t feel any different. Surely if I’d lost my mind, I'd know.


"You had a breakdown."


The way she says it, she could be talking about the weather.


She asks me if I want anything and I tell her a pair of proper pyamas, a dressing gown and slippers would be nice because I’m an ice block. If she gets in touch with Mum, she’ll bring me in some stuff.


Her smile’s still there, but breaks down around the corners of her mouth. There’s something she’s not telling me, because she’s worried how I’ll react. There’s fear in her eyes. I notice she’s wearing a lucky heather brooch, the same one I got for Mum. I’m staring at it as she tells me she’s going to fetch a doctor, when a memory stirs inside me and no matter how hard I try to push it away, someone’s taken their finger out the dyke and the water’s rushing in.


Blood, blood everywhere. Dad’s slumped in his favourite armchair, head bent forward as if in prayer (he never prayed a day in his life); a single bullet hole in his head. 

I know it’s him, even although his face has been beaten to a pulp: his blood staining the fireside rug my mum was so fond of. 


Even in death, my dad has a presence. He fills a room with the sheer weight of his personality. 


Discarded nearby is the baseball bat they used on him. It’s covered in blood and something sticky and dark brown, resembling raw mince.


All material is copyright of the author Jenny Thomson (C) 2018



*****For a limited time Hell To Pay will be 0.99*****

You can buy it here 
   Oneclick   



How Kirsty gets her Kicks will be published in June 2019

There's nothing more exciting for an author to see the cover for their new book for the first time.

It's like waiting for your baby to be born and hoping he doesn't have your sticky out ears.

I'm delighted to introduce the cover from the awesome Shotgun Honey for How Kirsty Gets Her Kicks.


You can meet Kirsty, the one-legged barmaid on the run from a gangster with a safe load of cash and a hot gun on June 2019.


Monday, 22 October 2018

6 of the Most Important Things I've learnt in 30 years of getting published

He has it all figured out - it took me years.


Thirty years ago my first piece was published in Jackie magazine about superstitions. I've learnt so many lessons along the way.

Some of them took me too long to learn and have cost me.  

There's a lot to recommend old fashioned pen and paper


1. Never edit on screen. 
You miss too much and sometimes your mind sees what it wants to see and not what's really there.

There's nothing more time consuming than forgetting what you put in each chapter and spending hours searching through your work to check something was or wasn't included.


Print out your work and edit with pencil or in red pen and then edit onscreen. I don't know why, maybe it’s the rhyme of pen or pencil on paper that concentrates the brain.

2. If you don't read books you can't write books
Reading opens your eyes not just to how others write, but to the mistakes they make.

3. Read as widely as you can. 
I write crime and devour books in that genre, but I love reading horror and anything supernatural too. At one stage, I read every Western I could get my hands on.

Read books you love. Read books you hate. That way you can see what works and what doesn't.

4. Do chapter summaries or outlines so you know what you've written in every single chapter with a quick glance. 

Trust me, I've learnt this the hard way.

Keeping track also helps with continuity. You don't want people to shriek, "How can she have a fight with her brother when he died of a drug overdose and it was mentioned in chapter five!"

5. Save copies of your work every single day. Use a free online storage company like Dropbox.

Does your Internet provider give you access to online storage free? If so, use it.

Back up not just every single day you do any work, but any time you make substantial or important changes. As well as online storage companies, email yourself your work to every email you have that either offers unlimited or a generous amount of storage. And invest in a an external drive. One large enough to store EVERY FILE on your computer.

That way if you're computer has a nervous breakdown you won't have a melt down when you discover you've lost all of your work.

6. You can put a bit of yourself into one character or every character, but never make them you. 
Make them react in their own way to things that happen to them, not you.

We give characters life, but its theirs to live in their very own unique way.

What do you think of those tips? Are there any tips that you swear by?
I'd love to hear from you.

Drop me a comment on this blog or contact me on Twitter where I tweet as @jenthom72
I hope to tweet you:)

Thursday, 4 October 2018

5 ways you know you've written your characters well


Characters. Every great novel or work of writing needs them. Without good characters things fall flat regardless of how well something is written.

But, how do you know readers will find your characters interesting enough to keep on reading?



1.You find yourself yelling "there's no way he/she would do that."
You know them so well.


2.When you're writing a scene you find yourself getting into their head space and hearing, smelling and feeling what they do.

You're not there with them - you are them. At least whilst you're writing the scene. We're not talking multiple personality disorder here, but it might feel like it.

3.You find yourself talking about them in every day conversation as if they're a friend of yours or even a family member.

4.You start placing them in your favourite novels and TV shows relishing how they would react if they met your favourites in that book or TV show.

5.You can place them in any scene and you know how they will react. You don't have to overthink it.


Saturday, 15 September 2018

The wacky world of the pop out cake

Hopefully the person jumping out of your cake won't look as bored as these two!

For a major scene in my book, How Kirsty Gets Her Kicks, I wanted my main character Kirsty to try and get close enough to someone who would immediately have her killed if he saw her.

I racked my brains about how to do this without her being found out and when it emerged he was having a birthday party, I thought it would be awesome if she could hide in a cake.

I don’t know about you, but I have never seen anyone jump out of a cake before, so I didn’t know where to start.  That’s when the good old Internet came to the rescue.   





Here are some fun facts I discovered -

It's actually quite straightforward to hire a pop out cake, as cakes designed for jumping out of are called.

Pop out cake are usually three tier cakes that resemble wedding cakes, you can even make your own. They can also be square.

Note, I said make and not bake your own because the only similarity between these cakes and real ones is the edible frosting they may have on the outside.

Quite often, a table cloth is placed over the bottom the cake to hide the fact there is no bottom and that’s how the person inside gets inside. Other cakes sit on a kind of platter like this one - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-xtjrR5Dc8  and have wheels so that the cake can be wheeled in with the person inside. A section of the cake can be like a door to allow the person to get inside with ease.

The top comes off and that’s how the person inside jumps out.

A pop out cake even featured in Xena Warrior Princess. You can watch the footage by clicking here
To hire a cake, it’s best to approach a prop hire company like this one

Footnote - 
I'm delighted to announce that How Kirsty Gets Her Kicks about a one-legged Glasgow barmaid who goes on the run from with a gangster's cash and gun, will be published on December 28th by Shotgun Honey. 

Stay tuned for details, including the cover reveal, as you finally get to find out why Kirsty jumps out of a cake and how she gets on:)

DI Duncan Waddell - Detective in a Coma Book 2

Don't Come For Me (Nancy Kerr book 3) What would you do if you were charged with your boyfriend's murder, but you knew he wasn't dead?

That's the situation Nancy Kerr finds herself in in Don't Come for Me.  Here's an extract - Prologue You're in ...