Today I am so pleased to welcome Lisa Henry to Joyfully Jay. Lisa has come to talk to us about her latest release, Two Man Station. She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving Lisa a big welcome!
Hi! I’m Lisa Henry, and welcome to the blog tour for my new release, Two Man Station. I’m visiting some of my favourite blogs around the place to talk a bit about writing Two Man Station, and sharing some of my influences, my ideas, and even an excerpt or two! Don’t forget to leave a comment, for your chance to win a prize of a $20 Riptide voucher plus a small package of Australian goodies that I’ll post worldwide. The winner will be drawn on January 31.
When it came to writing Two Man Station and thinking up a few calls for service that the police might get, I come from a background that could only be described as an embarrassment of riches. In my day job I’m a Communications Operator for the Queensland Police Service—a dispatcher. Some days that means taking emergency calls from all around the state, and some days that means manning the radio and actually dispatching the jobs we receive, or dealing with enquiries for the crews on the road.
I’ve been in that job for a while, and if there’s one thing I’ve come to realise it’s that absolutely anything can happen, from the tragic and the heartbreaking to the downright ridiculous. And sometimes both of those things in the space of minutes. The tragic incidents stick with you for a while, but hopefully it’s the ridiculous ones that you keep the longest.
I once had a lady call me to complain that a scrub turkey had taken garden mulch from her yard into her neighbour’s yard. The lady had asked the neighbour to return the garden mulch once breeding season was over and the neighbour had refused. The lady requested police attend and sort this out. She was not happy when I explained to her that it was impossible to prove ownership of garden mulch, that turkeys couldn’t be arrested for stealing, and that police really had better things to do with their time.
Now, tell a story like that to most people and they won’t believe it. Really? Someone would really phone the police about something like that? Really?
And of course there are always things that don’t fall under the purview of the police as such, but police will go to anyway just to stop matters from escalating into something that they’ll have to deal with later. But it’s not an emergency when your pizza is late, when the birds are too loud, or when you can’t do your maths homework. (Okay, that last one was from a little kid, and it was kind of adorable.)
Also, you probably shouldn’t tell us when your drug dealer overcharges you. Because you haven’t thought that one through.
One of my most memorable calls was from a woman who was so drunk I could barely understand her. She was calling about a domestic dispute, and she mentioned that her partner had a knife.
“What sort of knife?” I asked.
“A cunnamato knife.”
“A cunnamato knife.”
I was frantically trying to get this job on the system so we could get crews proceeding, and wracking my brain to think of what the hell sort of knife a cunnamato was. Was it a brand name or something like that?
“What’s he doing with this knife?” I asked.
“He’s in the kitchen,” she slurred. “Cutting ’matos.”
A cutting tomato knife. The guy was making a sandwich.
So not everything is the emergency it first seems.
But one of my favourite calls ever will be the time this little kid at a payphone tried to make an obscene phone call to me. We get these quite a lot, and there’s really nothing we’ve heard that can surprise us. Except this little bloke, clearly being egged on by older kids in the background, had all of the intent and absolutely none of the vocabulary.
“Police emergency,” I said. “Where do you require the police?”
For a moment all I could hear was giggling in the background, then the little guy took a deep breath, yelled “Bottom!” and ran away again.
I laughed so hard I think I almost passed out.
Best. Obscene call. Ever.
Not too much of this silliness made it into Two Man Station, I’ll be honest. Mostly because my country coppers don’t take their own emergency calls, but also because, honestly, who would believe it? I was really tempted to put that thieving scrub turkey in there, but it was definitely one of those times when real life was stranger than fiction. But for every traffic accident and domestic disturbance and drunken fight I sent my fictional coppers to in Two Man Station, rest assured that somewhere, even if it didn’t make it to the book, a fictional dispatcher was laughing so hard at the word “Bottom!” that she almost fell off her chair.
Gio Valeri is a big city police officer who’s been transferred to the small outback town of Richmond with his professional reputation in tatters. His transfer is a punishment, and Gio just wants to keep his head down and survive the next two years. No more mistakes. No more complications.
Except Gio isn’t counting on Jason Quinn.
Jason Quinn, officer in charge of Richmond Station, is a single dad struggling with balancing the demands of shift work with the challenges of raising his son. The last thing he needs is a new senior constable with a history of destroying other people’s careers. But like it or not, Jason has to work with Gio.
In a remote two man station hours away from the next town, Gio and Jason have to learn to trust and rely on each another. Close quarters and a growing attraction mean that the lines between professional and personal are blurring. And even in Richmond, being a copper can be dangerous enough without risking their hearts as well.
Lisa likes to tell stories, mostly with hot guys and happily ever afters.
Lisa lives in tropical North Queensland, Australia. She doesn’t know why, because she hates the heat, but she suspects she’s too lazy to move. She spends half her time slaving away as a government minion, and the other half plotting her escape.
She attended university at sixteen, not because she was a child prodigy or anything, but because of a mix-up between international school systems early in life. She studied History and English, neither of them very thoroughly.
She shares her house with too many cats, a green tree frog that swims in the toilet, and as many possums as can break in every night. This is not how she imagined life as a grown-up.
Connect with Lisa:
- Website: lisahenryonline.com
- Blog: lisahenryonline.blogspot.com
- Twitter: @lisahenryonline
- Goodreads: goodreads.com/LisaHenry
To celebrate the release of Two Man Station, one lucky winner will receive a $20 Riptide credit and a package of Australian goodies! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on January 27, 2018. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!
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