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I have received criticism concerning my treatment of Richard Knight, with some understandable allegations of racism.

As an authour, I chose to make Richard black because it would give an extra twist to his accusations against Jamie, because it resulted in the reaction it did with Wallace, and because it makes Jamie's reaction to the whole situation all the more deliciously awkward and uncomfortable. Aside from all that wonderful narrative juice, there was no particular reason for me to make the teenage thug character black.

Richard was a one-dimensional brute, not because of his race, but because he was male, seventeen, poor, stupid, and had a habit of abusing recreational narcotics. I'm not a racist - I'm a sexist, an ageist, a classist, an intellectualist, and a narcoticist! Those are all socially acceptable prejudices.

But racist? Me? Please. What do I look like, a Floridian*?

*(some of my best friends are from Florida)


(Wednesday, INT: office, JH and LD are driking sparkling cider.)

JH: It's just... I mean... A man is dead.
LD: Minor. A minor is dead.
JH: He died, and now I'm a free man. Like Jesus.
LD: Yeah, except he's the one who got you in trouble in the first place.
JH: Well, depending on your theology...
LD: Ah ah ah! I never get into religion with clients. Too many people I deal with seem to have a custom-made "God" who exists solely to excuse their behaviour and condemn anyone they disagree with.
JH: What, like "Jesus forgave me, so you should too."?
LD: More like "Jesus loves me, therefore he wants me to enjoy myself, therefore crack."