Sunday, March 22, 2009

"The Mentalist"

Those of you who follow this blog will be aware that early in 2007 I was invited to write a novella for the Crime Express series published by Five Leaves Press. You may also be aware that I chose the title "The Mentalist" for my story and it was published in the autumn of that year, alongside novellas from John Harvey and Stephen Booth.

Imagine my surprise then, on watching the television last night, to see a trailer for an American detective series entitled - you guessed it - "The Mentalist".

One of my reasons for writing The Mentalist was that I felt it would make an excellent plot for a movie. Thus the investment in time getting the structure just right would give me two potential products. Now, I am not sure where I stand. When I write my screenplay of The Mentalist, will I be accused of stealing the idea from this US TV series?

Happily, the TV series first aired in the autumn of 2008, a year after my book was published. So I feel that I stand on firm ground. On the other hand, that makes me ask the question - do any of the ideas in the series come from my book?

I find it somewhat disturbing.

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