Writing materials

Graduate students from writing crime to fighting it

Sophie Carney

A college graduate goes from writing about crime to fighting it.

Sophie Carney, 25, has spent the past two years writing mystery novels as part of her degree course at the University of Dundee.

She found perfect crime mysteries and protagonists who solve them during her crime writing and forensic investigation course, and is now preparing to become a police detective herself.

Ms Carney said she first learned about the National Detective Curriculum, a fast track to becoming a detective, at a masterclass lecture.

She said: “I didn’t know it was an option. The traditional route to becoming a detective is to start as a police officer and work your way up. It would never have suited me. I’m more interested in the process of solving of a crime and the work behind the scenes to put the puzzle together.

crime scene tape
Sophie Carney will go from writing about crime to investigating as a detective (PA)

“True crime and the theories and methods that go into solving a case have always been an interest of mine. I never would have heard of this opportunity if it weren’t for taking this course and interacting with people who have similar interests.

“I got to talk to a lot of people in different specialties and had to do a lot of research to make sure everything was forensically accurate, and that’s going to be very helpful in this new direction.”

Ms Carney, from Sussex, is one of around 2,500 students graduating from the university this week, but is still undergoing final testing for the program before starting her detective journey in January.

She said she might be able to draw on her own experiences as a detective for future writing work.

She added: “It will be great material if and when I decide to write something. There are a lot of writers who are police officers or former police officers.

“It will be a fascinating experience and I’m really excited to start this new adventure.”