Bad day at work? Rent due and short of cash? Framed for murder? My streetwise ex-con Jason Carr, half of the crime-solving team in The Amy Lane Mysteries, shares his practical tips for successfully surviving on the run…

I’ve known my fair share of trouble. More than my share, being honest, but that’s my own fault. I mucked about in the past, got nicked by the cops – and rightly so, let’s admit it – before being sent down. But this time, it weren’t my fault. I got framed for a crime I didn’t commit and, despite my boss’ best efforts and with some bad guys trying to finish me off, I ended up running from my problems.

I don’t really recommend it, but if you find yourself in this kind of jam, here are my tips for staying alive and keeping a low profile.

Mobile phones are not your friend
You know those smartphones we carry about everywhere? My boss is a tech whizz and she tells me that anybody can track you down if it’s in your pocket. And I’ve seen her in action, tracking suspects all over Cardiff just using their phones. If you’re serious about going on the run, ditch your phone asap. That goes for your fancy iPads and laptops and anything else that half-thinks for itself.

Stay off the beaten track
Given the choice of towns, cities and main roads or open fields and dirt tracks, you gotta go country every time. I’m a city boy, born and bred in Cardiff, so I haven’t the first clue what to do in a field full of sheep. But there aren’t many cameras out in the Welsh valleys and not many folks to spot you. That said, there are fewer strangers about too, so don’t just march into the local and order a pint. They’ll know you don’t fit in, especially if you’re wearing a monkey suit for your court date.

Hello darkness, my old friend

While we’re being careful of those stranger-danger, Neighbourhood Watch types, it’s always better to move after dark. Find somewhere to hole up during the daytime, preferably warm and dry but at least out of the way, and then get going again under the stars. Not that we get many stars out in Wales – too many clouds, dishing out that rain we’re famous for. Also, barns might not be your best idea. Not many people are packing in Wales, but farmers and their mums probably are and you don’t want them to get twitchy with a shotgun in hand.

Safe for you and safe for your mates
If you’re a selfish git, you might just be thinking of your own skin. But if you’ve got family you love and mates you respect, you’re gonna want to keep them out of harm’s way as well as you. So making straight for your mam’s front door isn’t smart – it might draw down all kinds of hell on her, from the law to the lawless. But if you’ve got a techy friend who stays off the radar and has a few nooks and crannies to hide you away, it might be worth paying her a visit.

Someone to watch over you
Last and no way least, you need someone to look out for you. Someone on your side, who really believes you aren’t a complete waste of space who probably did what everyone’s saying he did. It helps if that person also knows how to go about proving you’re innocent, has friends who are honest cops, and maybe planted a tracking device on you to make sure she knows where you are 24/7. It’s creepy at first, but it’s good to know that someone’s genuinely got your back. And wants you to come home.

When streetwise ex-con Jason Carr is framed for murder, agoraphobic hacker Amy Lane must prove his innocence before he is hunted down by vengeful gangs, the police and the mastermind behind it all. Code Runner, Book 2 in The Amy Lane Mysteries, is released on 29th September 2014 and you can order it here.

If you haven’t met Amy and Jason yet, Binary Witness is currently on sale for 61¢/37p on Amazon and 99¢/60p everywhere else. Buy it now!


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