I grew up in several places in the U.S. and Canada, before settling in upstate New York. I’ve loved writing since picking up a crayon in preschool, and contributed to high school and college newspapers, various media projects, wrote a blog for 9 years, as well as a good deal of technical writing for work. My day job is with software, computers and people, not necessarily in that order. ‘The Survival Job’ is my second book.
What inspires you to write?
Expressing myself through words is comfortable, and a natural way to share with others. I've had writing as an outlet in many forms thought my life, and enjoy the many outlets available. It's also free therapy.
Tell us about your writing process.
I typically write during my lunch hour at work, then at night for an hour or so. I don't force myself to write every day as some writers do. I have weeks I'm inspired and weeks that I'm not. But rarely do I go more than a few days without adding to my current project, or working on an outline of a different one. I need to outline so I have a sense of where things are going to go, but it's amazing when something heads in a different direction and opens new avenues for plot. Once I have a draft, I get index cards and start riffing ideas for alternate plot points to what I heave. I find this allows me to either defend a character or direction, or let it go. Another trick is I do google searches for images of people and "select" my characters and put them in a separate google doc, so I can refer to them. having a clear image of a real person helps me describe them consistently.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I don't interact with these characters, but I do hear them. Several have strong Boston accents, and it's melodic and can change the dialog if the way they say it isn't somehow in the readers head as well.
Who are your favorite authors?
Donald E Westlake had an amazing skill for weaving plot and characters. Elmore Leonard created dialog that defined characters stronger than any description. Contemporary writers I enjoy are Carl Hiaason and Thomas Perry.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I first published a book myself in the 1990's, and it was a different game then. Much easier to get attention in bookstores, reading clubs and libraries. Now, it's not as unique, and you have to find new ways to get your work noticed. Still working on that part!
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I'd like to see an artificial intelligence tool like Watson or similar be used to ingest works and somehow rate them, so stronger stories could be raised up and promoted based on the merit of the work, as opposed to who pays for attention.
What genres do you write?
What formats are your books in?
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