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IN CONVERSATION 

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How long does it take you to write a novel?

The entire processstart to publicationis about 18 months. Approximately 6 months to research and outline, 6 months to write, and another 6 months for editing, and to work with my graphic designer on the cover, maps, and formatting. Working concurrently I can publish one novel a year. 

Are your novels part of a series?   

 

Yes, the books are all inside the same universe and timeline, with layered stories and interconnecting characters, set against real world events. They can be read in any order, wherever a reader jumps in. 

Who are some of your favorite authors? 

Wilbur Smith, John. D. MacDonald, James A. Michener, Clive Cussler, Donald E. Westlake, Thomas Harris, Stephen King, Lawrence Block, Tom Clancy, Sidney Sheldon, Lee Child, Agatha Christie . . . 

Favorite movies?

Although I am a writer and avid reader I am heavily inspired by film, notably: 
 

No Country for Old Men, The Silence of the Lambs, Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Shawshank Redemption, Dead Calm, Carlito's Way, Thief, The Shining, Jaws, Scarface, Heat, Miami Vice, The Godfather, The Godfather Part II, Night Moves, Blue Ruin, Body Heat, Cold in July, The Deep, State of Grace, At Close Range, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, L.A. Confidential, The Thing, Key Largo, Chinatown, Bad Lieutenant . . .

Favorite genres to read and watch?

Adventure, mystery, crime, thriller. 

What does your typical writing day look like? 

Unless I'm traveling, I keep a somewhat structured daily routine. I work in the mornings—either writing, editing, or outlining future projects—for about 5 or 6 hours. After lunch I like to spend time outside, get in a workout, or head out on the water. In the evenings my wife and I relax with a movie or show—and lots of snacks! 

Are you a plotter or pantser? 

Definitely a hardcore plotter—all the way! I have a novel fully outlined before I begin writing. 
 

What are you currently working on? 

I have started writing a third novel, Devilfish Key, targeting to publish fall 2023. 

Any tips for those starting out? 

Even though I have been working on these projects for more than half a decade now, I feel I am still just starting out! Without question, writing a novel is a challenging, lengthy, and nerve-racking process that requires serious commitment. For many, including myself, the blank page of "Day 1" can be the toughest part. You're going to spend months alone at a keyboard engaged in a world and characters of your own design. Fortunately I find the daily creative progress of working on and completing a novel a ton of fun and extremely rewarding. 
 

1. Read voraciously. 
2. Write consistently. 
3. Get started—and then keep the ball rolling. 

4. Always have a notepad with you—you never know when a fantastic idea is going to hit! 

5. Keep lots of snacks close by—I love cold brew coffee and dark chocolate.

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Shortfin Mako I photographed off Rhode Island.
"
Blue Dynamite!"

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