ALAN RUSSELL: PICKING OUT A FAVORITE BOOK IS LIKE PICKING OUT A FAVORITE CHILD
Posted by Ognian Georgiev
Alan Russel’s next book Guardians of The Night will be officially released on January 1 2015. The novel is available for download as e-book. The story headed Amazon bestselling list few days ago and still is staying as #1. We’ve got a great chance to speak about the book with the author himself. Ladies and Gentlemen, it’s time for our next guest – Mr. Alan Russell.
– Alan, your next book Guardians of The Night will be officially released in January, but the novel is already #1 ин Amazon’s bestselling books. Did you expected such result?
– I’ve never written a book with the idea of, “I’m writing a bestseller.” Every book I write I want to be compelling. I also never want to write the same book twice. Some authors only have one book in them, and they keep rewriting that same book over and over. If I make a reader think, and I make a reader feel for my protagonist, then I think I have succeeded in writing the book.
– How did you decide to write the story?
– There are two different mysteries going on in GUARDIANS OF THE NIGHT. A longstanding approach of mine is to ask the question, “What if?” Sometimes situations come to me that make me feel compelled to explore that question(s). That’s what happened here.
– What was the biggest challenge during the write up process?
– The biggest challenge in writing this sequel was that I didn’t want readers to be disappointed. I was proud of my book BURNING MAN, and I didn’t want GUARDIANS to be a letdown for them. It’s always hard writing a book when you have lofty goals. When I finished this novel I wasn’t quite sure what I felt about it. I knew it was a good book, but I wasn’t sure if it was on par with BURNING MAN. Even though the two books feature the same protagonists, they are quite different. I think I’m my toughest critic, though, so I am always beating myself up.
– Tell us something more about your main character Michael Gideon? Is it close to someone from your real life?
– My writer friend Ken Kuhlken tells everyone that writing Michael Gideon is easy for me to write, because he’s autobiographical. I certainly wouldn’t go so far as to say that, but it is true that I do like to crack wise, and enjoy one-liners. When it comes to repartee we are similar. And I think we also share a spiritual side which both of us like to bury. One big difference between us is that Gideon has had his crucible. I am thankful I never had to go through anything like he did.
– How much time did you need to finish the story and to publish it?
– It always takes me at least a year to write a book, and some books have taken as much as three years. I hoped when I became a seasoned author that I could be a faster writer, but that hasn’t materialized. If anything, I am slower in my writing now because I am more particular about the way I want to tell the story.
– Two years after its release Burning Man is still considered as your best novel. Did you expected such a success?
– I don’t know if BURNING MAN is considered my best novel. Certainly it is my biggest seller, but that’s never been my litmus test for what is best. All my books are so different. My sentimental favorite is ST. NICK. If you like a potboiler I always recommend EXPOSURE. And I would have to say that MULTIPLE WOUNDS is the most complex and suspenseful of my novels. Picking out a favorite book is like picking out a favorite child. And being the father of three children, I can honestly say that as I love my kids equally, it’s pretty much the same thing with my books.
– What kind of research you made to describe so well Sirius as a police dog?
– For me Sirius is a character as much as any human is a character. You’ll notice Gideon invariably calls him “my partner.” There is a partnership there. I grew up with German shepherds and I currently have three dogs. It’s easy to write about Sirius because I have so many memories to draw upon. I have also been lucky enough to see some working dogs in action. On two occasions I was lucky enough to play at being a cowboy during a cattle drive. What amazed me was how a solitary dog (a Border collie) was able to move a herd of cattle. Through hand signals and shouts the cowboys directed the dog and he did all the rest.
– Who are you?
– I am a storyteller. I’ve never wanted to be anything else.
– What are your writing habits?
– I have come to realize that writing a book is much like being a marathoner. You need to work, work, work at your craft. If you put in enough hours eventually you can create the pages that add up to a book. Knowing what has to be done and doing it are two different things. Sometimes you crave diversions. I love to watch and play sports. I love good company. But usually I prioritize work.
– What are you doing to promote your book by the best possible way?
– I am not good at promotion, and never will be. I do have a Facebook page (please “like” Alan Russell Mystery Author), but the only thrill I get out of social media is hearing from people who have enjoyed reading one of my books. I would much rather be writing, or reading a good book, than doing promotion of any kind.
– Exposure will be republished next year. Would you give some hints about the story?
– EXPOSURE will be reissued in April. I just finished updating the book so it reads like it’s out of today’s headlines. What I like about the book is that the protagonist is a bit of an anti-hero. Graham Wells is a paparazzo. He’s used to uncovering the secrets of others, but now he has a huge secret of his own that might have international consequences. It’s a David vs. Goliath story.
– You are known as a big fan of gardening. How it helps you to relax and did you get some of your book ideas, while you are taking care of tomatoes?
– There is nothing in the world that tastes as good as a freshly picked homegrown tomato. You know how Hobbits love mushrooms? That’s how I am about tomatoes. Since I live in Southern California I get to harvest tomatoes for about five months out of the year. Alas, I have no crop now. I do think there are similarities between writing and tending to your garden. If you go to my website you can read one of those blogs.
– If you may ask yourself one question in the interview what it will be? (Don’t forget to answer)
– I guess I’d ask myself if I’ll ever be satisfied that I’ve “made it” as a writer. And since you’re forcing me to be honest, I have to admit that I still don’t think I’ve “made it.” It doesn’t matter that my latest book is a number one bestseller. I always want each book to be better than the last, and I always have doubts as to whether I’ve succeeded in doing that. I suppose I’ll be trying to prove myself “worthy” until the day I die.
About Ognian GeorgievOgnian Georgiev is a sport journalist, who is working as an editor at the "Bulgaria Today" daily newspaper. He covered the Summer Olympics in Beijing 2008 and in London 2012. The author specializes in sports politics, investigations and coverage of Olympic sports events. Ognian Georgiev works as a TV broadcaster for Eurosport Bulgaria, Nova Broadcasting group, TV+, F+ and TV7. He is a commentator for fight sports events such as boxing/kickboxing and MMA. In May 2014 Ognian Georgiev released the English version of his book The White Prisoner: Galabin Boevski's secret story.
Posted on December 9, 2014, in Author, BESTSELLER, Books, Interview, TOP 10 and tagged Alan Russell, Amazon, author, bestseller, book, Guardians of the Night, interview, St. Nick. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.