SUMMER OF MYSTERY AUTHOR INTERVIEW – Charles Kowalski
Welcome to the “Summer of Mystery Reads” happening July 9th to August 17, 2018, at THE PULP AND MYSTERY SHELF! It’s the midway point of this six week event, so today we bring you a DOUBLE FEATURE!
DISCLAIMER: This content has been provided to THE PULP AND MYSTERY SHELF by the author. No compensation was received. This information required by the Federal Trade Commission.
ABOUT THE BOOK
The son of a notorious Nazi fugitive is running for U.S. President. A Secret Service agent sworn to protect him meets a beautiful Mossad spy determined to stop him.
THE DEVIL’S SON comes out in August of 2018.
INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR
What initially got you interested in writing?
I’ve dreamed of being a writer for as long as I can remember. In first grade, my classmates laughed to see how excited I was whenever I saw “writing” listed among the day’s activities. I completed my first novel-length manuscript in high school – and having published my first novel just last year, I sometimes look back and wonder what I was doing in the intervening years that I could possibly have thought was more important than writing.
What genres do you write in?
Contemporary thrillers for adults, and fantasy for middle-grade readers.
What drew you to writing these specific genres?
I loved fantasy when I was a boy – the Narnia books and the Lord of the Rings were among my all-time favorites – and always dreamed of creating an imaginary world of my own. Now that my elder son is the age that I was then, he’s given me the inspiration I needed to put pen to paper. And in adulthood, I’ve become partial to thrillers, particularly those that explore global issues or world mysteries, like Dan Brown and Daniel Silva.
How did you break into the field?
The old-fashioned way: doing painstaking research on agents, sending out dozens of query letters, spending a fortune entering contests and traveling to writers’ conferences to pitch agents and editors in person…until I finally got my first contract through, of all things, a Twitter pitch party!
What do you want readers to take away from reading your works?
They’ll take away whatever they most need to take away, but I always hope they’ll come away from it looking at the world and contemporary issues from a new perspective. I like to pose questions that will stay with readers after they’ve finished reading: in MIND VIRUS, “Could global terror in the name of atheism be possible?” or in THE DEVIL’S SON, “Could a government agent who conspired with a foreign spy to bring down the President be a true patriot?”
What do you find most rewarding about writing?
Making a connection with readers. When I hear someone say they enjoyed my book, or it made them think – or even, on occasion, “You scared me to death!” it makes it all worth it.
What do you find most challenging about writing?
Throwing every possible hardship in the way of my protagonists, and then finding clever ways for them to prevail through skill and wit. It’s a never-ending chess game against myself, in which White will always win but Black has to give it the fight of its life.
What advice would you give to people wanting to enter the field?
It’s a long and rocky road, but worth the journey. If you have a story that won’t let you rest until you tell it, then go forth and don’t be discouraged. It always seems impossible until it’s done.
What type of books do you enjoy reading?
I like to read in the genres I write in, when I’m not reading nonfiction books for research purposes (which is what mainly fills my reading list).
Is there anything else besides writing you think people would find interesting about you?
I’ve spent half my life abroad. I teach at a university in Japan, and have studied about 10 languages and visited about 30 countries. Maybe it’s no wonder that my genre of choice is the international thriller!
What are the best ways to connect with you, or find out more about your work?
Visit my website (charleskowalski.com), like my author page on Facebook, or follow me on Twitter (@charleskowalski).
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Charles Kowalski is an active member of International Thriller Writers. His debut thriller, MIND VIRUS, won the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers’ Colorado Gold Award, and was a finalist for the Killer Nashville Claymore Award and the Clive Cussler Grandmaster Award. His new political/espionage thriller, THE DEVIL’S SON, comes out in August.