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Broken Pieces

Jack Canon's American Destiny

Monday, December 2, 2013

Author Interview – AFN Clarke @AFNClarke

What is your most recent book?  Tell us a little about it.
The Jonas Trust Deception, which is actually the second book of a new thriller series. It follows the success of the The Orange Moon Affair which features Thomas Gunn, ex-Special Forces, who is dragged back to his old life of international intrigue and danger following the brutal murder of his billionaire father.  In The Jonas Trust Deception, the fallout from the Orange Moon conspiracy throws Thomas and his girlfriend Julie into the deadly path of Mexican drug cartels, corrupt politicians, unscrupulous financial brokers, and the US and UK intelligence services. Outraged by the feeling of constantly being “played”, Thomas decides to take an action so shocking and unexpected, that even his team fear he’s lost his mind.  The question is – has he?
I’m loving writing this series and am already part-way through the third book “Running with the Bonefish”, which I expect to release in early 2014.
What inspired you to write your new thriller series?
My inspiration is the person the first book, The Orange Moon Affair, is dedicated to – Terry Forrestal, ex-British SAS, brother-in-arms and a dear friend, may he rest in peace. His life read like a Hollywood movie, indeed he was a stunt man, actor and stunt coordinator (The Killing Fields, Titanic, Brazil and more), and he had that streak of larrikin in him, so I think he would enjoy these books. He – like myself, and the central character Thomas Gunn – was always torn between the “trained killer” part of himself and the more caring, emotional part that simply wanted a more “normal” and peaceful life. That inner turmoil is an integral part of the book and it’s what makes Thomas so vulnerable. It also makes for an interesting relationship with his girlfriend Julie.
I was also inspired to take on the challenge of a series  – and believe me it is a real challenge – because I wanted the opportunity to develop a number of inter-related themes and characters over a longer period of time, allowing the reader to go on a continuing journey as if they were a part of the main characters’ lives.  It’s not easy, but I’m loving the process and excited about continuing with many more books to come.
What’s your favourite / least favourite aspect of your writing life? Has anything surprised you?
What I love about writing is living in and creating whole new worlds in which my readers and I can lose ourselves. Editing is what I dislike most! For me, when I write the last word I’m done. Enter my long-suffering wife and first-line editor. She puts on her suit of armour and delivers her forceful feedback. Despite my relentless kicking and screaming, her insistence slowly works its magic and I do indeed succumb, making changes that are essential to the success of the book. You’d think I’d learn, but the next time, it’s the same again, round and round we go.
What do you do when you’re not writing? Do you have any hobbies or party tricks?
I am not naturally a sedentary person, so I spend my relaxation time being physically active. My favourite thing is to sail out on the ocean alone when the sky is blue, sun warm, and let the wind blow the cobwebs out of my head. My wife and I take long walks and we enjoy travelling off the beaten path. I used to be a race-car driver so watch all sorts of motor racing and just about every kind of sport you can imagine. I also really enjoy cooking and make a huge mess in the kitchen.
No party tricks I’m afraid, don’t go to them – am not a fan of crowds, they make me uncomfortable.  A remnant from army days, patrolling and breaking up unruly crowds with hate in their eyes.  Some things are hard to shake even years later.  I do love cooking for a few good friends though, with great conversation, maybe a heated discussion or two thrown in followed by a glass of port and lots of laughs.
What is the hardest, getting published, writing or marketing?
If you had asked me that 30 years ago I would have said, getting published.  But today I self-publish, and the new digital age has opened up Indie publishing in a way that makes it really easy for an author to get their work out there.  Marketing and promotion is my nemesis, and I think tough for most authors.
I mean, let’s face it, we’re authors – we like to spend our every available moment away from the prying eyes of the word writing our next book.  Many of us have hermit-like tendencies – then suddenly we have to become masters at marketing, out there talking ourselves up, chattering away on social media, sending messages in 140 characters when we normally write books with half a million characters, creating budgets, developing web sites, writing blogs that take time away from writing books, figuring out where to place ads.  Makes my head spin.  Yet it’s part of the new Indie author’s roadway to success, so none of us can avoid it.  And that roadway does offer us so much more freedom and control of our own work – so my solution?  Get past the bitching and just get on with it.

Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Thriller
Rating – PG-13
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