To get us started can you tell us a little about what you are working on or have coming out?
Currently I’m finishing revisions on a story about serial killer who leaves the victims in room 319 of different hotel rooms around the city. I’m also working on the third book in the Jamie Richmond mystery series.
If we asked your muse to describe you using five words, what do you think they would say?
Those five words would be: devilish, diligent, humorous, smart-assed, and twisted. Of course, those same words could be used to describe my muse.
If someone hasn't read any of your work, what book would you recommend that they start with and why?
For those who like romance, start with “Devious” which is the first book in the Jamie Richmond series. In this novel, Jamie is doing research for a character in an upcoming book. While riding along with a state trooper, she witnesses him being shot. Jamie is determined to unravel who did the shooting and why. Along the way she begins a romantic relationship with another trooper, a guy named Malone who may not be everything he appears to be.
If you prefer more of a straight mystery or thriller, check out “Desperate Measures”. That novel is the story of a struggling author who decides to write a book that no one can reject. So he writes a ‘How to Kill Your Wife and Get Away with It” book. Three days after he sends it to a publisher, his wife disappears. Soon the police are involved. Would a guy really kill his wife in order to get his book published?
Do you have a book that was easiest to write or one that was the hardest?
The ones that are harder for me to write are the Jamie Richmond series, because these are from her perspective. So while I’m writing, I have to think like a woman, react like a woman. That’s not so easy for a guy to do.
When you begin your stories, do you go with the flow, or go with an outline?
I’ve never been able to write with an outline, so I begin with a basic idea and go with the flow. It always surprises me some of the turns a story will take. I like to get the characters interacting on the page and see where they want to take me.
Is it hard coming up with titles or characters names?
Titles are difficult, because I always want them to be unique, yet related to the story. I have fun with character names. I like to use different ones and often use names that might give the reader a clue as to how the character will react or behave. In the Jamie Richmond series, Malone is the name of her love interest. He doesn’t use his first name, which drives her slightly crazy. So Jamie calls him by a different first name each day, in the hope that someday she will figure out his real name. Many readers enjoy this interaction.
Is music a factor for you while you are writing? Do certain songs put you in the right frame of mind to write certain stories?
Music is definitely a factor. For the romantic scenes, I’ll listen to songs by Diana Krall, Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Laura Fygi, Seal, Van Morrison and others in the same genre. For more action scenes, I’ll switch to the blues and rock and roll, from Stevie Ray Vaughan and Eric Clapton to Bob Seger and Bruce Springsteen. If the characters are being thoughtful or introspective, I’ll use classical music, like Beethoven or Mozart or instrumental piano or guitar solos. Music can definitely set the mood.
Has there been any character that started off as supporting character, but then developed into a more prominent character?
Yes, Dr. Vincent Schulte started out as a minor supporting character in “Devious” but he was just too good for me to ignore him. So he played a key role in the sequel “Vanishing Act”.
If a movie or TV production company chose to produce your books into a series of shows or movies, who would your ideal cast be?
For the character of Jamie, I’d cast Hilarie Burton. The first time I saw her, she’s was a gorgeous redhead who took my breath away and when she spoke, I knew she was the perfect actor for Jamie. She can do sass and sarcasm with the best of them. For the Malone character I think Colin Ferguson could carry it off with a solid mixture of strength and humor.
What is the best trick to overcome writer's block?
Go back a chapter or two and read what you’ve already written. That’s usually the spark I need to return to the story line and get me motivated, assuming you’ve already started the project and are hitting a wall. If you’re looking at a blank screen, try the shotgun approach. You can use bullet points if you like. Just start typing random ideas. Write down names of characters, occupations, love interests, hobbies, passions, fears or anything that comes to mind. Read the obituaries and use those names and occupations for characters, making up a strange interaction. Before you know it, you’ve knocked through the wall and you’re writing.
Teaser from Devious by Mark Love
Sweet Cravings Publishing
Jamie Richmond, reporter turned author, is doing research for her next book. Attempting to capture the realism of a police officer’s duties while on patrol, she manages to tag along for a shift with a state police trooper. A few traffic stops and a high speed chase later, Jamie’s ride takes an unexpected turn when she witnesses the trooper being shot. Although it is not a fatal injury, Jamie becomes obsessed with unraveling the facts behind this violent act. While she is trying to sort out this puzzle, she becomes romantically involved with Malone, another trooper with a few mysteries of his own. Now Jamie’s attention is divided between a blooming romance and solving the crime which is haunting her. Jamie begins to question the events that took place and exactly who could be behind the shooting. It was a devious mind. But who?
The first time on the sofa was wild. There was no chance for foreplay. We both wanted it too much for that. Clothes were flung so far that I didn't find my red bra until two days later. It must have bounced off the wall and slid behind the planter. After the initial rush, Malone introduced me to the romantic aspects of each room in my apartment. At one point after a warm bath together, I was on my stomach in bed and he proceeded to drive me crazy by slowly making patterns down my spine with one solitary fingertip.
Each time after the first started out slow and tender. A kiss here, fingers stroking there. Malone was toying with me, bringing me to the edge of excitement now, his lips following his finger. My whole body felt alive, energized with the reactions to his touch.
He kissed his way up my body, taking his time. A nuzzle here, another tantalizing kiss there. My skin was singing. My face was flushed, probably as red as my hair. At about the time I could actually feel my body starting to recover, he zeroed in on my breasts.
Now I can’t say this is true for all women. I can only speak for me. Maybe it’s because of the infrequency of romantic interludes. Or maybe it’s my age. Or maybe the moon was rising.
My breasts are small. I hinted at that before. There are fourteen-year old girls out there with bigger breasts than mine. To clarify the situation, all my bras are padded and yes, the cup size is A. I don’t know if that’s good or bad, but it’s what I’ve got and I’d never consider surgery to pump them up. All I know is that when Malone starting stroking and kissing my breasts, it’s like there was a direct connection down below. I was immediately wet with anticipation yet again.
“What am I going to do with you,” I whispered my voice little more than a feathery gasp.
“Whatever you would like, I’m open to suggestions.”