Why crime? What is it about the gutters and dark alleys of the
world that compels you to write crime fiction?
Because we’re talking crime here, I think it’s appropriate to use, uh, bullet points.
- Justice – I have a well-developed sense of right and wrong, but in the real world, justice doesn’t always prevail. In my world, justice does prevail, often with extreme prejudice.
- High stakes, high drama – Often, crime is about life and death. For the victims, for the perpetrators, for those suffering the fallout of life-shattering events. Writing about characters in these situations makes for compelling drama.
- Anything goes – criminals do some nasty, nasty things, so as a writer, I don’t feel constrained in any way about what I can write about. I can be as nasty as I want!
- Fascination – As a kid, my TV diet consisted of the great cop/detective shows of the 70’s: Mannix, The Rockford Files, The FBI, Adam-12, Barnaby Jones, Ironside, McMillan & Wife, Banacek, Columbo, Streets of San Francisco, Tenafly, Cannon, Baretta, Starsky & Hutch, Kojak, McCloud, Harry O, Shaft, Cool Million, and for some reason, Police Woman and Charlie’s Angels. For me, it’s not so much “write what you know,” but “write what you’ve watched a million times.”
Inside knowledge – It would be a shame to waste the 15 years I spent at Leavenworth.
Crime: it’s what all the cool kids are writing!