Friday, February 12, 2021

The Question That Can Not Be Named

What interview question do you wish someone would ask you but never has? What’s the answer?

by Paul D. Marks

How does it feel to win an Edgar Award? No one’s ever asked because I’ve never won or been nominated for an Edgar, but I wish I was in that position to be asked that question.

But seriously I’ve done a lot of interviews both as the interviewer and the interviewee, I’ve moderated panels and had to come up with questions, so I’ve asked and answered a lot of questions. The truth is I wish someone would ask me a question that would surprise me. One I’ve never heard before and never even thought of. So I don’t know what that question is, cause I haven’t thought of it yet, but I’ll be excited and happy to answer it when it happens.

But since that doesn’t really address the blog question here, I’ll say one question that I would like to be asked: what other things besides books have inspired your writing? I probably have been asked that question in some form, but it’s one I don’t think I’ve ever fully answered. 

I think to really answer the question would probably take at least 1,000 pages so I’ll try to be brief:

1) The art of Edward Hopper. I like the loneliness and alienation depicted in his pictures. Probably the same reason I like noir films from the 30s and 40s. 

2) The music of the sixties, the Beatles in particular. Although I love lots of different kinds of music. The music of the sixties probably influences me the most. It was a time of a lot of creativity and change in the music world. I remember the excitement of waiting for a new album to be released and rushing out to buy it or calling in to radio stations and asking them to play a certain song. Everything was fresh and new and changing all the time. 

Peace, Love, and Crime anthology edited by Sandra Murphy
 and including my story "Can't Find My Way Home"

3) The films of the 30s and 40s. Film Noir in particular. See #1 above. 

4) My life experiences. I think my life experiences have drawn me towards writing about people who are outsiders, noir anti-heroes. Not because I grew up on any mean streets, but because I grew up in an abusive environment and I guess I want to see justice. And if not justice then at least revenge. That’s one of the reasons I love the Count of Monte Cristo. Revenge at it’s best.

So that’s short version of my answer. Now ask me about that Edgar!


And now for the usual BSP:

I just sold my short story "A.K.A. Ross Landy" to Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine. Stay tuned for more.

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