Ten Plus One Questions with Author Sam Abbott

26 Sep

A Cold GoodbyeSome others will give a full paragraph on who they are and others are a bit more shy about telling readers who they are. Then of course there are authors who can write word after word and save that for their creations I believe that author Sam Abbott falls into the category of saving their writing. I say this as there are several Ned Fain books in publcation. Also one thing read the answers carefully as you will learn some real information about Sam Abbott is. So without further comment lets get to those questions.

Question 1: When did you realize first wanted to be a writer?

As a kid I used to write 10 to 20 page thank-you notes for birthday and Christmas gifts; I guess I could say that was the bug first biting me. I’m a late starter, though; took me years to actually pen my first story.

Question 2:  How did your friends/family take the loss of your time as you wrote the book?

My husband travels a lot for work, so my writing time isn’t much noticed by him. Other than that, I’ve been in business for myself for years, and writing has now become the business I wish I’d always been doing.

Question 3: What inspired you to write A Cold Goodbye?

Honestly, I don’t remember anything specific. Readers often ask where my ideas come from and the only answer I can give is that they just don’t stop. It’s rather problematic, actually, and can be quite a distraction.

Question 4: During the initial writing process where did you get the idea for the book and its characters? 

The books I write are the books I like to read, which covers a fairly broad spectrum. Ned Fain evolved in my mind over a period of time and he was pretty real to me before I even began to think of a plot. Much of that thought process developed during my morning walks with my dogs, and as I got to know Ned I began to imagine his story. I did want a character who was physically challenged, including in his looks, and in the second book in the series that leads to Sylvi, who turns out to be a pretty different lady. As to the opening setting of the book, I wanted something a little off-the-wall, so began with “somewhere” in a zoo and ended up at the polar bear pit.

Question 5: Who were some of the authors that inspired you as a child growing up and their books? 

Well, The Chronicles of Narnia, C. S. Lewis, completely enchanted me, and I read the series over and over. At age 12 I discovered boys, (Sam Abbott is a pseudonym, if you didn’t already know) and went through a dreamy-eyed phase of Georgette Heyer historical romances. However, Miss Heyer was also an accomplished writer of mystery, and before you know it I’d worked my way to Agatha Christie, Dorothy L. Sayers and Ngaio Marsh among others.

Question 6: What was the feeling like when you saw the first completed version of your book?

Nervous. ‘Nuff said.

Question 7: Do you continue to write and in what genre? 

Absolutely I’ll keep writing; Ned Fain isn’t ready to retire yet. Another PI series I’m working on as Liz Dodwell features a gorgeous, yet emotionally scarred, Icelandic woman: Elka Dahl, the Agency Confidential Series. And I have an ongoing series of an amateur sleuth who also happens to be a shipwreck treasure hunter – the Captain Finn Treasure Mysteries. Last year I wrote a cozy mystery story of a pet-sitter – Polly Parrett, which I’m picking back up for the end of this year. There’s also a new detective series in the works – a supernatural mystery, of sorts – and I’m adding to my range with a little Arthurian Sword & Sorcery.

By now you’re thinking I’m all over the place. Well, yep; it’s true. I’ve tried, I’ve really tried, to stick with one series at a time but finally had to accept my mind just doesn’t work that way. Though I’ve trained myself to create in-depth outlines I still get blocked at times. When that happens, I jump to a different series and keep on writing.

Question 8: Who do you imagine being the people reading your book?

For Ned Fain I chose a male pen name because men are still more likely to read mystery/thriller. However, it seems more and more women are learning to enjoy this type of intrigue, which is why I created Elka Dahl. As for cozies, mature women far outnumber everyone else.

Question 9: Any good suggestions for those who want to try writing their own book?

Write something short and get it out there so you can get past that fear of failure and learn the production side of the business. Don’t sweat reviews and don’t reply to reviews. If you don’t have any reviews, it’s no big deal. As I write this there are two books in the Amazon top 100 that have only three reviews, and another with just one; and every top author has plenty of one-star reviews. Once your book is published, the real work begins: it won’t sell unless you put some effort into marketing it, so do your due diligence.

Question 10: When not writing how does you like to spend your time?

Ah, reading is definitely up there, along with walking the dogs – I have a pit bull and two poodles. My husband and I love dining out and traveling and I like to yodel. (Just kidding about that last one).

The + 1 Question (In this case I ask authors to answer one or the other. We got a bonus as answered both.)

If you had any one place in the world you could travel to for a book tour, where would that place be, and why? 

Hmm, I had to think about this and I’m inclined to say I’d go to Afghanistan – where Ned Fain met his fate – and hand out books to the remaining troops, or visit military bases here in the US.

If your book got turned into a movie do you have any actors/actresses you’d like to see play your characters?

For Ned, JR Martinez would certainly have to be in the running, but I could also see Robert Downey, Jr., Bradley Cooper or James Franco.

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Posted by on September 26, 2015 in Reviews


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