Q. How would you describe your life in only 8 words?
A. Passing strange...
Q. What is your motto or maxim?
A. Kaizen - "continuous improvement"
Q. How would you describe perfect happiness?
A. When I attain it, I'll let you know.
Q. If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you choose to be?
A. Right where I am, but with a personal transporter so I wouldn't have to deal with airports.
Q. What are your most overused words or phrases?
A. I'm much too fond of the word "myriad." I do use it correctly, but too often.
Q. What do you regret most?
A. The Thor Power Tool decision. Every midlist writer knows exactly what I mean.
Q. If you could acquire any talent, what would it be?
A. Facility with languages, and the ability to read music.
Q. What are your 5 favorite songs?
A. "Piano Man", "Let the River Run" - really any song that sings of dreams deferred but a determination to keep on trying.
On Books and Writing
Q. Who are your favorite authors?
A. Any author who can transport me to a place I've never been in the company of interesting characters. Among them: John le Carre, Martin Cruz Smith, James Lee Burke, many, many others.
Q. Do you have one sentence of advice for new writers?
A. Love the writing for its own sake, and be prepared to sacrifice years of your life for something that might never come to pass.
Q. What comment do you hear most often from your readers?
A. "There are too many flashbacks!" alternating with "I've read your book six times, and I cried every time."