Name: Murphy Edwards
Where are you from: Brookville, a small town in rural Indiana
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc:
I attended college at Mount Saint Joseph on the Ohio and majored in Journalism and Business Communications. I love rescue dogs, a good cup of coffee and prog rock music. I have played drums in several professional bands, including Sidecar Prophets.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I have just finished the first crime thriller novel in my new crime series and I’m currently completing a new horror novel for Severed Press Publishing, titled “Carrion”. I have also been contacted by two production companies expressing interest in the movie rights to my “Dead Lake” trilogy.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I started at a very early age, around twelve or thirteen. I’ve always liked reading and I love to tell stories. I think it’s the Irish in me that drives me to weave facts and fiction into a tale. I do it to entertain (myself and my readers). It’s odd, but if I don’t write for a few days I go into a slump and begin to feel bad.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When my submissions began to be accepted for publication by editors I felt like I had made the first great stride towards becoming a writer. I still learn something new nearly every day and with every piece I work on. For me, being an author is an ongoing process.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I had the genesis of “Dead Lake” floating around in my head for over ten years. I made general notes, but there were no actual outlines or chapters developed. Gary Lucas, the editor at Severed Press Publishing sent me a very nice e-mail and asked if I would be interested in writing and submitting a novel for a new series he was planning. Gary was developing a series of novels for Severed Press Publishing that centered around the Dead Bait** theme. I was surprised that I actually had an editor asking me for a book (since this rarely happens) and even more surprised that the theme he proposed fit nicely with that story floating around in my head all those years. I sent Gary a proposal with a full novel synopsis for his consideration. “Dead Lake” is the result of that proposal. **My relationship with Gary Lucas and Severed Press Publishing began when a few years ago I answered a submission call for their anthology “Dead Bait.” Gary liked my story “Noodlers.” I was thrilled to get that opportunity. Gary then invited me to submit a piece for the sequel anthology, “Dead Bait 2”, which resulted in my cross-genre crime / horror story “Heavy Weather.” DB2 included features by Ramsey Campbell and Tim Curran, so again, I was delighted to be in such good company. Shortly after “Dead Bait 2” was released, I learned Severed Press was planning another anthology. I contacted Gary Lucas with an offer to write a crime / horror piece exclusively for “Dead Bait 3.” I penned “Sinkers” and it made the cut. As you can see, there were actually quite a few steps involved before the first novel actually came to fruition.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
It varies based on the genre and the subject matter. I always try to include factual information in my fiction. Some of my novels start out with a single character or scene, while others begin with a specific plot point that I want to expand into a full-length piece. Like most writers, I have notebooks, journals, bar napkins, envelopes and data files filled with ideas, scenes, locations, characters and plots. I’m a messy writer.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
My titles are all based on the events in the books. “Dead Lake” came from the premise of cemeteries that were never properly moved before a massive lake project was finished. The graves were left under the water as the lake filled up.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
In the Dead Lake trilogy it is probably sixty percent entertainment and forty percent message. The message would be a caution about how we treat our dead and their sacred remains.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic?
About thirty percent is based on actual events. The rest is pure fiction.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
A little of both.
Fiona: What authors have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
Oh my, there are so many. I’ll try and scratch the surface, but I know I’ll forget a bunch. Let’s go with Ken Bruen, Jason Starr, Urban Waite, Joe R. Lansdale, Brian Keene, Victor Gischler, Alan Guthrie, Tim Curran, Dean Koontz, F. Pail Wilson, Jack Ketchum, Elmore and Peter Leonard. On the more local / regional front I’d include Jeffrey Ashby, David Scott Pointer, Brian Rosenberger, David Bain, Paula D. Ashe, Rebecca Besser, Mike Jansen and Chantal Noordeloos, Justin Hunter. And I can’t forget Sean Page, Johnathan Mayberry, Charles Bukowski, Robert B. Parker, Edgar Alan Poe and J. Lee Butts.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
“The Forgotten Addiction” by Michael Lion.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
Justin Hunter, Johnathan Mayberry, anybody who tells a strong tale with emotion, intensity and action. If I get about forty to fifty pages into a book and there isn’t something pretty intense going on, I’m done with it. I have the same problem with movies. I practice the ‘ten minute rule’ when I watch a movie. If the action hasn’t started in the first tem minutes I’ll usually bail.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I have just finished the first crime thriller novel in my new crime series, with the second novel in draft form. I’m also currently completing a new horror novel for Severed Press Publishing, titled “Carrion”.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
As far as organizations I would have to say Midwest Writer’s Workshop. They are so professional and supportive to the writing community. As for an individual, I’ll go with James Ward Kirk of James Ward Kirk Fiction. James is a dear friend, not only to me, but to thousands of authors, poets and artists around the globe. I have worked with James on several projects and through him I have been fortunate enough to meet some incredible people in the publishing world.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Absolutely. I’m doing it for fun first, but I also take the writing process quite serious. There’s always something new to be learned.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Actually, I don’t think I would. It took me over seven drafts to get it where it is, so I think I probably eliminated most of the gremlins.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I comes largely from reading. I’ve always enjoyed being able to pick up a book and escape to wherever the story takes me. Hopefully my writing does that for others.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Marketing and publicity are two areas where I am struggle a bit, but I’m trying to catch up.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
I’d say Ken Bruen, hands down. Ken’s style and dialog always pull me in and keep me turning pages. Robert B. Parker, Jason Starr and Elmore Leonard a quite good at that, too.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Currently, I do not, although I would love to do more book signings and personal appearances.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
All of my covers, to date, have been designed by William Cook, a fellow writer and dear friend from New Zealand, or the art department at Severed Press Publishing.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Turning off my internal editor and just getting the initial draft on the page.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Every book I’ve written teaches me something. I’ve learned to pay attention to detail, as well as, patience, persistence, research and the importance of dialog. Lastly, I’ve learned how wonderful the support of my readers, editors and fellow writers can be to the success of a project.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Never stop reading. Never stop writing. Never stop submitting.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Thanks to everyone who has read my work, sent me an email, patiently stood in line and asked me to sign their books or contacted me via my web page, email or on social media. Without you I am nothing.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
The first memorable book would be “The Catcher In The Rye”.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Laugh: A good joke, slapstick, snappy, sarcastic dialog in a novel or movie. Cry: Physically or verbally abusive people, lack of compassion, the loss of a friend.
Fiona: Is there one person past or present you would like to meet and why?:
Leonardo Da Vinci, so I could pick his incredible brain.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why ?
“He loved life”….because I do !!!
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Homicide Hunter, Law & Order, Law & Order SVU, Chiller, Smithsonian and National Geographic Channels. Nurse Jackie and Dexter were both great, but sadly, they have been cancelled. I’m also a sucker for splatterpunk and “B” movies.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music:
Italian, Indian, Chinese and Soul food cuisine are all good. Black is my color. Prog rock, metal and rock are usually tickling my ears.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
Playing drums in a recording & touring band.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?:
Readers can drop me a line at: firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to follow me on my Amazon author page. http://www.amazon.com/Murphy-Edwards/e/B004BA46SC/ref=dp_byline_cont_pop_book_1