Interrogation—Scott Montgomery

Who: Scott Montgomery

What: Crime fiction coordinator of MysteryPeople, the mystery bookstore within Austin’s BookPeople, and founder, co-editor, and contributor of the MysteryPeople blog. He is the author of several short stories  published in webzines such as The Big Adios and Shotgun Honey, and the anthology MURDER ON WHEELS.

Where: Austin

Interview conducted by email. Some questions and answers have been edited.

What does the role of Crime Fiction Coordinator for BookPeople entail? What’s the biggest misconception about what you do?

It’s sort of jack of all trades when dealing with crime fiction. I assist the buyer in finding what I think are the best books to stock in our mystery bookstore within a bookstore, MysteryPeople. I also help our marketing department get authors for events, oversee our MysteryPeople blog and contribute content, deal with direct sales from independent presses, work with self-published authors, and simply sell books out of the section. The biggest misconception is that I wield any kind of power in publishing.

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2016: My Year In Interviews

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I got the not-so-original idea to interview other writers at Bouchercon, Long Beach a couple of years ago. At the time, I was new to the vibrant crime and mystery community and eager to learn about the people who were a few steps—or a few miles—ahead of rsz_screen_shot_2016-05-08_at_74929_amme in their publishing journey. Since then I have expanded my interviews to include a handful of publishers, event organizers, designers and bloggers.

I discovered pretty quickly that even the most hardboiled author was happy to indulge my questions, giving them serious consideration and, when asked, providing insightful advice about writing, publishing and marketing. This is a truly talented bunch of people. And a lot of them are funny too.

Two years later, I’m happy to say that many have become friends that I connect with regularly on social media, at annual conferences like Left Coast Crime, Noir at the Bar events around the country, and bookstore signings.

rsz_screen_shot_2016-04-08_at_75943_pm_2Looking back on 2016, I did 48 interviews. If you missed any of them, or if you’re looking to discover a talented new crime/mystery author, here they are again (along with links):

January:

Corey Lynn Fayman, Leslie Bohem, Jack Getze, Ingrid Willis

rsz_screen_shot_2016-01-24_at_50801_pmFebruary:

John L. Thompson, Rob Hart, J.L. Abramo, Bill Fitzhugh, J.T. Lindroos

March:

Brett Battles, Brian Thornton, Michael Lister, Gary Phillips

April:

rsz_screen_shot_2016-01-17_at_83408_amMarietta Miles, Jon Jordan, Jeff Newberry, C.S. Dewildt

May:

Christian Lee, Jen Conley, Glen Erik Hamilton, Sarah M. Chen

June:

Larry Wilson, Bryon Quertermous, Dharma Kelleher, Ryan Gattis, Joe Clifford

July:

rsz_screen_shot_2016-06-26_at_73433_pmBenjamin Whitmer, Jason Pinter, Greg Barth

August:

Mike Creeden, Nick Kolakowski, Erik Storey, Gabino Iglesias, Mike McCrary

September:

Alex Segura, Ro Cuzon, Erik Arenson

rsz_screen_shot_2016-09-05_at_34632_pmOctober:

Jay Stringer, S.G. Redling, Christa Faust & Gary Phillips, Michael Pool, Naomi Hirahara

November:
Lori Rader-Day, Andrew Nette, Bob Truluck, Angel Luis Colon

December:

Matt Coyle, Jonathan Brown

I look forward to interviewing more of you in 2017. Thanks for a great year!

grizzly-seasonS.W. Lauden’s debut novel, BAD CITIZEN CORPORATION, is available from Rare Bird Books. The second Greg Salem novel, GRIZZLY SEASON, was published on October 11, 2016. His Tommy Ruzzo novella, CROSSWISE, is available from Down & Out Books.

Interrogation—Benjamin Whitmer

Who: Benjamin Whitmer

What: Author of PIKE, which was nominated for the 2013 Grand Prix de Littérature Policier; CRY FATHER, recently released from Gallery Books; and co-author (with Charlie Louvin) of SATAN IS REAL, a New York Times’ Critics’ Choice book.

Where: Colorado

Interview conducted by email. Some questions and answers have been edited.

Yesterday was the Fourth of July. Can you tell me how Patterson Wells, the protagonist of CRY FATHER, would have spent the holiday weekend?

It’d depend. To my mind, holidays only exist if you get the day off work. Right? If you’re making money for somebody else instead of spending it with your friends and family, it’s not a holiday. President’s Day is a bullshit holiday, because nobody gets off work; Christmas is usually a real holiday–though there’s been years I worked it. Fourth of July is a weird one, in that you get it off on some jobs, not on others. It all depends.

That said, I can’t imagine Patterson ever heading to some hot, crowded field to endure Lee Greenwood and Toby Keith for four hours so he can spend 15 minutes pretending to be impressed by fireworks. I question the sanity of anybody doing that who doesn’t have children to make them. I’ll bet he’d just drink some Evan Williams and read Jim Harrison – which I’d consider a better and more patriotic celebration, anyways.

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