Interrogation—Stephen Jay Schwartz

Who: Stephen Jay Schwartz

What: Los Angeles Times Bestselling author who spent a number of years as the Director of Development for Wolfgang Petersen where he developed screenplays for production. His two novels, BOULEVARD and BEAT, follow the journey of sex-addicted LAPD detective Hayden Glass.

Where: Los Angeles

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

The protagonist from your two novels, BOULEVARD and BEAT, is a sex addict and LAPD detective named Hayden Glass. What was the inspiration for this character?

Of the characters I’ve written, Hayden is the easiest to write because he is most like me. We’ve been through similar struggles and we share a similar point of view. Hayden can be an asshole, and I have been an asshole, but the trait comes from the fact that we are damaged goods, little boys lost, searching for our fathers. A character is compelling when he is real in all dimensions, when he represents all aspects of humanity, regardless of the counterpoint that might present. Hayden is good/bad, handsome/ugly, sensitive/cold, loving/brutal. He came out of me at the core and grew into something fictional and separate.

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Quick Quotes—The Week In Publishing

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“Fret not: your hardbound books and loose-leaf paper are not under threat. But there’s simply no use clinging to the past when there’s a glut of free resources available to writers at the click of a button.”—Writer’s Circle

“The American Book Association reports that since 2009, the number of independent stores has increased by 27 percent. This good news is somewhat tempered by that fact that while the numerical increase brings the number of locations up from 1,651 to 1,971, this still pales compared with the nearly 4,000 independent stores in operation during the 1990s.”—Jim Raftus at Providence Journal

“Genre is a classification system, subject to change over time and based on trends.”—Brooke Warner at Huffington Post Books

“In most respects, writing for private clients is like working on any other book. One difference, though, is that instead of trying to imagine what my audience might find compelling, or debating some of the contents with editors and publishers, I now had a direct line to the readers.”—William Novak at New York Times

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—Angel Luis Colon at Bad Citizen Corporation

“What truly makes Heinlein one of the great, foundational figures of modern science fiction is his intellectual curiosity, and his willingness to question life and society through his writing. His work in social science fiction was informed by a complex response to culture, and he insisted on following his ideas wherever they took him—even when that meant going against popular opinion or risking book sales.”—Leah Schelbach at Tor

“Before you are close to wrapping up the current novel, begin to think about the next one, and start writing it as soon as you can. When the current novel is released, you should be working on the next. This is your best defense against a void being created as the present excitement dies down.”—Kwei Quartey

“If you like to read, we’ve got some news for you. The second-half of 2015 is straight-up, stunningly chock-full of amazing books.”—The Great Second-Half 2015 Book Review at The Millions 

S.W. Lauden’s short fiction has been accepted for publication by Out of the Gutter, Criminal Element, Dark Corners, Dead Guns Magazine, Akashic Books, WeirdBook, Spelk Fiction, Shotgun Honey and Crimespree Magazine. His debut novel, BAD CITIZEN CORPORATION, will be published in October 2015. His novella, CROSSWISE, will be published by Down & Out Books in 2016.