The Who’s A What Thing?

Let me explain.

The very talented Kristi Belcamino tagged me. She answered some questions because she got tagged. Once I do the same, I will tag another crime author. It’s a fun way to follow a thread around the Internet and learn about some great writers. Cool? OK, let’s go:

What are you working on?

I’ve just finished a round of revisions on my second Pete Fernandez novel, Down the Darkest Street. After that, I’m working on a science fiction short story for an anthology titled APOLLO’S DAUGHTERS, a comic script and another short story featuring Pete as a guest star – for a competition and potential anthology inclusion. Also have a few pitches percolating, too!

How does your work differ from others of its genre?

That’s a tough one that I’m not really sure how to answer. My book is set in Miami and features a down-on-his-luck journalist named Pete Fernandez stumbling through a case that drags him into the darkest corners of the Miami underworld. I think my familiarity with the setting and the fact that Pete isn’t an established PI or cop is different, as are his motivations, which are pretty selfish and muddled due to his self-destructive habits. But I think a reader or contemporary is the best judge of this!

Why do you write what you do?

Because I have to. The stories stick in my head and I have to put them on paper. I really wanted to write a novel that featured a protagonist that wasn’t fully formed right away. Someone who made a lot of mistakes and was severely flawed. Someone readers could relate to but also worry about. I also wanted it to be set in my hometown and tell stories about people I knew growing up, which I don’t think is how Miami is usually represented.

How does you writing process work?

It’s very assignment-based. I try to write in the evening after work and over the weekend. I outline and try to work through my structure while still allowing for flashes of inspiration or luck. I sit at my dining room table and try to zone out all the noise and background craziness that is the world so I can focus on the work. It’s a challenge, but exhilarating.

Now, as part of this Blog Hoppy Thingie, I have to tag someone else! I have chosen Mystery Writers of America – NY Chapter Presidente Richie Narvaez, who’s a great writer and good pal. Head on over to his site in a week for his answers!

Born and raised in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Nuyorican writer Richie Narvaez has had work published in Murdaland, Indian Country Noir, Long Island Noir, Hit List: The Best of Latino Mystery, and You Don’t Have a Clue: Latino Mystery Stories for Teens. His short story collection Roachkiller and Other Stories won the 2013 Spinetingler Award for Best Anthology/Short Story Collection. He is the current president of the New York chapter of the Mystery Writers of America.