Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I reckon that the seed for my storytelling ambitions was sown when I was a kid. The classic tale: schoolteacher puts student on the spot by making him read his writing aloud. Other interests would emerge during summer breaks, when I would design tree houses and project manage their construction. I grew up in various countries, returning to the UK as a teen to study architecture at university in Bristol – the hometown of world-renowned graffiti artist Banksy. While writing my Urban Design Master’s Thesis in London on crime prevention, I befriended a police officer. Despite my best efforts, I wasn’t able to glean the kind of knowledge that could be used for a novel. Turns out that “Designing Out Crime” Police Officers know far more about residential layouts – oddly enough – than juicy murder investigations. I currently live in Sweden, where I work as a creative tech expert in urban planning, in addition to being an entrepreneur. I’ve written a mystery thriller called 24 Hours, and a techno thriller called Unforeseen Enemy. I’m currently working on several new novels. I promise to keep the words coming on a regular basis.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My latest, published book, is a techno thriller called Unforeseen Enemy. Sniper and intelligence operative Jack Shaw just failed a mission, leaving his partner dead. Anguished, Jack teams up with young operative Yi Ling on a globe-spanning mission to seek redemption. But when their search for justice collides with a twisted mastermind who controls the holy grail of human genetic engineering, they’re in a race to stop this sociopath’s homicidal technology before it’s unleashed on a history-altering scale. My fascination with genetics inspired me to write this story. Human genetic engineering will have the potential to cause great harm in the future; I created a sort of ‘worst case scenario.’
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I have to take a walk before I sit down to write, as I like to write for long stretches of time. Physical exercise is crucial for my creativity and productivity. I also brew some Yerba Mate tea, which I mix with Rooibos tea to make it taste better! If I’m in a hurry to get my words down, I’ll go for a cup of instant coffee instead.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Michael Crichton stands out. Not only are his thrillers accessible to a wide audience (it’s easy to follow the well thought-out plots) but the story architecture makes for great blockbuster movies (Jurassic Park, Westworld, Timeline, etc.). I love being able to watch the action unfold in my mind when I read, and I strive to achieve this cinematic quality in my own writing. Other influences include Ian Fleming (James Bond 007), Robert Galbraith (aka J. K. Rowling), Greg Iles, Vince Flynn, Douglas E. Richards (to name a few).
What are you working on now?
I’m currently working on a sci-fi thriller. I’m halfway through the first draft, so there’s some work left to be done. Fans of Ernest Cline’s Ready Player One should enjoy this one. I’ve also done research for the next installment of my mystery series featuring PIs Martin Brunner & Daniel Lakin.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
Whichever blogs and websites you feel comfortable using.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Ask beta readers to read the multiple drafts of your book. Entertaining readers is my top priority, so asking for continuous feedback is a must.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Learn to walk before you try to run (applies to most areas of life). To quote Ryan Holiday, ‘the ego is the enemy’ (disclaimer: the quote is not linked to my novel Unforeseen Enemy).
What are you reading now?
Noble Man, by William Miller (a Jake Noble thriller).
What’s next for you as a writer?
I’m a relatively ‘new’ author, so I hope to have a long and fulfilling writing career.
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
Terry the turtle builds a raft (available on Amazon), Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Collected Works: 55 Works! (I haven’t gotten around to reading any of his books), C’est La Vie (I have know idea what it’s about – but the title seems appropriate somehow).