Welcome author Gordon Kessler on his tour stop to my blog today. Please follow the tour as the AUTHOR WILL BE GIVING AWAY: a $50 Amazon.com GC and the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here: http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2011/09/virtual-book-tour-jezebel-by-gordon.html
Um—I think I’m blushing. I didn’t know the competition would be so stiff!
BTW, thanks for hosting me on you blog, Raine!
Q: What genre do you write and for what publisher(s)?
A: I write thrillers—a mixed bag, from horror to mystery to sci-fi. And after several problems with publishers and contracts over the years, I’ve gone completely “Indie”.
Q: Tell us about your latest/upcoming release. What inspired it?
A: The one I’m wanting to promote today is Jezebel. It’s a horror thriller, perfect for the Halloween season, and recently released in all eBook formats. I wrote Jezebel while going through a divorce—so there’s a little romance and some violent suspense. It actually came about while I was staring blankly at my keyboard at the dining room table. I looked up to see the family ferret come bounding around the corner of the dining room. “Jezebel,” I thought, “ferret from Hell!” Well, a killer ferret was a bit ridiculous, so to make it more believable, I made Jezebel a huge, black Great Dane who kills against her will.
Q: How do you build characters and their personalities and looks?
A: I love complex and deep characters. They need to be in conflict not only physically, but emotionally. Their personal life and past will always affect their decisions and the way they react.
Q: Tell me about some of your heroes/heroines.
A: They’re everyday, sometimes quirky, but they become dynamic very quickly. They have passion about something.
Tony Parker is the Animal Control Director, going through a mid-life crisis, with a lovely wife and two children. He’s attracted to his beautiful, young assistant, who tries to seduce him every chance she gets. But his loyalty remains with his wife and high-school sweetheart, Julie—or does it?
Julie is a hardworking mother, very strong in her own way, and sensible. She wants a normal life, but that’s certainly not what she gets when Jezebel goes on the loose.
Sarah Hill is Tony’s assistant. She’s young and beautiful, but her passion for animals may be what attracts Tony to her the most.
Doc White Cloud is Tony’s mentor. A Native American veterinarian, he is like a father to Tony, and his wife Patsy loves Tony like a son.
Jezebel is one of the largest dogs on record. She’s a purebred Great Dane, making the trip from England as a pup, with her mate Beelzebub, to be with their retired insurance-salesman master. She’s a loyal and loving dog until evil comes to town.
Q: What do you do when the muse decides to take a holiday or become really difficult? How do you try to coax them back to the drawing board?
A: I’ve never really had writers’ block. I’ve had life block quite a bit, lately. Seems like something always gets in the way of my writing schedule. I’m not only busy with my “real job,” but also with mentoring other writers. I’ve started an organization for independent writers called the Indie Writers Alliance (www.IndieWritersAlliance.com), and I’m a founder and current president of the Kansas Writers Association (www.KWAWriters.com). When I’m not involved in all that, or I want to get away from it all, I take my lovely golden retriever pup, Jazmin (Jazzy Brass) for a walk, or just sit with her out on the patio and enjoy the evening with a class of wine or maybe a little scotch.
Q: Do you have any specific things (or rituals) that help you to write or that inspire you?
A: I like to listen to building percussions, like Taiko drums, while writing the action and suspense scenes. It really puts me in the mood.
Q: If the world was to end tomorrow, what three things would be on your bucket list?
A: Tomorrow might be a little too soon to get through those three things, but, if I could buy some time… go to South America—Peru, Brazil, Argentina. I’ve been all over the northern hemisphere, but never south of the equator. So, I’d like to go to Australia, as well. What else: I’ve already done some parachuting, SCUBA, sailing…I know, I’d like to take a ride in an F-18.
Q: Are there any authors who have influenced your work?
A: Definitely. My mentors, both now having crossed over, were excellent writers. Mike McQuay and Leonard Bishop. They wrote in opposing styles. Drawing on their skills made me the writer I am today. Otherwise, the writers I admire most these days are Douglas Preston, James Rollins, Dean Koontz, Clive Cussler and James Patterson (when it’s really him).
Q: What comes first for you: Setting? Storyline? Characters?
A: I think that varies. I suppose the concept/basic storyline is typically first. But as soon as I have that started, I work on Characters. They need depth and realism. They need to bleed when they’re cut, have passion about something, and flaws. And setting comes in quickly, as well. The setting needs to be dynamic in some way and always will influence the plot and conflict as well as the characters.
Q: If one of your books became a movie, which celebrity would you like to star as your main characters?
Since Jezebel is the novel I’m blogging about today, I’d say that someone like David James Elliott would be good as Animal Control Director Tony Parker; I think Kate Capshaw would be a great Julie Parker; a younger Morgan Freeman would be a good Lt. Jack Simpson, and Tony’s best friend; and someone like Christina Applegate might be good as Tony’s seductive young assistant Sarah Hill.
Q: What do you have coming next? Anything you want to tell us?
A: I’m actually working on sequels to all three of my thrillers. The sequel for Jezebel is Satan’s Trail. Tony Parker is back, with a PhD in Veterinary Science, and he and his Jezebel offspring, Satan, are assisting Sarah Hill’s older sister in a case involving a series of animal attacks along a fifteen-mile-long, biking trail in the Kansas City Metro Area. They soon discover hundreds of human remains that date back over two hundred years. What kind of creature could be on a killing spree for two centuries?
Brainstorm’s sequel is The Master Plan. This one steps well into the supernatural, but has one foot planted in current scientific theory and theological understanding. It’s going to be deep and a very wild ride.
Dead Reckoning’s sequel is The Storegga Effect. NCIS Investigator Janelle “Spurs” Sperling is on the case again, this time hunting down an assassin while trying to stop a madman from initiating a huge natural disaster. It starts with a bang and ends with a boom!
Q: If you came with a warning label, what would it say?
A: Caution: Should only be handled by professional animal trainers. May drool, pee on your carpet and lick you crazy.
Q: What else would you like readers to know about you or your work?
A: I love writers and readers. There’re no better people in the world. They’re imaginative and creative, all in their own ways. And I love to entertain. I try to push the limit in every aspect in my novels. In my stories, I take away, so that when I give, the gift is more valuable and appreciated.
Q: Where can we find you on the web?
A: First check out my book trailers on YouTube: Jezebel at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zHD9pmHOzk&feature=related; and Brainstorm at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6eDjWJFbRdI . My blog: http://www.WMxBlog.com and my websites: http://www.GordonKessler.com and http://www.ReadersMatrix.com. I have other blogs and websites for writers. And you can always find my books at any online bookstore, including Amazon, B&N, iBooks, Nook, etc. All three of my thrillers are currently on sale in eBook formats for only $.99—trying to get those sales numbers soaring! Of course, you can find them in traditional paperback and hardcover at reasonable prices, as well.
Thanks again for hosting me on you blog! Happy reading!
Sneak peek into Jezebel by Gordon Kessler
Sleep lightly tonight…
A madman has come to town seeking a diabolical revenge and large dogs begin attacking their masters for no apparent reason and with heinous results.
Animal Control Director Tony Parker must find out why and stop the murderous attacks. Meanwhile, Jezebel, a huge black Great Dane has killed her master and is loose, terrorizing the city and stalking Parker and his family. Parker and Sarah Hill, his beautiful and seductive young assistant, attempt to unravel the mystery and stop the terrible carnage while dealing with their own demons and lusty desires.
The attacks must be stopped. Jezebel must be found-and soon, you see–there is one other complication. Parker seems to have come down with an annoying little virus. No, it’s not one of those irritating summer colds. It’s certain death.
She’s a murderess, huge and black as a hell-bound night.
Beware. Jezebel is on the loose!
Hill went to the front door and watched Chin’s van make a U-turn at the corner and head down the street. The headlights flashed in Hill’s face, momentarily blinding her. She winced. The light burned her already blood-shot, weary eyes.
A silent moment passed before a sound came from outside. The back yard. Scratching. Something was climbing over the fence.
The rifle. It was still next to the back door. Hill moved quickly toward the kitchen. As she made it to the hall, the dog port began to open. Hill stepped to the side, out of sight, before seeing what was coming through.
She trembled, backing up to the wall next to the large window that was painted shut. She could run for the door, but by the time she reached it, she’d be seen. No way out. Hide. Where? There was no place. Behind the sheer curtain, maybe. In the dark, she might not be seen if she was quiet and didn’t move.
She pulled the curtain around her. She could see through it, but it made the already dim room even dimmer. The blowing fan was the only noise. Nothing moved except the oscillating shadows of the fan blades beating the stale air through the room. The green flash of the clock on the CD player caused an eerie, strobing light.
A dark shape slowly emerged from the hallway and moved into the room. Large. Huge. Black.