1) Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?
I am a lawyer, married and have three kids. Those are probably the three most important areas of my life. When my kids were small, I started telling them long, involved stories that were embellishments of my real life. One of them, a story about a lawyer with a soccer prodigy son, will be my next book coming out. What I found is I could tell stories that used plot as a way to develop character. I realized I loved stories that constantly moved and disliked narrative that was bogged down with description. My stories depict what happens when a character is faced with difficult choices, which ultimately, I believe, is incredibly revealing.
2) What inspired you to write your book?
I always wonder what is stronger, friendship or the drive for personal enrichment (money). In my novel, one of the key plot drivers is that three long-time friends are forced to take the opposite sides of an important trial. The three met the first day in law school but later in their careers find themselves as the attorney representing a woman suing a big company, the lawyer for the company and the judge in the trial. I thought about all of the major conflict that could arise when each wants to do their best professionally, and how that could affect their friendship. I have dealt in my career with some lawyers who are highly professional and others who will do virtually anything to win. What happens if there is a mix of those types in an important case? Every trial has enough stress. Add in some volatile personalities and the results can be explosive.Get the Grinch with Max B&N Exclusive Plush for only $12.99 when you buy any other item on BN.com
3) What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?
With every character in the book, you will some good and some not so good. The three main characters start in the same place ethically. They are young and impressionable when they are in law school. Yet just a few years later, they are in completely different places. Mike still wants to help people and make a positive impact. Jeri wants to avenge her feelings of rage since almost being raped. Jack now just wants to become partner at his big law firm and make even more money.
Sometimes a person doesn’t even realize when he is going down a path that leads towards becoming a lesser person. Ultimately, lawyers are shaped by their environment. The people a new lawyer works with teach them how to practice law ethically or how to cut corners. Good often has to be nurtured and in its absence evil lurks.
4) What drew you into this particular genre?
That one is easy. I’m a lawyer and have been one for too long. I have been through many trials and think most people find the drama inherent in a courtroom compelling. I certainly do. I know I can describe what happens in a courtroom with realism—and I think in a way that brings out the conflict.
5) If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?
I love Jack as a character. He so flawed, but to me so human. His primary motivation is success/money, and he lets the ultimate rewards dictate his actions. I would want to ask Jack if he can see himself the way others see him and whether he would like what he saw. He has so many good traits—He’s smart, witty, and an incredibly hard worker. People want to be around him and he’s a leader. But does he realize what path he’s put himself on because he has only one goal—money?
6) What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?
This is my first published book and I am just learning how to market. I am extremely unsophisticated when it comes to marketing. I also consider myself to be one of the world’s worst self-promotors. I am trying however. So once I learn better how to use social medial to attract readers, I will come back and answer this question again.
7) What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?
If you like writing, keep writing. Write about things that interest you. Don’t worry what other people like. If you are moved by your writing, others will be also.Find the perfect gift for everyone on your list with the Barnes & Noble Gift Guide.
8) What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?
I am still working at being a lawyer, but I am trying to write every day. I am finishing up my next book, The Jersey, about the lawyer with a son who is a soccer prodigy. It has a significant tragedy in it, but look at it as ultimately uplifting (as much as it can be after such a tragedy). I have also started by next novel which has a young, rebellious student who kills the president and the effect this has on his family.