Hey there Word Nerds. I’m so excited to bring you this interview today with Robert Crais, a #1 New York Times bestselling author of crime fiction.
In this episode, we talk about how to persevere as a writer, and let me tell you, if anyone can speak to this subject it’s Robert Crais. He began his career as a TV writer, working on some of the biggest crime dramas. This experience has shaped his perspective on writing novels, and has taught him numerous writing skills.
Listen in hear Robert’s insights about what you can learn from writing outside your comfort zone. You’ll hear about his journey from writing for TV to writing novels, and what writing for the screen taught him about crafting stories for the page.
Plus, animal lovers (especially dog-lovers) will get a kick out of this this episode because you’ll hear Robert talk about how captured the POV of Maggie, the K9 hero in his latest book The Promise. Unlike other books that anthropomorphize animals, making them seem like humans in an animal body, Maggie feels very real. The sections in her point of view are quite true to how you would imagine a dog perceives the world.
I think Office Cat could sense the animal-friendly vibe in this interview, because she cuddled up to the mic while we were recording this episode. (Bonus points to anyone who can hear her purring in the background.)
Check out the episode below.
In this episode Robert and I discuss:
- Capturing animal characters’ perspectives in your writing.
- The process of optioning the film rights for your writing.
- How writing for TV prepared Robert for writing novels.
- The challenges of writing a novel versus writing for the screen.
Plus, Robert’s #1 tip for writers.
About the Author
Robert Crais is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of nineteen previous novels, fifteen of them featuring private investigator Elvis Cole and his ex-cop, ex-Marine partner Joe Pike. His novels have been translated into more than forty languages and are global bestsellers in more than sixty nations. Nominated for every major crime-writing award (for a total of twenty nominations), Robert has won the Anthony, Barry, Shamus, Macavity, Gumshoe, and Ross Macdonald awards, among others. In 2014, he received a Grand Master Award from the Mystery Writers of America, which represents the pinnacle of achievement in mystery writing. A native of Louisiana from a family of police officers and oil refinery workers, he lives in Los Angeles with his wife, three cats, and many thousands of books.
About the Book
In THE PROMISE, Robert Crais unites the heroes of “one of today’s best crime series” (Los Angeles Times) with the breakout stars of his most recent novel, SUSPECT—LAPD K-9 officer Scott James and his four-legged partner, Maggie. Loyalty, commitment, and the fight for justice have always driven Elvis Cole and Joe Pike. If they make a promise, they keep it. Even if it could get them killed.
When Elvis Cole is secretly hired to find a grief-stricken mother, he’s led to an ordinary house on a rainy night in Echo Park. Only the house isn’t ordinary, and the people hiding inside are a desperate fugitive and a murderous criminal with his own dangerous secrets. As helicopters swirl overhead, Scott and Maggie track the fugitive to this same house, coming face-to-face with Mr. Rollins, a killer who leaves behind a brutally murdered body and enough explosives to destroy the neighborhood. Scott is now the only person who can identify him, but Mr. Rollins has a rule: Never leave a witness alive.
For all of them, the night is only beginning. Sworn to secrecy by his client, Elvis finds himself targeted by the police even as Mr. Rollins targets Maggie and Scott. As Mr. Rollins closes in for the kill, Elvis and Joe join forces with Scott and Maggie to follow a trail of lies where no one is who they claim — and the very woman they promised to save might get them all killed.
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Until next week, keep writing and keep being awesome.