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Author Q&A's > [Closed] Author Q&A: Charles Salzberg

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message 1: by Kathy (last edited Oct 23, 2014 04:32PM) (new)

Kathy | 905 comments We are thrilled to introduce author Charles Salzberg who wrote Swann's Lake of Despair!

Swann's Lake of Despair by Charles Salzberg

Here is the synopsis:

When rare photos, a scandalous diary, and a beautiful woman all go missing at once, the stage is set for three challenging cases for Henry Swann. It begins with an offer to partner up with his slovenly, unreliable frenemy, Goldblatt. The disbarred lawyer-turned-"facilitator" would provide the leads and muscle, while Swann would do all the fancy footwork. A lost diary by a free-loving Jazz Age flapper is worth enough to someone that Swann takes a beat down on an abandoned boardwalk. Pilfered photos of Marilyn Monroe propel him deep into the past of an alcoholic shutterbug, his wife; and he's hired to search for a lonely writer's runaway girlfriend. The cases converge and collide in a finale that lifts the curtain on crucial, deadly facts of life for everyone ? including Swann himself.
Please post questions by October 26.


message 2: by Kathy (new)

Kathy | 905 comments What is your favorite genre to read and write?
Did you find the publishing process to be difficult?
What advice to you have for new writers?
Who inspires you in writing?


message 3: by Kathy (new)

Kathy | 905 comments Here are the answers:
What is your favorite genre to read and write?
My favorite genre to read is wide. I love literary fiction, as I grew up
reading Saul Bellow, Philip Roth, Bernard Malamud and Vladimir Nabokov, and
would have loved following in their footsteps. But I wound up being a crime
writer, but close readers will probably find that I’ve been heavily influenced by
those writers. But I also loved reading the novels of Dashiell Hammet, Raymond
Chandler and Ross MacDonald.
I also love reading non-fiction. The last book I read was a biography of the
English spy, Kim Philby, and true crime books about the old west and criminals
like Bonnie and Clyde.
I’ve grown to love crime writing, because I’m able to write about people
and about the common, petty crimes committed by them every day—I don’t write
murder mysteries. Yet. My detective novels have to do usually with non-violent
crimes, the kind of crimes we might come in contact with every day.


Did you find the publishing process to be difficult?
It’s very difficult and, I think, become even more difficult for new writers.
Yes, more books are being published, what with self-publishing, but commercial
publishers are much less willing to take a chance on a new writer. They want
proven winners, writers with track records. This is why writers try so hard to get
new readers and lift sales. It’s not about the money; so few writers make a living
from writing. It’s about growing your readership so publishers will take notice.

What advice to you have for new writers?
To read voraciously. To write, write, write. And most important, never
give up. Never let someone tell you you shouldn’t be a writer. In going through
some old papers recently, I found a rejection letter from a big publisher telling
me I shouldn’t be a writer, that I was in the wrong business. Fortunately, I didn’t
listen to him. And you shouldn’t either. If you want to be a writer you have to
write and you have to deal with rejection.

Who inspires you in writing?
Good question. I think my students inspire me—I teach writing here in
New York City at the New York Writers Workshop, where I’m a Founding
Member, and the Writer’s Voice. I learn from them every day. Other inspirations
include the writers I admire, many of them my friends. But probably my biggest
inspiration is myself. I don’t mean that in a narcissistic way, I mean that if I
don’t write I feel guilty, and I don’t like the feeling.


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