As a book bloggin’ and book luvin’ Princess, I’m always curious to find out how authors got the ideas for their books. Can you tell us how you got the idea to write your book?
Tropical Doubts is a legal thriller, so I tend to draw inspiration from real life cases when I can. In this instance, the protagonist, Pancho McMartin, is a criminal law attorney who is cajoled into representing an old family friend in a medical malpractice case. But when his client is charged with murdering one of the doctors he sued, Pancho is suddenly handling both a medical malpractice and a murder case for the same client. The medical malpractice case is based on a very tragic case I handled back when I was still practicing law in Honolulu. Luckily, there was no murder involved.
Can you tell us a little about the main characters of your book?
Pancho McMartin is the recurring principal character in my Tropical legal thriller series. He was born in Taos, New Mexico, where his parents had gone to live in a commune after dropping out of college in the late 60s. His parents claimed they named him Pancho so that he would get along better once he started school in the mostly Hispanic community. Pancho’s theory is that his parents dropped acid after he was born to celebrate and named him while stoned.
Pancho’s private investigator and best friend is Drew Tulafono, a large Samoan man who had played for the San Diego Chargers in the NFL before moving to Hawaii to become a PI. When Pancho and Drew aren’t working, they grab their surfboards and hit the waves.
Pancho’s current love interest is Padma Dasari, an American of Indian descent who was the chief medical examiner for the city and county of Honolulu. Now retired and working as a medical expert consultant, she proves to be instrumental in helping Pancho on both the medical malpractice and murder case.
The client in Tropical Doubts is Manny Delacruz, who is an old family friend. Manny’s beloved wife falls into a permanent vegetative state following what should have been a routine surgery, and Manny is later arrested for the murder of one of the doctors involved in the surgery.
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would that be?
Avail yourself of the many excellent books on fiction writing. Read lots of books in the genre that interests you. And just write, write, and write.
What would you say is one of your interesting writing quirks?
I’m very undisciplined and do not have a set schedule to write. I don’t use an outline, so when I get an idea in my head, I start writing and can write all day if it is flowing well. I don’t mind writing myself into a corner and having to backtrack. It’s a fun part of the process.
Do you hear from your readers? What do they say?
The most common comments are that I am very good at dialog. Luckily, most of the comments have been excellent. I was especially pleased to hear from one reviewer who is an attorney and who felt the legal depictions were very realistic.
What is the toughest criticism given to you as an author?
In my first novel, a golf related suspense story (Unplayable Lie), some readers felt that the descriptions of the golf games were boring to them, although all liked the overall story. That was to be expected. I also received some similar criticism from a few readers of one of my legal thrillers who felt I was too detailed in some of the legal maneuverings.
What has been your best accomplishment?
I assume you are talking about accomplishments in writing. Every time I complete a novel I feel a tremendous sense of accomplishment.
Do you Google yourself?
I have, but rarely.
How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have?
I have another Pancho McMartin legal thriller, Tropical Deceptions, coming out this fall or winter and another completed manuscript, Tropical Scandal, which I’ve just sent off to my independent editor. And I have a mostly completed novel which I’ve been working on for the last several years which is not a legal thriller. Its story lines, which touch on racism, love, friendship, and historical events spanning five decades has suddenly become highly relevant, so I’m excited about finishing it.
Fun question – if you were princess or prince, what’s one thing you would do to make your kingdom a better place?
Encourage interracial and interethnic marriages so as to blur the lines people use to hate and discriminate.
Do you have anything specific that you would like to say to your readers?
Thank you for reading my books and, if you can, please post a review at whatever site you want. It is reviews and blogs by people like the book bloggin’ and book luvin’ Princess which help those of us lesser known authors find an audience.