Thursday, November 14, 2013

Who Loves Ya, Baby?

Why crime? What is it about the gutters and dark alleys of the
world that compels you to write crime fiction?

Because we’re talking crime here, I think it’s appropriate to use, uh, bullet points.

  • Justice – I have a well-developed sense of right and wrong, but in the real world, justice doesn’t always prevail. In my world, justice does prevail, often with extreme prejudice.
  • High stakes, high drama – Often, crime is about life and death. For the victims, for the perpetrators, for those suffering the fallout of life-shattering events. Writing about characters in these situations makes for compelling drama.
  • Anything goes – criminals do some nasty, nasty things, so as a writer, I don’t feel constrained in any way about what I can write about. I can be as nasty as I want! kojak
  • Fascination – As a kid, my TV diet consisted of the great cop/detective shows of the 70’s: Mannix, The Rockford Files, The FBI, Adam-12, Barnaby Jones, Ironside, McMillan & Wife, Banacek, Columbo, Streets of San Francisco, Tenafly, Cannon, Baretta, Starsky & Hutch, Kojak, McCloud, Harry O, Shaft, Cool Million, and for some reason, Police Woman and Charlie’s Angels. For me, it’s not so much “write what you know,” but “write what you’ve watched a million times.”
  • Inside knowledge – It would be a shame to waste the 15 years I spent at Leavenworth.

Crime: it’s what all the cool kids are writing!

(This entry is “simul-posted” on Criminal Minds.)