Friday, March 6, 2015

Interview with Author Lannie Wright

A word or two with... The Amazing Author Lannie Wright. 

1.       Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I have been a writer of mystery/suspense novels since 2001. I am an investment advisor and have been working in the financial services industry since 1978. I am married to Melissa. We have a Black Lab by the name of Barney who is probably smarter than the both of us. Together we have three sons and three grandchildren. We live in the rural area of Carmel Valley, Ca.

2    How did you choose the genre you started writing in?

Many years ago, a close friend of mine, Ronald Turek, a police officer, was killed in the line of duty on the night before my birthday. I found out that morning when I woke to the news on the radio. It was a time in my life when I started questioning everything. Why do bad people do what they do? What do good people need to do to overcome evil? Over time, the pain diminished, but the questions continued. I now use what I learned to tell stories about good overcoming evil and how sometimes, bad will happen to even the best of us.

3    Where do you get your ideas?

Crazy happens around us all the time if you are simply open to seeing it. Generally, I find that a good book happens not merely with a good story, but with likable characters. I usually take characters that I have created and put them into situations and then give them a chance to figure out how to get out of it or solve the problem. What makes for a good story, is when not even the author knows how they are going to succeed.

4     Can you tell us about your challenges in getting your first book published?

There were many challenges. The first was ignorance. When someone goes through the process of writing a novel (or any book) they are left with the feeling that they have accomplished something. At least I thought I had done something great. What I came to learn over time is that writing a novel is actually the easiest part of the whole process. Getting it published was extremely difficult. There are questions you must ask yourself. Is it perfect in all ways? How do I want it published; traditional, self-published, e-publish, audio? Those are just a few of the alternatives. Even that isn’t the most difficult, you must also figure out how to market the work after you see it in print. It’s a lot of work and takes a strong person who’s willing to accept rejection. However…all in all, it’s worth it.

5     How do you market your work? What methods have you found to best for your genre?

Tough questions. I have tried many different methods of marketing. A lot of what a person can do depends on how much they can afford to spend. In my situation, I don’t have a large budget so I have relied on social media as the primary source of my marketing. Twitter and Facebook have helped me allot. I have also participated in several book signings at book stores as well as joining local establishments when they are having special promotions at their stores.

6     Can you tell us about your upcoming book?

I am currently working on two different books. The one I am spending the most time on right now is the third book of my Katt and Mouse Mystery series. I don’t have it titled yet, but hope to have it ready by this summer. I am also working on the second book of my Connections series. I have had success with both series so far. The main characters of both series are fun, smart and ready for a new challenge.

7     Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?

Nothing in life or in writing is pure of either. Someone told me a long time ago that if you want to write a better book, live a better life. I think what he meant by better is, more exciting; or at least more interesting. The beauty of a great novel is the author’s ability to transform his imagination into something that we as readers can believe as possible. If it isn’t believable, or possible, then our minds cannot accept it as something worthy of our time and energy.

8       How did you come up with the title?

In the book “Castle Grey”. The title of the book came to me before the story or even the characters. One of my favorite T.V. shows is Castle. It’s fun and has great characters and I look forward to it every week. One of my wife’s favorite T.V. shows is Grey’s Anatomy. I was sitting down watching castle when I saw a commercial for Grey’s Anatomy and the name just hit me, Castle Grey. Once I had the title, I had to have a building worthy of the name and a location for it to exist. I combined (in my mind) the Hearst castle with the Winchester mansion and placed it in Monterey, CA. Thus Castle Grey was born.

9     What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author?

I can think of two examples of hand. The first came to me from my biggest critic—my wife. My first novel, one I had toiled over for over two years, was completed and she came to me and told me that my ending stunk. And that is the PG version of what she actually said. Rather than getting upset, I re-wrote it with similar results. It took me six or seven times before I got her approval. But that first time hurt the most. The second time I was criticized is when my editor came back on that same novel and had 10,000 corrections that needed to be made (not an exaggeration) that I had to make. Most of them were spelling and punctuation. It took me a very long time to get that corrected. My second editor, on the same book, found about 2,000 more.

10    Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers?

I might have a few nuggets. Write every day. Tell a story that makes sense and has continuity. Create an ending that leaves the reader want more. Finally, get a professional to edit your work.

11    How do we get to know you better?

You can check me out at . I am available at and you can read my books in both paper and e-book formats.

12      Are you a person who makes their bed in the morning, or do you not see much point?

I am a person who makes my side of the bed in the morning. My wife has to make her own side of the bed. I’m not sure where this concept came from. I used to make both sides. However, after many mornings where she refused to make my side, I came to the conclusion that the rules were now different. We each must bear the burden of our own messes.

13      Do you get road rage? What pisses you off the most about other drivers?

I seldom get upset while driving. I would best classify myself as a giver, not a receiver of things. If rage is to be experienced, I find it best for others to experience.

14       What is your favorite fruit and why?

My favorite fruit is the Kumquat. The origins of this happened when I was a mere child. My aunt had purchased some of the delectable pods to use as a part of her Christmas fruit bowl. My cousin David dared me to eat one by telling me that it was just a miniature orange. The difference being that I could eat the rind and even the seeds. Not one to refuse a challenge, I popped the little thing in my mouth and crunched down on it with gusto. I was amazed at the initial sweetness which was quickly encased by the tart internal juices. It was delicious. Since then, I make it a habit to pick some of them up whenever I get the urge.

15   You can have any animal in the world as a pet. What would it be?

I think I could narrow it down to either a Siberian Tiger or a Polar Bear. I’m not really sure why it would be those two. I’m sure that a Bengal Tiger and a Grizzly Bear would work just as well. I think it has to do with the uniqueness of them both being pure white which is so rare in nature. Either that or I’m a freak.

15   Do you make friends easily?

This is a trick question. The first thing that one must know is the definition of a friend. I have hundreds of friends on Facebook and Twitter; most I wouldn’t leave alone in my home while I went to the store. There are others that the title “friend” gets slung around that I see somewhat frequently that I could entrust certain valuables, but only because I know where they live. But to me, a friend is someone you could trust with your deepest secrets, your wife’s life and your daughter’s chastity. Those kind of friends are rare enough that I would feel honored to know a hand full in a lifetime.

So, that’s it about me for now. I hope you learned a thing or two about the author of the Katt and Mouse Mystery series and the Connection series.

I'm sure there will be many more titles to come from this talented Author.  


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