So, as I have said in previous posts, I am a reader first and foremost. My genre of choice? Thrillers of course! I love books that will keep me up in the night and send my mind racing.
I am currently reading a novel, The Ten, that was released TODAY by up and coming author Luke Swanson.
To give you a little insight, here is a little about his book:
Thou shall not steal.
Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy.
Thou shall not kill...unless it’s torture.
Abel believes he is chosen by God to rid the world of the unrighteous. One by one, he hunts down those who break the Ten Commandments and plots heinous deaths.
Abel’s goal is to smite one sinner per commandment, and with that, start a revolution. Others will follow. Others, who are equally as loyal and subservient to God’s wrathful side as he. Up until now there has been no one smart or brave enough to stop him…that is, until Jason Flynn.
Jason has been to more crime scenes than he can count, but the recent string of homicides has been extraordinarily gruesome. As the bodies continue to surface, Jason knows he is out of time.
He has only two choices…
Track down the elusive serial killer and save the next target from a grisly demise, or wait for Abel—the self-proclaimed assassin of God—to trigger the most horrifying religious war of his time.
Okay seriously, don't you want to dig in already? I know I do! I love the book's premise and I'm not finished with it yet, but I'm already so in love with the characters and Jason Flynn's sense of humor. I know first hand how hard it is to write comedy into a suspenseful book, but Swanson pulls it off flawlessly.
Speaking of Luke Swanson, I was lucky enough to get him to squeeze me into his schedule for a little last minute interview today and I wanted to share that with you guys.
Me: So, Luke tell us what made you decide you wanted to become an author? What inspires you to write?
Luke: Storytelling has always been a huge interest of mine. Using your words to hold someone’s attention is a unique experience, and it is a very important one—it’s a responsibility I don’t take lightly. While I certainly love entertaining people with twists and turns, I ultimately hope to teach people something about themselves.
Me: I love it. That's such an important part of our job as writers. Why did you choose to write thrillers particularly?
Luke: I love stretching the imagination, massaging the mind, trying to keep the reader one step ahead of me. Keeping the reader engaged is my goal, and there are few occurrences as fulfilling as truly engrossing another person in a story. Plus, thrillers and mysteries are my preferred novels. If I can’t be engaged in a story, how can I expect someone else to be?
Me: So, cliche question here, who are your all time favorite authors?
Luke: Steven James is far and away my favorite author, and he doesn’t get near the credit he deserves. I also enjoy Michael Connelly, Dennis Lehane, Ted Dekker, Tosca Lee, Anthony Horowitz, and Stephen King. I love history books too, so, in terms of authors, I would throw Stephen Ambrose, David McCullough, and James Swanson (no relation) in the mix. And I hate to sound pretentious, but you can’t beat Twain, Faulkner, and Hemingway.
Me: *mentally adding these names to my #ToBeRead list* Out of all of your favorite books, is there a quote or passage that stands out to you? One that you could narrow down as your favorite?
Luke: While not exactly inspiring or life-changing, this passage from Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” is, I think, genius and perfectly written: “He had one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life. It faced, or seemed to face, the whole external world for an instant and then concentrated on you with an irresistible prejudice in your favor. It understood you just as far as you wanted to be understood, believed in you as you would like to believe in yourself.”
Now come on, who doesn't love The Great Gatsby? And seriously, props to Luke for even coming up with a favorite quote. If I were asked, I'd have to run and hide... in a mountain of my favorite books. How could I ever choose?
Me: What's your writing routine?
Luke:: I tend to work and think best in momentum. I don’t really have a schedule or routine—when things get going, they keep going. Until acted upon by an outside force, of course.
Me: So, when I've finished The Ten I'm sure I'll be ready to devour more of your work...what can your readers expect from you next?
Luke: They say comedy is harder to write than drama, and I’m finding this to be very true. I’m trying to crack the code on my own version of “Forrest Gump.” It’s difficult to explain and strange in concept, so I’ll leave it at that for now.
(I love this concept- how cool! Let's hope there's an adorable catch phrase in this version, like in the original)
Me: So, spill...what was the VERY first thing you did when you found out your book was going to be published?
Luke: I high-fived my roommate, who had suggested I send “The Ten” to Limitless Publishing in the first place.
Me: What would you like to say to everyone who inspired your writing?
Luke: To all the authors and filmmakers whose stories I have absorbed over the course of my life, I would say thank you from the bottom of my heart. Their works and talents have inspired me immensely.
Me: If you could sit down and discuss your book with anyone in the world, living or dead, who would it be?
Luke: Although this man is in a different medium, it would have to be Christopher Nolan, writer/director of some of my favorite movies. His grasp on complex storytelling is unparalleled.
Me: What is one thing you wish people knew about you or your writing?
Luke: To quote Oscar Wilde, “Life is too important to take seriously.” Writing stories isn’t the most important thing in life. While I certainly enjoy it, relationships and experiences take the top spot.
(How sweet! This guy's got his priorities in line!)
Me: So, admit it...you've thought about your dream cast, right? If your book were ever to be turned into a movie, tell us who you'd want front and center.
Luke: Oh man, I’ve thought about this. (Because you're an author. And that's what we do with our spare time) I would put Ryan Gosling as Jason, Rachel McAdams as Cheyenne, Oscar Isaac as Garth, Aaron Eckhart as Jack, David Oyelowo as Chris, and John Goodman as Captain Jones
I'll just sit here and try not to swoon over the idea of another movie with Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams.
Give me a second. Geeze.
Okay, I'm back.
Me: Last question, before I let you get back to your amazing #ReleaseDay celebration: What book are you reading now?
Luke: Currently, I’m re-reading one of the best novels I’ve ever read, “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak. It’s a brilliant piece of storytelling, the sort of thing that makes me wish I’d thought of it—but I immediately take it back because Zusak pulled it off flawlessly.
Luke, I just want to say thank you again for taking the time to talk with me. I enjoyed discussing your book with you and can't wait to find out all of the secrets it holds. I wish you so much luck with your career and will be following your success every step of the way!
Thanks for joining me this week guys.
Until next time,
So, what are you waiting for? Check out Luke's new book, The Ten, on Amazon & order your copy today: http://www.amazon.com/Ten-Luke-Swanson-ebook/dp/B01EK2LY80
Kiersten Modglin is an award-winning author of psychological and domestic suspense novels. Her first novel was published in 2016. Mother, wife, and Netflix-addict, when she's not writing, Kiersten can be found with her family devouring binge-worthy books and TV.