CRIMINALLY GOOD: Interview with author Michael Frase

michael1) Who are you and what have you written?

My name is Michael Frase and I have written five full-length novels thus far. They are all thrillers, or as you refer to the genre, crime fiction. Fatal Gift is the first of these books to be published. The others are scheduled for release over the next couple of years. You can visit my website HERE and LIKE my Facebook page, HERE.

2) Why do you write crime fiction?

I find the struggle between good and evil, between the individual and corrupt government or corrupt entities within the government, to be especially compelling. I like to put ordinary people—those possessing no “superpowers”—into situations completely outside of their comfort zone and typically not of their doing, and then see how they fair when pitted against the forces of evil. Much as you and I would have to do if we found ourselves in similar circumstances.

FGWhile I respect anyone who can write well and hold an audience’s attention, regardless of their chosen genre, I just don’t see myself writing romance novels or science fiction. I think any artist performs best when he or she stays within a world they know. That said, it is also essential to grow and test oneself constantly throughout one’s career. Whenever it gets to easy or familiar, banal and uninspiring can’t be far away.

3) What informs your crime writing?

I have had the good fortune of being around and involved with many different types of law enforcement personnel and agencies for much of my adult life.

I have served as a consultant for numerous “spook” agencies over the years and have even developed various technologies used in the war against crime and terrorism. While none of the books I have written to date relate directly to any information or cases I reviewed or was involved with, the cornucopia of information that I gathered during that time has given me more than enough material for a bookshelf of stories.

4) What’s your usual writing routine?

I don’t believe in writer’s block. I’ve heard that expression for years and I don’t even know what it means. I get up every day and write, just as anyone else performs the tasks associated with his or her job. I’m a writer; that’s what I do, even if it’s not always inspiring or award-winning. Electricians don’t get electrician block. Nurses don’t get nurse block. They go to the office every day and do what’s expected of them.

If someone has the good fortune to write for an audience, it is their obligation to get up every day and go to work. That doesn’t mean that everything they put down on paper will be worth reading. In truth, I probably throw out ninety percent of what I write at any given time. I am always my toughest critic, and it must past my stringent standards or it goes straight in the trash—no reprieve. But, whether good or bad, I do write something every day, often as much as five or ten thousand words. I find that the “writing muscle” must be exercised every day to stay in top form, just like any other part of the body. The more you work it, the more you can depend upon it.

5) Which crime book do you wish you’d written, and why?

I suppose if I had to pick just one novel, it would be The Da Vinci Code. I have three reasons for saying that: first, Dan Brown developed a story-line for this novel that was almost wholly unique in the world of literature, something that is more difficult to do than any non-writer could possibly imagine. Second, Brown did a stellar job of weaving the tale, and gave us several characters that “stick to your ribs,” as my mother would say. And third, I can’t imagine a writer alive who wouldn’t want to say they had written for an audience as large as the one enjoyed by that worldwide bestseller.

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