Some of the minute details are from everyday observations of the interesting and entertaining human race. A few scenes were inspired from actual events in my life. The majority of the time, the characters tell me where they’re going and no amount of arguing from me changes their minds. They can be an unruly bunch when they have something they want to say or do.
I got the name from a very inspirational person. The real Cris Steele is much softer and kinder than my fictitious one. The inspiration came from her natural drive and determination to go above and beyond to help not only a fellow human, but a military member. It was not a singular act but a natural way of life, helping others. While she is soft and kind, she has the grit to get the job done and stand up for what’s right.
Chapter 28 in Breaking Steele was rough. I won’t give a spoiler alert but those who have read it would understand why. The hardest scene though was probably most of Chapter 6 in Burying Steele. Just the raw emotion of what she felt and experienced. I still get choked up when I read it.
The characters really formed and took a life of their own and showed me their story. I tried to ignore them for four years, until I couldn’t anymore. I was able to influence with some aspects that I wanted to bring light to, such as our military, veterans, PTSD/suicide awareness and homeless vets.
I do not have a law enforcement background but often feel I missed some callings (I probably would’ve made a great drill sergeant). One of the great things about being a fiction writer is you can still get to live out your dream job.
While not always a “who dunit” writer, my favorite author for about 30 years now is Dean Koontz. I also enjoy reading Lisa Jackson, J.D. Robb, Lisa Gardner, Iris Johansen’s Eve Duncan series, James Patterson’s Cross series, Lee Child’s Reacher series, Stephen King and when I want some great crime comedy, I really enjoy Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series.
I do have a vision of what I want the cover to look like by the time the book is done. The difficulty is coherently explaining what’s in my delusional brain. I often find the photos and fonts, etc. to try and help the process. I do have a say in them and sometimes it takes several proofs before it gets close enough to what I was envisioning.
Keep checking back for more questions from the fans and attempts at answers from me.
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