Thursday, June 21, 2018

Today's victim is a friend, author, fellow Rebel ...

Kia ora,
Please welcome our latest victim guest, José H. Bográn. On the metal plate suspended above that puddle by wires is a chocolate fish. Behave and the delicious pink marshmallow fish covered in chocolate won’t end up a goopy mess on the floor.
In the event of an earthquake/zombie plague/or random occupation - you’ll find emergency procedures taped to the bottom of your seat. Yes, just like a flotation device. You’ll also find a Glock 17 with a full magazine.
Remember you cannot reason with zombies and it’s a head shot every time.  

Since the last time I sat here we went into a debate about the pros & cons of Glock, I’m gonna go with a simple yes this time.

 I know how I do what I do … but how do you do what you do?
One word at a time. Let’s expand that to one book at a time. I write an outline, sometimes a chapter list, and keep working from there, just following the map. I’ve discovered it prevents writer’s block and allows me to write scenes out of order.

Could you tell us a little bit about your latest work?
Poisoned Tears is not your average serial killer story. My antagonist doesn´t really want to get caught, and disguises the deaths as accidents by using poisonous animals as his weapon of choice. It took one stubborn character, namely my protagonist Allan Knox, to piece the case together and come up with a theory that not only got him mocked, but landed his partner in jail for obstruction of justice. 
On his blurb, author friend Jon Land said Poisoned Tears was “a great piece of noir.” Since I never intentionally wrote it as noir, the line came as a surprise to me. Then again, who am I to argue with a best-selling author! 

Do you have a favorite coffee or tea?
I tell people I get out of bed at 6am, but really wake up after the first cup of coffee. On the other hand, earlier this year I decided to cut the intake of sodas, and discovered teas are great, so nowadays I eat lunch accompanied with a warm cup of tea.

 Walk us through a typical day. 
A typical day for me is quite hectic, but let me see if I can organize my thought and put it in some sort of coherent order. My 9-to-5 is fundraising for Habitat for Humanity in my country, but after that, my wife and I run a small Korean restaurant so I either act as host, or bring the beverages or prepare the check, anything to keep me from the kitchen. Wedged between the free time somewhere is my job with The Big Thrill as correspondence secretary where I vet the book submissions and other activities. Also, work as the Roundtable Coordinator that’s a weekly discussion of different topics with guest authors. It’s a blast and the topics are varied. 
As of December last year, I also taught English as a second language, but I grew tired of being referred to as “professor.”
Oh yeah, I also write. Occasionally. 

Tell us about your main character. 
Allan Knox is a former Private Eye, but also a former football player. Heck, his nickname back in the day, Fort Knox should tell you all about his attitude. As a proud Texan he wears snakeskin boots that he’s more than happy to plant on whoever butts he finds in need of a good kick. 

Do you ever put pants on your dog, cat, or budgie? 
A resounding NO. Because of the cold weather, my kinds attempted once to put a t-shirt to our cocker named Lucky. He didn´t like it and chewed his way out of the thing in record time. Wish I had recorded a video of that, would have gone viral.

Who is your favorite fictitious villain? Or are you all about the hero? Who do you love to hate?
My favorite villain is Darth Vader. My love-hate relationship with Anakin reaches the point where I’m almost glad he gets his limbs chopped off at the end of Episode III so I can see my bad guy in black shining armor. I’m a writer. Twisted comes with the territory.
Oh, and I love to hate Adam Sandler. Have seen many of his movies, never liked any of them so yeah, this is an informed opinion. 

All-time favorite movie and why?
I’m a movie buff, have too many favorites to list here. Try to watch Casablanca at least once a year, never turn the channel when I come across a James Bond flick, or Indiana Jones for that matter.

Do you enjoy the editing process?
I hate editing my own work. Part of my problem is that I know something’s wrong and can’t identify it. Now, working with a capable editor is a joy. I have no problem with other people suggesting changes to my work. 

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be and why?
I’ll choose New Orleans. Not only is located in my own continent, but it feels European, so a best of both worlds kind of thing. Plus that’s the best place to get beignets and chicory coffee. 

What were you before you became a writer? 

A liar. The motto in my website says “I never tell lies, I only write them.” My writing career runs in parallel with my other life. I used to work in the manufacturing industry for fashion, but nowadays I run a Korean restaurant and work with an ONG as a fundraiser. Talk about life changes after 40!

What is the most random thing you have ever done?
Pick a book by an unknown author. Most of the times I’m pleasantly surprised.

What’s in your pockets? 
Trained Boy Scout, some I’m always ready. My pockets contain a Swiss army knife, so if needed I can open the beer bottle, cut the lemon, or get the cork out of a wine bottle. The screwdrivers have saved my life more times than I care to count. 
Other items include a small pen so it can fit into my jean pocket. 
A lighter. I don’t smoke, but you never know when birthday people forget the matches to light the candle. 
In recent years I added a thumb drive with some music and backup files. 
My wallet has three types of business cards: day job, restaurant and author.

Laptop, PC, Mac, tablet?
Last time I said: “All three: Laptop at the office, PC at home, tablets everywhere.” But let me update that.

Favorite apocalyptic scenario?
I’d like to share a story about the arsenal for a zombie apocalypse. A few years ago while going over a dream list of items with my sons, they were baffled by my inclusion of a Hattori Hanzo katana. That weekend I introduced them to Quintin Tarantino’s Kill Bill and later they not only agree but made a note about on their own lists.
As for my favorite scenario, I guess the one where I get to survive! 

Where do you do most of your writing?
Since I’ve reverted to handwriting the first draft, I can pretty much write anywhere. As for the typing and subsequent revisions, I work at either the restaurant during my night shift, or with my personal computer in various places.

What’s the hardest thing for you when it comes to being an author? (For me it’s marketing but for others it’s the actual writing …)
For me it’s marketing. Writing is meant to be a solitary profession. If I were a sales person I’d work in something else! 

You made it!! Damn, you rock. Now would you like to try for the chocolate fish? Mind the puddles … but hurry. Power surges are common in the dungeon; you don’t want to have one hand on the metal plate containing that delicious chocolate fish and a foot in a puddle...
That laughter you hear is coming from The Knight, he probably won’t flip that switch he has his hand on. Probably …

You can find out more about José in the following places ...

Twitter: @jhbogran

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