Tuesday, March 02, 2010
Pro-File: Lynn Kostoff A CHOICE OF NIGHTMARES
“A Choice of Nightmares is noir at its lurid best.”
— Megan Abbott, bestselling author of Bury Me Deep
“Lynn Kostoff is that rarest breed of stylist who can, in a minimum space, evoke a whole world.”
— Marcus Sakey, author of The Blade Itself
“Kostoff is clearly one of the unsung heroes of modern crime fiction. A Choice Of Nightmares is a page-turning adventure from a novelist with a style the rest of us can only wish for.”
— Charlie Stella, author of Mafiya
“Perfect. I love this book.”
— Sara Gran, author of Dope
Pro-File: Lynn Kostoff
Tell us about your current novel .
My novel, A CHOICE OF NIGHTMARES, is due out in March2010 from New
Pulp Press. The novel, set in Miami and Key West, has thematic roots in
the old Gold Medal paperbacks and in Conrad’s HEARTOF DARKNESS and
Fitzgerald’s THE GREAT GATSBY. I wanted to pay homage to the noir
tradition and hopefully add something of my own to it. I was
very pleased when New Pulp Press picked it up.
Can you give a sense of what you’re working on now?
I am in the final stages of revision for a new novelcoming out from
Tyrus Books in July 2010; it’s called LATE RAIN, and it’s a
neo-noir/crime novel about three characters whose lives collide ina
booming South Carolina coastal town. At the heart of the book is a
murder for hire that goes awry andis witnessed by a man in the late
stages of Alzheimer’s. When the person hiring out the murder tries to
cover things up, everything spirals out of control. LATE RAIN finally is
about need and desire and the fear and desperation that drive how far
the characters are willing to go to find what they want.
What is the greatest pleasure of a writing career?
For me, it’s the work itself. It grounds me. Ilike the idea of getting
up each morning knowing there’s a long-termproject that holds my
attention. The greatest pleasure is seeing the story andcharacters
slowly taking shape in each draft of the novel. Typically, I do four to
five drafts of a book.
What is the greatest displeasure?
That’s an easy one. It’s the same as most of the citizens in the
Western world: the frustration each day of not having enough time to get
what I need and love to do done. Carving out some quiet time each day
gets more and more difficult, but at the same time, nothing is
more essential to each of us.
If you have one piece of advice for the publishing world, what is it?
I wish publishers would find a way to better integrate blogs (like this
one and others) within the publicity procedures for their books. The old
review base/system is dramatically shrinking, and so many worthwhile newbooks and authors are simply not reviewed at all. Often it seems like
there’s a major disconnect between the publishers and the audience for
their books. There’s a lot of quality fiction out there that
goes unnoticed, and that’s sad news for both readers and authors.
Are there two or three forgotten mystery writers you’d like to see in
Gil Brewer. Dan Marlowe. Charles Williams. Leigh Brackett. Peter Rabe.
Thomas Dewey. Paul Cain. Harry Whittington. Loren Singer. Marc Behm.
Some are not in print at all and should be, and others have
limited print runs. All are very good writers.
Tell us about selling your first novel. Most writers never forget that moment.
It was a quiet moment for me. But a very important one because I felt
I’d finally reached a turning point as a writer. Like most novelists, I
had made a ten-year bet with myself about breaking into print, and after
years of apprenticeship, there was real satisfaction in finding I was
now part of the guild.