About J.T. Conroe:
J.T. Conroe is a former architect and U.S. Air Force officer who was born in Montana and has since traveled widely and lived in various places around the country and the world. He is an editor/publisher of non-fiction history books. He has written and published five varied suspense novels infused with a certain literary quality and set against the expansive background of recent American history. One reviewer said “this writer has a strong literary sense reminiscent of noir novels of the past.” Expect to encounter his American protagonists in such places as post-war Nebraska, Washington during the Watergate scandal, Central Asia during the aftermath of 9/11, a small town in West Texas, Dresden during its devastation and long, slow recovery, a remote city in post-Soviet Russia, the Chicago underworld, the Hollywood fringe, or the international black market in art stolen by the Nazis.
Conroe started writing at age ten and publishing at age 60. He was and is inspired by the novels of Len Deighton, Ross Macdonald, Alan Furst, Mario Puzo, John le Carré, Eric Ambler, Joseph Conrad, Herman Melville, Len Deighton, Graham Greene, William Kennedy, and many others too numerous to name.
He currently lives in the lively city of Austin, Texas with his wife Margaret and their imperious dachshund who answers (when it suits her) to the name, Ruby.
What inspires you to write?
Tell us about your writing process.
I start with a sketchy idea of a character, usually someone much like myself, place him in a particular setting, think of something that might happen to him there, and let him go to wherever my imagination is willing to take him. I make note of ideas that come to me along the way, and I may do a rough outline when things get complicated. I don’t worry much about perfection until the first draft is complete. After I finish the first draft, I go back and work on the writing.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
My characters tend to speak and act on their own. Many of them who were intended to be mere bit players end up taking over whole scenes and completely altering the course of the story.
What advice would you give other writers?
It’s okay to nudge your characters in the right direction, but don’t try to control everything they do or say. Turn them loose and they will surprise you, usually in a good way. Do get into their heads. Write so that your reader experiences things in the same way that your point-of-view character does. Make it a direct, first-hand experience for the reader, not a second-hand, indirect one. Try to visualize every event in a specific setting and convey that visualization to your reader. Above all, keep on writing.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I decided to self-publish because the process of making yourself known and trusted by a publisher who can actually help you sell books takes far too long. As a writer, you need to be able to handle rejection, but having an actual book out there in the real world, even it doesn’t sell, is far more satisfying than having a stack of rejection letters.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I’m guessing that traditional publishers will be far fewer and those that survive will only publish books by people who are already famous or have had substantial success as self-publishers. Already successful authors are and will continue to gravitate away from the traditional publishers. Amazon will dominate the field.
What genres do you write?: suspense thrillers with a somewhat literary touch
What formats are your books in?: Print, Both eBook and Print
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