It has been a very busy week here at CMash Reads. And last, but not least, I have the privilege to introduce you to today’s guest author, Mr. Wix Simon! Welcome!!
Wix Simon worked for the Environmental Protection Agency for many years and is now a consultant. His scientific training provides him the basis for understanding modern police work, which is heavily rooted in science and technology. Wix learned about police work from Mickey Lloyd, the lead investigator for the APD in the Atlanta Child Murders that occurred between 1979 and 1981. He is the author of the novel A Toxic Assault; he also plays the fiddle and enjoys black-and-white photography.
Visit Mr. Simon at his website here.
Q & A with Wix Simon
Writing and Reading:
-Do you draw from personal experiences and/or current events?
I use personal experiences to shape character and motivation. I think some about current events for plot, but usually I start the plot with an idea I’ve had for several years.
-Do you start with the conclusion and plot in reverse or start from the beginning and see where the story line brings you?
I never know where the book is going. How boring would that be! Instead, I start the plot and then as I get to know the characters, they act out the plot through their motivations and desires. Every character I create, even Rusty Nails in “A Lost Gun”, has some aspect that engages me.
-Your routine when writing? Any idiosyncrasies?
When I’m writing a novel, I either think about the book or write for about 45 minutes while I sit in my kitchen drinking coffee. I use a small computer to write novels and it’s easy to fire it up in the morning.
-Is writing your full time job? If not, may I ask what you do by day?
I work as a consulting scientist. I have a solo practice as a consulting toxicologist. As a toxicologist, I’m writing a text book on environmental risk assessment. It’ll end up about 110,000 words. I write it when I can. Much more time consuming than writing a novel–after all, I can’t just make it up for the text book. I can talk further about my work if you wish.
-Who are some of your favorite authors?
for thriller/suspense: James Lee Burke, Oliver Potzch, Gillian Flynn, Lee Child, James Elroy for literature; Thomas Pynchon, William Gaddis, Joseph Heller, William Faulkner for philosophy: Karl Popper, Friedrich Neitzche, Soren Kirkegaard, David Hume, Robert Pursig
-What are you reading now?
The Beggar King by Oliver Potzch and a biography of the photographer Edward S. Curtis.
-Are you working on your next novel? Can you tell us a little about it?
I completed about 80 pages before starting on the text book. In that story, Detective Bud Prior goes after a serial killer. This is the story in which he meets his first wife Sandi. Sandi drove a friend to an abortion clinic and was waiting for her. She was reading Flaubert’s novel Madame Bovary. Bud is a reader and was intrigued by her choice of books. That was how they met.
-Your novel will be a movie. Who would you cast?
In “A Lost Gun,” I’d cast Rooney Mara as Jessie, Jude Law as Bud Prior, and Keith Couture as Ron Niles.”
-Would you rather read or watch TV/movie?
I like both books and movies–the choice is driven by content. The last movie I saw out was “Django Unchained.” It was great. I’d read another Jack Reacher book by Lee Child, but I think he’s likely burned out. I read “Dark Places” by Gillian Flynn recently. I’d read another by her in a NY minute.
I have food allergies and am gluten free. I eat to live rather than vice versa. I like good sushi.
Coffee, what else?
I do traditional black-and-white film photography and play the violin.
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