Friday, June 15, 2012

Interview with Mystery Writer Fred Lichtenberg
By Jacqueline Seewald

Fred Lichtenberg is a native New Yorker who lives with his wife in Jupiter, Florida. His second novel, Double Trouble, will be released in June 2012. Hunter’s World, Fred’s first mystery set on New York's Long Island, was released by Five Star/Cengage in May 2011.
 In addition to writing mystery novels and short stories, Fred wrote and produced a one-act play titled The Second Time Around … Again, a comedy about finding love in a nursing home, presented at the Lake Worth Playhouse. Fred is a member of Mystery Writers of America and the International Thriller Writers.

 Question: What is the genre of your novel?  Why did you select it?

Answer: I’m a mystery writer. It’s what I mostly read over the years so it was an easy decision to write that genre once I got the bug to write. I also have a bit of comedy in my DNA so humor is always sprinkled into my books. 

Question:   What inspired this novel? How did it come about?

Answer: I enjoy writing about flawed characters and this book is no exception. My stories are psychology driven, so the genesis of Double Trouble deals with characters running away from reality. I’ve been intrigued with twins especially identical twins separated at birth? While their DNA is the same, different environmental backgrounds can make their personalities quite different. In Double Trouble, mistaken identity is the underlying theme that moves the story along.

Question:  Could you tell us a little bit about the heroine and/or hero of your latest novel?
Answer: Charlie Quinn is a washed-out detective (defective detective) from Fort Lauderdale. He’s lived a painful life, has known betrayal, deceit and quite honestly, has little going for him until by chance, he runs into his twin in a Fort Lauderdale parking lot. His twin, Frankie Marcone, is a happy go lucky hit man for the mob but doesn’t have time for a family reunion and bolts. It seems Marcone stole diamonds from his boss and is planning a long vacation. Quinn won’t take no for an answer and attempts to track Marcone down only to become enmeshed in Marcone’s dark world. The boss wants his diamonds back!

 Question:   Can you tell us about some of your other published novels?

Answer:  Hunter’s World was my first published novel. It takes place in a small town on Long Island. The chief of police is investigating the only murder his town has known and the evidence (compromising positions displaying the victim and some of the women), if went public, could cripple the town’s moral foundation. The protagonist must balance his position as a police officer with the love of his town. The more he pushes for justice the more someone behind the scenes is pushing to have him evicted from his office.

I published a short story in February called 666 Kendall Drive, a horror/humorous story of how one man’s investment in the rental real estate market can go terribly wrong. It takes place in South Florida, where else?
Question:   What are you working on now?

Answer:  I just completed the first draft to Good Luck Bad Luck, a Carl Hiaasenesque theme that includes Medicare fraud, pill mills, Ponzi schemes and infidelity. And, of course, murder. It takes place in South Florida. My two main characters include an eighty year old woman, street smart, and a forty something ex-con. It was great fun to write.
Then there is Murder 1040. It’s about what happens to an IRS agent when he uncovers fraud, money laundering, and drugs during an audit. Murder will be published next year.

Question:   What made you start writing?

Answer: I always believed I was a good story teller. After reading mysteries for years, I started dabbling. I began with short stories, and while taking a creative writing class, I wrote a mystery short story. It was well-received and provided the encouragement to continue.

Question:  What advice would you offer to those who are currently writing novels?

Answer:  Writers tend to give the same advice to aspiring novelists. Of course, I’ve added my two-cents. But I can’t emphasize enough that one must have a passion and discipline for writing. That first, then take creative writing courses, read the genre you’re interested in and locate a writers group in your hometown. Then write, write, write!

Question:  Where and when will readers be able to obtain your novel?

Answer: Double Trouble will be available around June 15th. I decided to publish this novel through Amazon’s Create Space and Kindle. It will be available in both soft cover and e-book version. In addition, Hunter’s World, which was previously only in hardcover, will also be available on Amazon’s Kindle at the same time. By the way, the reader doesn’t need a Kindle device to read books from Amazon. Any e-device will work. 

Fred, thanks so much for being our guest today at Author Expressions. Comments are welcome in this forum.


Joyce Elson Moore said...

Jacqueline: Thanks so much for hosting this author. I was surprised to see he lives in Florida. And his books sound like must-reads to me. I did wonder why he was publishing with Create Space, now that Five Star is doing Ebooks. Maybe that's a subject for another post. Thanks for introducing this reader to some more good mysteries!

Jacqueline Seewald said...

There are many great "undiscovered" authors.
Fred is certainly one!

Bren said...

I agree with your comment, Fred, that writers must have a 'passion and discipline' for writing. Most people think writers simply sit down in front of our computers, then magically our pages become a published book. It takes discipline to sit every day, writing, rewriting & revising, to craft a novel people will want to read. You accomplished that with Hunter's World, and I wish you the best on your new works.

bdtharp said...

Nice interview, Jackie. Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Good blog (always interesting) and I admire you for getting some of your work on Create Space. I never got the hang of it, got my grandson to put one onetherefor me but the sales are so near non-existant I'm not worried abaout getting any more on - ha! Good luck and good reading to all of us,
Jackie Griffey
Author of Maryvale Series

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