7.23.15 - 7 Minutes With... Sean Chercover

Sean is one of my all-time favorites, and not only because he used to let me sneak off and smoke with him. Killer Year brought us together, he won a slew of awards for his work, and here we are, nearly a decade later, celebrating his new thriller, THE DEVIL'S GAME. Awesome cover, don't you think? Sean is rushing up the charts his new series, which isn't a surprise. He's an amazing crime fiction writer, and has really spread his wings with The Game Trilogy. The books are thick with prophecy and miracles and mysteries, and sharp, evocative writing. You're going to LOVE them. Welcome, Sean!

 I was lucky enough to chat with SEAN in New York last week at Thrillerfest!

 

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Set your music to shuffle and hit play. What’s the first song that comes up?

“She’s Gone,” by Hound Dog Taylor and the Houserockers.

Now that we’ve set the mood, what are you working on today?

Right now, this interview. Then I’ll dive back in on the final book of the Game Trilogy.

What’s your latest book about?

Intrigue, adventure, romance . . . also deceit, betrayal, and villainy (all the good things in life). In my previous thriller, THE TRINITY GAME, [my protagonist] Daniel Byrne was searching for a miracle, but found much more than he was looking for. Perhaps the real miracle he found was the healing of his relationship with his uncle and childhood guardian, the Reverend Tim Trinity, televangelist-grifter-turned-maybe-prophet. In THE DEVIL’S GAME, Daniel is no longer searching for a miracle—now he’s searching for the truth.

And the truth is, Trinity was not the only person strangely afflicted with an apparent gift of prophecy. While the world only knows about Trinity, what’s come to be known as the Trinity Phenomenon has actually manifested in thousands of people, and it’s spreading like a contagion. Whatever the cause, it’s clear that the universe is trying to tell us something. So Daniel hooks up with some shady rich dudes and goes running off to try and solve the thing. And then everybody starts shooting at each other.

Where do you write, and what tools do you use?

I rent an office in the same building as my apartment, which makes for an easy commute. Tools? I write my first drafts in a notebook, using Blackwing 602 pencils, then move to my MacBook Air. And I write at a standing desk, which is a life saver.

What was your favorite book as a child?          

THE MOUSE AND THE MOTORCYCLE, by Beverly Cleary.

What’s your secret talent?

I can move my consciousness back and forth between parallel universes.

What book are you reading now?

WAYS TO DIE IN GLASGOW, by Jay Stringer. Loving it.

When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

I knew for sure by the 3rd grade. But I kept it a secret for a long time.

Who is your writing idol? Have you met him/her? If so, did you completely nerd out or keep your cool?

Oh, gawd. I’ve nerded out more times than I can count. Which is odd, because I don’t really think of artists I admire as “idols.” I used to work in television, where I met a ton of famous actors and musicians, and I never nerded out over them (Well, once. I totally nerded out when I met Bob Dylan, but I think I can be forgiven that). So I thought I was immune to the syndrome. But for some reason, when I first joined the crime fiction community, I acted like a tongue-tied teenybopper when I met authors I admire. Thankfully, they were very gracious, and I’m long over that phase. Still, I reserve the right to nerd out if I ever meet Beverly Cleary.

What’s your favorite bit of writing advice?

Just write the book that you want to read.

What do you do if the words aren’t flowing?

Hate myself. Then write anyway.

Are you creatively satisfied?

No. But there’s joy to be had in the journey, and moments of great elation along the way. As Peter Tosh said, “Peace is the diploma you get in the cemetery.”

What would you like to be remembered for?

I don’t presume that I’ll be remembered, except by the people who share my life. I hope that the people I love will find my presence in their lives preferable to my absence.

Alright, now for the really important questions:

Beach or mountains? Beach!

Coffee or tea? Coffee (although I drink a lot of green tea).

Skydive or bungee jump? Skydive (but only if the plane is going down).

Chocolate or vanilla? Are you crazy? Chocolate. Dark, bitter chocolate.

Winter or summer? Summer.

Cake or pie? I don’t really have much of a sweet tooth, but I like a good piece of pie.

Cats or dogs? I have both, love both. But if you put a gun to my head, I’ll take dogs (sorry, Fiona).

Pens or pencils? Pencils.

Truth or dare? Truth with friends, dare with acquaintances.

Print or ebook? Both. Audiobook too, when my eyes are required elsewhere.

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Sean Chercover is the author of the Wall Street Journal bestseller THE TRINITY GAME, and the newly released thriller THE DEVIL’S GAME. He’s won a bunch of awards and stuff, and he lives in Toronto with his wife and son and dog and cat. To learn more, please visit www.chercover.com.

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J.T. Ellison

J.T. Ellison is the New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of fifteen critically acclaimed thrillers and is the co-author of the Nicholas Drummond series with #1 New York Times bestselling author Catherine Coulter. With over a million books in print, Ellison’s work has been published in twenty-five countries and thirteen languages. She is also the co-host of A Word on Words, Nashville's premier literary TV series, which airs on Nashville Public Television. She lives with her husband and twin kittens in Nashville. Visit JTEllison.com, and follow her on Twitter @Thrillerchick or at Facebook.com/JTEllison14.