Please welcome Tim Hall, author of Dead Stock.
What’s your idea of a perfect day?
It’s summer and I’m at a beach house on the ocean. I get up at 7 a.m., have strong black coffee, write, go to the beach and swim, read and write some more, have a picnic and play Frisbee with my wife and son, write, read, take a nap, go for a late afternoon swim, have dinner and watch a movie, write, read a bedtime story to my son, catch up with my wife, fall asleep with pen and pad in my hands by 11.
Do you have a signature accessory, color, fragrance, phrase, or meal?
Seabrook Farms creamed spinach over medium shells with butter and parmesan. Works every time.
Do you listen to music when you write?
Depends. I like instrumental stuff when I write, and tend to like long pieces, so I might put on an old Grateful Dead concert, or 70s prog rock like Yes or early Genesis. I also love progressive house and certain kinds of techno, so I play a lot of DJ mixes–Sasha, Digweed and Carl Cox get played a lot.
If your latest book were chocolate, what kind would it be and why?
It would be dark, salty, and nutty, because that pretty much describes me.
What made you interested in writing this particular story?
When I was a young man (in the late 1980s) there were no cozies that I could find with protagonists like me. I didn’t like hardboiled stuff, though I read it all. The closest I could find were humorous caper novels like Lawrence Block’s Burglar series, or some of the Jeeves and Wooster books. I loved and devoured those. So the idea for this book is actually 25 years old, it just took a while for either the world to catch up to me or for me not to care what the world thought.
What themes do you regularly (re)visit in your writing?
Long Island, girls, chivalry, romance, women, entitlement, girls, regret, dames, redemption, broads, justice, romance, girls, and independence. And girls.
Tell us about your main character’s psyche or personality. What led her (or him) to be the person s/he is today?
Bert is lower class, economically. His dad left when he was young, and his mom probably drinks a little bit more than she should. He’s the classic “lost child,” but he’s saved by a sense of humor and his own innate decency and honest outlook on life.
Describe your protagonist as a mash-up of three famous people or characters.
Bertie Wooster, Columbo, and a Horatio Alger hero.
If you could host an author dinner party, who are the six writers (living or otherwise) you’d include?
Dawn Powell, Dorothy Parker, Oscar Wilde, Isak Dinesen, Mark Twain, and Ben Franklin.
What’s next for you?
I’m currently working on Bert Shambles book number two, which should have been finished by now except I got involved writing two other cozy series, plus a bunch of short stories. I expect to have Bert #2, Tie Died, out sometime in the fall, and then two new books/series starting in 2015 along with Bert #3.
Tim Hall is the author of 3 novels and 2 short story collections. His first mystery novel, Dead Stock, was published in 2013 by Cozy Cat Press. He lives in New York City with his wife and son. His infrequently updated website is http://www.timhallbooks.com.