Thursday, November 1, 2012
Blog Tour Stop #1: Falling Immortality by Robert Downs - Interview
Welcome to a very special edition of Into the Confessional, Robert Downs author of Falling Immortality has stepped into the confessional as part of his blog tour, hosted by Making Connections on Goodreads. Enjoy your time on this first stop of the Falling Immortality Blog Tour. Without further adieu, here is the transcript of Robert's visit to the confessional.
1. What made you want to become a writer?
Like many authors, I’ve always been a voracious reader. And once I realized being a garbage
man probably wasn’t the right career path for me, I set my aspirations in an entirely different
direction. As I grew older, I dabbled in song lyrics, or what I refer to as really bad poetry, but
I was testing out the writing waters, without really even knowing what I was doing. And after
watching Finding Forrester, I decided to become a little more ambitious with my water dabbling
by deciding to tackle a novel. I had to wrestle it to the ground like a bull, and it popped back up
with horns at the ready, as I waved my white flag. But several manuscripts stuffed in file drawers
later, here we are, and I can honestly say that I love it as much now as I did then. I just hope I’m
a bit smarter about the whole process.
2. From who or what do you get your inspiration and was there one individual that got you
started in writing?
It wasn’t a specific individual that kick started the writing gene (see my answer to question 1).
As far as where I get my inspiration, the short answer is everywhere. If I don’t get at least one
or two ideas a month, then it’s probably been a bad month. Will I use all my ideas? Probably
not. But it’s nice to know I have a wealth of ideas, and I can always seem to manufacture more.
Now, I know ideas don’t just explode in my head, but it sometimes feels like they do. Anything
can trigger an idea from reading to observing to two random thoughts popping together like
firecrackers to movies to a conversational phrase that won’t go away.
3. Every writer has their own unique process and each process has its own quirks. What are
some of yours if any?
I don’t know if I have specific quirks, but you’re right I do have an approach to my writing
process. It probably wouldn’t work for everybody, but it works just fine for me. When I write,
I pound the keys with as much force as I can possibly muster, and I keep going until I run out
of steam, or life gets in the way. When I was younger, I’d write for what felt like an entire
weekend. Even though I don’t write quite that much now, I still try to devote as much time to
the writing process as I can. Since I have a day job, I write during the evenings when I’m not
previously indisposed, or as much as I can on the weekends. Oh, I should probably add that I
have the same desk (slightly modified) and chair, since I was in the fourth or fifth grade. I don’t
consider it a quirk, but my wife probably would. And, yes, one day I do plan to upgrade my desk.
4. Where did your inspiration for Casey Holden come from? Someone you know personally?
Not really. He’s a rather unique individual, so I can’t say he grew out of one specific person. I
hadn’t read many hard-boiled or noir novels, so I had no idea how much I loved the genre. But
I do. I really, really do. The closest I probably came to hard-boiled was Robert B. Parker, and I
devoured his novels like a tray of cupcakes. I wanted a strong, unique voice, so naturally I came
up with the strongest male voice I could possibly muster. He’s me without the moral compass,
filter, and way too much money and time on his hands. These are all problems I don’t currently
have to worry about, so I have a lot of fun exploring the world through his eyes. As my dad
would say, he’s my alter-ego.
5. Do you have anything special in the works? If so when can we expect it to hit shelves?
Oh, I like to think all of novels are special, because let’s face it, if you’re going to devote several
years to the process from conception to manuscript completion to final product to marketing,
you’d better have a damn good reason for doing it. But I can tell you my publisher and I are
working on editing the second Casey Holden mystery titled Graceful Immortality, so we’re just
a bit beyond step 2 of my timeline. As for when it will be available to readers, your guess is as
good mine, since many aspects of publishing remind me of a weather forecaster trying to predict
the next rainstorm. But I hope we can have it available for purchase in a year and a half or so, if
6. If you had the chance to spend one month anywhere in the world, what one place would you
Well, Hawaii comes to mind. It’s been on my places to visit list for a while now, and I’ve never
been before. Short of being on the West Coast, the flight time is about as short as it will ever be
for me, since I live in New Mexico. In a few years, though, I’m liable to give you an entirely
7. If you could visit any fictional world for one day where would you go?
Again, I’ll give you the first answer that comes to mind Sherlock Holmes. Sure, he’s not the
first detective to have ever walked the Earth, but he’s certainly one of the most famous and most
beloved. I’d love to see 221b Baker Street and London through his eyes. I know it could only
help my own writing.
8. If you had to choose four fictional characters to have a meal with who would they be and what
one question would you ask of each of them?
Four characters that come to mind are Jack Reacher, Elvis Cole, Archie McNally, and Sherlock
Holmes. Honestly, I’d probably sit around with my mouth open, and it’d take me fifteen or
twenty minutes to summon enough courage to ask them a question. I’d probably ask them about
their detective skills, since all four of them have a different approach and they each bring unique
capabilities to the table.
9. What are the top three books on your to read list right now?
The top three in my pile of books to read. Sorry, I don’t mean to be a smartass, but every book
on my shelf and in my Kindle is important to me; otherwise, why would I spend the money,
or more importantly, take time away from other activities to read? Now, that’s not to say I
don’t love reading, because I do, so I can’t even fathom a world without books. When I read, I
completely immerse myself in every book.
When I look at reading, just as I do with writing, I focus on what book I want to read, or write,
right now. So the short answer to your question is The Corpse Wore Pasties, Moneyshot, and
Capital. If you ask me in a few weeks, I’ll have an entirely different answer for you, since I’ll
have three completely different books at the top of my pile to read right now.
10. What one question would you ask to any historical figure if you had the chance?
The first historical figure that pops into my head is Martin Luther King, Jr. Since he was such a
great leader, I’d probably ask him what I could do to become a better leader.
11. One final question and this is actually for Mister Casey Holden, what is your ideal date that
does not include sex.
Here’s what he would say: Whatever the girl wants to do. Because when he takes a woman out,
it’s not about him: it’s about her. It doesn’t matter if it’s the movies, dinner, a picnic lunch, a
day at the beach, flying to Paris, driving toward the Appalachian Mountains, or walking through
MacArthur Center Mall, dating is about showing an interest in her and making her feel special.
So he would do whatever it takes to knock her out of her high heels, even if it’s just for a
moment. Because if he’s successful, he knows she’ll come back for more.
Website: Robert Downs
Facebook Page: Robert Downs Books