An Interview

Interview from Book Goodies

About DJ Swykert:
DJ Swykert is a fiction writer and former 911 operator and accident investigator. His work has appeared in The Tampa Review, Detroit News, Underground Book Reviews, Big Al and Pals, Crime Book Junkie, Coe Review, Monarch Review, the Newer York, Lunch Ticket, Gravel, Harpoon Review, Zodiac Review, Sand Canyon Review, Barbaric Yawp and Bull. His books include Children of the Enemy, Maggie Elizabeth Harrington, Alpha Wolves, Sweat Street, Three-fingered Jack Davis, The Pool Boy’s Beatitude, Nude Swimming and The Death of Anyone. You can find him at:

What inspires you to write?
Fiction is the lie through which we tell the truth – Camus.

I write fiction because I can tell my story exactly the way I want it told, not as it actually happened. I like endings that resolve the conflict, nothing just hanging out there.

Tell us about your writing process.
I’m a believer that a novel is: characters in conflict seeking a resolution to the conflict. I usually know how I will end the story from the beginning, each chapter then moves the story forward towards the ending. I write a novel like you’d watch a movie, something I learned from Elmore Leonard. I do make some notes, but do not write from any formal outline. Often novels begin as short stories, I get a character.

For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
Sometimes I will read out loud what I wrote just to hear if the dialogue sounds real

What advice would you give other writers?
The best advice I can give a new novelist is to read the Ten Rules of Writing by Elmore Leonard. You can get it free on the internet.

How did you decide how to publish your books?
Submitting to agents and direct to publishers that will accept un-agented work. You can also self publish with programs through Amazon. I have a publisher who formats the stories for me, lists them on the writing websites and we share in the royalties.

What do you think about the future of book publishing?
It’s going to be interesting. Reading is fast becoming a secondary means of entertainment, young people today seem more inclined to use video or audio more than reading books. But there will always be a market for those who prefer reading, but I don’t see it getting larger but smaller. That’s a pretty bleak forecast, but probably true. Garrison Keillor a decade ago said he saw in the future about fifteen readers for every writer, I’d guess right now there’s about fifteen writers for every reader.

What do you use?: Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer

What genres do you write?: Literary and Crime Noir

What formats are your books in?: eBook, Print, Both eBook and Print

DJ Swykert Home Page Link

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