Love on the Run
by Dean C. Moore
The fast-talking, fast-acting, adrenaline seeking duo pick up a few on-again off-again sidekicks along their way, despite staunch protests from Zinio. But with all they’re up against–not the least of which being one smart, hound-dog of a lady detective–the question is: Can love conquer all?
“The story is smart and funny.” R. D. Hale, Sky City: The Rise of an Orphan
“For the booklover that doesn’t like having his or her time wasted.” Jack Heath, Remote Control
“This would make a brilliant movie or TV series.” Demelza Carlton, Ocean’s Gift
“Reminded me of The Thomas Crown Affair, down to the whip-cracking humor, the snazzy plot turns, and the character dynamics between the leads and the hotshot female detective on their tales.” Rhys Jones, The Whispering Void
“Only if you want an action packed read with fully developed and interesting characters.” Victor Longshanks, One Big Problem
“Any big ideas, bright guy?” Delaney said, holding the broken rearview mirror in her hand to check out what was going on overhead, to avoid giving those inside the chase helicopter the satisfaction of her looking up.
“Just drive straight into the ocean.”
“Please tell me you’re joking.”
“Why would I be joking at a time like this?”
“Okay, fine, I’m sorry for picking on you so much. I know you’re doing the best you know how. There, I said it. You happy?”
“I’m not depressed, Delaney. I just need you to drive into the ocean.”
“A psychotic break? Is that it? You picked now for a psychotic break? Why not all those times I chewed off your male appendage, metaphorically speaking—not to make myself out as a man-eating black widow?”
“You dragged along the equipment I asked you to, right?”
“So, you get it now?”
“Yeah, duh. God, that just makes so much more sense in context.”
Kerry looked up from the photos of the couple to the big screen again. Her jaw dropped as she watched Delaney drive the convertible Thunderbird straight into the ocean. They made no attempt to get out of the vehicle; they let the sea swallow them up along with the car.
“Are we finally rid of them?” Carter said.
Kerry started chuckling slowly. The guffawing grew into a geyser of loud laughter, which finally subsided. “No, Carter, not yet.” She glanced back up at the screen.
“God, that’s clever.”
It is my pleasure to welcome Dean C. Moore, author of Love On the Run, to Room With Books!
What do you do when you are not writing?
I’ve discovered as an extension of my writing that I enjoy altered states of consciousness (writing alone uses several.) I prefer the drug-free approach (I have my health to consider). So reaching “the twilight zone” typically means practicing various forms of meditation, and enjoying other natural highs (photography, superfoods induced euphoria, nature walks (on more energetic days that includes hiking and backpacking), travel (getting lost in a foreign culture is a Zen all its own), and dinners out with friends and family.
Is there any particular author or book that influenced you in any way either growing up or as an adult?
I’m a complete Michael Crichton addict. Of all my favorite authors, he’s the one who I’ve read every book of and usually more than once. Needless to say I really mourn his passing. And of all the writers who have impacted me over the years, without a doubt, his writing has exerted the strongest influence. Hopefully, with time, I’ll be seen as “the next Michael Crichton.” My books seem to hang out on the edge between sci-fi and the paranormal, the way many of his titles do. Or, as with Michael, the paranormal abilities of some of my heroes and heroines may extend from genetic alterations or cyber-enhancements or what have you. Love on the Run breaks the mold because I think it’s the one title I’ve penned that doesn’t delve into sci-fi or the paranormal. Oh, wait, I lie, I have one coming out in 2015 called Strays that fits in with Love on the Run in that it too is a heist story slash action adventure slash romantic comedy.
Can you tell us about your challenges in getting your first book published?
Indie authors have to wear a lot of hats that traditionally published authors don’t (or at least that they didn’t have to wear.) I don’t get to hand the marketing end of things over to someone else. I have to do that part myself, and it requires different skills entirely. It’s been quite the learning curve. I didn’t even know “virtual tours” was a thing until a couple months ago. So I thought, “Heck, maybe the reason I’m undiscovered is that I haven’t exactly been banging the drums about my work loudly enough.” With 400 books getting published each day, it probably wasn’t the best idea to just throw my titles on top the Amazon slush pile (the biggest book repository in the world) and call it a day. Sigh. Painful lesson #1. So hopefully with these virtual book tours, the “audible” level of my book promos will be more within range of normal human hearing (as opposed to something only dogs respond to.)
On the self-publishing front, perhaps the biggest challenge for me has been mastering any number of software suites that accompany do-it-yourself. For my book covers, I use GIMP (a free open source and poor man’s version of Photoshop). Mercifully, there are a thousand youtube videos on the subject, or I’d still be stuck in the mud with getting print copies made of my books. Taking my Word skills to the next level so my printed books look as elegant as those published by the biggest publishing houses was no overnight thing either. But what seems impossibly difficult at first gets easier with practice and eventually seems ridiculously easy.
I must say, of all my forays into marketing, I’m enjoying this guest blogging and virtual tour thing the most. Whether I’m doing a Q&A for an interview, or a post of my own design, it’s another form of writing, after all, so what’s not to like?
If you could have any superpower what would you choose?
My paranormal fantasies (Blood Brothers, The Warlock’s Friend, The Hundred Year Clones series, the Renaissance 2.0 series, and even Escape From the Future, which is as much urban fantasy and sci-fi as paranormal fantasy) usually hinge on the three T’s: telepathy, teleportation, telekinesis. You’ll find shapeshifters in my stories too, but usually it’s a consequence of genetic alterations (think X-Men.) With such a smorgasbord to choose from, which would be my favorite? I think it would be possessing the scientific acumen to give myself whatever superpower I wanted (after some undoubtedly disastrous early research attempts. I mean, I crave the drama too, so I can’t make it that easy on myself.)
What was your first job?
My first “real” job, if we don’t count mowing the neighbor’s lawn for the unbelievable score of $5 bucks? That would be as a high school senior sweeping the parking lot of this auto dealer for dropped cigarette butts and other detritus. Actually, I think my best friend’s dad landed us both the contract to teach us the value of money and to compel us to think more long-term about what we wanted to do with our lives. I wasn’t yet sure about my future, but I was completely certain it would not involve sweeping parking lots. If I’d had the foresight then to approach my first job as an exercise in humility and Zen, the entire experience might not have traumatized me. As it was, it took many years of Zen meditation later in life to undo the indelible scars to my psyche. Of course, back then, they didn’t have PhDs sweeping parking lots. Welcome to the new world order. The top one percent live like kings, and everyone else catches their ass. Hopefully the new renaissance sweeping through publishing will spread to all exploits and help with this dreadful centralization of power, money, and influence that is an invisible bomb blasting us back to the Dark Ages.
What types of books do you write?
I write sci-fi, paranormal fantasy, action-adventures and thrillers, or some combination thereof—all with a strong vein of dark humor. Though, my works are dramas first; the humor is there to take the edge off as with the Raiders of the Lost Ark, Transformers, and Jurassic Park film franchises. But ever since I was a kid, I never did play well within the lines. As a consequence, some of my books are hybrids (sci-fi with paranormal fantasy elements like the TV series Extant, and Forever, or the X-Men movies). Others are way out in left field like Love on the Run and Strays (mentioned above.) I think one advantage of being an indie author is using that extra freedom to stretch yourself, and to continually grow as a writer. Contrast that with the poor bastard who’s condemned to write the same book over and over again forever because the first one was such a success (the dire fate that awaits anyone on the bestseller list employed with a traditional publishing house.)
Who’s your main audience?
I would have thought males 18 to 65. My stories, after all, are fast-paced, with plenty of action, and usually involve hi-tech, futuristic weapons and conflict. But most of my stuff has turned out to be very Pg-13 in nature (the one exception being the R-rated Renaissance 2.0 franchise). Also, to my surprise, I’m doing better with the female contingent than I would have imagined. I guess because the female characters in my stories serve a function beyond just B-story love interest. My women are co-protagonists and co-antagonists with the same weighting as the men, and they drive the plot turns and determine the outcomes of those stories every bit as much. The more traditional role of female characters was one of those things I wanted to change about writing in general. And I felt I could do it believably without getting a sex change. I hope I’m right, as I really don’t think I could go through a second sexual identity crisis at my age.
Out of all of your characters, which is your favorite?
Possibly Cleo in The Warlock’s Friend. She has that whole Sigourney Weaver of the Alien film franchise thing going on, only, she’s pulling it off from within a paranormal fantasy world. Heldor, her co-protagonist is a very strong alpha male character and she’s very good with putting him in his place. She’s funny and charming and feminine while doing all the things men do, just better. She’s a huntress and a witch, and of the two of them, she’s definitely the brains of the operation.
What does your writing schedule look like?
It used to be write-write-write. Have a mental breakdown or take a power vacation, depending on which was in budget. Repeat. These days it’s about fifty-fifty between the writing and the marketing. My books sitting there like lead weights on Amazon was the first clue that I might need to restructure my use of time. I did it begrudgingly at first, as any time away from the writing feels like someone is driving a branding iron into my face. But I’m learning to craft a marketing campaign that suits me, one that is heavily skewed to book tours, because like I said, it’s just another form of writing, which is something I can get behind. If past naiveté is any indicator, I may soon find that that too is no cure-all, and may have to discover some other marketing avenues which others are already exploring but aren’t quite as obvious to newbies at the game like myself.
Do you use your OWN experiences?
I worked in customer service for a while, and they beat it into us that people may have ten positive experiences over the phone with you, but if they have one negative one, that’s the one they’ll remember. It’s a shame that we’re wired that way, but it’s been my experience from drawing on my past that it really is so. All the nasty stuff that happens to me in life finds its way into my writing a lot sooner than the more positive stuff. The latter I fill in with my imagination. I guess because writing is meant to be therapeutic not just for the reader, but for the writer; we thus use it to exorcise our demons, work through our issues and sticking points. And it’s a valid tool to that end because I tell people I’m much smarter when I’m writing than in real life. The altered state of consciousness required for the task puts me in touch with my higher-self or higher-power better; it’s a meditative state in which insights and realizations into life not only come more readily, but also the accompanying willingness to let go of the hurt. Without this coping mechanism, I may well carry around the mental baggage with me indefinitely.
Was it easy to pick the title for your book?
For Love on the Run, yes. The title pretty much popped into my head, probably because it’s such an accurate distillation of what happens in the story. They’re on the run from the high profile crime units of the FBI throughout the novel, playing a game of mental chess with them that they seem doomed to lose. And while under this impossibly high pressure situation, they’re enacting the love story of the century. If this were a movie, I’d say that no one has seen screen chemistry like this since Dick Powell and Myrna Loy of The Thin Man movies. These two, when they’re in the same room, are positively electric. But this isn’t a romance in the Harlequin sense of the word, more like the romantic comedies that come out of Hollywood.
What one profession would you choose if you were not an author?
I’d be a critic. I love doing film and book reviews. I have an indie author book review blog going on my website where I pay it forward by devoting reading time to other indie authors. If we expect the renaissance to continue, after all, we have to step off the sidelines and participate in it. That means devoting a certain percentage of our time to reading unknown and undiscovered writers, even if that’s just from our perspective. And now that I’m on the virtual book tour circuit, I find I’m enjoying these Q&As and guest posts so much that I’d be just as delighted to do that for a day job. Of course, the reality of marketing for indie authors being what it is, it may very well turn into one.
What are you currently working on?
I have several irons on the fire right now, which is fairly typical for me. When my books finally make it through multiple drafts to the finish line, they arrive in droves as a result. I developed the habit when I found it reduced the amount of downtime between drafts. Whenever you finish editing something, you need some distance from it, so you can come back and look at it again with cold, detached eyes. That cooling off period all writers need between drafts means that something worthwhile has to transpire in the meantime. So for me that means either writing another book or editing another one. When I get up to three or four, I stop using the downtime to write something new and start editing one of the other ones in the pile. This way I remain continually productive and manage to look perhaps a lot more prolific than I am. It’s really just good time management. Or perhaps, obsessive compulsive disorder.
One of my current ditties is entitled, Strays. It’s a modern day Oliver Twist tale of an out of work teacher who takes in street urchins as teens and “rehabilitates” them as criminals who enact rather elaborate heists. It’s hard not to root for him because he has a Robin Hood and his merry men approach to life; he only steals from those who have to give to those who haven’t. The B-story involves the growing romance between him and the lady detective tasked with tracking down the source of these mysterious heists. As with all my female leads, however, she helps to drive the story every bit as much as our anti-hero. Look for this one sometime in 2015, and just get on my mailing list by using the “contact me” form on my website if you simply must know the second it becomes available. I mean, what writer would not want to encourage that kind of excitement?
What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? Chocolate Cherry Cordial. Cherries are my favorite fruit and I’ll imbibe chocolate in most any form; it’s my personal crack cocaine.
Night owl, or early bird? Early bird. But I’m known to wake up in the middle of the night with an idea and rush to the computer and start typing. So the spirit moves me when the spirit moves me.
Red, or white wine? That’s a tough one, though I’m slightly more partial to red. Also a huge fan of blueberry grapple, and a peach wine that comes out of Ireland that an Irish friend turned me on to. God, I sound like such a lush. Let’s just clarify right now that this is a dinner out kind of thing.
Roller Coasters or Water Rides? Water rides, without a doubt.
Swimming in the ocean or a pool? Depends. If we’re talking the Caribbean, the ocean. Most anywhere else, the pool.
Walking or fitness club? For most of my life, the fitness club. But living out in the boonies, and not being able to justify the long haul to and from the gym, these days it’s P90X and jogging the quarter mile gravel driveway back and forth like a peculiar form of cuckoo bird running the track on one very big cuckoo clock.
Any last words?
I have more franchises running now than I have follow up installments. And honestly, people, I could use some quality feedback from my readers on which ones to write a sequel on next. So take pity on me, don’t buy one of my books, buy them all, and make sure to send me your feedback on my “contact me” form. Otherwise the frustrated scientist in me who needs to run these experiments as reality checks will likely need to visit the therapist twice a week instead of once.
Thank you for answering questions and sharing a bit of your life with our readers and for allowing Room With Books to be part of your tour!
I write sci-fi, fantasy, action-adventures and thrillers, or some combination thereof—usually with a strong vein of dark humor. Though, my works are dramas first; the humor is there to take the edge off as with the Raiders of the Lost Ark, Transformers, and Jurassic Park franchises.
I wrote screenplays for a while, and while enjoying them, I found them a bit confining. After a while you just need the extra page count to flesh out characters better and do additional world building, especially when considering doing anything epic in scope. I also took a run at future forecasting and trend tracking, being as I always had my head in the future, things like Alvin Toffler’s Future Shock. I also relished this, and can certainly see myself releasing a few titles accordingly in the nonfiction area. But since delving into novels, short and long, I’ve definitely found my home and my voice. For the first time I feel the restraints have been taken off of my imagination. I suppose all mediums have their limits, so I may end up doing a mix of things, but I suspect I will continue to spend most of my time with novels. Series add an additional dimension, allowing for even more depth and development both in the character and world building departments. But I remain at heart a divergent thinker, so, no surprise, I seem to have more series going than follow up installments at this point. That too may change over time; we’ll see. Until then, it may be best to just think of these books as one-offs if you’re fond of my writing style and some of the themes I work with.
My current catalog of twelve books represents a little over five years’ worth of work. I’m currently averaging a couple books annually. Of my existing franchises with multiple installments, The Hundred Year Clone books can be read in any order, while the 5 books of Renaissance 2.0 must be read in sequence as they form part of a singular story arc (much as with A Game of Thrones.)
I live in the country where I breed bluebirds, which are endangered in these parts, as my small contribution to restoring nature’s balance. When I’m not writing, or researching my next book, I may also be found socializing with friends, or working in my organic garden.
Dean will be awarding a $20 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour, and a $20 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn host.
Room With Books encourage our readers to follow the tour and comment.