September SinC Up – with R. Franklin James




by R. Franklin James

What authors have inspired you?

Wow, this is a tough one. I’m a voracious reader so I tend to be inspired by authors in who write in various genres and over the years my preferences have changed.

My first love was F. Scott Fitzgerald. He was not a mystery writer, but I loved the way he could make words sing off the page. Ayn Rand was a favorite for her ability to fictionalize social issues without being boring.

Today, I am inspired by Harlan Coben whose ability to write everyday thrillers, keeps me on the edge of my seat and I devour his work within 72 hours. His latest, Missing You, I read in 48 hours. Also, David Baldacci, James Rollins and Vince Flynn are ongoing favorites who have taught me the art of suspense.  

What is the best part of the writing process for you? 

The best part is conjuring up the right word. I use the word conjure because for me it works like magic. On a good day, I sit down to write, but my story is taken over, and while the words are my own, the form and order flow onto the page as if by magic. After the day’s work, I smile. I love that feeling. 

Do you listen to music while writing? What’s on your playlist? 

Nope.  Sounds distract me.

However, to reward myself after reaching my word-count goal for the day, I listen to jazz classics and modern vocals. Singers such as Sarah Vaughn, Diana Krall, Alicia Keys, and Justin Timberlake top my list. 

What books are on your nightstand right now? 

I’m reading two books at the same time. The first is The Circular Staircase by 1908 writer Mary Roberts Rinehart, she’s a great mystery writer for any time; and I’m just starting James Rollins, The Kill Switch.  Next in the queue are: The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt and Moving Day by Jonathan Stone.  So many books, so little time. 

If you were to mentor a new writer, what would you tell her about the writing business? 

Write what you love to read and take the time to write the very best book you can.  Research the business, sign on to blogs, subscribe to online writer’s digests (ex. Sisters In Crime, the Guppies and Writers Must Advertise). Go to writer conferences to learn, network and volunteer to help out.

And never, never, ever give up.

R. Franklin James, Author of  The Hollis Morgan Mystery Series:

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Special thanks to R. Franklin James for guest posting here as part of the #SinCBlog Hop!