Sometimes you just click. Dave Zeltserman and I met at last year’s New England Mobile Book Fair mystery gala and followed up online, chatting mostly about our shared business. When we saw each other again at the New England Mobile Book Fair mystery gala earlier this month, i felt we could have kept talking all night. I’m now zipping through his upcoming fantasy (!!) The Tenth Wish, which I will probably be blurbing – it’s that good – and I’m thrilled to have him here today. You need to read Dave Zeltserman. Whatever genre you read – thriller, horror, fantasy – he’s got a book for you.
How does a book start for you?
My first two books started too late into the plot, and I had to go back and start them earlier. Since then I’ve developed a pretty good feel for picking the right place to start my books (and short fiction). When I look back at them, they all start right before something big is about to happen. Our job as writers is to get the reader invested in the story right away, so we want to drop them into an intriguing scene that will want to make them keep reading.
Who in your latest book has surprised you most – and why?
I have two latest books: HUSK, a horror novel written under my own name, and my CRUELwritten under my pseudonym Jacob Stone, and they both came out last October.
The character who surprised me the most in HUSK was Brittany. I knew she was going to be trouble from the beginning, but she surpassed my expectations. In CRUEL, it would have to be my hit man. Somehow I unleashed my inner Richard Stark in writing that character.
When and/or where is your latest book set and is there a story behind that setting?
HUSK starts off deep in the backwoods of New Hampshire and ends up in New York City. For some reason, whenever I need a place in my books where terrible things happen, I always gravitate to New Hampshire.
CRUEL, like the other Morris Brick thrillers I’ve written, takes place in LA. When I was trying to decide where to set my thriller series, I needed a a city large enough to accommodate a new serial killer every six months, and that seemed to narrow it down to either New York or LA. I chose LA because John Lutz had set his terrific Quinn series in New York. An added benefit to choosing LA was using Hollywood and the desire for celebrity as a thread that runs through these books.
What are you working on now?
I have two more books scheduled to come out next year–a truly bizarre noirish mashup of hardboiled PI and fantasy titled EVERYBODY LIES IN HELL and my fifth Morris Brick thriller UNLEASHED. Right now I’ve just finished up something completely different for me–a charming fantasy/adventure novel titled THE TENTH WISH, which I am planning to put out myself as an ebook.
Which question didn’t I ask you that I should have?
To steal from Stephen Colbert: is a hotdog a sandwich?
H! Thanks, Dave! You need to read Dave Zeltserman! Find out more here: https://www.davezeltserman.com/