Sunday, February 24, 2013

Meet & Greet: Frank J. Edwards

Sunday Meet & Greet

Today we are meeting up with Author Frank J. Edwards, author of medical thriller FINAL MERCY
First off, as always I like to do an ice breaker using 2 truths & a lie:
1.      I once flew a Cessna 150 under a bridge in Rochester, NY. 
2.      I recently locked myself out of my house and opened the door by using a propane tank as battering ram. 
3.      I am afraid of water.    

So who is the man behind the book? Let's find out!!!!

Frank is a happily married man of 23 years who loves Shakespeare. He can’t pinpoint a favorite book but knew he wanted to write them by the time he was thirteen.  His favorite book turned movie is The Hobbit and his hero is Abraham Lincoln. When asked what his greatest fear was he replied “republicans gaining control of both houses!” And if he could only take three things with him to a deserted island, he would choose a case of good wine, his kindle, and a helicopter. (Sneaky if you ask me!) He enjoys watching House of Cards on Netflix and he always has a pen, his phone, and a laptop nearby.  Frank said he would love to play his guitar in front of a lot of people without having fear and would also love to see his children be born again. Last but not least, his pet’s names are Chase Stormy Gizmo and Patches. Don’t you just love those names!!!
My favorite was Gizmo!LOL
Where did you find the inspiration for your most recent book? 
“Final Mercy’s” inspiration came from the political battles I fought back in the 90’s to help establish the specialty of emergency medicine at the University of Rochester, where I worked at the time and had gone to med school.  As the newest field, emergency medicine met a lot of resistance from the old guard, who didn’t recognize it’s importance and wanted to protect their own turfs.

It sounds like a lot of experience and passion went into the creation of your book...aka a lot of blood, sweat, and tears!  Tell me, who is your favorite character in your book
I distilled my own best qualities and wished-for qualities in the hero, Jack Forester.  Very fond of him.  But it was more satisfying, in some strange way, to create the villain, Bryson Witner.  The challenge was to make him both believable and yet very evil. 
Creating a villian is sometimes the heart of the novel. I mean, you wouldn't exactly need one without the other now would ya. Ha! Do you use a particular writing method?
I do start every writing day with a warm up—a combination of free writing and journaling.  I start a major fiction project with sketches that evolve into detailed outlines, including character and setting descriptions.  I will sometimes spend an entire day just writing what amount to essays in which I try to articulate the turns and twists of the plot and why the characters react as they do.  Once I feel I understand the basic mechanics of the story, I will launch into writing chapters and scenes.  If I come to a sticking point, I will go back to the daily journal and talk myself through the issue by brainstorming.   
It sounds like what you do works really well. I really liked the brainstorming comment. I use journaling and warn-ups myself. What has been the best part since becoming a published author? And the worst? 
The glow of being published, of course, wears off very quickly.  Critiques sting and praise begins to feel gratuitous.  You learn from everything, though.  As soon as you climb one mountain, you see the others rising even higher.  You must live your writing life for the moments when the story really falls together, especially towards the end.   
I would have to agree with you. It's an amazing feeling when you finally see the ending coming together! What are your goals for the future (as a writer). 
I want each new novel I write to be better and better.  I want to stretch into books that bridge the gap between genre fiction and literary fiction.  I want to spend some time writing more poetry too.
Poetry was something I did a lot myself growing up but I've moved away from it. Hmm....having heard your answers, I might just try a bit of poetry writing here soon. :)

Rapid Answer Zone

Who did you last call? Why did you call them? 
Just had a great conversation with my little sister, whom I hadn’t gotten together with in several months.  Just wonderful to reconnect and catch up.
What was the last gift you purchased? 
The book “Guns, Germs and Steel,” for my friend’s fiftieth birthday.
What is the best age to be? 
I’d say Forty.  Still lots of vigor and the adolescent feeling of immortality hasn’t quite been worn away. 
Pizza, hot pockets, or pizza rolls? 
Pizza—thin crust, with everything including anchovies, with some sweet and sour sauce drizzled over it.
And last…which was the lie?
I’m not afraid of water.
Frank, thanks so very much for this honor. It's been a pleasure meeting you!
Readers, Final Mercy is available now. Check out the book blurb below and then go hit some of those hotspots!!!
TWITTER: @frankjedwards

Final Mercy by Frank J. Edwards

Book Synopsis:

Dr. Jack Forester, director of the New Canterbury University Hospital emergency department, is about to win an ongoing battle to modernize the ED when he's stymied by the power-hungry dean, Bryson Witner. Then someone tries to murder Jack's mentor and the former dean, setting it up to look like suicide. Bit by bit, Jack uncovers facts that suggest several other recent tragic accidents may not have been in the least accidental. The deeper he digs, the closer danger creeps, and the phrase "life or death" begins to take on a new and very personal meaning.

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