Indie Book Promo is happy to welcome Frederick Lee Brooke to the blog today! He’s the author of Doing Max Vinyl and Zombie Candie, and is here to answer some of our questions about his writing and his books. If his books sound like something you would be interested in reading, find some buy links at the bottom of the post and pick up a copy or two.
IBP – How would you describe your book in 20 words or less without using the blurb?
Frederick – Doing Max Vinyl is a story about betrayal, friendship and greed filled with hilarious encounters between some violent ex-cons, one ex-wife and one very ticked off ex-Iraq War soldier.
IBP – If you wouldn’t be a writer, what you would be?
Frederick – If I weren’t a writer I’d be a cook. I like cutting up vegetables and trying new recipes, and I like eating.
IBP – Why did you decide to become a writer?
Frederick – I became a writer because I loved reading so much, and I had one of those epiphanies where I said to myself, I could do that. There is only one more perfect pleasure than reading a good book, and that’s writing one.
IBP – Do you keep track or write reviews for books you read?
Frederick – I write reviews of most of the books I read, because it’s a service we should provide for other readers. I take this task seriously, because I think this is how people choose books today. Fewer and fewer people read book reviews in the newspaper, while more and more read them on Amazon or Goodreads. I read the reviews people write about my books. I’m especially happy when people send me emails to chat about what I’ve written.
IBP – What do you love about writing?
Frederick – I love the emotional roller coaster of writing. I immerse myself in the psyche of my characters and live vicariously through them. Sometimes it’s quite a ride.
IBP – What’s the hardest part of writing a book?
Frederick – The hardest part of writing a book is finding the time to stick to it. Between my kids and my friends and some activities required for marketing my books, I often have to get hard core about saying no to offers and invitations. I write anywhere from two to ten hours a day, most days.
IBP – What’s your favorite part of writing a book?
Frederick – The most important part of writing for me is revision. I spend at least three times as much time revising as I spend hammering out the first draft. In the first few revisions there is always a lot of heavy lifting, as I move things around, or delete or add whole scenes to make the story flow better. In later revisions it’s about making sure I haven’t gone too fast, allowing the characters’ interiors to come out on the page, making sure their quirks are memorable. You are never really done fixing stylistic problems, replacing cliches, deleting redundancies. It sounds like a chore, but I love this work.
IBP – What inspired you to write, you took any ideas from other books, movies etc?
Frederick – I was inspired to create the Annie Ogden character by stories on the news about women soldiers from the Iraq War. Everything we heard was so impersonal, and the stories of the men and women returning from the war didn’t always get told. I tried to create Annie as a real person who made the choice to enlist, and is now dealing with the ways in which she was changed by the experience.
IBP – Which genres do you prefer to read?
Frederick – I like to read various genres but especially literary fiction, mysteries and thrillers. I like the historical fiction of authors like Tracey Chevalier and Geraldine Brooks, but I also like the humor of authors like Carl Hiaasen and Elmore Leonard.
IBP – How many books do you read/month?
Frederick – I read anywhere from 50 to 100 books a year. It goes a bit faster with the audio function on my kindle, which means I can listen to a book if I’m driving alone somewhere, or cooking, or working out at the gym.
IBP – Where can your fans find you ?
Frederick – Anyone who would like to follow me on Twitter will see that I like to tweet about a wide variety of content, mostly related to books and authors. On my blog I post book reviews, recipes and other random thoughts. Anyone who subscribes to my newsletter (on my blog) gets the occasional freebie.
IBP – What projects are you currently working on right now? Would you mind sharing them with us?
Frederick – Right now I’m putting the finishing touches on the third book in the Annie Ogden series. I’m excited about this book. Besides being a more traditional mystery than the first two Annie Ogden books, all of Annie’s secrets are revealed here, and there’s some real dynamite. I’m having a heck of a time keeping the lid on.
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I write books because I love playing with language, on the one hand, and creating characters and seeing what crazy things they will do if you set them free. I’ve spent more than 20 years living in different European countries such as France, Germany and Switzerland. I speak French, German and Italian, and I’ve been learning Turkish for the last five years just for fun.
When I’m not writing I’m usually reading. I like to write book reviews. Of course I love it when people review my books, too. I like to cook and sometimes post recipes on my blog. Zombie Candy contains most of the recipes in the book in an annex at the end. I also like to hike and travel and learn about other cultures.
Frederick can be found:
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Max Vinyl’s type of success story can only happen in America. Rising from humble beginnings, he has reached the height of the computer recycling racket. Problem is, he’s using Lake Michigan as his own personal profit center. Even that wouldn’t have been a problem if his environmentalist girlfriend Tris hadn’t found out his dirty secret. And while Max is devastated by his love crashing down around him, he’s about to learn that the rage of a woman scorned packs far more firepower and potential for destruction than he had ever imagined.
Iraqi War veteran Annie Ogden has spent three depression-filled months living in a cabin in a forest preserve trying to re-discover her purpose in life. When two of Max’s thugs threaten Annie’s sister, she is dragged into his corrupt world in an unwitting alliance with the environmentalist, Tris. And for Max, that’s really bad news. Will he hold up under the coordinated attacks of two angry women? Will Annie find the inner peace that has escaped her so far? As things spin completely out of control and complications mount, it’s all Max can do to stay one step ahead—until it’s all he can do to stay alive!
A farce full of hysterics and wholehearted chicanery, Frederick Lee Brooke’s first installment of the Annie Ogden mysteries is an incisive examination of corporate lunacy, greed and modern disconnection. Having received multiple four and five-star reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.com, Doing Max Vinyl: An Annie Ogden Mystery is loaded with razor-sharp dialogue, ingenious plotting—and so much fun it should be illegal!
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From her gorgeous husband to her acclaimed cooking classes, Candace Roach’s life looks nearly perfect from the outside. Well, appearances can be deceiving. Her husband, Larry, has three unruly addictions that drive her to the brink–zombie movies, cilantro, and having sex with other women. Luckily, her best friend Annie Ogden is back from Iraq and armed with a private investigator’s license and a fierce determination to see Candace happy again.
Together, the women uncover the ridiculous extent of Larry’s infidelity. He needs to be punished,that much is clear. But how can they hit him where it counts? Oh, if only she could find a way to tap into those three little addictions–what a lesson that would be. Italy is calling, as are the zombies in the night, as suburban housewife Candace Roach transforms herself into the ultimate fidelity vigilante, complete with a badass motorcycle, a very small pistol, and the nom de guerre “Zombie Candy.”
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Frederick’s books can be purchased at Amazon and the links are: