Interview with writer and novelist Stephen Clark

thriller author Stephen Clark
joins me today to talk about Citizen
Stephen Clark
is a former award-winning journalist who served as a staff writer for the Los Angeles
Times and as a politics editor for the Washington, D.C. bureau of
Stephen grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia and now lives in North Jersey
with his wife and son.
Welcome, Stephen. Please tell us about
your current release.
Citizen Kill tells the story of a covert effort to
finally end the War on Terror after the president loses her son in a
devastating explosion. Her administration authorizes the launch of a CIA
program that targets for assassination U.S. citizens suspected of radicalizing
Muslims. Among the recruits is Justin Raines, a suspended operative determined
to redeem himself after a botched assignment overseas. But when he is assigned
to kill a mysterious Muslim educator that he believes is innocent, he grows
disillusioned. Now he must find a way to prove her innocence and derail the
program before they both are assassinated.
What inspired you to write this book?
I was
inspired by then-Attorney General Eric Holder’s declaration in 2012 that it was
constitutional for the government to kill U.S. citizens overseas without any
judicial review if they were deemed a terrorist threat. Holder’s declaration
came after a U.S. drone attack killed an American-born Muslim cleric in the
Arabian Peninsula. Given my experience covering national politics at, I thought it would be fascinating to write a story that took that
policy to its logical conclusion.
What exciting story are you working on
psychological thriller centered on a deadly police shooting that sets the
shooting cop on a collision course with the victim’s family.
When did you first consider yourself a
When my wife
gave me an ultimatum: our family or my novel and I chose to finish my novel.
LOL. Actually, I’ve considered myself a writer since I was a young boy spinning
revenge fantasies in my journal against my siblings for real or perceived
grievances. After college, I briefly worked as a financial advisor for American
Express. But I could not ignore my true calling and soon I was packing my bags
to pursue a career as a journalist.
Do you write full-time? If so, what’s your
work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time
to write?
Now I’m a
full-time marketing professional for a Wall Street law firm. During the week, I
sneak in as much writing as I can at night and during my one-hour-plus commute.
The weekend, though, is when I really start cooking.
What would you say is your interesting
writing quirk?
Not sure how
quirky or unusual this is, but I often get my best ideas on the toilet or in
the shower. Then I end up scrambling to finish what I’m doing so I don’t forget
the idea by the time I get to my computer.
As a child, what did you want to be when
you grew up?
As the child
of a Pentecostal preacher, I was groomed to walk in my father’s footsteps. But
before I enrolled in Bible school in Oklahoma, I rebelled and devoted my life
to worldly pleasures.
Anything additional you want to share
with the readers?
Not only do I
love reading books, I also enjoy watching prestige dramas. My favorite shows of
all time are: The Sopranos, The Wire, Breaking Bad, and The Leftovers.

Thank you for being here today, Stephen!

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