Interview with detective/mystery author Austin S. Camacho

Novelist Austin
S. Camacho
joins me today to chat about his new detective mystery, The Wrong
Kind.

During his virtual book tour, Austin will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes
and Noble (winner’s choice) gift card to a lucky randomly drawn winner. To be
entered for a chance to win, use the form below. To increase your chances
of winning, feel free to visit
his other tour stops
and enter there, too!

Bio:
Austin
S. Camacho is the author of seven novels about Washington DC-based private eye
Hannibal Jones, five in the Stark and O’Brien international adventure-thriller
series, and the detective novel, Beyond Blue. His short stories have
been featured in several anthologies including Dying in a Winter Wonderland
– an Independent Mystery Booksellers Association Top Ten Bestseller for 2008.
He is featured in the Edgar-nominated African American Mystery Writers: A
Historical and Thematic Study
by Frankie Y. Bailey. Camacho is also
editorial director for Intrigue Publishing, a Maryland small press.

Welcome, Austin. Please share a little bit about your current release.
The
Wrong Kind

is the seventh novel featuring Washington DC private detective Hannibal Jones.
This time a distraught woman hires him to track down her daughter who has run
away, trying to escape the homeless shelter life her mother has come to accept.
When Hannibal finds Connie Blanco she is entwined in a gang war and somehow
connected to a murder. The corpse is barely cold before a second murder follows
and Hannibal finds himself entangled in a complex plot revolving around stolen
drugs. To keep himself and Connie alive he needs to figure out who the
mastermind of this twisted scheme really is.
What
inspired you to write this book?
I
like mysteries that don’t start with a murder and I became interested in the
growing gang problem in suburban Virginia and Maryland. Then I stumbled upon a
unique way to murder someone and the story fell together.
As
you can see in this excerpt from The Wrong Kind, finding a
missing person doesn’t always work out well for our hero:
            if you take my advice you’ll go back
up to Charles County and look in on your mama. It might not matter to you but
it will make her feel a lot better.” He stood, leaned forward and offered a
hand to help her to her feet.
            And then the lights went out.
            Hannibal spun in the sudden
darkness, one hand snatching his Oakleys off his face while the other darted
under his suit jacket reaching for his weapon. Before his fingers could manage
to grip the gun his head exploded with pain.

            The impact staggered him. The left
rear corner of his head. With luck that might be enough of a clue. He whipped
his left fist around and back. He hit nothing but air. Then an arm wrapped
around his neck. Another arm went under his right arm and he felt the hand at
the back of his head. He knew the hold, not a choke in the classic sense, but
what television wrestlers called a sleeper hold, cutting off the blood flow in
both his carotid artery and jugular vein. He could breathe fine but with no
blood going to his brain it didn’t matter. He felt a deeper darkness moving in
and his balance deserted him. The arms suddenly came away. Something crashed
into his knees. Most likely the floor. His arms were unresponsive, and it felt
like he was falling forward. He took a deep breath because he knew the next
part was really going to hurt.

What exciting story are you working on next?
My Work In Progress is about a DC-based, African American female assassin named
Skye. She has accepted a contract on a mob boss.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I
had written three novels by 1999 and submitted them to several agents and
publishers. At that point I decided to self publish to see if anyone really
wanted to read my stories. The day the first book was purchased by a reader I
finally saw myself as a writer.

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?

I’ve retired from my career as a Defense Department communications specialist.
I’m still an early riser because my wife continues to work outside the home. I
generally drive her to the Metro to take a train into Washington DC, then come
home, fill a mug with coffee, and write for a couple of hours. It’s important
that I work every day but as part owner of a publishing company I also spend
time during the day editing other people’s work, and doing marketing work,
especially social media. Still, I manage to lay down a couple thousand words of
my own novels in the morning, five days a week.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

It
may be that I need to picture everything that happens in my stories before I
can write it. This often means standing up and going thru the motions of a
fight scene to see how it would really work. I know my wife is always amused to
see me fighting invisible enemies like a violent mime.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

At
first I wanted to be a detective like Batman in the comics I grew up on. By
high school that had switched to journalism which I eventually found my way
into during my Army time.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?

I
hope people who read my Hannibal Jones novels can see that the books are about
more than solving a crime. Each has a social theme, and the series overall is
about the rising and advancing of one man’s spirit. I think Hannibal’s personal
growth, what he learns from each case, makes this series different from most others.

Links:


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  2. James Robert says:

    My family loves reading so hearing about another great book I appreciate. Thanks for sharing and also for the giveaway.

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