Interview with LS Hawker
What genre do you write and why?
I write thrillers because it's a blast to put characters in peril and watch them wriggle back out again—or not (please picture me either rubbing my hands evilly or stroking a white cat as you read this). My characters tend to come up with solutions that I'd never have thought of.
Who are your favourite authors?
In alphabetical order, they are: Harlan Coben, Michael Crichton, Nick Hornby, Gregg Hurwitz, Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Anne Lamott, Dennis Lehane, Elmore Leonard, Liane Moriarty, Chuck Pahlaniuk, Rainbow Rowell, Anne Tyler, and Tom Wolfe.
What's your favourite quote about writing/for writers?
"Write hard and clear about what hurts." –Ernest Hemingway
What's the best thing about being a writer?
Getting to live hundreds of lives through my created characters. They do so many things I'm terrified of doing. I also get to work out emotions through these characters, to rewrite my own history so things turn out better, turn out differently.
Where can people find out more about you and your writing?
They can visit LSHawker.com to view trailers for my books, and read about my adventures as a cocktail waitress, traveling Kmart portrait photographer, and witness to basement exorcisms. Reading guides for my novels are available there, as well as my podcast The Lively Grind Café, in which my daughter and I talk about writing. You can also visit my Goodreads and Amazon pages.
Who is your favorite character in your book and why?
I have a real soft spot for my main character's three-year-old son, Daltrey, in BODY AND BONE. He doesn't speak but is able to communicate eloquently via body language, facial expression, and American Sign Language.
Did you learn anything from writing your book that was unexpected?
I learned how difficult it is writing fiction on deadline! Before I got my contract with HarperCollins, I could take as long as I wanted getting to know the characters, letting them wander around and chat for pages on end. But with the compressed timeline, I've learned to manage my time better and figure out the story very quickly.
Who inspires you?
Right now, I'm completely obsessed with the hip-hop Broadway musical Hamilton, so the wunderkind behind this work of genius, Lin-Manuel Miranda, is my biggest inspiration. He not only created the show, he stars in it. The show has received a record-breaking 16 Tony award nominations. Miranda's my hero—a guy who made his own luck, who worked his butt off and made it all happen. He posted the most glorious tweet recently: "*Gets in time machine, grabs 12 year old me by the face* IT GETS SO GOOD KID, JUST HANG IN THERE."
A combination of interviews, on-site research, and the good old Internet. My friend Bob is a deputy sheriff, and he keeps the police-related facts straight in my novels. I'm also friends with Kacey, a county prosecutor, who helps me figure out the legal ramifications of the things my characters do. For BODY AND BONE, I spent a morning at Denver's KQMT The Mountain radio station with jock Mike Casey, mostly because my own radio experience is ancient history, and I wanted to make sure that my radio scenes were accurate. In my debut thriller, THE DROWNING GAME, there's a pyrite mine that figures prominently in the action, so I traveled up above Leadville to the Climax molybdenum mine to walk it and secure it firmly in my head.
What are you currently reading?
I'm listening to the Audible version of See How They Run by Tom Bale, which is a tightly written, edge-of-your-seat thriller I highly recommend.