Monday, January 11, 2016

An Interview with Thriller Author Mia Thompson

One of the coolest things about being an author is having the opportunity to meet other authors. Mia Thompson is one of the authors I've been fortunate enough to get to know. She's author of the internationally bestselling Sapphire Dubois series, which includes the novels Stalking Sapphire, Silencing Sapphire, and Sentencing Sapphire. She also happens to have the same agent and publisher that I do.

I'm continually blown away by Mia, not only because she's a great writer, but because she was born in Sweden and English wasn't even her first language. The fact that she writes about serial killers is pretty cool, too.

Garrett: We’ll get right to the good stuff. Where did your fascination with serial killers come from?

Mia: I write about things that perplex me, and evil does. I have a hard time comprehending where it comes from, and why it evolves in some while not in others, so I write about it to try and understand it.

Garrett: Any chance that you’ll delve into supernatural horror in future books?

Mia: Supernatural, yes! I have a book plotted and planned in that very genre. Horror, no. Years ago, I tried to write a horror story about a haunted kindergarten. It creeped me out so badly I couldn’t sleep, so I swore to myself I would never attempt it again.

Garrett: You were born in Sweden and then moved to the U.S. when you were 19. How many languages did you learn growing up, and at what point did you learn English? Do you ever write fiction in other languages?

Mia: In Sweden we have introductory classes for German, Spanish, French, and Sign Language before we pick our main language, which excludes Swedish and English. Sadly, I only retained arbitrary words and generic greetings from that time. As for English, I could be wrong but I think I had my first English class when I was nine, or ten-years-old. That said, I watched a lot of MacGyver prior to that. Though I love my native tongue, I doubt I’ll ever write another work of fiction in Swedish. Most of my stories came to me in English, long before I moved to the states.

Garrett: You went to film school, so I’m guessing you’re at least a bit of a film buff. Would you say that film or literature has been a bigger influence on your own writing?

Mia: I’ve always been a bit more of a film nerd than a buff. They both influenced me greatly, but in different ways. Movies helped me understand pace, structure, and how to be visual in a scene. Literature helped me understand characters and how their emotions, their words, are infectious. I think the combo of the two is the reason my stories run the way they do today.

Garrett: Your bio on Goodreads mentions that you’ve held some dubious jobs over the years. That seems to be a rite of passage for writers. I know I’ve had my fair share of lousy jobs. Looking back now, what job was the most cringe-worthy for you?

Mia: It’s hard to pick—I loathe them all equally—but one that comes to mind is when I was a phone salesman for about a minute and a half. I was semi-decent at it, which both surprised and alarmed me. Then I found out that some of the “amazing” things we promised customers never actually happened after they signed up and that I’d unknowingly been scamming people the whole time; I felt so bad I quit.

Garrett: Does Sentencing Sapphire wrap up the series, or should readers expect another Sapphire book?

Mia: Though the first three books run much like a trilogy, and Sentencing Sapphire wraps up a lot of things, I’ve got two more books coming. I’ve hidden a few juicy storylines in the first three books that will explode in book four and five and I don’t think the readers will see them coming.

Garrett: What's your current work in progress, and anything else you’d like readers to know about?

Mia: I’m working on Book #4 in the Sapphire series, which should be out late 2016, a date I’m too scared to think about at the moment. I’m also working on my first stand-alone, a story and a character I’m very excited about, and hope to share with my readers in the future.

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