As some of you might know, I host a crime fiction reading group in our local library once a month and as well as enjoying discussing crime fiction, we are also partial to a visit from an author every now and again!
This month we were delighted to welcome along author of the Carter Blake series, Mason Cross fresh (or maybe not so fresh!) from Bloody Scotland. The group had read “The Killing Season” as our chosen book last month and they were eager to hear what Mason had to say about his writing career. I took the night off interviewing and one of our members Suze hosted the session tonight. Well done Suze!
Mason discussed writing stand-alone’s versus a series and told the group that he particularly enjoyed writing a series as it allows him to develop his characters as he goes along, he quite likes not having to start from a blank slate for each book. Readers also like a series as they develop relationships with the characters and are eager to find out how they develop and grow.
I’ve added a couple of Facebook live videos if anyone would like to hear Mason talk about his books and his reading from “The Killing Season”
He likes to write his books with the bare minimum of research and for him, one of the most enjoyable aspects is the editing process where he then is able to change certain elements of the novel as research dictates. He cited Google as his greatest friend in terms of research, especially when planning the logistics of travel over such a vast landscape of the United States where the series is set. He also told the group that American law enforcement agencies have excellent information that is invaluable to an author on their websites, this is very true, I’ve trawled the FBI site many a time myself!
Mason isn’t his real name and when asked why he used a pen name and why the name Mason Cross, he explained that his publishers felt that this would be more suited to his books, Mason Cross was the name of a character in one of his submissions and most helpfully having the initial C in your surname is an added bonus in bookshop and library shelving as your books are in amongst the likes of Agatha Christie, Raymond Chandler, Lee Childs etc.! So now you know!
The question was asked of Mason, was he acting out his wish to be a hero through his character? He felt that he was nowhere near as cool, heroic or as charismatic as Carter but there was a certain element of writing crime fiction that was therapeutic as it allows you to channel your inner serial killer!
Book titles, reviews (and Mason read out possibly one of the funniest 1-star reviews ever!), book festivals, and plotting were all hot topics of the evening and I think we could have chatted to Mason for hours he is such a fascinating man! A huge thank you to Mason for joining us tonight!
You can read my review of Mason Cross “The Time To Kill” from last year here
To buy Mason’s books you can click the Amazon Link below and it will take you to his Amazon page.