Thursday, March 24, 2011

A Conversation with Paul Hudson

It has been pointed out to me (thank you, Juliet) that I haven't interviewed any of the men from Death By A Dark Horse or Levels Of Deception except Jonathan. While entertaining, he's not as admirable as some of us (Juliet) would like. To correct the skewed interview archive I've asked Paul Hudson, leading man of the Thea Campbell Mystery Series, to be here today and give us some of the intimate details of his sexy self.

Susan Schreyer: Welcome Paul, glad you could stop by.

Paul Hudson: Susan, you said this wasn't going to be too personal.

SS: Oh! Well, (laughs) don't worry. [aside to readers] much. [to Paul]  So, let's get started.

PH: Fire away.

SS: In Death By A Dark Horse we are shown contrasting glimpses of you. You're an intellectual, but you get your hands dirty working on farm equipment. You dress conservatively, yet you sport an earring. You're pretty tuned in to other people's feelings, yet you can (rather loudly) lose your temper. In Levels of Deception we also see your ability to keep your cool and be passionate as well. You're a pretty complex guy.

PH: Not really. I've just learned to adapt, thanks to a little sister who wouldn't let me be a jerk, and an older brother who continues to be one. I wouldn't call myself an intellectual --

SS: But you've got a PhD.

PH: It was a means to an end. Paleontology and geology fascinate me. Earning a PhD was a way to stay immersed in it.

SS: What is it about dinosaurs and rocks that fascinate you?

PH: (laughs) Honestly? There's a certain, oh, romantic appeal to it. Looking at a mountain range, or desert, or old river bed grabs my imagination. What was this spot like millions of years ago? What forces caused it to change? Was it gradual, or catastrophic? What animals roamed here, how did they live, what did they look like? Sound like? Smell like? Finding bits of answers, bits of new information, is like putting a puzzle together without knowing the picture you're going for. There are always surprises and more questions.

SS: Like a detective story!

PH: (laughs again) Right.

SS: Do you ride horses like Thea?

PH: I can. 

SS: No kidding! I didn't know that. Are you good?

PH: Just good enough to borrow Henry's horse and go trail riding with Thea and maybe jump a log or two.

SS: Did she teach you?

PH: No, Miguel taught me the basics when I was a teenager.

SS: Miguel? You keep surprising me!

PH: Yeah. Miguel did rodeos when he was a kid -- up until he came to Snohomish to manage Copper Creek for my aunt Delores -- so he knows how to handle a horse. My folks sent me out here in the summers from Minneapolis to clean stalls. They hoped hard labor would straighten me out, and I just wanted to get out of the house. The first week I was here Miguel had a word or two to say about my attitude toward the horses and clients. He figured if I had a taste of what the people who came here to ride experienced in order to do what they loved I'd show more respect. 

SS: Sounds like you were a bit difficult. So, did it work? Did learning to ride straighten you out?

PH: Well, I don't know about that, but I gained some respect. In fact, Thea taught me a thing or two about handling a horse when she was ten and a student here.

SS: I thought you two met just last year?

PH: We did, for all intents and purposes. She doesn't remember me from back then.

SS: Too interested in the horses to notice the cute barn help, huh? So, what happened when she was ten?

PH: I was having some problems leading a horse into his stall. Thea thought I was sending mixed signals and being too rough. She marched over and read me the riot act, then showed me how to do it right. She was a pretty gutsy little kid -- not exactly what I was thinking at the time, though. Embarrassed me enough to stick in my memory.

SS: A little hard on a fifteen-year-old ego to have a little girl show him up, huh?

PH: Oh, yeah. I still remember her lecture. (Smiles) She's still pretty sure of herself.

SS: I think you like that about her.

PH: True enough.

SS: Now, this wasn't so bad -- or horribly personal -- was it?

PH: No. You were right.

SS: Let's finish up with some rapid-fire questions with quick, off the cuff one-word answers.

PH: Shoot.

SS: Favorite color?


SS: Favorite food?

PH: Barbecue anything.

SS: Middle name?

PH: Anthony.

SS: Sport?

PH: Soccer.

SS: Lights on or off?

PH: On ... uh...hang on a sec.

SS: Boxers or brief?

PH: Uh, Susan --

SS: Oh, commando! Dress left or right?

PH: Okay, we're done. Juliet put you up to this, didn't she?

SS: There had to be some concessions. You know how she is!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Goals Update for Levels Of Deception -- We're cookin'!

Levels Of Deception has been out for a couple of weeks now, and WOW! Sales are going well! Thank you, everyone! Thea's second adventure is (at this moment. The list changes hourly) number 64 on Amazon Kindle's Hot New Releases List for Women Sleuths.

Click here: Amazon Hot New Releases to see where LOD is now! 

There's apparently a number of things that influence the position of a book on the Amazon lists. Sales, of course, but also reviews -- the more good ones, and the more stars the better -- and clicking on the "Like" button. There's "Like" buttons on the author page above the author picture, and on the trade paperback page, too. None on the Kindle version page. I have no idea why. However, you don't have to buy to click the Like button, and you don't have to write anything. Just go to the page and click. Easy. Here's some links (and thanks ahead of time for your Liking).

Now here's something really interesting; Sales of Death By A Dark Horse have rocketed. No kidding. DBADH is outselling Levels by 3 to 1. That thrills me, too!

We're on our way to getting into the top 10 on the Amazon lists, not to mention the 50 sales a day goal! Way to go, team!