Exclusive Author Interview with Lee Goldberg is here. Lee who’s latest novel Bone Caynon is out now joins me in this exclusive interview!
Hello Lee, I’m so excited to have you In Conversation. Tell readers about yourself.
I’m often mistaken on the street for Pierce Brosnan… if he really let himself go. I end up having to tell people they’ve made a terrible mistake. That I am a novelist, mostly of crime novels, and a TV writer/producer, mostly of shows your grandparents loved. That I am not from Ireland but from Northern California, the son of a father who was TV anchorman and mother who was a reporter who covered “high society” for the local newspaper. I have to admit I have never saved the world, or driven an Aston Martin, or slept with a dozen women. I don’t drink martinis, shaken, not stirred, but Diet Coke, with ice.
Bone Canyon is your latest novel. For those readers who have not read it, give us an overview without giving away spoilers.
Eve Ronin is the youngest female detective in the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s department. But she didn’t get that job by virtue of skill or experience. A video of her off-duty arrest of an abusive movie star went viral, turning her into a popular hero at a time when the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department was plagued by scandal. The sheriff, desperate for more positive press, promoted Eve to homicide. Now Eve, with a lot to learn and resented by her colleagues, has to justify her new badge…to her skeptical, bitter colleagues, to her soon-to-retire partner, to the public, and to herself. In this novel, a catastrophic wildfire scorches the Santa Monica Mountains, exposing the charred remains of a woman who disappeared years ago. Eve’s investigation ends up pitting her against her own department…which has secrets they want to keep buried.
There are many twists in your new thriller. Where did you get your ideas?
I look at my mortgage payment and weep. That always makes me creative.
Do you have a favorite character you really enjoyed writing in Bone Canyon?
Eve, of course! She is a deeply flawed, relentless, and idealistic character. She can be her own worst enemy. I love finding new aspects of her character by putting her in one conflict after another and throwing obstacles in her path.
From the cover to the title, it all ties in perfectly, and I love how it relates to the plot. Were you involved in the cover design and naming of this novel?
Very involved. I have very clear ideas of what I wanted the cover to be. I have my own small publishing company, Brash Books, and we’ve produced over 100 titles. I have a lot of experience with covers …and strong opinions about what works and doesn’t….which probably drives my editor and her designers crazy.
Now, you are not just an author. You broke into television with a freelance script to Spenser: For Hire. Since then, you have done television writing and producing from Monk to Baywatch to Hunter, The Glades, and so much more. How does TV writing and producing differ from writing a novel?
When you are writing a script, you are creating a blueprint for a lot of other people to do their jobs — the director, the actors, the location manager, etc. It’s not prose. The story is told through action and dialogue and nothing else. You are finding a way to take your story and bring it to life in the real world. In a book, you are all those other people, doing all of those jobs and creating all those things to bring the story alive in someone’s imagination. It’s two entirely different ways of telling a story.
What is a fun fact you want readers to know?
Kirk Douglas’s real name was Issur Danielovitch Demsky.
Do you have an all-time favorite project you have been part of?
I make a lot of jokes about it…but I had a wonderful time writing and producing Diagnosis Murder. I learned so much about crafting mysteries doing that show. I also had an amazing experience writing and producing an action movie, Fast Track, in Berlin about 13 years ago. It’s not that the movie is anything particularly special. It was just a great cast, a great time, and a great place to be in for a summer.