Thursday, 15 May 2014

Spotlight + Author Interview: In Velvet by Burt Weissbourd

The northwest corner of Yellowstone Park is closed for bear management, and Rachel, a bear biologist, is discovering some very startling animal behavior—grizzlies denning in June, swans at their wintering grounds in summer, what appear to be Irish Elk, an extinct species, with huge palmated antlers. There are also horrific mutations in the young—elk calves with no front legs, earless bear cubs, and eaglets without wings. What has gone wrong? Why is this area closed? Who’s covering up these animal abnormalities in the Park?

A non-stop thriller set in some of North America’s wildest country, In Velvet takes you deep into the hearts of a hard case local detective and a Chicago cop as they take on a corrupt sheriff, a pathalogical poacher, and a lethal black ops manager to solve this ghastly mystery and restore the natural order in Yellowstone National Park.,%201
Author Interview

Hello, and welcome to Roxy’s Reviews.

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit with us today.

1.       Tell us a bit more about your writing process.

As a writer, I try to start with strong, complex characters and a “rich stew” — that is to say, a situation with conflict, emotional intensity, and the potential to evolve in unexpected ways.  Once I have that, I write, then rewrite, then rewrite again.


2.      What inspires your writing?

I’m not sure what inspires my writing.  It’s many things: a love of story telling; a desire to explore, understand and articulate my own experience; I like finding the precise language to say what I want to say; and most importantly, after a good day’s work I feel great.

3.      What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

I’d advise them to keep writing.  My experience writing novels has been that as I write more and more, I become a better writer. I feel more confident about my writing; I know when something is working and why, and I know to keep writing until I get there; and, unlike screenwriting, when I do get there, the final product, good or bad, is what I want it to be. So my advice to an aspiring author would be – even though it’s often difficult to get a first novel published, even though there are rejections from agents, even though there are days when you hate what you’ve written, keep writing.

4.      If you could turn any novel into a movie, which would you choose?

I’d love to turn my own novel, In Velvet, into a movie.

5.      Who are some of your favourite authors?

My favorite authors include: Ross MacDonald, Stieg Larsson, Scott Turow, Ross Thomas and James Welch (The Indian Lawyer).

6.      What is the best advice you received in life? And what is your secret to success?

I can’t really point to the “best advice I received in life” except to say that as a young man, the cumulative effect of talking with people I respected was to choose work that I loved, however difficult that might be. And there is no secret to my success except keeping after the things I wanted to do – persevering when there were rejections, disappointments, and results I didn’t like.

7.      You have accomplished so much as a producer, writer and running an investment business. Have you ever thought of penning an autobiography?

No, I’d rather not write an autobiography.

8.     When you are not busy doing one of the above. What can you be found doing?

I’m an avid and passionate fly fisherman. I try to fish at least 30 days a year, usually on the Madison River in Montana.

9.      You have worked with some of the biggest names in Hollywood. Tell us more about your time spent as a producer.

It was a lot of fun to produce movies when I was a young man.  A newcomer to Hollywood, I approached writers whose movies I loved –movies such as Klute, Two for the Road, and Ordinary People –and worked with those writers and others, including working with Ross Macdonald, a legend in crime fiction, on his only screenplay.  This was the “New Hollywood” and the movie business was full of very smart, articulate and artistically innovative people.  So the quality of the conversations about movies was very stimulating. But in the early eighties, the movie business changed – movies were being made for younger audiences - we had children, and I decided to do something that would allow me to spend more time with my family.
10.  Are you currently working on any special projects, writing or other? Can you tell us a bit more about them?

I’m working on Teaser, the sequel to Inside Passage, and the second book in the Corey Logan Trilogy.  As described on my website: Teaser, the sequel to Inside Passage, takes Corey and Abe into the interconnected worlds of private school kids and the runaways who roam Seattle's streets. Billy attends the Olympic Academy, where two friends, Maisie and Aaron, are experimenting with sex and drugs. They've become close to Star, a streetwise seductress who leads them down a treacherous path. Despite the best efforts of Abe and Corey, Maisie is abducted by the diabolical “Teaser,” a man determined to take revenge on her father, his former cellmate. Teaser is a mystery to everyone except Abe and Corey, who alone realize what they must do to rescue Maisie. They contrive a plan that shocks even them.
Be sure to enter the weekly giveaways through Goodreads to win a copy of In Velvet, throughout the  Month of May!!

To find out more about this tour go to the JKSCommunications Virtual Tour Page

Burt Weissbourd is a novelist, screenwriter and producer of feature films. He was born in 1949 and graduated cum laude from Yale University, with honors in psychology. During his student years, he volunteered at the Museum of Modern Art in Paris and taught English to college students in Thailand. After he graduated, he wrote, directed, and produced educational films for Gilbert Altschul Productions. He began a finance program at the Northwestern University Graduate School of Business, but left to start his own film production company in Los Angeles. He managed that company from 1977 until 1986, producing films including "Ghost Story" starring Fred Astaire, Melvyn Douglas, John Houseman, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., and Patricia Neal, and "Raggedy Man" starring Sissy Spacek and Sam Shepard, which The New York Times called "a movie of sweet, low-keyed charm." In 1987, he founded an investment business, which he still runs. INSIDE PASSAGE is the first in the Corey Logan trilogy.


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