Author Interview: Ted Galdi

Long and Short Reviews welcomes Ted Galdi who is celebrating the recent release of Black Quiet, a Cole Maddox Action Thriller, and the upcoming release of Razor Moon, scheduled for release on August 22.

All of his books, and short stories, are thrillers. However, there are a lot of kinds of thrillers, ie, sub-genres, and his stories are in quite a few.

“Thriller sub-genres are pretty distinctive, so even though all my stories are part of one genre, there’s a lot of variation between them,” he told me. “For example, an action thriller and a psychological thriller may have some commonalities, but the types of characters and plot events can be very different.

“Action thrillers tend to feature main characters highly skilled in combat, who willingly take on dangerous opponents, while psychological thrillers tend to feature main characters without any formal combat training, who fall involuntarily into dangerous situations.”

We asked the author, “How do you develop your plot and characters?”

“Usually, I’ll start coming up with an idea for a story by thinking about some aspect of the world I want to comment on. I’ll then think about how to dramatize my view on this aspect of the world. The characters and plot start coming along from there,” he said. “For example, with my book Lion on Fire (free on Amazon), I wanted to comment on how modern-day college graduates deal with adjusting to life in the adult world. Naturally, a recent college graduate became the main character. To add contrast to the story, the central supporting character became another young guy who viewed adult life very differently than the protagonist. The plot started coming along once I paired these two characters together and thought about how they’d interact in a big city.”

When it comes to plot or characters coming first, Ted said it doesn’t matter which one you focus on first. In the Lion on Fire example above, he had a general sense of two major characters before the plot started developing. Then, once he began building the plot, that gave him ideas for other characters.

He explained, “I made the two initial characters limo drivers who wind up transporting people to underground gambling events in Manhattan. Once I knew they were involved in that world, I came up with a character at the limo company, their boss, and a character who ran the gambling events. Once I had a good sense of how those characters behaved, I got more ideas for plot events.”

He added that the flow could easily work the other way around, where you think of a plot event first, and then picture a type of character who could make for a lot of drama at the center of that event. Things progress from there, with the characters helping build the plot and vice versa.

“What is your work schedule like when you are writing?” I wondered.

“On first drafts, I aim for 2,000 words a day. I don’t always get there, but I’m usually in the ballpark. I tend to do this five days a week. I start pretty early in the day, after breakfast. Before I even get to this stage, I put together a pretty detailed outline. When it’s time to write the actual chapters, the outline really helps. Various connections between scenes have already been figured out. When you’re writing a scene, you can just focus on it, not how it fits into broader plot threads.”

Finally, I asked, “What did you want to be when you grew up?”

“I did know I wanted to be involved in storytelling since I was pretty young. As a kid, that wasn’t all though. I of course wanted to play on three different professional sports teams too. The storytelling thing happened, but I’m still waiting on the sports contracts. New York Yankees – if you’re hiring, email me.”

Cole Maddox just moved back to his hometown in Montana after leaving the Army’s most elite unit because his superiors lied to him. But his town has changed. A ruthless gang of bikers has flooded it with fentanyl, and when Cole’s brother defies them, they put him in a coma.

Big mistake.

Cole unleashes his arsenal of Special Forces skills to take them down. However, he soon learns the gang is only the bottom layer of a criminal network much larger and deadlier than he imagined.

Can Cole get justice for his brother while keeping himself and those closest to him alive? Find out in this fast-paced, adrenaline-surging thrill ride. Available for Kindle, including Unlimited, paperback, and audio – get your copy.

About the Author: Ted Galdi writes suspenseful, smart crime thrillers. His goal is to get your blood and brain pumping when you read his novels and short stories.

He’s a winner of a Reader Views Reviewers Choice Award and a Silver Medal in the Readers’ Favorite Book Awards. His titles have hit #1 on Amazon bestseller charts.

Ted has been featured in interviews by ABC and FOX television, iHeart Radio, and other media outlets.

In addition to writing, he teaches online courses to help other writers improve their skills.

To download a free book, and take his free intro writing course, visit his website.

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Buy the book at Amazon.

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