Sunday, January 1, 2012

10 Questions with Mystery/Thriller Writer R.S. Guthrie (@rsguthrie)

This week's Author Spotlight features Mystery/Thriller writer R.S. Guthrie, author of BLACK BEAST

and its sequel LOST (see cover art at top).

1. How did you get into writing?

Being an avid reader is really what got me interested in writing. I will say that I had already realized there was some potential there—I’d already gotten a lot of encouragement from creative writing instructors in college, so it seemed like a natural path to take.

2. What do you like best (or least) about writing?

As with all things in life, I’m sure my answer to this would change depending on the stage. Right now I am in heavy editing before release. That’s easily the most stressful time so I’d say I like that least. The best part by far is when the writing is really sucking me in and hours suddenly go by. As a writer, you realize you became immersed in your own story.

3. What is your writing process? IE do you outline? Do you stick to a daily word or page count, write 7 days a week, etc?

I have a “day job” so that plays pretty heavily into my schedule, not just time-wise but also because I can’t write when I am drained mentally, physically, or emotionally. I am a pantser—I do not outline much, other than to build a basic storyline in the beginning. As deadlines approach, however, I have to knuckle down, set word count goals, etc.

4. Who are some other writers you read and admire, regardless of whether they are commercially “successful?”

For many years, I admired Stephen King. I’ve since become somewhat jaded about the man. One of my favorite contemporary authors to read is Jonathan Lethem. That young man has really got the chops! When I read within my own Mystery genre, it’s John D. MacDonald and James Lee Burke. True masters of the genre.

5. Should the question mark in the above question be inside or outside the quotes?


6. What’s your stance on the Oxford Comma?

I am actually a HUGE proponent of the Oxford comma. I regularly post quotes, images—serial lists in sentences just don’t look right to me without it. It’s one of those pet peeves with me. I guess that means I never could have been a journalist.

7. What is your book  L O S T about and how did it come to fruition?

L O S T is the sequel to Black Beast, the debut novel in the Clan of MacAulay series.

Denver Detective Bobby Mac returns in this intense horror/thriller, set in the northern panhandle wilderness of Idaho. After receiving a phone call from his brother, the Chief of Police in Rocky Gap, Idaho, Bobby Mac travels north to assist in the investigation surrounding two gruesome murders and the abduction of an eleven-year-old girl.

These two seasoned cops---estranged brothers reunited---will bring all of their experience to bear in a case that threatens not only the safety of a small town, but also the sacred lineage of a family of heroes.

8. What’s your current writing project?

I just released L O S T and I am now returning to a novel I’ve been slowly working on over the past couple of years. It is a contemporary western detective novel called Dark Prairies, set in a fictional Wyoming town much like the one in which I grew up.

You grew up in a fictional town in Wyoming? Cool.

9. What book(s) are you currently reading?

I am currently reading James Lee Burke’s Feast Day of Fools. I am also rereading Dennis Lehane’s A Drink Before the War.

10. Who or what inspires your writing?

I like to think that the human spirit can overcome almost any obstacle. These are the types of stories that inspire me, so they also inspire my writing. I like to examine tragedy and how we deal with those tough turns in our lives.

Finally, is there anything you’d care to add? Please also include where people can read your published stories, buy your book, etc.

Earlier this year I turned an idea I had into a website to promote authors who are compassionate and give back from the success of their work. The site is called “Read a Book, Make a Difference” and the idea is simple: we promote authors who donate some portion of the proceeds from their books to a cause that is important to them. Readers can find these authors at Writers who would like to join can go there, too, and fill out the contact form.

Black Beast:

Thank you for sharing your time and experience with us, Rob. The books look amazing. Especially if you look verrry closely at LOST.

Be sure to visit the links above to learn more about Rob's books and to pick up your copies today.

If you are an author/writer and would like to participate in an Author Spotlight, please contact me at


  1. Thanks so much for having me, Ryan. Great questions...I really enjoyed the interview. Cheer!

  2. You're very welcome, Rob. Let's do this again when your next book is ready!

    And authors, be certain to check out RABMAD if you've not yet done so; it's a GOOD cause. Link is here: