JD Today’s guest visiting me in
is Claude Bouchard,
author of the best-selling ‘Vigilante’ series. Welcome, Claude, or should I
say, “Bienvenue”? Dubai
CB Why am I suspended over a shark tank?
JD We are at the famous Dubai Mall, the biggest shopping centre on the planet. While we were here I figured you’d like to see the amazing aquarium. Huge, isn’t it?
CB It is. But that doesn’t explain why I’m suspended over it.
JD It’s insurance. If you get boring or cheeky I press the button and you’re shark meat.
CB And where’s that creature of yours? What’s his name? Digby?
JD Digby’s on vacation in
with his Auntie Kerriann, so it’s
just you and me. New York
CB Yeah, and about a thousand onlookers.
JD Oh, stop moaning. Now, according to my notes, you’re Canadian. Why on earth were you born in
? Do you have no imagination? Canada
CB Things were a little iffy in the U.S.S.R.,
, Vietnam , Cuba and Angola , to
name a few, when I was born so I tended to stay away from such places. The fact
that my parents, particularly my mother, were in Portugal also played a role in
determining my place of birth. Anyhow, from what I’ve learned, you’re a fine
one to talk. A man your age who can’t decide where the hell he wants to live
and traipsing from one continent to the next like a damned gypsy. Are you on
the run or what? Last thing, about that imagination question you had. Bite me. Canada
JD I have no intention of biting you, but there are one or two fishy friends below who probably wouldn’t mind having a go. Hmmn. Canadian … That’s practically French, right? Do you eat garlic?
CB I am NOT practically French. I’m Canadian and proud of it.
JD Proud? Are you serious? Go on then: tell me five good things about
OK, look, maybe that's a bit difficult. Just tell me three. Canada
CB Ha! I’ll tell you ten though I’ll bill you for the extras.
invented basketball, giving tall people a purpose in life. Canada
has loonies, toonies but no damned pesky pennies. Canada
3 – Nobody can say “eh” like Canadians can.
4 – Canadian winters give everyone ample opportunity to wear their coats and boots.
5 – Maple syrup.
6 – Igloos.
7 – Dogsleds.
8 – Beavers.
9 – Caribou.
10 – Poutine.
JD Pathetic. I think I almost wish you were French. OK, let’s talk about your scribblings before you start singing the Canadian National Anthem or something. What made you want to write the ‘Vigilante’ series instead of, say, erotica? There's probably more money in erotica, right?
CB My initial intention was in fact to write erotica but every time I’d sit down to get some writing done, I’d start to giggle and blush. I eventually got over that but then ran into a wall when I realized the complexity involved in developing stories in this literary genre. I mean, the list of plot possibilities is endless and only gets more difficult to manage once you throw in potential settings. For example, should the story unfold in a bedroom, bathroom, garage, supermarket, beach, tree-house, boat, hammock, trampoline or while free-fall skydiving? Already mind-boggling, add available character choices (policeman, hairdresser, pool-boy, schoolteacher, ranch-hand, housewife, etc.) and it’s enough to make you dizzy.
However, I must confess I took the effortless route and went with the much simpler crime/mystery genre; some good guys, some bad guys, a couple of smoke and mirror tricks and the common but handy red herring and voilà, an easy thriller!
JD Has the success of the series surprised you?
CB Yes and no. No because when I set out to make my books available to the world, I was confident that they were good enough to entertain the majority of those who would read them and determined enough to get them out to those readers. Yes because it’s happening and that leaves me with a surreal feeling when I consider there are literally hundreds of thousands of copies of my works out there. It’s a fickle world and business so one never knows when all can abruptly end.
JD Tell me about your latest book 'Femme Fatale'. And be quick about it. I want a beer.
CB ‘Femme Fatale’ is my eighth novel and the seventh installment of the ‘Vigilante’ series. Two novels earlier in ‘6 Hours 42 Minutes’, Leslie Robb made her first appearance. At the time, my impression was that hers was a minor role, limited to that particular story. Hell, I didn’t even know if she’d make it out of that bank heist/hostage-taking fiasco alive. As it turned out, there was a lot more to this feisty, redheaded lesbian accountant than just good looks and she ended up guaranteeing herself a main spot in the following book as a new member of the government’s clandestine Discreet Activities team. As if that wasn’t enough, she then snagged the central role in ‘Femme Fatale’ where she flies to
to vacation with her new girlfriend, Dominique. The problem is, within
twenty-four hours of Leslie’s arrival, Dominique and her younger sister
disappear, turning Leslie’s vacation into a business trip of justice and
JD You do internet marketing of your books, yeah?
JD How much time do you spend per week on Twitter and other social networks? Perhaps I should say anti-social networks.
CB That’s a difficult question to answer as I’ve never actually monitored the time. My computer is on with open tabs on Twitter and Facebook ten to twelve hours per day but I’m not locked onto those pages. I’m also writing, editing, researching, blogging, corresponding, responding to interviews, maintaining my website, etc. Twitter remains my main channel to connect with readers, other writers and people in general where I have a following of over 363K as I write these lines so I do spend a fair amount of time there. It is, after all, part of my business activities. Best guesstimate? Twenty hours per week. As for your anti-social reference, that’s not an issue with me. Perhaps a reflection of your personality, John?
JD That’s it. I’ve heard enough.
(JD hits the button and CB is dropped into the shark tank)
BOY, POINTING Mummy, there’s a man swimming with the
JD Nope, doesn’t look like they’re going to eat him. Must be all that damn garlic.
‘Femme Fatale’ – along with all of Claude’s ‘Vigilante’ books – is available on Amazon.
Amazon.com link http://www.amazon.com/Femme-Fatale-VIGILANTE-Series-ebook/dp/B00BLN4AJW/ref=la_B002BLL3RK_1_2_title_1_kin?ie=UTF8&qid=1366983807&sr=1-2
Amazon.co.uk link http://www.amazon.co.uk/Femme-Fatale-VIGILANTE-Series-ebook/dp/B00BLN4AJW/ref=la_B002BLL3RK_1_6_bnp_1_kin?ie=UTF8&qid=1366983857&sr=1-6
You can learn more about Claude by connecting with him on Twitter @ceebee308 or by dropping by his website http://www.claudebouchardbooks.com or by visiting his Amazon Author Page.
Go on, check him out. He’s Canadian. We should all support the less fortunate.