Random thoughts on our impending doom and everyday life, courtesy of a Romance Writer who occasionally feels the need to talk like a Sailor.

Monday, 17 December 2012

A Pistol Whipped Christmas with Luke Preston + a Give Away!

Welcome to a Christmassy themed interview with a fellow Momentum writer. Today I’d like you to meet Luke Preston. Luke is an Australian Crime Writer and the author of Dark City Blue. A roller coaster of a book with sharp, punchy writing and plenty of action. Sooooo much action. I loved it. It’s about a good cop going way over the line to take down a bunch of bad cops. And the lead character, Tom Bishop, is rough and rugged and not the least bit pretty. He's truly fantastic.

If you’d like to be in the draw to win a copy of Dark City Blue then leave us a comment including your email address.

If there’s one thing worse than a crooked cop on your heels then it’s a whole unit of them.

A fistful of people are murdered, fifteen million dollars is stolen and detective Tom Bishop is stuck in the middle. When he hits the street, every clue points in the same direction – his colleagues in a police department demoralised by cutbacks and scandals. Hunted, alone and with no place left to turn, Bishop embarks on a hellish journey down into the gutters where right and wrong quickly become twisted and problems are solved with gunfire and bloodshed.

Over the next two days, Tom Bishop will be cornered. He will be beaten. He will bust into prison. He will shoot at police. He will team up with violent criminals. He will become one of them. He will break every rule in the book, chasing a lead nobody else will go near down a rabbit hole of corruption, murder and buried secrets.

Will Bishop become the very monster he set out to destroy?

Will Luke even make it home for Christmas?!
First up, tell us about Dark City Blue and the lead character Tom Bishop...

Dark City Blue is a balls to the wall police procedural on crack. Career cop, Tom Bishop tears apart the police force to expose a network of corrupt officers. It's best read with a six pack of beer and some cheap cigarettes.

What did you do to form the character of Bishop?

Character is all about goals for me. I figure out who wants what and what happens if they don't get it. Then to expand on that, I do things the Michael Hague way. I start with five connected aspects that address the core of the character.

THE WOUND: Something, generally bad that happened to the character in their past.
THE BELIEF: Because of that wound, they now believe something about the world. The belief is always wrong but always logical.
THE FEAR: Based on the wound and the belief, the character will now have a fear. This can be anything from, fear of falling in love to a fear of Fraggle Rock characters.
FALSE IDENTITY: To protect the character from their fear, they will have developed a false identity, or emotional armour to protect themselves.
TRUE SELF: This is who the character is if they were never wounded and usually who they are by the end of the story.

Characters generally don't change, but they lose that false identity and become their true self. Many people call this their 'Journey'.

Are you writing a sequel or what?

Hell yeah! It's almost finished. All I need is one more caffeine fuelled, loud music blearing week and that beast is in the bag. Until I can think of something better it's called OUT OF EXILE. It's twice as fast as Dark City Blue, bigger in scope and with a higher body count.

Why can't Bishop hook up with some honey and have a happy ending?

In book three, which is nothing but a few loose notes written on the backs of napkins, Bishop will have himself a special lady friend. But she won't be any damsel in distress sort, she will be there kicking in doors alongside Bishop.

What are your optimal writing conditions?

It all depends on what stage of writing I'm buried in. If I'm outlining, I like to move around to various bars and cafes. If I'm writing a first draft then I prefer a good desk (I stand when I type) and if I'm editing I like to travel around again.

I'll write from anywhere. At the moment I'm at the front bar of The Flying Duck in Prahran, and there are two old bar flies watching 'Who Wants to be a Millionaire.' One of them is frustrated because the muted contestant is too slow and the other one is still answering the question from a half hour ago. The world is we're I get my stories from so I like to be in it.

And now for some Christmas Questions...

What's your ideal version of Christmas Day?
Family. Food. Booze. Nap. Food. Booze. Gremlins. Bed.

What music will you be listening to this Christmas?
Christmas in the Heart by Bob Dylan

What movie will you be watching?
It will be one of these five: Die Hard, Lethal Weapon, Christmas Vacation, Gremlins, Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang

What will you be drinking?
Doesn't matter. It's all good.

What food?
The lot.

If you could trade presents with anyone dead or alive, who would it be and why?

Gary Busey, because no matter what he gets, it will always be a surprise. After Christmas with Gary Busey you could wind up with a monkey, a Cadillac or a black eye. The question is, what would I get Gary Busey? Somehow I picture him as the type of guy who would appreciate a The Complete Works of Ron Jeremy.
Want to win a copy of the awesomely good Dark City Blue? Leave us a comment including your email address. Go on.

Just because it’s Christmas I’m going to give you a wee favourite snippet of mine from Dark City Blue. Tom Bishop talking to an Internal Affairs Officer...

   ‘I never broke the law.’
   ‘You’ve skimmed the edges of it. The question I ask myself is, who is the real Tom Bishop? The hero cop on these pages or the violent man hidden between the lines?’ He put the lid on his pen and the pen in his pocket.
   ‘Well, there is one thing I’ve been wanting to get off my chest,’ Bishop said.
   Patterson smiled. ‘Good.’
   ‘It’s a little embarrassing.’
   ‘Go on.’
   Bishop filled his lungs and slowly let the air escape. ‘Yesterday, I parked in a handicapped zone.’
   ‘Come on. I’m being serious.’
   ‘I feel really guilty about it.’
   Patterson leant against the chair and stretched his leg. ‘Get out of here.’
   Bishop stepped into the hall. Uniforms passed him in one direction as they came on shift, while others hurried in the other with knock-off drinks on their minds. A door opened and closed down the hall and Chief Inspector Patrick Wilson stepped out. Bishop knew the room: one table, one chair and a television to monitor the interview rooms like the one Bishop was just in.
   ‘You hear all that?’ Bishop asked.
   ‘I heard,’ Wilson grumbled. ‘I’m starting to think that maybe you shouldn’t have come back so early.’
   ‘It wouldn’t have changed anything that happened today.’
   ‘You went in without a warrant.’
   ‘I had probable cause.’
   Wilson smirked to himself. ‘So you say.’
   ‘Everything worked out,’ Bishop said.

You can learn more about Luke here.


  1. Tom sounds interesting. Would love to win copy of Dark City Blue. Email address is:

  2. Hope I'm not too late for this giveaway!