Interview with Bart Hopkins

Can you please tell us about yourself? What do you do when you're not writing?
I’m from a small island off the coast of Texas that Glen Campbell once sang about. In my teens I surfed every day I could, but I haven’t been on a surfboard in sixteen years. I lose sleep so that I can read every night. I prefer movies to television, summer to winter, and vanilla over chocolate.

I laugh as much as possible every day.

My kids are like three lenses, and through their eyes, I’m allowed to view and rediscover life every day. My wife is my best friend. Together we’re this quirky, fun family that is the center of my little universe.

If given a BLT each day for lunch, for the next thirty years, it wouldn’t be enough. U2, The Beatles, and the Foo Fighters are my favorite bands.

When I’m not writing, I’m an Air Force weather guy, and I’ve been doing that for twenty years.
Can you tell us a little bit about your books?
Fluke was co-authored with my pal Dave Elliott. We actually wrote most of it in 2001-2002, bouncing it back and forth via email, as we took turns deploying to Bosnia. We didn’t get around to publishing it until 2012. It’s a somewhat twisted boy-meets-girl story. Fluke gets mixed reviews—lots of love or hate without much between.

I finished the first draft of Texas Jack on New Year’s Eve, just a few hours before 2013. It’s about a boy from, well—Texas—and the role alcoholism plays in the life of his family. I always imagine Jack Nicholson as Billy Leonard, Jack’s dad in the book. If you read it, I’d love to hear whether you agree with that.

Dead Ends is a collection of three short stories—darker tales—my nod to King and Koontz and Straub. They vary from thriller to creepy.
Your dad is also an author ... how has he influenced your writing?
My dad is the reason I started reading; reading is the reason I started writing. In that sense, my dad was the ultimate influence. Now, years later as authors, we discuss every facet of our writing with each other. How cool is that? We (probably) mutually influence one another to keep truckin’ and put words on paper.
Do you have a favorite genre?
No favorite genre, but Historical Fiction, Contemporary Fiction, and Suspense have a slight edge over the others.
Is there any particular author or book that influenced you growing up or as an adult?
It may not be very original, but Stephen King was the key influence in my early years. I think he’s a fantastic storyteller. King’s son, Joe Hill, is a fabulous writer, too. (I firmly believe that, whenever you discover father-and-son authors, you should immerse yourself in all of their works ☺)

Robert Parker’s punchy dialogue and wit has affected me in more recent years. The world lost one of the greats with his passing.

Ken Follett’s Pillars of the Earth is in my top five; Follett’s Century Trilogy is a glorious, sweeping epic that I wish I’d written.

Anything from Harlan Coben or John Grisham is a fun escape from reality.

On a side note, this crazy brew of luck, author generosity, and behind-the-scenes efforts from my wife, brought me face-to-face with Stephen King and Harlan Coben earlier this year. Both were incredibly down to earth, positive people, and they juiced me up… inspired me all over again.
Published 2014-06-29.
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