I have been writing in one form or another since I sat down at my mom's electric typewriter in the third grade. I have been doing it professionally since 2006. I am the author of a number of works of fiction and non-fiction. I write thrillers, horror, suspense and young adult novels in fiction. For non-fiction I write true crime and historical books, mostly about the Midwest and my hometown of Chicago. I also write on a freelance basis and my writing there includes press releases, website content, news, journalism, and reviews of movies, television and literature.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the Chicago area. I was born and raised on the north side of town. It has influenced me greatly. I have often said that I consider Chicago to be a great inspiration for my work. There is something about this city that just inspires me. Not all of my books have been set in Chicago, but they have what I would call a Midwestern or Chicago-style attitude and feel to them.
When did you first start writing?
I first started writing when I sat down at my mother's electric typewriter and wrote my first story. It was a horrifically bad three-page story with little punctuation and no paragraph breaks called (get this!) "Jaws, Jr." Within that three pages I killed off a character, only to forget that I had and bring him back at the end. It was awful, but I had so much fun doing it, from that point forward I told people I would be an author.