Today we're talking with Giacomo Giammatteo, author of Murder Takes Time: Friendship and Honor Series, Book 1
FQ: First of all, I love the title of this book. How did you happen to settle on this particular title?
The series name (Friendship & Honor) came from the theme of the books, but the title of this book, Murder Takes Time, I came up with after considering the plot and how things developed. As soon as I thought of it, I knew it was right.
FQ: It must have been quite a culture shock to move from a busy neighborhood in Delaware to the great state of Texas. Part of my family moved from a tiny town in Connecticut to a Dallas, TX suburb and loved it from the start. I assume with all the animals that you are in the country. How does your present life differ from the past?
Differs completely. Even though Wilmington, DE has a small population, it always seemed more like a big city. A "little big city" I like to call it. When I was growing up, it had the feel of a big city, complete with the ethnic neighborhoods and all that went along with thatógood and bad.
By contrast, where we live now is secluded. We're close to malls and everything else but we're surrounded by woods.
On one hand, I love the seclusion, especially for the sake of the animals, but I miss the city, too. I loved the city.
FQ: Iím anxious to read the next installment in the Friendship and Honor Series. When do they come out?
The second book in Friendship & Honor will be out at the end of the year, but the first book in another series, Blood Flows South, will be out in September. The third book in Friendship & Honor will be released late spring of next year, with others following every six-eight months.
FQ: I live with a writer, my daughter, and know that sometimes she does her best writing at night. But, I see that you have a busy day job also. When do you sleep?
It's been getting more and more difficult. Between the day job, and helping my wife take care of the animals, I'm forced to do my writing late. I guess I'm lucky that I don't need much sleep.
FQ: Did you have a lot of problems trying to get your first book published? Being a former librarian, I have heard many stories of the publishing world and I admire anyone who can stay with it long enough to actually get some recognition.
I had more than trouble. I tried the traditional route for almost two years. Murder Takes Time was rejected more than 100 times. I think 103 was the actual count. Finally, I said, enough of this, and did it myself.
FQ: I really enjoyed your book as you didnít use any of the usual Godfather quotes such as: Iím gonna make him an offer he canít refuse and Everytime I try to get out they pull me back in. Your story seems so true to life and tells the family stories behind these characters. How did you manage to tell a mob-related story and not get into all the expressions that are always used in mob books and movies?
I know this is going to sound crazy, but I never viewed this as a mob book. This is a book about three kids and how their lives changed. It just happens to have mob elements. As far as the dialogue, I tried to stay as true to life as I could. The stuff you see in movies is great, but it's for movies.
FQ: I always, in author interviews, ask if the author has any animals. Well, I can see that you do and admire you and your wife very much for taking these animals in. Even the Wild Boar. Is he really your buddy? He looks very formidable in his photograph. We have a very large, black Belgian Shepherd that looks very scary but, is really a big baby.
Ah, the animals! Besides my family, the animals are my real passion. And yes, that crazy wild boar is my best buddy. It's a long story about him, but I rescued him from dogs when he was about a week old. The vet suggested we put him to sleep as he wouldn't make it. He's now a little over two years old and about 350 lbs. I go for walks with him every day and he's very playful. The trouble now is he's getting too big to be playful. When he runs and hits against me, he knocks me on my butt.
FQ: Thanks very much for taking the time to answer these questions and Iím looking forward eagerly to the next installment.