Short, Sharp Interview: Paul O’ Brien

PDB: Can you pitch BLOOD RED TURNS DOLLAR GREEN in 25 words or less?

It’s about the longest running con in US history. And the men who would do anything to keep its mechanics secret and hugely lucrative.

PDB: Which books, films or television shows have floated your boat recently?

I love Boardwalk Empire and Breaking Bad. American TV is going through the best two decades of its existence. Just fantastic writing coming out from over there. I also love the Coen Brothers – but not all of their stuff. I also have a dirty liking for early Cameron Crowe.

PDB: Is it possible for a writer to be an objective reader?

Probably not. But, I don’t think any reader can be objective. That’s the beauty of book discussion. Someone loves a novel, someone hates. Of course the writer will appreciate the one who likes it but obsess over the one who hates it.

PDB: Do you have any interest in writing for films, theatre or television?

Yes. I’ve written a couple of screenplays and a ton of plays. For the last fifteen years I have been lucky enough to have my plays commissioned and/or produced by The National Theatre of Ireland, Druid Theatre, Red Kettle and The Gaeity School of Acting.

PDB: How much research goes into each book?

For this book – over twenty five years! I have watched, read and listened to hundreds of thousands of hours of video, testimony, interviews and autobiographies. I became fascinated with this world at eight years old and I’ve finally gotten the opportunity – with the right story – to put it all on the page.

PDB: How useful or important are social media for you as a writer?

I think I haven’t mastered it yet. But I can certainly see the benefit of keeping it going. Facebook, Twitter etc are okay for me but I can’t get into blogging yet. I just doesn’t feel right, which to me means I’m doing it wrong. Do I write about writing? Myself? My thoughts? What?

I think once I do find that out I might be fairly good at it.

PDB: What’s on the cards in 2012?

Well, I want to get Blood Red Turns Dollar Green out and to find an audience, and at the same time write the follow-up. This story is epic in terms of geography and material, so I want to make sure I do the very best job I can with it.

If people want to get me, they can at – | | @tweetpaulobrien

Published by PaulDBrazill

A writer and teacher, from England and living in Poland. 'The Poundland Poe.' Books include The Last Laugh, Guns Of Brixton, and Gumshoe Blues. This/ That/ & The Other.

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