Book Nerd Interview
A New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author, Olsen has written nine nonfiction books, nine novels, a novella, and contributed a short story to a collection edited by Lee Child.
The award-winning author has been a guest on dozens of national and local television shows, including educational programs for the History Channel, Learning Channel, and Discovery Channel. He has also appeared on Dateline NBC, William Shatner's Aftermath, Deadly Women on Investigation Discovery, Good Morning America, The Early Show, The Today Show, FOX News, CNN, Anderson Cooper 360, MSNBC, Entertainment Tonight, CBS 48 Hours, Oxygen's Snapped, Court TV's Crier Live, Inside Edition, Extra, Access Hollywood, and A&E's Biography.
In addition to television and radio appearances, he has been featured in Redbook, USA Today, People,Salon magazine, Seattle Times, Los Angeles Times and the New York Post.
The Deep Dark was named Idaho Book of the Year by the ILA and Starvation Heights was honored by Washington's Secretary of State for the book's contribution to Washington state history and culture. His Young Adult novel, Envy, was the official selection of Washington for the National Book Festival.
Olsen, a Seattle native, lives in Olalla, Washington with his wife, twin daughters, three chickens, Milo (an obedience school dropout cocker spaniel) and Suri (a mini dachshund so spoiled she wears a sweater).
Paperback: 348 pages
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (December 13, 2016)
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (December 13, 2016)
Why is storytelling so important for all of us?
That’s easy. Storytelling brings us together through shared experiences and the understanding that we’ve all come from the same place. We’ve all experienced the ups and downs of the world around us…when we tell stories we connect with the truth that we’re all the same.
What was the greatest thing you learned at school?
Listening. That means listening to everyone. Especially the quiet people.
What is the best piece of advice you ever received from another author?
Never give up. If you are a writer it is who you are. You can reach an audience (large, small) but only if you write. So write every day.
Can you tell us when you started THE SOUND OF RAIN, how that came about?
I was thinking about my next book when I had a phone conversation with a friend of mine who was in serious trouble with a gambling problem. She’s a wonderful woman and smart, but she caught up in something she couldn’t control. She’d lost everything and was facing possible criminal charges. We talked about what she’d done and how she was trying to fight her way back into her old life. It made me think about gambling and how it can sneak up on people and ruin their lives. That’s what happened to Nicole Foster in THE SOUND OF RAIN.
For those who are unfamiliar with Nicole, how would you introduce her?
A police detective with a great heart, complicated relationships and a knack for sabotaging herself in ways she can’t see – at least not at first.
You have the chance to give one piece of advice to your readers. What would it be?
There is general advice for all people – take a chance, try something you haven’t tried before. Yet, I think the best advice is to follow you heart and pursue your passion. No matter what anyone says. You have to go for it. As my mom said, be the best you can be…but be something!
When asked, what’s the one question you always answer with a lie?
How much do you weigh?
Where is the best place in the world you’ve been?
This is very hard to say. I’ve been to Europe, the Philippines and Hong Kong on tour and I loved every moment in all of those places. The best place in the world for me is the little town I call home. I love Olalla, Washington with all my heart… the people, the scenery, the laidback vibe. Home is where my heart is. That’s not to say that I don’t love places like Hawaii where the sun shines and the beaches are warm. J
What's the most memorable summer job you've ever had?
I worked on a salmon processing boat in Kodiak, Alaska. It was without a doubt the hardest job ever – gutting fish on a line with frozen fingers and an endless supply coming at you!
When was the last time you told someone you loved them?
I tell people I love them every day. I always have. My wife. My kids. My friends. My readers. My dog, Suri. I mean it every time I say it, but I probably say it too much!
Which would you choose, true love with a guarantee of a heartbreak, or having never loved at all?
Heartbreak, of course. Every writer needs a dose of lingering pain. I drives us to dig deep into emotions and those feelings fuel every word we write.
When was the last time you cried?
This morning when I was telling my wife about a documentary I watched last night. It was about a musician whose career had failed in the US, but unbeknownst to him he was a big star in another country. It was touching and amazing.
What decade during the last century would you have chosen to be a teenager?
I would love to have been a teenager in the 1960s… so much was happening, so many changes were shaping the world and challenging people. It was a volatile time, but those who grew up with it seem to have a strength of character that other generations might not have.
What's the loveliest thing you have ever seen?
When our twins were born. I just couldn’t believe how beautiful those girls were. They were absolutely perfect. Here’s the funny thing, when I look at those first photos now, I think…hey they are all read, scrunched up and crying….how come I thought they were so pretty?
As Nicole obsesses over the old facts, she realizes everything about that case felt off: a disinterested mom, a suicidal pedophile, and too many questions left unanswered. When the little girl’s grieving father begs Nicole for help, she’s drawn back into the investigation…and given one shot at redemption.
But the deeper Nicole digs, the more evil she uncovers, including betrayals that hit painfully close to home. Will a shocking discovery be the key to finally getting justice for Kelsey and resurrecting her own life?
“A few days after I screwed a stranger and lost all the money I had, I find myself in front of this kind, patient woman, and I’m so angry that I’d like to pull that unicorn from her neck and stab myself with it.”
“Stacy attacks me with that look she really ought to patent. It’s a combination of pity and disdain, with just a dash of anger. The anger is only a dash, because Stacy likes to hurt me in small doses. Ridicule by a thousand paper cuts.”
And now, The Giveaways.
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December 17th Saturday Books, Dreams, Life SPOTLIGHT
December 18th Sunday Captivated Reading SPOTLIGHT
December 19th Monday Mama Reads Blog REVIEW & GUEST POST
December 20th Tuesday A Dream Within a Dream REVIEW & MUSIC PLAYLIST
December 20th Tuesday Rose's Book Corner REVIEW
December 21st Wednesday The Avid Book Collector SPOTLIGHT
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