A candid chat with British author Ray Green

Ray Green is married with two daughters and lives in England. He graduated from Southampton University with a BSc in Physics and then went on to a career spanning some 30 years in the electronics manufacturing industry. For much of that time he was operating at Director or Managing Director level in several different companies and so he is well qualified to give an insight into the world of business and corporate politics and intrigue.

‘Lost Identity’, the first book in the ‘Identity Thrillers’ series, is a tense psychological thriller set in the criminal world of drug trafficking and murder. The sequel, ‘Identity Found’ finds the principal protagonists drawn into another dangerous web of intrigue. Ray Green is a master storyteller who pulls you deep into the plot with every stroke of the pen. Whatever series you decide to begin Green will not disappoint. The ‘Identity Thrillers’ by Ray Green are simply gripping and filled raw emotion that will sweep you away into late night hours of the night.

Do you believe anybody can become a writer or are there certain characteristics one should possess to become a successful writer?

No – not anyone. I do believe, however, that there are many, many people who could become writers, but lack the confidence to give it a try, or think the whole process of creating and book and getting it published is just too complicated.

I think some of the attributes necessary are as follows –

The ability to write accurately in terms of grammar, punctuation, and syntax. Without this, then no matter how many of the following you have, your book will not reach a high standard.
A fertile imagination.
The ability to observe people and situations in real life and adapt what you see to use in your stories.
The ability to think analytically. If you have a number of separate, but related, sub-plots it can be quite taxing to figure out how to weave them together and put the various events in the best order.
Determination. It’s really easy to get bogged down in the middle of a book and you need to be able to work through the obstacles and get to the finish line.

 

What is the best piece of constructive criticism you ever received as a writer?

I’ve been lucky enough to have received a lot of help while learning my craft. I could mention many pieces of invaluable constructive criticism which I have received, but if I have to choose just one it would be ‘don’t underestimate your readers’. As a writer there is always a tremendous temptation to over-explain things – to make sure your reader hasn’t missed something important. This is a mistake – it’s far better to just leave clues and let your reader figure it out for themselves. That way your book is more intriguing and you don’t risk patronizing your reader.

If you could co-author a book with someone, who would it be and why?

You know, I really can’t imagine co-authoring with anyone – at least when writing fiction, which is what I do. The process of constructing the plot can get so complicated and tricky to resolve when it’s just me involved! It must surely be even more so with two of you.

If given the chance, would you ever re-write a book of yours and change the outcome?

I don’t think so. Although my books can be read standalone, they also form part of series. So the way one book ends is a lead in to how the next one starts. I think if I were to rewrite the ending of any it would affect the coherence of the series.

What did you enjoy most about developing the Roy Groves Thriller Series?

I think it was the way that, although each book is clearly linked to the previous one, with many of the same characters, and a logical continuation of the story, the series developed and branched out into different genres.

The first book, ‘Buyout’, which was based on my own real-life experiences, is quite ‘businessy’. When I wrote the second, ‘Payback’, although I still leant on my business experience, I reduced the business and finance content and allowed the book to become more of a suspense thriller. The third book, ‘Chinese Whispers’, while still set in a business context, is and out-and-out action thriller. Finally, the fourth book ‘Horizontal Living’ is a dark comedy thriller.

I didn’t set out to construct the series like this – in fact ‘Buyout’ was originally intended to be a standalone story – but once the writing bug had bitten, the series sort of developed almost of its own accord. I loved the way the mood and style changed as I worked through each book.

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