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Tom Minder Interview

Welcome to Ink & Magick. I'm your friendly neighborhood witch. What kind of spell can I get for you (or your character) today?

Something that makes people more civil to each other would be nice. Then, we can focus on books or the arts rather than tearing each other down.

What a wonderful sentiment. If only magick was something that could do that. This is just the place for you. There is only love here. Tell us about your mystery novel, The House Always Wins.

Someone is shooting up Dirty Sam’s. Will the Long Harbor police get their man, or woman, before a casino heist, a slots player who disappears in a puff of smoke, a crossbow-toting florist, and an undercover agent who makes a mean goulash, complicate the investigation?

Oh, for the simpler days of illegal gambling.


LaVonne Wilson pulled the log book from her satchel and smiled at the Hello Kitty sticker waving back. She entered her position: third level parking, inner lane, facing the elevator atrium. She checked Mickey and made her entry:

Time: 10:45 p.m. Status: All Quiet.

She put the log away and continued to walk past the endless row of cars. I wonder who’s winning in Dirty Sam’s tonight, and how many mortgage payments are being lost.

Swinging her flashlight, she exposed the dark corners of her domain. Nobody lurking. Good. She stopped and moved the light to a Nissan about ten cars down: some poor guy, head pressed against the driver’s side window, sleeping it off, no doubt. I’ll have to rouse him and send him on his way. The casino isn’t running a flophouse.

Tapping the end of the flashlight against the window, she shouted, “Hey buddy, wake up. Time to hit the road.” No response. She leaned in and rapped with her knuckles. That’s when she saw the blood splattered on the dashboard and the shattered windshield.

She shone the light on the man. “Oh, my God!” She fell to one knee and vomited the chicken noodle soup she had just eaten. Catching her breath, she called her supervisor. She stood, using the door handle for support, and forced herself to look at the man. That poor guy looks familiar. What’s left of his face, anyway.

Intriguing. As a mystery writer, you must love to read mysteries as well. What author/book would you say influenced you the most to become a mystery writer?

A combination, I would say. The novels of Graham Greene, Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment, or even Douglas Adams's Hitchhiker series. Anyone or anything that can tell a compelling story with just enough humor to keep the reader engaged.

Nice variety there. Which one of your characters surprised you?

Herb Pine. We want to boo/hiss his actions but learn to appreciate his humor and aplomb.

Who is your favorite (or least favorite) character and why?

Larry, the day manager. A man driven by desire for what he can't attain, and incapable of realizing his goals because of self-inflicted stubbornness.

What can readers who enjoy your book do to help make it successful?

Leave a review and pass their impressions on to other readers.

Always! What can we expect from you next?

I'm planning on completing the Long Harbor Trilogy, then maybe delve into memoir.

Neat. Well, good luck to you, and thanks for stopping by!

Tom Minder lives in southern New Jersey, with his wife Paula. He is a member of the South Jersey Writers' Group and The Writers’ Coffeehouse. His short story Burning for Rehoboth was included in the Beach Nights anthology from Cat & Mouse Press, 2016 (Judge’s Award). His anthology Chronicles of Sam was published December 2017 by Digiterra Publishing, and his novel, The Long Harbor Testament, was published by Black Rose Writing on January 2017.

You can connect with Tom on his website, Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, and Goodreads.

You can get a copy of The House Always Wins on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

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    D. Lieber has a wanderlust that would make a butterfly envious. When she isn’t planning her next physical adventure, she’s recklessly jumping from one fictional world to another. Her love of reading led her to earn a Bachelor’s in English from Wright State University.

    Beyond her skeptic and slightly pessimistic mind, Lieber wants to believe. She has been many places—from Canada to England, France to Italy, Germany to Russia—believing that a better world comes from putting a face on “other.” She is a romantic idealist at heart, always fighting to keep her feet on the ground and her head in the clouds.

    Lieber lives in Wisconsin with her husband (John) and cats (Yin and Nox).

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