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Saturday, August 18, 2012

Author Interview: Jorge Salgado-Reyes

Today I am pleased to present to you all the eleventh in a series of Author Interviews. Recently I sat down with the aspiring novelist Jorge Salgado-Reyes and our conversation went something like this:

Paul: I like to start by asking if you have any writing rituals?
Jorge: I don’t really have any. I just sit down on my sofa and place the laptop on my lap. I open up Scrivener and start typing. I usually read the prior chapter first.

Paul: What types of books do you like to read? Who are your favorite authors? Why?
Jorge: I read science fiction (a small amount of science fantasy), cyberpunk and thrillers. My favorite authors are Robert Anson Heinlein, John Connolly, Michael Connelly, Lee Child, Richard (K) Morgan, William Gibson, Arthur C Clarke, Phillip Jose Farmer, C J Cherryh. There are many more authors that I love but these jump out at me. They are all without question, at the top of their game. Their stories are involved and totally believable.

Paul: If someone had the power to step into your creative mind what would they see?
Jorge: I honestly don’t know. I try and write in a linear fashion. Although I have plotted my novel and I know the ending in a vague kind of way, I don’t know how I’m going to get there.

Paul: What is a typical day for you? 
Jorge: I wake up, shower, dress, coffee. 
Morning - Step into my office (work from home), answer emails and turn on social media (facebook, twitter, Indie Authors Press forum), deal with post. Man the phone and return any calls that need returning. Assign any jobs that have come in overnight. Drink lots of coffee and dance the social media dance.
Afternoon - Prepare all the surveillance gear for any jobs that need doing. Do any jobs that need doing (process serving, surveillance etc), write a blog article for the biz.
Evening (7pm-2am) - Swim 1000 meters, make dinner, write 1000k words (target), write a blog article, dance the social media dance.

Paul: How do you find the time to write?
Jorge: I try and structure my time to write in the evenings.  I normally stay awake till at least 2am and wake up at 8am every morning unless I’m working at night.

Paul: What is one thing you hope I do not tell the readers?
Jorge: I don’t have any secrets (except the ones that are secret and therefore no one knows them hehehe).

Paul: If you are self-published, what led to you going your own way?
Jorge: I started looking at the whole publishing industry and it seems self-evident that a revolution is underway. I want to remain in complete control over my career and feel that the only person who can do the right things is myself. I decided to create a publishing company for myself and a (very) few other people called Indie Authors Press ( This company has the appropriate links with POD printers and publishers like Amazon Kindle and Createspace. I can publish a hardback, paperback or eBook just as fast and with the same quality as a traditional publisher.

Paul: Do you plot your stories or do you just get an idea and run with it?
Jorge: I do a bit of both. I get an idea and then I flesh it out through plotting.

Paul: Do you do a lot of editing or do you find that as time goes on your writing is more fully-formed?
Jorge: I do lots of editing. My writing is not perfect although I strive to improve all the time.

Paul: Do you have to do much research for your stories?
Jorge: I research what inventors are working on in terms of the internet, computing and gadgets that can be surgically implanted in people. I am trying to predict the future of technology and how we will be using it. I have to extensively research the law (UK) and PI techniques for my forthcoming books, British Process Servers Guide (out August 2012), The Zen of shoplifting (out 2013) and The Zen of Sleuthing (out 2014).

Paul: What is your most recent book? Tell us a little about it
Jorge: I am currently working on The Smoke in Death’s Eye, this is a cyberpunk/thriller of a novel, geographically set in “the smoke” (e.g. London) about a 150 years in a dystopian future. The protagonist is a private investigator whose agency is tasked with investigating a serial killer. The novel starts with the serial killer stalking and interrogating his victim (who dies as a result of the interrogation) in a derelict building in a suburb of south London. This victim is not the killer's first, with the killings going back for decades. I will leave the rest for the reader to discover.

Paul: What inspired you to write this book?
Jorge: Believe it or not, it started as a vivid dream. I woke up in my bedroom with my girlfriend leaving for the day. For some reason, it was in Kings Cross, London and it was in the future. I suddenly felt scared for her and ran out after her but she was gone. In my dream I started to look for her and many years later, I was still looking.

Paul: Do you also write any poetry, non-fiction or short stories?
Jorge: I write bad poetry from time to time. Check out Dragon’s Dance. I am writing some professional books on the world of the private investigator. I mentioned them earlier in this interview.

Paul: How much marketing do you do for your published works or 
for your ‘brand’?
Jorge: I blog, tweet, facebook and hang out on my forum. I call it the social media dance.

Paul: What’s your favorite / least favorite aspect of your writing life? Has anything surprised you?
Jorge: My favorite is reading. I love to read and reading is research so it’s all good. My least favorite is writing articles and blogs. I often have nothing to say.

Paul: What do you do when you’re not writing? Do you have any hobbies or party tricks?
Jorge: I swim every day. I’m also a keen photographer.

Paul: Well, thanks, Jorge. I wish you every success for the future.

About Jorge Salgado-Reyes: Jorge moved to the UK at age seven from Chile, where he was born. He is tri-lingual, having lived in the UK and Mozambique, speaking fluent English, Spanish and Portuguese.

Jorge came up through the ranks in various high street retail stores until he became a Security Manager for a leading high street book seller and then various roles as a Senior Retail Loss Prevention Investigator at a national level.

In April 2006, after seventeen years in retail fraud investigations, he started his own private investigator agency, Allied Detectives & Salgado Investigations specialising in corporate investigations, surveillance, process serving and tracing. Jorge is a founder member of e-LEGAL | Gathering, an online discussion forum for private investigators. Jorge has a Edexcel BTEC Advanced Private Investigation Level 3 Diploma and a BTEC award in Investigative Interviewing. He is currently serving on WAPI's Governing Council in Electronic Media, after having served as General Secretary for a year, and is a member of the Federation of Small Businesses.

Jorge has also co-authored a guide called British Process Servers Guide. Jorge is currently working on his novel The Smoke in Death’s Eye and is planning a series of books,The Zen of Shoplifting & The Zen of Sleuthing. He also enjoys writing poetry (his works can be found in the poetry section of his writing forum and is an amateur photographer.

Jorge's Author Site: Jorge Salgado-Reyes
Jorge on Twitter: @J_SalgadoReyes

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