Interview with Grant Blackwood, writing for Tom Clancy

While I was reading and reviewing Under Fire by Grant Blackwood (Tom Clancy) my burning question was:  ‘how do you write so well that we believe the iconic Tom Clancy is really the one putting pen to paper?’  These authors who write after the death of a beloved writer, like Ludlum, Parker, Fleming or Clancy, are really talented.  To be able to put their own unique ‘voice’ on the shelf and write so successfully for another author?  It boggles this writer’s mind!

Grant at work on his latest vampire/romance/thriller joined by his two consultants.”
Grant at work on his latest vampire/romance/thriller joined by his two consultants.”

Q. Where do you write? Do you have a special room, shed, barn, special space for your writing? (please provide a photo/s of your shed, room, closet, barn….) Or tell us about your ‘dream’ work space.

A. I have an office in our house. As we’ve recently moved, I’m still in the process of getting things decorated. That said, here’s the view I have when I work in the morning…The wall behind my computer is intentionally barren; when I’m writing I don’t want to give my imagination anything to chew on but what’s on the screen.

Q. Do you have any special rituals when you sit down to write? (a neat work space, sharpened #2 pencils, legal pad, cup of tea, glass of brandy, favorite pajamas, etc.)

A. I like to have my office fairly tidy, at least those spots I can see out of the corner of my eye when I’m writing. But my primary ritual is, SDSW (sit and down, start writing). Also known as, “get out of your head and just do it.”

Q. Could you tell us something about yourself that we might not already know?

A. I can’t draw to save my life. A stick figure is a stretch for me.

Q. How do you ‘get inside’ Tom Clancy’s head and write for him?

A. That comes from being so steeped in the Clancy-verse, both as a reader (I first read HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER while in the Navy) and then as Tom’s co-author on DEAD OR ALIVE. That combination has put me in the right mindset.

Q. Do you find your ‘voice’ creeping in when writing for another author?

A. Not really. I stay focused on the story as a whole and on the particular scene I’m writing. Once I’m “in the zone” it takes a lot to kick me out of it.

Q. What’s your best advice to other writers for overcoming procrastination?

A. Don’t think. Sit down and start tapping keys. In my experience, writer’s block is about fear. Stare it in the face; it’ll run away.UNDER-FIRE-copy1-2

Q. Do you ‘get lost’ in your writing and for how long?

A. It happens every time I write. It usually lasts until my “get up and stretch” timer goes off — unless I ignore the timer, that is.

Part Two will post Sept. 19th.  For more information about Grant’s books click here
Review of Under Fire

DON’T MISS UPCOMING BLOGS featuring INTERVIEWS with  best-selling AUTHORS!      Grant Blackwood (Tom Clancy) in Sept. and Julia London in October.
Coming later in September: 
A bonus Interview with iconic comic book writer, Chuck Dixon, in September.
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