Monday, October 7, 2019

FEATURED AUTHOR: ANG POMPANO




ABOUT THE BOOK


When his girlfriend dumps him and a dealer nearly rams him off a bridge, Al DeSantis quits the New Haven Police Department. Just as he plans to head for LA, he finds out the father who left when he was a kid has deeded him the Blue PalmettoDetective Agency in Georgia.

Al goes down to Savannah intending to sell fast and go west, but before he can, he discovers a strong, attractive detective named Maxine, a dead body on the dock—and his father, alive, suffering from dementia, and determined to help his “new partner Al” solve the crime. Al has a lot of adjusting to do when his traditional ideas are challenged as he has to act as his father’s caretaker, and finds that Maxine is his superior in the agency that he “owns.” When his father goes missing, Al and Max must team up to save his father–and capture the murderer.



Book Details:

Title: When It’s Time for Leaving

Author: Ang Pompano

Genre: traditional mystery


Publisher: Encircle Publications (October 1, 2019)


Print length: 274 pages




On tour with: Great Escapes Book Tours








IFs ANDs OR WHATs INTERVIEW WITH ANG POMPANO



Q: If you could live in any time period which would it be?
A: I think one of the most fascinating time periods in history was the era that roughly follows Mark Twain’s lifespan. (1835-1910) The developments in technology, politics, and society in general in those 75 years was amazing. No wonder Twain had so much to comment on.

Q: If you could step back into a moment or day in time, where would you go?
A: At first, I was going to say that I’d go back to visit the little boy that was me and tell him what wonderful things the future would bring including marriage, children, grandchildren, a teaching career, and even published stories and books. But as I write this I’m changing my mind. I don’t think I’d want to rob him of the joy of seeing how those things unfold.

Q: If you could be anything besides a writer, what would it be?
A: I’ve dabbled in many other occupations from running a forklift, bartending, and factory work to construction. Of course, education was my main occupation where I worked in and out of the classroom and even ran the school TV studio. And while I’ve always been a writer and have been publishing stories and academic pieces for going on 30 years, I’m glad that I saved publishing my first novel for the time in my life when I could enjoy the ride.

Q: If you could meet any author for coffee, who would you like to meet and what would you talk about?
A: I wish it were possible to meet Sue Grafton for coffee one more time. Several years ago she was our guest of honor at the New England Crime Bake in Boston. I was lucky enough to sit next to her at breakfast. She was so gracious. She wanted to hear all about what those of us at the table were writing. She talked to me more about my writing than hers, and she gave me pointers and suggestions. She made each person there feel they were important.

Q: If you could choose a fictional town to live in what would it be and from what book?
A: I think Kembleford from the Father Brown series would be a great place to live. Those old homes, and that 500 year old church blow my mind. My town of Guilford, CT is very similar, but thankfully without all of the murders. This is a picture of the oldest home in our town. Doesn’t it look like it belongs in Kembleford? That may be because the Guilford settlers who built it in 1639 came from England.



Q: If you could live anywhere in the world, where in the world would it be?
A: I love it right here in the good ol’ U.S.A. but if I could have a second home it would definitely be on the Amalfi coast of Italy. It’s beautiful there with towns such as Positano and Amalfi clinging to mountain cliffs that rise out of the Tyrrhenian Sea. The culture there has its roots in Greek, Roman, Moorish, and even Norman tradition. I can find a lot of mystery in that beauty and ancient civilization that I’d like to write about. In fact, one of my early short stories was called, “A Return to Amalfi.” I’d love to expand it into a book. 



Ands



5 favorite possessions:
•   my typewriter that I've had since I was 14 years old. 
•    my antique books
•    my Kayak
•    my 18-year-old car
and
•     my electronics. I love technology.
 
5 things you need in order to write: 
•  food! When I write, I split my time between my computer and the refrigerator.  
•   music - I keep Pandora on all day.
•   books - when I have writers block, the best way to clear my head is to read.
•    Google Home and the internet - I'm constantly doing research and asking it questions. It's like having a research assistant.
and
•   my writer's group—they are invaluable. They are with me from the time I have the germ of an idea until the finished manuscript.  

5 things you love about writing:
•    I love to write dialogue. Speech patterns fascinate me.
•    I love writing action scenes. My characters do things that I can only wish to do.
•    I love to write about crime not because I like crime but because I want my protagonist to solve crime and bring balance to the world.
•    I love the fact that writing is a solitary act.
and
•    Yet, I love the fact that writing is a community effort. The mystery writing community is one of the most generous groups of people on earth.    

5 things you love about where you live:
•    the change of seasons, I live in New England.
•    the history of our town which was settled in 1639.
•    the educational opportunities—I live near Yale, Wesleyan University, and several other colleges.
•    the water. I live not far from Long Island Sound. My wife and I walk by the shore every day.
and
•     the food. There are tons of restaurants near here, but best of all we have New Haven Style Pizza.

5 favorite places you’ve been: 
•   Key West—My wife is an artist and of course, I write. We have many writer and artist friends who live there.
•    Savannah—It is a town I love because its antebellum architecture and cobblestoned squares escaped the redevelopment craze of the 1960s that destroyed the character of so many cities. But you know, no matter how beautiful a place is there is always a dark side. I hope I captured a bit of both in the book.
•   LA—my daughter is a TV producer, and we visit often.
•    Italy—it's a tossup between the art and culture of Florence and the beauty of Amalfi.
and
•    New York City—we live only 90 miles away, and I spend as much time there as possible.   

5 favorite books: 
•    The Old Man and the Sea
•    The Great Gatsby I read Old Man and the Sea and Gatsby once a year
•    Murder on the Orient Express
•    The Maltese Falcon

and
•   The Godfather    

5 favorite authors: 
•    Sue Grafton
•    Walter Mosley
•    Hank Phillippi Ryan
•    Lee Child
and
•    Hallie Ephron 

Whats


Q: What’s your all-time favorite memory?
A: The birth of my children, a girl and a boy. My wife, Annette, did all of the work, but I was there for moral support. I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. My daughter now has a girl of her own, and my son has two sons.

Q: What’s your all-time favorite movie?
A: It’s A Wonderful Life is one of my favorite movies. George Bailey is the perfect hero and Mr. Potter is the perfect villain. The only flaw I can find in the movie is that Mr. Potter did not pay for his crime of keeping George’s money when he found it. But when you think about it, many authors, including Agatha Christie, have allowed the criminal to go unpunished except for the burden of knowing they are guilty. Good prevails in the end, so I think that makes up for that flaw.

Q: What’s your all-time favorite author?
A: I can’t pick one. I’d have to narrow it down to Mark Twain, F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Hemingway. I’m always revisiting Huck Finn, The Great Gatsby, and The Old Man and the Sea.

Q: What’s your all-time favorite city?
A: I love New York City and Los Angeles, but my absolute favorite city is Florence Italy. There is so much history, and art, and fabulous food to be had there.

Q: What’s your all-time favorite library?
A: Blackstone Library in Branford, Connecticut was my childhood library. Here is a picture of it and another of the inside of its magnificent dome, which my grandfather helped restore. I think you can see why it’s still the library I use the most.

Q: What’s one thing that very few people know about you?
A: That I’m considered by some to be an expert in privacy. It’s totally an accidental label. When I was a Yale-New Haven Teacher Fellow I wrote a paper titled “Privacy in the Age of Video Surveillance This Is Not Your Father's Candid Camera.” Somehow it go picked up by the media and I’ve been quoted in newspapers and court cases all over the world. I really think it’s kind of funny.


Q: What’s your biggest pet peeve?
A: I don’t really have a pet peeve. I’m not saying I’m a saint. Plenty of things irritate me but I try to figure out where the “offender” is coming from. An example would be tailgating. Not the kind that involves food. I’m all for that. But I just don’t get driving on another car’s bumper. When it happens though, I try to put myself in the other person’s shoes. Maybe they are late for work, or have to pick up their kid, or worse. I figure whatever it is, the person is already stressed so I try not to add to it. I just get out of the way and don’t let it ruin my day.

Q: What’s the most beautiful sound you’ve heard?
A: Once we went to Paris to celebrate my wife’s birthday. Sainte-Chapelle was high on Annette’s list of things to see because she heard it was like being inside a jewel box. I surprised her with tickets to a Mozart concert there. The light coming through those stained glass windows was amazing and the music was so beautiful that you would have thought that you were at the gates of heaven. 

Q: What’s your favorite vacation spot?
A: We love Key West and have several writer and artist friends who live there. It can suit any mood that strikes you from the excitement of Duval Street to the restfulness of Fort Taylor. The restaurants are fantastic second only to those of Grand Case in St. Martin.

Q: What’s your favorite quote?
A: Be nice to those you meet on the way up because you’ll meet them again on the way down, has always been a favorite. Some people attribute it to Sinatra, but think it’s been said by many people including Walter Winchell, and Ralph Kramden. It’s a truism that you can probably find somewhere on a wall in the forum, but the point is always be nice no matter what you’re really thinking.

Q: What’s your favorite social media site?
A: For all of its faults, I think that Facebook is a wonderful thing. I’ve reconnected with many lost friends and made many new friends through Facebook.
I’ve had a Twitter account since the site was started, but I just can’t get into keeping my messages short. The same with Instagram, I have the account but hardly ever use it. And Pinterest, I just don’t get the point. I know I’m in the minority on that one. I think it just boils down to the fact that I don’t really have a lot of time to spend on social media, so I put all of the time I have into really connecting with people on Facebook.

Q: What’s your favorite color?
A: My favorite color has always been blue. Then when our first grandson became old enough to identify his colors he declared blue to be his favorite color. When I told him it was mine too he said it couldn’t be because it was his favorite. So now I guess I’m without a favorite color. What am I supposed to do, fight with a toddler?


Q: What’s one thing you never leave the house without?
A: I used to be totally lost if I forgot my wallet at home. Now I’d say I couldn’t be without my cell phone. Everything I need is in that little device including my “money.” If I realize that I forgot my phone, I turn around and go back and go back for it.


Q: What is the wallpaper on your computer’s desktop?
A: Pictures of my grandkids. I like to be reminded of them when I’m working. They call me Grandude and when they come around I stop everything, including writing, to play with them.

Q: What do you know now that you wish you knew then?
A: I wish I knew that you have to be a little aggressive in the publishing business. If you don’t take the initiative to get the ball rolling you may stay unpublished for a long time. And once you do get published there is still a lot of work to do. There are plenty of people who are willing to help you, especially in the Mystery Writing Community, but you have to make the first move.


Q: What do you collect?
A: I collect old books. There’s something about the sweet musky, almost vanilla, smell of old books that I like. I like to imagine who read those books before me. This picture shows a small part of my collection. They range in publication date from 1851-1959. Two of my favorites in this pictue are P. T. Barnum’s autobiography (1873) and Tom Swift and his Airship (1910).



Q: What smells remind you of your childhood?
A: I know this will sound weird, but the smell of a pig farm is a childhood memory. After WWII my grandfather and my father built a track of suburban homes in the Branford, CT. It was farm country and there was a pig farm that I had to pass as I walked to school. On the way home, I’d stop by “the nursery” to look at the baby pigs. The smell was odiferous to say the least. But I loved it!






ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Ang Pompano has been writing mystery for more than twenty years. His mystery novel, When It's Time For Leaving will be published in October 2019 by Encircle Publications. His short stories have been published in many award-winning anthologies. His most recent, “Diet of Death” appears in the 2019 Malice Domestic Anthology, Parnell Hall Presents Malice Domestic: Murder Most Edible. In addition, he has written many academic pieces including one on teaching detective fiction. A member of Mystery Writers of America, he is a past recipient of the Helen McCloy/Mystery Writers of America Scholarship for a novel in progress. He has been on the New England Crime Bake Planning Committee for fourteen years and is a long-time board member of Sisters in Crime New England. He lives in Connecticut with his wife, Annette, an artist, and his two rescue dogs, Quincy and Dexter.



Connect with Ang:

Website
 Facebook  |  Twitter

Buy the book:
Amazon paperback  |  Amazon Kindle (pre-order)  |  Barnes & Noble (pre-order)  |  Encircle Publications





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