Today’s guest blogger and future Crime Cafe interviewee is thriller author Lawrence Kelter. Obviously, Larry — can I call you Larry, Larry? 🙂 — has exquisite taste in movies.
My Cousin Vinny is one of my favorite legal movies of all time. And funny? Don’t get me started.
Lawrence “Larry” Kelter, being the generous soul that he is, is giving away the ebook version of BACK TO BROOKLYN, as part of his guest appearance here and on the Crime Cafe podcast.
All you need to do to enter the giveaway is email Lawrence or Larry at this email (yeah, just click on that link there – thank you!).
Now, with that said, here’s Lawrence Kelter himself!
Lawrence Kelter on the Elusive Pot of Gold at the End of the Rainbow
Did you ever want something so badly you could taste it? Of course you have. Who hasn’t? I was afraid of heights, so I never dreamed of being an astronaut. But like any other kid, I dreamed of playing major league ball, shredding lead guitar in a rock band, racing at Le Mans, and any number of other pursuits I was not meant to succeed at—a bitter pill for any young man to swallow.
Then along came the personal computer, and BAM, I was back in the game.
Now, my story is probably not much different than any of yours. I wanted to write the Great American Novel.
And I did.
Repeatedly, in fact.
At least I thought I had. But few agreed with me. All right, it wasn’t all that bleak. Along with a shoebox full of rejection letters, there were acceptances from agents and a smattering of publishing deals.
But not enough to make a career of it.
My accountant called it a hobby, a remark he paid for with a swift beheading.
In 2012 I reacquired my rights from the publishers I had worked with and threw my hat into the indie publishing arena. I mean, what did I have to lose? I sold a quarter of a million books that year. When I walked into my CPA’s office the following March, he said, “Holy crap. We can’t call this a hobby anymore.”
Through it all, there was one specific project I wanted to be involved in, but like the rock star dream and the Super Bowl victory, I thought it was not to be. You might think this silly or lame. And maybe it is. There was a film I enjoyed so much that every time it popped up on TV, it made me late for an appointment because I just couldn’t pull myself away. I knew the script verbatim and often incorporated the better-known lines into my everyday conversation. That movie is My Cousin Vinny.
It popped up on the tube about two years ago, and I decided to email the screenwriter/producer to tell him how much I loved his film, thinking, Hollywood screenwriter—I’m dirt beneath his boot—He’ll never reply.
But he did.
And somehow we forged a connection. Emails led to conversations. He discussed his upcoming projects with me, and I with him. One day he called up and said, “Hey, I read one of your books and you’re pretty f_ _king funny.”
“So how about you let me turn My Cousin Vinny into a book series?”
“Make me an offer.”
Four attorneys and fourteen months later, BACK TO BROOKLYN was delivered to Eric Campbell, publisher of Down & Out Books.
Writing BACK TO BROOKLYN was the most fun I’ve ever had sitting in front of a keyboard. I have high hopes for this book. After all, I love the characters and the backstory—not to mention the two years I have invested in the project. But where it goes from here…
The only thing I can tell you for certain is that it may have taken Vincent Gambini and Mona Lisa Vito twenty-five long years to navigate from that dirt-swept stretch of Alabama roadway back to New York, but they never would’ve made it back without me.
I never expected to be a writer. In fact, I was voted the student least likely to visit a library. (Don’t believe it? Feel free to check my high school yearbook.) Well, times change I suppose, and I have now authored several novels including the internationally best-selling Stephanie Chalice Thriller Series.
Early in my writing career, I received support from none other than best-selling novelist, Nelson DeMille, who reviewed my work and actually put pencil to paper to assist in the editing of the first book. DeMille has been a true inspiration to me and has also given me some tough love. Way before he ever said, “Lawrence Kelter is an exciting new novelist, who reminds me of an early Robert Ludlum,” he told me, “Kid, your work needs editing, but that’s a hell of a lot better than not having talent. Keep it up!”
I’ve lived in the Metro New York area most of my life and rely primarily on locales in Manhattan and Long Island for my stories’ settings. I try very hard to make each novel quickly paced and crammed full of twists, turns, and laughs.
PS: You only have until July 31 to grab a copy of THE CRIME CAFE 9 BOOK SET for $0.99 on Amazon and Smashwords. And you can get THE CRIME CAFE SHORT STORY ANTHOLOGY for free on Smashwords. But only until July 31.
That was an unpaid promotional announcement. Someone has to pay the bills here! 🙂