Listening In is a series of author interviews, featuring authors whose works have been transformed into audiobooks! Adam Mitzner is a critically acclaimed bestselling suspense and thriller author and Silver Gavel Awards finalist for one of his previous titles, A Case of Redemption. Love Betrayal Murder is his latest, and this “smart and twisty legal thriller” is out now, narrated by three talented voices: Bronson Pinchot, Elizabeth Evans, and Brian Hutchison.
Adam Mitzner is the critically acclaimed Amazon Charts bestselling author of Dead Certain, Never Goodbye, and The Best Friend in the Broden Legal series, as well as stand-alone thrillers A Conflict of Interest, A Case of Redemption, Losing Faith, The Girl from Home, A Matter of Will, and The Perfect Marriage. Suspense Magazine named A Conflict of Interest one of the best books of the year, and the American Bar Association nominated A Case of Redemption as a Silver Gavel Award finalist. A full-time practicing attorney in New York City, Mitzner and his family live in New York. Visit him at www.AdamMitzner.com.
Please tell us more about Love Betrayal Murder! Why should we listen to it?
It’s a legal thriller set amidst the backdrop of a New York City law firm. Matt Brooks and Vanessa Lyons are in love, but Matt just made partner and Vanessa was just assigned to Matt’s biggest case.
You know that there’s a betrayal coming because it’s in the title. And a murder too.
Everyone lies, no one is above suspicion, and it’s got a killer (pun intended) final twist.
The audiobook is awesome. Three narrators – Brian Hutchinson reads Matt’s dialogue, Elizabeth Evans plays Vanessa and, the main narrator is Bronson Pinchot, who many people remember as Balki from Perfect Strangers, but for me he’ll forever be the inventor of the Memo Minder from Risky Business.
Could you please tell us about your career as an author? What first drew you to writing?
I’ve always loved writing, and began crafting little stories as a child. Then I stopped writing for pleasure at about 8 year’s old and didn’t start again until I was forty.
I still wrote for those 32 years, but my writing was limited first to school papers, and later, legal briefs. At 40, I wanted to write something more creative than legal arguments, and without a single writing class, but having read a lot of John Grisham, I started my first novel.
It wasn’t brilliant from the outset, however. I had lots of help along the way — editors, my agent, most importantly, my wife — honing my books. Fast forward and Love Betrayal Murder is my 10th novel since 2011.
We’d love to hear about your writing process. Please elaborate!
I’m fortunate enough to have a Monday-Friday job as the head of the litigation department of a New York City law firm, so my writing occurs mainly on the weekends. On Saturday, I wake up and start to write. If it’s a good day, I can do about 2000-3000 words. Then I do the same thing on Sunday. When I’m in heavy editing mode, which starts after I reach about 20,000 words, I sometimes edit for an hour before I begin my lawyering day.
What drew you to Legal Thrillers? When did you know that it was the genre you wanted to write?
It was a natural fit because of my background as a lawyer. One of the things that pleasantly (and not so pleasantly) surprised me when I began writing was that I had always assumed the legal parts of my book would be great and the writing might demonstrate I was, first and foremost, a lawyer and not a writer. I was told the opposite — that agents/publishers loved the voice, but the legal scenes needed work.
You are also a practicing attorney. Have you found there to be any similarities in writing novels and practicing law? Are there major differences that you enjoy?
Both involve writing, which I love, and a bit of problem solving, which is always very challenging. The best difference is that writing is something I control completely, whereas practicing law is on behalf of clients and there’s a lawyer on the other side telling you that you’re wrong.
Where is your favourite place to write?
My house. Originally, I wanted my desk to be on the dining room table, but my wife couldn’t see a life with a computer (I use a desktop) in the center of our dinners. I work out of a nook in our hallway with a view to our yard, which satisfies my requirements of great light and no walls.
Describe your writing style in five words or less.
Sparse: character development/plot only.
Any advice for emerging writers?
Write. All the time. Every day. Bad stuff. Good stuff. Whatever hits you. Edit a lot. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Enjoy the writing. Don’t think about what comes after that – it’s too scary.
What do you do when you experience writer’s block or reader’s block?
I’ve fortunately never experienced writer’s block. Maybe that’s because I don’t write every day. For reader’s block, I switch books.
What has been the most exciting part of having your novels transformed into audiobooks?
My daughter is a playwright, and she describes hearing the work performed as the moment it is no longer yours but now for everyone. Writers usually don’t experience that because readers/listeners have their own solitary experiences with a book. But, when you hear the words spoken, with gifted narrators, it suddenly comes out into the world and that’s very exciting.
Love Betrayal Murder has three fantastic narrators. Did you have a say in the initial casting of Bronson Pinchot, Elizabeth Evans, and Brian Hutchison? What made them right for the job? And was having a multi-narrator cast important to you?
I was given samples of three narrators for each part and I got to choose one. Elizabeth Evans and Brian Hutchinson sounded exactly the way I heard Matt Brooks and Vanessa Lyons in my head, and Bronson Pinchot reading my words is really quite the thing for someone, like me, who grew up watching him. I think the three narrators will make it sound like you’re listening to a movie and Matt and Vanessa are both such strong characters that they needed their own voices.
Please recommend an audiobook you absolutely adored!
Michael Conelley’s Desert Star.
What are you reading (or listening to) right now?