Garn Press Interview of Matthew Fleury of the Great Crime Novel Bloody Lane
Matthew Fleury and Marty Lee have been friends for more than forty years. Matt is quiet and pensive while Marty is outgoing and irrepressible. It’s clearly a winning combination of characteristics for crime writers who have created a wickedly successful hair-raising crime novel that is an addictive page turner. Bloody Lane will appeal to crime novel aficionados and also to readers of historical novels who imagine the possible repercussions of historical events on our lives today.
Readers of romance novels will also enjoy Bloody Lane. Everyone is in for a treat!
GARN PRESS: Why Bloody Lane?
MATTHEW FLEURY: When Marty and I first started talking about Bloody Lane (which then had a different working title), I was especially intrigued by the prospect of weaving Civil War history into a contemporary work of fiction, the more so as the passions that so violently stirred the two sides then, North and South, have not only persisted but are often—too often—still on display.
I also have a familial interest in the Civil War. A great-great-grandfather served as an officer in the Union army and was wounded in battle (though not at Antietam).
GP: What writers of crime or mystery novels have influenced you?
MF: I’m a very careful and deliberate reader, which means I have to be pretty choosy about what I read. My tastes are eclectic: canonical literature; modern and contemporary fiction, including a wide range of crime and mystery authors; history and philosophy. I read a lot of periodical literature as well.
Of authors in the crime field and in related genres, Conan Doyle, Edgar Poe, Raymond Chandler, Graham Greene, Georges Simenon, John le Carré come to mind as exemplary story-tellers, prose stylists, and masters of atmosphere and mood. And I like as much as the next fellow the English who-done-its that end with a forensic dissection of a train schedule.
I am in debt to my wife, too, for her discriminating recommendations over the years. It’s thanks to her, for example, that I’ve become acquainted with and thoroughly enjoyed the work of such accomplished, if diverse, practitioners of the art as Rex Stout and Andrea Camilleri.
GP: Do you have a writing routine or habits? How did they effect the composition of Bloody Lane?
MF: My part in bringing Bloody Lane to life meant sitting at my desk every night, whether I felt like it or not, and on weekends; usually I managed to wring out a page or so in a sitting. Or I’d review and comment on material that Marty had drafted. We got together from time to time to compare notes and to work out the story or talk about characters. The writing of Bloody Lane took quite a long time—Marty and I worked on it for years—in part because we were both also making ends meet professionally and in part because the composition was a collaborative, and therefore reiterative, process. Also, I’m an inveterate reviser.
I keep a notebook or write loose notes for each project I’m working on. I usually have at least two in the hopper, and I switch back and forth between them as inspiration or frustration dictates. I’ve trained myself to write directly into Word but invariably print out and mark up a manuscript with hand-written corrections, revisions, rewrites, and notes to self.
GP: Do you have anything in the works?
MF: Yes, I’m now working on a new novel and plotting out a couple more.
Authors: Martin Lee and Matthew Fleury
Paperback: $17.95 | Amazon | Barnes & Noble
eBook: $9.99 | Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-942146-23-0
eBook ISBN: 978-1-942146-27-8
“A body lies dead on the battlefield at Antietam. Nothing unusual there – so did 23,000 others, victims of the bloodiest day of the Civil War … however, the time is today, not 1862, and the dead man is a victim of murder, not war. So begins this riveting, intricately plotted, beautifully written novel, with a rich cast of characters and a plot that brilliantly parallels the events of September 17, 1862 …” – Robert Leonard Reid, author of Arctic Circle and Mountains of the Great Blue Dream
“Loved it! If you’re a Civil War buff, you won’t be able to put this book down. But even if you know nothing at all about that history, you’ll quickly be hooked by an ingenious plot and a fascinating cast of characters. Martin Lee and Matthew Fleury are natural-born story-tellers, and I congratulate them for keeping me guessing right up until the surprising climax. Bloody Lane is a bloody good read!” – Krin Gabbard, Professor Emeritus, Stony Brook University
“Felix Allaben is a vividly drawn, hard-boiled character in the tradition of Philip Marlowe or Sam Spade. After a murder at historic Antietam battlefield, Detective Allaben gets pulled into a murky and dangerous world, where nothing is as it appears. Stylish, taut, complex … a bloody good read.” – Justin Martin, author of Rebel Souls: Walt Whitman and America’s First Bohemians