Friday, March 13, 2009

Author Interview: Jennifer Chase

First, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Jennifer Chase for the opportunity to review her book and for taking the time to let me interview her for Socrates’ Book Reviews. Her book, Compulsion, is an awesome book that will keep readers at the edge of their seats. A truly riveting book.

So, let’s get the interviewing going…

1. Was writing your first career choice? Have you done anything in criminology that wasn’t geared towards writing?

I’ve loved writing and reading books for as long as I can remember, but it was not my first career choice. I originally had other ideas and eagerly entered into the business management world. However, writing seemed to be on my mind most of the time. I dreamed of writing a novel one day. It was not until I finished my degree in criminology that I felt I had the confidence to put my story to paper, and eventually the Emily Stone character was created. I think my degree was the extra push I needed to write the novel and the timing seemed right for me.

Criminology is still a new step for me and it has mostly been geared towards writing. It’s a fascinating field and I find that I’m still learning more as time goes on.

2. What made you decide to write this book and is it your first or do you have a backlist?

My favorite genre has always been suspense, mystery, and thriller books. My inspiration for Compulsion is really three-fold. First, my love for writing and wanting to complete a thriller novel has been the main driving force. Second, my academic background actually gave me the confidence to write about serial killers and related crime scene investigations. And finally, it was my first hand experience living next door to a psychopathic individual with violent tendencies that consistently threatened my life for more than two years, along with my interaction with local law enforcement. But, this bad experience gave me first-hand exposure and a great jumping off point to begin planning the characters for my first book. It was a horrible experience that ultimately turned out to be a great experience.

I have several stories in the beginning stages that I plan on writing. I’m currently working on the second Emily Stone novel. After I completed my first novel, it seemed to have fueled more ideas and inspirations that I need to get down on paper.

3. Are the characters in Compulsion based on any real life people or real life incidents?

No, the characters aren’t based on any real life people. In my research, I did meet many law enforcement individuals that helped me to understand how investigations are conducted and heard many interesting police stories. As far as the main character of Emily Stone, I only wish that I could be as tough and savvy as she is in the story. The characters and storyline are a combination of many aspects of my creative writing and criminology knowledge.

4. Do you watch shows like CSI? Do you find them realistic?

I rarely watch CSI, but it is a very entertaining show. The forensic technology is fairly accurate, but not the speed and accuracy of the results. Of course, it would really be boring if the audience had to wait weeks for crime scene results. I wish all law enforcement agencies had the budget and personnel to have a state of the art crime lab that is portrayed on CSI, but the reality is that they don’t. I enjoy shows like Law and Order, Cold Case, and The Closer that demonstrate all the aspects of the criminal investigation.

5. Are you interested in writing in any other genres?

I’m interested in writing and ghostwriting in the true crime genre. I’m beginning to research a group of unsolved serial homicides that took place in California during the early 1980s for a potential true crime book.

6. Do you have any favorite authors or genres that you enjoy reading?

My favorite genres are thriller, mystery, true crime, and sometimes science fiction or fantasy books. If I had to pick only three of my favorite authors they would be Jeffrey Deaver (Lincoln Rhyme novels), Dean Koontz, and John Douglas (criminal profiler). I enjoy a good mystery by Agatha Christie too. It’s also a treat when I discover a new writer, so I’m always on the look out and appreciate any recommendations.

7. How did it feel when you heard that your book would be published?

It was extremely exciting and exhilarating, you feel like shouting it from every rooftop. All that hard work has finally paid off. But there’s also a part of you that thinks, “What if no one likes my book?” I’m sure that new writers all feel this way and you build more confidence as you publish more books. It’s still exciting seeing my own novel on my bookshelf.

8. Have you gone on any book signing tours? What was it like?

I’m just beginning to do some book signing appearances. It’s great signing books and talking to thriller fans. People are very receptive to the storyline and ask many questions. It’s fun and festive because you never know who you’re going to meet.

9. What kind of fan reaction have you had to your book?

I have been receiving very positive reviews for Compulsion. It’s probably the most single exciting part of publishing a book is to hear from fans. I really do appreciate any comments and questions about the novel.

10. Can we look forward to any sequels or other books in the future? Can you tell us anything about them?

I’m working my second thriller novel with Emily Stone as she tracks down an ingenious high-tech serial killer who uses the front of a prominent video game company to elicit unsuspecting victims to their deaths. I hope to finish this novel before the end of the year.

Jennifer – Thank you so much for taking the time to visit us and introduce us to your work. I wish you the best of luck, you have a bestseller on your hands!

If any of you have the chance, do yourself a favor and read this book. Check out these websites:



  1. Great interview Yvonne.

    Did you write a review of this book? Didn't see it.


  2. I LOVED this post. An insightful interview. Great questions. I would like to read this so I'm going to visit the sites. By the way, cool cat blog. We have a Burmese with a lot of character. He's my literary companion, always after the mouse on my laptop!

  3. Wow! I absolutely loved this interview. It's so much fun learning more about authors.

  4. CJ - Yes, I did review this book and loved it. Here's the link to my review...


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