March 16 – 22: “Should series characters change?”
The TV series Seinfeld claimed their characters never changed. This week ITW members Jean Heller, Glen Erik Hamilton, Nicole Maggi, Connie Di Marco, Cecilia Ekback, Alan Field and Jack Dewitt discuss whether or not the same rules should apply to characters in a book series.
Most of Jean Heller’s career was as an investigative and projects reporter and editor in New York City, Washington, D.C. and St. Petersburg Florida. Her career as a novelist began in the 1990s with the publication of the thrillers, “Maximum Impact” and “Handyman” by St. Martin’s Press. Then life intervened and postponed her new book, “The Someday File,” to publication in late 2014. Jean has won the Worth Bingham Prize, the Polk Award, and is an eight-time Pulitzer Prize nominee.
Connie di Marco, writing as Connie Archer, is the national bestselling author of the soup lover’s mystery series from Berkley Prime Crime: A Spoonful of Murder, A Broth of Betrayal, A Roux of Revenge and Ladle to the Grave. Connie was born and raised in New England and now lives on the other coast. You can visit her website and connect with her on Facebook and Twitter: @SnowflakeVT
A native of Seattle, Glen Erik Hamilton grew up aboard a sailboard and spent his youth finding trouble around the marinas and commercial docks and islands of the Pacific Northwest. He now lives in California with his family, and frequently returns to his hometown to soak up the rain.
Nicole Maggi was born in the suburbs of upstate New York, and began writing poems about unicorns and rainbows at a very early age. She detoured into acting, earned a BFA from Emerson College, and moved to NYC where she performed in lots of off-off-off-Broadway Shakespeare. After a decade of schlepping groceries on the subway, she and her husband hightailed it to sunny Los Angeles, where they now reside, surrounded by fruit trees, with their daughter and two oddball cats.
Cecilia Ekback was born in the north of Sweden; her parents come from Lapland. During her teens she worked as a journalist and, after university, specialized in marketing. Over twenty years her work for a multinational company took her to Russia, Germany, France, Portugal, the Middle East and the UK. In 2010 she finished a Masters in Creative Writing. She now lives in Calgary with her husband and twin daughters, “returning home” to the landscape and the characters of her childhood through her writing.
Alan Field, new to the ITW, hopes to make a splash with his first urban thriller, The Chemist, that revolves around a weapon of mass destruction and the person who created it. Alan has written short stories starting from age 10, but this is the first work he wishes to publish. While practicing law for twenty years, Alan fathered four children. He is also an accomplished music composer and arranger who resides in New Jersey.
Jack DeWitt is a poet, a chronicler of car culture and a novelist. His study of American hot rodding, Cool Cars, High Art: The Rise of Kustom Kulture is included in the Street Rodder Hall of Fame. For three years he wrote the column “Cars and Culture” for the American Poetry Review. One of the columns was chosen as a notable essay in Best American Essays 2010. Almost Grown, his latest book of poems, is about growing up in Stamford, CT. For many years he taught in the Liberal Arts Division of the University of the Arts in Philadelphia.
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