I had the privilege of interviewing
Kevin R. Doyle,
mystery/suspense author of THE GROUP.
Who are some of your favorite authors?
When I was younger, Arthur C. Clarke, Lester Dent, Don Pendleton and Edgar Rice Burroughs, among others. In later life, Lawrence Block, Robert B. Parker (his earlier stuff), Richard Matheson and Bill Pronzini. There are several others, but those are the main ones that come to mind.
What motivated you to become a writer and at what age?
I actually started one day when I was nineteen and I was sitting home bored with nothing to do. On an impulse, I got out my mom’s typewriter (this was several decades back) and began hacking away.
What 3 words describe you as a person?
Conservative, introverted and frugal
What 3 words describe you as a writer?
Developing, learning and stretching
When not writing, how do you spend your time? Hobbies?
Writing is the hobby framed around work. I teach high school, so nine months out of the year I’m doing nothing but work. I do, however, spend quite a bit of time during the summer on the road, not going any particular place, just seeing where the highway takes me.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
Not the first I ever read, but one of the earliest that had a real impact, and is still my favorite short story of all, is Arthur C. Clarke’s “The Star.”
Describe your desk.
It’s an old, kind of flimsy computer desk. Kind of weathered, but I’ve had it for almost two decades, ever since graduate school.
Who is the main character in The Group?
What’s his story?
He’s a professor at a local college who falls into a dalliance with a young woman. His wife finding out leads to a rift in his marriage, which is only the beginning of his troubles as, a couple of months later, his lover is found dead.
Where/when does the story take place?
Current time in an unnamed larger city.
How did the story come to you?
One night I was watching a cable news show that employed a focus group to give their opinions about a political debate. As I watched and listened, it struck me that none of those people on that panel had any connection to each other, and that after that night would probably never see each other again. It only took a couple of days of pondering that to come up with the basic premise for The Group.
Where do you get the inspirations for your book(s)?
From all over. You just need to walk around with eyes and ears open for ideas. The Group, for example, came about from watching a cable news political discussion show. A few times, ideas for short stories have come to me because of particular sites. For example, one of my creepiest stories, “Visage,” came about because of an abandoned wall I saw in an Iowa farm field.
Any advice for new writers just beginning this trek down the wonderful world of publishing?
Don’t get too full of yourself. Don’t automatically assume that what you produce is the greatest thing ever and don’t ever assume that the world owes you a living just because you believe you’re talented.
A high school teacher and fiction writer, Kevin R. Doyle’s short stories, mainly in the horror and suspense fields, have appeared in over twenty-five small press magazines. In 2012, Vagabondage Press released his first e-book, a rock fiction novelette title One Helluva Gig. In 2014 Barbarian Books released his first full-length mystery novel, The Group. And in February of 2015, Night to Dawn Magazine and Books released his horror novel, The Litter. Doyle has a BA in English and an MA in communications, both from Wichita State University, and teaches English and public speaking at a small rural high school.
Professor Ronald Green never saw any of it coming. He never expected to meet Diane Brewster, begin an affair with her, or nearly destroy his marriage and family. More than anything, though, he never imagined Diane’s death, or that he would become the main suspect in her murder. Then, just when Green felt his life had become as twisted and insane as possible, he discovered that Fate had at least one more turn in store for him. For Diane’s death had only been one of many, and the killer had several more people in his sights, including, quite possibly, Ron Green himself.
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