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Thursday 28 February 2019

ℚ The Tursiops Syndrome - John Waite

Today we have the pleasure of meeting up with author to talk about The Tursiops Syndrome (, John Waite 295 pages), a Thriller.

"When an award-winning journalist and master mariner decides to write a mystery novel, expect something between John Clancy and Clive Cussler; a fast-moving plot with strong characters. John Waite has done that in this powerful novel. The book defies genre classification, falling somewhere between mystery and adventure." - Amazon Reviewer

"A terrific plot and honestly one of the best first chapters I have ever seen in a thriller. It set up the subsequent action perfectly. If you love action thrillers, this one is for you." - Amazon Reviewer

|| Synopsis || Teaser: KCR Preview || Author Q&A || About the Author || Giveaway & Tour Stops ||

A very warm welcome to John Waite; thank you for joining us on BooksChatter!

What was the inspiration for The Tursiops Syndrome?

"The inspiration goes way back, to when as a teen I worked one summer at the Gulfarium in Ft. Walton Beach, Fl. Even before that, I have always had a soft spot for dolphin. They are the closest thing to a relative that we as humans have in the aquatic kingdom. They exhibit many of the traits that people possess, although not to the extent popularized in much juvenile fiction.

I worked with them a lot that summer, and often swam with them after hours, slipping into the main tank after the days’ shows were completed. I became particularly friendly with one young porpoise. When he died in a tragic accident, it affected all of the people working there. I thought of him more as a buddy than as an exhibit. We gave him a funeral and moved on, but his death affected all of the employees and left an indelible mark on my id.

Since that time I have been particularly inured of dolphins and it was simply natural to make them characters in my adventure stories. The feelings that I have for dolphins made its way into the character of Jim Crabtree, the “villain” in Tursiops, and, to a lesser extent the character of Kevin, the “hero” of The Tursiops Syndrome."
How much of yourself is reflected in this book, and how?
"As an author, I like to think of myself in heroic terms so I imbue my lead with some of the attributes that I consider thus. That’s natural, of course. We all hope we can live up to the attributes of our fantasy heroes. I modeled much of the character’s traits after those I always appreciated in people I have known. Of course, some of my worst traits show up in the anti-heroes.

I like to think that many of the traits I ascribe to my characters, both the heroes and the bad guys, are also part of me. Dr. Crabtree is passionate about his labors, and I believe I am too. Kevin ascribes to a dutiful code of self, and so do I. But it's how these attributes get mixed by the circumstance that separates the good guys from the bad guys. And sometimes it doesn’t. A lead character can demonstrate both sides. That makes him human."
The first thing that draws me to a book is its cover. Can you tell us about your cover for The Tursiops Syndrome - why you chose that concept and who the artist is.
"I’m fortunate in that my eldest daughter is a commercial artist. She spent 15 years working for Reader’s Digest corporation and knows design inside and out. She produced the cover for Tursiops and has also done the covers of my other books."

Why should we read The Tursiops Syndrome and what sets it apart from the rest? What makes your book unique?
"It’s the story that sets it apart from the rest. And since I’m telling the story….

I'm a degreed journalist and have several awards to my credit. When I worked as a reporter, I always strove to describe events, characters, and applicable details, as directly and unfettered as possible. I hope I carry that principle into my fiction. Too many adverbs and adjectives weigh down a page, sometimes to the extent that the story cannot be enjoyed. Since I am telling a story, a fictionalized story, I try to make it as readable as possible."
Can you tell us something quirky about The Tursiops Syndrome, its story and characters?
"The quirkiest thing in the plot is the relationship of Dr. Jame Crabtree to the dolphins he trains, and the event he is training them for. Crabtrees’ inability to see the mission for what it really is may seem dumbfounding. But that ability to narrow focus is an aspect of his personality borne out through other elements in the plotline.

Despite many clues, Crabtree has no idea what he is actually using the dolphins to achieve."
Who would you recommend The Tursiops Syndrome to and what should readers be aware of (any warnings or disclaimers)?
"The book is aimed at the thriller market, but I would recommend it to those interested in crime mysteries, especially to those who appreciate thrillers with a romantic bent.

The settings include not just Florida, but coastal Mexico as well."
If you could / wished to turn The Tursiops Syndrome into a movie, who would be your dream team?
"I guess I would like to see what Ben Affleck could do with this kind of plot, not only as a lead, Crabtree but also as a director. He can be thoughtful and emotionally torn at the same time.

Angie Harmon of Rizzoli & Isles would make a perfect Hickory. Mark Wahlberg would be Kevin. He has the air of hopeless menace that someone still rebuilding a life of great tragedy would have."

What do you like to write and read about? Do you stick to a particular genre or do you like to explore different ones?
"I prefer the mystery-thriller genre, but also like to dabble in science-fiction, end of the world scenarios. My two novels are both adventure-thrillers, but I have a book of short stories that should appeal to wider interest and a YA adventure novel.

I am currently working on a fictionalized biography of my best friend who died in Vietnam a long time ago. That is the hardest story and I’m not sure It will ever be completed."
What is your writing process?
"I subscribe to the Elmore Leonard theory of writing: sit down and put words on paper, or on the screen.

I find time flies when I am writing, and it doesn’t much matter what it is that I am writing. I don’t have to have the motivation to write but often find it difficult to take time away from the everyday world of errands and staying-alive tasks.

And when I start putting words down, molding thoughts into viable concepts, the day vanishes rapidly. So many things wind up left undone at the end of a typical day. Writing has to be a priority. Writing exists, so do it."
What is in store next?
"I am writing more graphs on the piece about my best friend’s life and death, but that moves slowly. Too much memory involved. I am writing several short pieces of fiction and poetry for myself, some of which can be viewed on Page and Spine online journal. And I spend a good bit of time on marketing."
And as a final quirky thing, to get to know you a little bit better... do you have a pet or something that is special to you that you could share with us?
"I have no pets of my own, but My Lady is owned by two yellow toms, O’Reilly and O’Malley. I converse with them daily."
Ah, ginger toms! Fantastic! Lots of cuddles to both of them from all of us at BooksChatter :-)
Thank you for sharing, John :-)

Don't Piss Off The Dolphin

The Tursiops Syndrome
Available NOW!

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