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Greg Stout Writer Wednesday Interview

I’d like to welcome Greg Stout to the blog for #WriterWednesday!

Things you need for your writing sessions:

Complete quiet and no interruptions. I have a very fragile attention span, and if (for instance) the radio is on, before long I’ll be listening to the song lyrics and lose the thread of what I’m doing.

Things that hamper your writing:

Any kind of interruption, unless someone has stopped by to give me money.

Things you love about writing:

Writing dialog. I was in sales and marketing for 27 years and then a teacher for 12, so I think I have a very good ear for how people actually talk.

Things you hate about writing:

Plotting a mystery. I’m good with the beginning and the end, but getting through the “soggy middle” is a chore.

Hardest thing about being a writer:

Well, I would have said selling a manuscript, but that’s all set as everything I have written is under contract. So I guess the next hardest thing is actually selling the books.

Easiest thing about being a writer:

I get to set my own hours.

Things you never want to run out of:

Dark chocolate peanut M&M’s

Things you wish you’d never bought:

A 1973 Vega and a 1968 Corvair.

Words that describe you:


Words that describe you, but you wish they didn’t:


Favorite foods:

Crayfish etouffee, pan fried lake perch, broiled scallops

Things that make you want to gag:

Any variety of cheese that I can actually smell.

Favorite music or song:

Patsy Cline, Dusty Springfield, Ambrosia, the Beach Boys

Music that drives you crazy:

“Old school” country western (like Hank), especially if they guy yodels

Favorite beverage:

Diet Pepsi, hands down. After that, Stella Artois beer

Something that gives you a sour face:

Grapefruit juice

Favorite smell:

Honeysuckle, mimosa blossoms

Something that makes you hold your nose:

Cauliflower or cabbage cooking

Something you wish you could do:

I wish I could play golf well, as it is a game you can play pretty much all your life. Unfortunately, I’m not very good at it, and because I’m not very good, I don’t enjoy playing, so I will never get any better because the only way to get better is to play a lot.

Something you wish you’d never learned to do:

Work on cars, because I'm always getting asked to "take a look" at something on somebody's car.

Something you like to do:

I like to fish in Canada. We keep only what we eat. Everything else goes back into the lake.

Something you wish you’d never done:

There was a job I took because I thought I knew my future boss better than I actually did. Turned out, he was a jerk. I couldn’t wait to get out of there. Fortunately, before I quit, the company got bought out and I got a really good package going out the door. I didn’t get to keep the company car, though.

Last best thing you ate:

There is a little breakfast-lunch place near where we live. Their Friday fish fry is really good.

Last thing you regret eating:

Chinese food off the real-deal Chinese menu. It was spicy as hell and made me sick for two days.

The last thing you ordered online:

The first three books in the Bosch series by Robert Connelly

The last thing you regret buying:

Cargo pants

Things you always put in your books:

My friends (at least the ones who actually read my books) refer to them as “Stoutisms.” These are terms and phrases I’ve used pretty much all my life, and so I put them into my characters’ mouths, e.g., “You can’t blame a goat for being a goat.”

Things you never put in your books:

Explicit sex. I figure anybody old enough to read my stuff already knows the drill and doesn’t need me to spell the process out.

Things to say to an author:

“I really liked your book. In fact, I bought seven copies to give to my friends.” (This actually happened.)

Things to say to an author if you want to be fictionally killed off in their next book:

“I noticed a mistake on page 38.” You read the whole book, and that's your take-away?

Favorite places you’ve been:

Belize. The fishing, the food and the tropical breezes are the best. After that, Hawaii, for the same reason.

Places you never want to go to again:

The wound specialist. She was great, but the problem took a solid year plus surgery to heal.

Favorite books (or genre):

PI or police procedural mysteries.

Books you wouldn’t buy:

Anything written by a politician or a business executive.

People you’d like to invite to dinner (living):

Pope Francis.

People you’d cancel dinner on:

Donald Trump. He’d order something expensive and stick me with the check.

About Greg: Greg Stout is the author of Gideon’s Ghost, a young adult novel set in small-town America in the mid-1960s, and Lost Little Girl, a detective novel set in Nashville, Tennessee. He has also written 22 books on the history of American railroads. His first title, Route of the Eagles, a history of the Missouri Pacific Railroad, was released in 1995. A complete listing of Greg Stout’s published works can be found at

Greg resides with his wife and two cats, Wallace and Gromit, in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, where he is a member of the Heartland Writers Guild and the Southeast Missouri Writers Guild. His second novel for Beacon Publishing Group, Connor’s War, will be released in July 2022. His second Jackson Gamble mystery for Level Best Books, The Gone Man, is scheduled for release in October 2022.

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