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Public Display of Imagination

Author: Mark Combs Author

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This podcast features the creative minds of some of the best storytellers to ever leave ink on the page. Each week, the host and the listening audience are taken on an adventure by a NY Times Best-Selling author. In most cases, their latest release is featured. But in every case, their approach to the craft and their overall volume of work is discussed. Probing questions are asked; secrets are revealed. Genres include: Suspense, Thrillers, and Cozy Mysteries, as well as a pinch of Sci-Fi and Fantasy. The complete listing of those conversations can be found on the Public Display of Imagination website at: https://publicdisplayofimagination.com/
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She was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, and acquired her PhD in Linguistics from Edinburgh University. She moved to Northern California in 2010, but still journeys home every year for a couple of months.Her “proper” jobs have included banking (which she describes as hopeless) and a short stint in academia (which she labels, miserable). And, there was also that time when she immersed herself in library work and fine arts, a time that she remembers as “marvelous”.When not writing, she’s reading, gardening, baking, or running through walnut orchards. She’s visited 43 states and counting. Today, Award-Winning, Bestselling author, Catriona McPherson walks us through the pages of her latest thriller, Strangers at the Gate…
He’s a former detective sergeant with more than twenty-seven years in law enforcement. At the time of his retirement, he supervised all homicide and violent crime investigations for Maine’s largest city – Portland.Following the terror attacks of September 11th, he spent four years working counter-terrorism with the FBI and earned the “Director’s Award” – the highest honor a non-agent can receive.Since his retirement from law enforcement, he’s been writing… his first published work, Among The Shadows, was a debut success in 2016. He produced additional thrillers in the Detective John Byron series in 2017 and 2018.Today, author Bruce Robert Coffin is setting aside the time to walk us through his crime scenes…
He’s a New York Times bestselling author of 14 suspense thrillers, and counting. His novels HIGH CRIMES and PARANOIA were adapted as major motion pictures. GUILTY MINDS and COMPANY MAN won Barry Awards for Best Thriller Novels. KILLER INSTINCT won the International Thriller Writers’ Thriller Award for Best Novel. BURIED SECRETS won the Strand Critics Award for Best Novel.In 2009, he introduced readers to “Private Spy,” Nick Heller in the runaway bestseller, VANISHED. Nick Heller’s story continued across the pages of the equally riveting thrillers, BURIED SECRETS and GUILTY MINDS.Today’s tour guide is a master storyteller, who’s going to walk us into the pages of the most recent Nick Heller assignment, HOUSE ON FIRE. Founding member of the International Thriller Writers Association, Joseph Finder takes us on an adventure into the world of a billionaire pharmaceutical kingpin with plenty to hide…
He’s a graduate of Notre Dame, an avid hockey player, and an amateur musician. As the former Chicago bureau chief of the Wall Street Journal, he shared in the Pulitzer Prize given to the Wall Street Journal in 2002 for coverage of the September 11 terrorist attacks.Over the course of his writing career, he has written both compelling fiction and award-winning non-fiction. His Starvation Lake Trilogy was an Edgar Award Finalist. In November 2019, readers were introduced to a city living in the long shadows of the powerful, founding family, the Bleaks.Today’s adventure takes us back to Bleak Harbor, as our tour guide, Bryan Gruley introduces us to another long time resident, wrestling with the truth of her past. Straight out of the heart of Chicago, where the days are overcast and the winds are blowin’ cold… please welcome, Bryan Gruley…
She’s an on-air investigative reporter for Boston’s WHDH-TV with 34 EMMY awards to her credit and more journalism honors than I could list and you could follow. She’s won five Agatha Christie Awards, two Anthony’s, two Macavity’s, a Daphne, and the coveted Mary Higgins Clark Award. If there’s an award for writing, she’s got at least one to her credit.Her latest release is called, TRUST ME, and Suspense Magazine called it, “By far one of the best thrillers they had read in years.” Crime Reads says that it’s, “one of the best thrillers of 2018 summer.” Who do you trust when you can’t trust yourself? We asked Hank Phillippi Ryan that very question in this week’s adventure…
M.L. HUIE - Spitfire

M.L. HUIE - Spitfire

2020-01-2401:02:52

He’s a writer, a teacher, and an actor, with 10 years of experience as a features journalist. He’s also written a number of plays, which have been performed throughout the U.S. and in the UK. He’s a proud member of the Actor’s Equity Association, and teaches theatre & acting at the university-level.Like Livy Nash he loves the northwest of England and has a Yank’s appreciation for a good Lancashire Hot Pot. Today, we’ll forge into the foggy streets of London as we peel open the pages of his debut novel, SPITFIRE. Please welcome our tour guide for today’s adventure, M.L. Huie…
He’s an Award-Winning USA-Today and Amazon bestselling author, whose work will take you to some of the most mysterious and frightening places on the planet. Readers find themselves immersed in inexplicable landscapes that they sometimes “can’t wait to visit” and often wonder if they’ll ever, be able to escape.He’s published more than 20 novels and novellas, which have been translated into multiple languages and optioned for TV & film. When it comes to page-turning tension and chilling storylines, his work has been compared to that of “Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Joe Lansdale, and other masters of hair-raising suspense.” He has won both an Australian Shadows Award and a Canadian Arthur Ellis Award. He was also a finalist in the Goodreads Choice Awards, the only major book awards, decided by readers.Today, he’s going to introduce us to some of “The World’s Scariest Places” a new book series that is several volumes deep and growing. Leave the lights on and keep your security blanket nearby, Jeremy Bates is our tour guide for today’s adventure…
Today’s guest was the Official Documenting Photographer for the Shroud of Turin Research Project (STURP), the team that conducted the first in-depth scientific examination of the Shroud in 1978. Today, he plays an influential role in Shroud research and education as the editor and founder of the internationally recognized Shroud of Turin Website, Shroud dot-com, the oldest, largest and most extensive Shroud resource on the Internet, with more than fifteen million visitors from over 160 countries.In 2009 he founded the Shroud of Turin Education and Research Association, Inc. (STERA, Inc.), a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation, to which he donated the website and his extensive Shroud photographic collection, as well as many other important Shroud resources, in order to preserve and maintain these materials and make them available for future research and study. He currently serves as the President of STERA, Inc.Today, we’ll walk through the pages of history, both recent (1978) and ancient (possibly as far back as the 1st century AD). Barrie M. Schwortz is our tour guide…
He’s a versatile writer and a master teacher of the craft. He’s penned more than 30 novels in the thriller genre and is currently crafting a book series that falls into the newly recognized hybrid genre of Cozy-Thriller.He wrote the popular Blaine McCracken series, a Green Beret with a bit of a James Bondian outlook. He also produced a series of books featuring Caitlin Strong, a 5th generation Texas Ranger, who finds out that the west can still be a pretty wild place at times. Today’s adventure will explore his latest Cozy-Thriller, featuring Jessica Fletcher and we’ll also highlight a hot new AudioBook that will take us inside the undercover world of Donnie Brasco.Buckle up, boys and girls… Jon Land is our tour guide for this adventure and you’ll want to keep both hands and feet inside the ride at all times…
In her career, she has worked as a freelance writer, worked on composited texts for academia, produced work on behalf of others as a ghost writer; she’s also taught high-school language arts, done translation work, and relieves stress as a martial arts instructor.She’s written a number of popular Cozy Mysteries, which I’m sure we’ll talk about at some point, including the Georgia Peach Mystery Series & Murder on Consignment.Today, we’re going to dig into the files of the Bone Gap Travelers, a series of books set in the thriving metropolis of Bone Gap, TN. Our tour guide for this Adventure is talented and creative Susan Furlong…
He was born in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada and captivated as a young man by a classic 1960’s television series about two young men in a Corvette convertible, traveling the United States in search of America and themselves. The TV series was called, Route 66. His creativity was so inspired by the series, that he dreamed of writing his on fictional sagas.In 1966, he moved to Happy Valley, Pennsylvania, were he attended Penn State University, studied literature under Hemingway scholar Philip Young, and received his Master’s and Doctorate in American literature. In 1972, he released a novel about a returned Vietnam veteran suffering from post-trauma stress disorder who comes into conflict with a small-town police chief and fights his own version of the Vietnam War. The book was entitled FIRST BLOOD and it introduced the world to John Rambo. He has since produced a large volume of thrillers and international best-sellers, many of which we will talk about today.Welcome to the wide-open, full-throttle world of David Morrell…
JOE CLIFFORD - Skunk Train

JOE CLIFFORD - Skunk Train

2019-12-1301:14:40

He spent much of the 1990s as a homeless heroin addict in San Francisco, but managed to get off the streets and turn his life in a positive direction. He earned a Master of Fine Arts from Florida International University in 2008 and eventually returned to the Bay Area, where he currently lives with his wife and two sons. His autobiographical novel, JUNKIE LOVE, was published by “Battered Suitcase” in 2010 and chronicles his personal battle with drugs.Today, he’s an acquisitions editor for Gutter Books and producer of “Lip Service West,” a gritty… real… raw… reading series in Oakland, CA. He writes the bestselling Jay Porter Thriller Series, which opened with a book titled, LAMENTATION, that was an Anthony Award Nominee for Best Mystery Novel in 2015. The series is currently 5 books deep and has received rave reviews from Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and the San Francisco Chronicle, among many others.He’s also editor of a couple of really enjoyable anthologies, which I’m sure we’ll talk about at some point during our conversation. He currently teaches online writing courses for LitReactor and speaks around the country at various writing conferences and retreats. Today, we’re going to dig into the storyline of his latest release, SKUNK TRAIN. Bestselling author Joe Clifford takes us on today’s adventure…
She’s a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who writes domestic noir and psychological thrillers. Her work has been published in twenty-six countries and fourteen languages. Her novel THE COLD ROOM won the International Thriller Writers Award for Best Paperback Original. Her novels FIELD OF GRAVES and WHERE ALL THE DEAD LIE were each RITA nominees for Best Romantic Suspense.She also co-authors the international thriller series, “A Brit in the FBI” with New York Times bestselling author Catherine Coulter. Today we’re going to dig into the pages of her latest standalone thriller, TEAR ME APART. Please welcome, the “Thriller Chick” J. T. Ellison…
She’s a New York Times, USA Today, and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling author of a whole host of novels that fall into the Cozy Mystery genre. She’s also written several Romance novels and she won the RT Reviewer’s Choice Award for romantic comedy.She left the glitz and glamour of Toad’s Place, for the peace and quiet that comes with a fulltime position at the Cromwell, CT. Public Library. Needing a break from the non-stop excitement, she packed up all her worldly belongings and moved across country to Arizona, where she met her husband and began her writing career. Jenn McKinlay is my guest today and the latest installment in her Library Lovers Mystery Series, HITTING THE BOOKS, just released…
Today’s guest is the bestselling author of nearly 40 published books over his career, which has seen him produce work for TV, Movies, and Video Games… We’re sure to pull on all of those dangling threads at some point during today’s conversation. He’s written both standalone and series and serial novels… He was the 3rd author (and 1st American author) to be tasked with taking over for Ian Fleming and continuing the James Bond story, something he did for 7 years.His book THE JAMES BOND BEDSIDE COMPANION, is an encyclopedic work on all things 007, and was nominated for an Edgar Allan Poe Award by Mystery Writers of America for Best Biographical/Critical Work. His Black Stiletto 5-book series has been optioned for TV & Film. Today, we’ll explore his latest release – BLUES IN THE DARK… Raymond Benson is our guide for today’s adventure.
ELLISON COOPER - Buried

ELLISON COOPER - Buried

2019-11-1501:04:28

She’s a dual Irish/American citizen, who was born just outside of Washington DC where she grew up among senators and supreme court justices. She has a PH.D in Anthropology from UCLA, with a background in archaeology, cultural neuroscience, ancient religion, colonialism, and human rights.She’s conducted field work in various locations around the world, including Micronesia, West Africa, Central America, and Western Europe. She has also done research at the University of London, Institute of Historical Research and her academic work has been published in a variety of journals, including the prestigious Cambridge Archaeological Journal. She briefly attended Georgetown Law School and worked as a murder investigator for the Washington DC Public Defenders Service where she gained an insider’s view of the criminal justice system.Aside from writing the riveting thriller series that will launch today’s adventure, she’s also a Wilderness K9 Search and Rescue volunteer and certified as a Federal Disaster Worker for the Incident Command System. Ellison Cooper takes us on today’s adventure…
He’s a native of the Brooklyn, NY, who graduated from Brown University and ascended the ranks of a major New York City Ad Agency, before leaving the city behind in August of 2001 and moving to Portland, ME, to begin a new career as a fiction writer.Since that time, he’s published five books in the McCabe & Savage Thriller series and each one of them has ascended the rankings on the NY Times Best-Seller list. Book #6 in the series, A FATAL OBSESSION, released in August 2018, just a few short weeks after this conversation.NY Times Best-Selling Thriller author, James Hayman, takes us on this Way Back When’s Day Adventure as we crack open the pages of THE GIRL ON THE BRIDGE.
He’s a Navy Seal and Shadow Warrior, whose personal missions have kept readers turning pages for the past 3 years. In days past and gone, he followed orders explicitly, without questioning what he was being instructed to do… or why…Now, he has a new identity and the playing field is clouded by shadow and misdirection. What was once clear, is now ambiguous at best.Today’s adventure will be guided by a pair of Navy Veterans, who are the writing team behind the Tier One series. They will introduce us to our Shadow Warrior, John Dempsey and give us a brief overview of how his world has changed from one of certainty, to one of perspective, point of view, and high-stakes judgment calls. Our guides for today’s adventure are Brian Andrews and Jeffrey Wilson.
She began her writing career in 1981 and since then has authored more than sixty-five New York Times bestsellers. She majored in English at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, TX, and received an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the university.She was the featured, headline host of Thrillerfest 2008, where she was awarded the prestigious International Thriller Writers Award. She has more than 80 million copies of her books in print in 33 different languages, but she’s still got stories to tell.Today, we step into a world of twists, turns, romance, and suspense. Sandra Brown is our guide for today’s adventure as we step into the pages of her latest thriller…TAILSPIN.
JEFF GUNHUS - Gypsy Blood

JEFF GUNHUS - Gypsy Blood

2019-10-3101:03:31

He’s a USA-TODAY bestselling author of a number of thriller and horror novels for adults and Young Adults. His series, The Templar Chronicles, featuring Jack Templar, Monster Hunter, was written in an effort to get his son, an 11 year old reluctant reader, to give reading a try. The family experiment worked and a new book series was born. His experience with his son, has made him passionate about helping parents reach young reluctant readers and he has become a proactive advocate in child literacy issues.His books for adults have become both USA-Today and Amazon bestsellers. His with novel, Night Chill, scoring nearly one-thousand positive reviews.He’s a father of five, who leads an active life in Maryland with his wife Nicole and Labrador Retriever, Rocky. Today, Jeff Gunhus takes us on a chilling adventure as we crack open the pages of Gypsy Blood…
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