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Interview with Matt Coyle- Yesterday's Echo

Yesterday's Echo




Here’s what’s being said about Matt’s debut

Library Journal
VERDICT Coyle does a superb job of drawing the reader in and keeps a steady pace of action along with solid character development. This celebration of the crime noir novels of old with a modern sensibility in Rick Cahill as hero will strongly appeal to fans of classic hard-boiled PI novels.—Amy Nolan

"Readers looking for a smart new spin on the classic P.I. novel will find it in Matt Coyle's terrific debut, Yesterday's Echo. Coyle turns the difficult trick of paying the proper respect to the traditions of the classic hardboiled novel while stamping it all with his own distinct, contemporary take. A great read."
   —Gar Anthony Haywood, The Shamus and Anthony award-winning author of Assume Nothing

"Disgraced ex-cop Rick Cahill runs but can't hide from his past in Coyle's gripping and gritty tale."   —Dianne Emley, LA Times bestselling author of the Detective Nan Vining thrillers

"A sharp, compelling read, Coyle's Yesterday's Echo conjures images of Chandler's California, while reverberating with an energy and style all his own. Watch out, mystery fans, Matt Coyle has entered the scene!"
   —Stephen Jay Schwartz, L.A. Times Bestselling Author of Boulevard and Beat



Debbie - Matt, welcome to my blog. Congratulations on your debut novel.

Matt - Thanks for having me. I’m delighted to be here.


Tell us a little bit about the novel.

It’s about disgraced ex-cop Rick Cahill who has been branded a murderer but never convicted in his wife’s death. He’s fled to his hometown of La Jolla, California, but can never escape the eyes of those who’ll never forgive. When a woman accused of murder gives him a chance at love and redemption, he risks his life confronting those desperate enough to kill in order to keep their own dark pasts buried.

This is the first in a new series.

Are you working on another installation now?

Yes, I’m currently working on the second Rick Cahill crime novel.

Can you tell us anything about it?

Well, without giving away too much from Yesterday’s Echo, Rick has left the restaurant business and started a new career that is more in keeping with his law enforcement roots. He tries to help someone he thinks got a raw deal from the justice system and things go horribly wrong. Things go horribly wrong a lot for Rick.


Do you see a stand-alone in your future, or is it series all the way for you?

I could see a stand-alone somewhere way out in the future, but right now I feel I really have my teeth into Rick Cahill and I don’t want to spit the bit just yet. There is still more of his backstory to examine and a very difficult future to traverse.


Tell us about your “overnight success” road to becoming an author.

How much time do you have? I knew I wanted to be an author since I was a kid. The first lesson I learned about becoming an author is that you actually have to write instead of just talking about writing. It only took me about twenty years to learn that one. The next lesson was that you can’t write in a vacuum. Someone else has to read the wonderful prose you’re turning out and tell you it’s not very good. After you recover from that initial shock, and fight the urge to say mean things about their work just to get even, you learn lesson number three: revision. Anyway, too late for long story short, but it took me about ten years to go from ink on the page to having a publisher say ‘yes’.


Have you always been a fan of the mystery genre?

Yes, ever since I was about fourteen years old when my father gave me The Simple Art of Murder by Raymond Chandler when.


Who are your favorite authors?

My favorite contemporary authors are T. Jefferson Parker, Robert Crais, Michael Connelly, and C. J. Box. Going back in time, they are Raymond Chandler, Ross MacDonald, Ernest Hemmingway, and F. Scott Fitzgerald.


Are you telling your readers a moral, or is this novel strictly entertaining?

I’m not smart enough or moral enough to tell a moral, so this must be for entertainment. However, that doesn’t mean I don’t want the reader to accept the story without contemplation. A theme that showed up on the pages of Yesterday’s Echo on its own was redemption. What was one person willing to sacrifice for it? And what happens if it’s unattainable?



It’s an exciting time when an author sells his/her first novel. Tell us your story.

The kernel of the idea for Yesterday’s Echo started rolling around in my head about twenty years ago. I let it grow without doing anything about it for ten years. Then I took time off in between jobs and wrote the first draft. I revised it and sent it out to agents a couple times before it was ready and went through a slew of rejections. I revised some more, and when it was finally ready I was lucky enough to meet Kimberley Cameron at the California Crime Writers conference two years ago. She read the manuscript, asked me to revise a couple things and then took me on as a client. Six months later she got me together with the fine folks at Oceanview Publishing and now Yesterday’s Echo is hitting the bookstores!


In the review by LibraryJournal the reviewer says; “This celebration of the crime noir novels of old with a modern sensibility...”
If you had to compare Rick Cahill to a protagonist of old, whom would he be the most like?

I didn’t try to pattern Rick after anyone, but after all the Chandler I read when I was young, Rick couldn’t help but have a little of Phillip Marlowe in him. They both have a deep seated distrust of authority. They both try to do the right thing no matter the consequences. They are different in that Phillip is more eloquent than Rick and Rick has more of a temper.


Do you have a group of authors/writers that you critique with?

I’ve been fortunate to be in groups with a lot of great writers over the years. The one that I’ve been in the longest, and am still in, is led by Anthony, Agatha, Shamus, and Macavity Award winner, Carolyn Wheat. Without the feedback from her and others, Yesterday’s Echo would have never made it to publication.


Will you be attending any signing events for fans to meet you in person?

Yes, thanks for asking. I’d love to have the opportunity to meet and talk with readers at the event listed below:

April 20th Los Angeles Times festival of Books, USC Campus

May 4th Launch Party Mysterious Galaxy, San Diego, California

May 7th Mysterious Galaxy, Redondo Beach

May 9thThe Poisoned Pen, Scottsdale, Arizona

May 23rdVroman’s, Pasadena, California

June 1st Book Carnival, Tustin, California

June 15 Book Passage, Corte Madera, California

June 22-23rd California Crime Writers Conference, Pasadena, California

July 21st  Warwick’s, La Jolla, California

Sept 19-22 Bouchercon Mystery Conference, Albany, New York


Matt thanks so much for chatting today, good luck with your debut and in the future as well.

Thanks for having me. I enjoyed it!