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becke_davis
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Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

[ Edited ]

Please welcome ED KOVACS, whose book, STORM DAMAGE, comes out this Tuesday, December 6, published by St. Martin's Press. 

 

 


Blurb

 

Blurb

 

 

***Publisher’s Weekly likes Storm Damage!:  “Kovacs’s gritty debut, the first in a series set in post-Katrina New Orleans, introduces PI Cliff St. James… Cliff takes plenty of knocks, but proves as resilient as New Orleans in this action-filled crime novel.”

 

“Powerful as a Category Five hurricane, STORM DAMAGE is a riveting journey into murder, politics, and greed. Kovacs writes like a master…” – Gayle Lynds, New York Times bestselling author

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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

[ Edited ]

BIO

 

 

Ed Kovacs has worked for many years as a private security contractor deploying to challenging locations worldwide.  He spent two and half years living in New Orleans beginning in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.  He briefly worked for the Military Department of the State of Louisiana and he co-founded a security company in New Orleans that taught defensive tactics and other techniques.   Ed has studied martial arts, holds many weapons-related licenses, certifications and permits, and is a certified medical First Responder.  He is a member of AFIO, Association for Intelligence Officers.

 

He has worked and traveled all over the world as a journalist, screenwriter, and media consultant.  His well-reviewed thriller novel, UNSEEN FORCES, was published in 2004.  Ed graduated with a B.A. in Mass Communications from Southern Illinois University, having paid his tuition by working in a steel mill, driving a truck, and spinning records as a late-night jazz DJ on local radio.  He is a member of ITW, International Thriller Writers organization, and the Mystery Writers of America

 

Ed’s hobbies include meditation, target shooting, wine tasting, and motorcycling.  He’s an amateur dowser, prospector, archeologist and spelunker, and he collects spiritual objects and WWII aviation memorabilia.  He has studied with shamans, medicine chiefs, and chi gong masters on several continents.

 

He splits his time between his home in Southeast Asia and his aircraft hangar home at a Southern California airport.

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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

[ Edited ]
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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Storm Damage 

Unseen Forces   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ed Kovacs is a private security contractor deploying to challenging locations worldwide, and the author of UNSEEN FORCES (Nov. 2004), STORM DAMAGE (Dec. 2011) and GOOD JUNK (coming soon!).

 

Good Junk

 

 

He spent two and half years living in New Orleans beginning in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.  He briefly worked for the Military Department of the State of Louisiana and he co-founded a security company in New Orleans that taught defensive tactics and other techniques.   Ed has studied martial arts, holds many weapons-related licenses, certifications and permits, and is a certified medical First Responder.  He is a member of AFIO, Association for Intelligence Officers, the International Thriller Writers Association, and the Mystery Writers of America.

 

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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Storm Damage  

 

Storm Damage

 

Overview

 

In the aftermath of a Category 5 hurricane in New Orleans, Private Eye Cliff St. James, a bare-knuckled ex-cop and mixed-martial artist, is stuck with the case of finding a missing person whose disappearance may have ties to Washington.

 

When a Category 5 hurricane devastates New Orleans, the fresh murder of a politically-connected bar owner gets swept under—literally—until in the gritty aftermath of the city’s recovery a bare-knuckled ex-cop and mixed-martial artist attacks the case like a hungry dog chasing a meat truck.  With no forensic evidence, a destroyed crime scene, and no corpse, Cliff St. James uncovers possible CIA involvement and learns that his duplicitous client, as well as each of his other suspects, are guilty of—at the very least—multiple felonies.  It’s New Orleans, after all.  With a contract on his head as Fat Tuesday dawns, Cliff calls in every chit and breaks every rule to solve the murder and end a new wave of murders.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

 

Are all the locations in your books real?

Most are, but not all.  For legal reasons I sometimes have to create a location instead of using an existing one.  I do a tremendous amount of field research; usually, if I’ve written about an establishment or city or country, I’ve been there beforehand.  I inject as much verisimilitude, or authenticity into my writing as possible.  I travel a lot.

Was STORM DAMAGE based on a true story?

No.  The premise of the book was inspired by a real event, but otherwise there is no connection.

Do you still live in New Orleans?

I had to move due to other commitments after living there for two and a half years, but I visit often and have many friends there.  I encourage everyone to take a holiday in and enjoy New Orleans.

How long did it take to write STORM DAMAGE?

STORM DAMAGE is unusual because it took three years to finish it.  I worked 12 hour shifts, six or seven days a week as a private security contractor over that three year period.  I never had a chance to just write full-time.  I started working on the book in 2007, the same year I co-founded a security company that specialized in providing training.  So I was pretty busy.  But if I worked nightshift, I could usually spend a couple of hours each shift writing, while still fulfilling my duties.

Does your first novel, UNSEEN FORCES, feature detective Cliff St. James?

No, the hero is Dr. Sky Wilder, a maverick archeologist and adventurer who has been marginalized by the scientific establishment.  He manages to get into a lot of trouble while working in the field trying to prove his “fringe” theories.  There is plenty of espionage and conspiracy in that book and it’s been called “Indiana Jones on steroids,” although Wilder is a present-day character.  A sequel is in the works.

UNSEEN FORCES features a female psychic spy working for the U.S. Army.  Did the military really use psychic spies?

Yes.  There were a series of super secret military units under different code names.  The program officially ended in 1995.  The whole thing was essentially given birth in 1972 at the Stanford Research Institute with CIA funding.  What’s interesting is that the Russians revealed in January 2005, in Pravda, that President Boris Yelstin had used Russian psychic spies to protect him from American psychic spies.

Your third novel is called GOOD JUNK.  What’s it about?

Cliff St. James returns to stir up a lot of trouble as he investigates a series of murders in New Orleans.  A sexy FBI gal, shifty intelligence agents, shady scrap sellers, fast-talking thieves, Feds on the take, and lots of gun-running.  Sounds like a party to me!

 

Check out Ed's website here: http://www.edkovacs.com/

 

He's also on Facebook.


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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Please welcome ED KOVACS!

 


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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

FYI: Ed is on assignment in Central Asia right now, which is roughly 12 hours ahead of us (depending which time zone you're in).

 

Since he has a pretty rough schedule right now, I've suggested he only check in once or twice a day to respond to questions and comments.

 

Go ahead and ask your questions, and Ed will respond as soon as he can.

 

Thanks!

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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Hi Ed - I'm going to kick this off with a few questions:

 

1) Is STORM DAMAGE based on real events you witnessed while working in New Orleans after Katrina?

 

2) Do you plot your stories out in advance, or do you write "from the seat of your pants?"

 

3) Will you be doing a book tour when you're back in the U.S.? Let us know if you've scheduled any Barnes & Noble book signings.

 

4) It sounds like you already have your next book completed. What are you currently working on?

 

(If you want to include this, or other comments, in your response, click "Reply" in the lower right corner and when the comment box opens, click "Quote" on the upper right.)

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EdKovacs
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Becke,

 

Wow!  Thanks for a fantastic intro and all of your hard work here at the B&N book community.  It's a pretty cool set-up, don't you all think?  You have no idea how much I enjoy reading forum threads, I just wish I had more time to do it.

 

When I was young it was such a thrill to go to a bookstore signing and listen to an author speak.  But that was always a catch-as-catch-can kind of thing.  The digital age is such that we can connect so easily with so many interesting people around the world--like our favorite authors--and get insights we could seldom get before.

 

I actually enjoy:

 

--tweeting on Twitter (@EdKovacs) https://twitter.com/#!/EdKovacs  --sorry, can't seem to get the hyperlink to insert--

 

--posting on Facebook:   https://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=100002233630848                           

 

--blogging on my Web site: www.edkovacs.com

 

--noodling on Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1344624.Ed_Kovacs

 

The trick is not to get too distracted and allow plenty of time to keep writing.  I have two more weeks to go on this six month contract here in Central Asia, in a country-to-be-named-later, and I can't wait to rotate out.  I work 13.5 hour shifts, six days a week.  I'm bushed, but have still managed to write some articles and develop Cliff St. James #3--we'll see if St. Martin's bites!

 

Since I'm 12 hours ahead of Central Time, forgive me in advance if my responses are tardy, but I look forward to shooting the breeze with you all.

 

Cheers!

 

 

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EdKovacs
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Becke,

 

Thank heaven for the Internet, even though it's very slow where I am.  I have a rare "extra" day off today, so I get to do some slow surfing in the virtual world. 

 

Thanks for posting all those questions.  Yes, I have a book tour coming for STORM DAMAGE in January:  Los Angeles, Phoenix, Tucson, St. Louis, Houston, Thousand Oaks (CA) and San Diego.  I think we will add New Orleans to that, probably at the Barnes and Noble in Metairie, LA. I'm calling it the "Double Down Micro Tour."  I'll post the schedule on my Website blog later today.

 

BTW, we must all say our prayers to keep Barnes and Noble and our independant bookstores healthy!  The online world is fantastic, but we need to keep bricks-and-mortar bookstores thriving.  Put me in a nice bookstore and give me a coffee drink, and I'm a happy, free-spending guy. 

 

And I'm hoping to add more B&N locations to my tour, if they will have me.

 

 

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EdKovacs
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Becke,

 

It's December 5, 2011 already over here where I am, so please let me wish HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my mother, Virginia Rose, who is 89 today and living in the St. Louis area with my brother.

 

My birthday gift to her this year was an e-book reader.  She loves it!  My brother and sisters showed her how to use it and she's buring through the books--especially the romances.  And at her age! :smileywink:

 

How cool that she can enlarge the print, thereby making it easy for her to read again.  Wish I'd bought her one earlier, but we can download from B&N and she gets the books, no problem.  I'm happy that worked out.

 

Do you have a lot of NOOK users here!  Personally, I like the trifecta: hardback books, paperback books, and ebooks.  They all have their place in my life.

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EdKovacs
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Becke,

 

Let me take a run at another one of your questions here:

 

1) Is STORM DAMAGE based on real events you witnessed while working in New Orleans after Katrina?

 

 

I witnessed a lot of amazing things, much of it not so pleasant.  The book is inspired by a real murder that took place--the last murder before Katrina hit.  I just used that as a premise--a bar owner found dead as the hurricane bore down on the city--as my jumping off point.

 

Serendipity threw the story in my lap.  I was already aware of the unsolved murder that had been turned over to cold case detectives.  On a rare day off from my job as a security operator, I was walking in the Warehouse Arts District, and found an old brick building I wanted to possibly purchase.  I met the “owner” who turned out to be an NOPD reserve officer and also a bar owner.  His old bar had been destroyed by the hurricane and he was renovating a new bar he had just bought, right next door to the building I wanted to buy.

           

It turned out his new bar was the murder-victim’s old bar.  It also turned out he had known the victim and was one of the original responding officers to the crime scene.  It quickly became clear to me that a heavily fictionalized crime story using the real-life scenario as an inspirational starting point was something I wanted to do.

 

I'd like to emphasize that the name "Katrina" never appears in my novel.  I simply refer to the Storm.  I don't claim my story to be some kind of documentary recreation of that specific tragedy, but rather the portrayal of an outsider's dogged investigation against overwhelming odds in the aftermath of a killer hurricane.  The fact that I lived through such an aftermath adds, I hope, a lot of veracity to the story.

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ReadingPatti
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

EdKovacs, Welcome, hope your visit is enjoyable. I like the titles of your books. I always wonder how authors come up with them.

 

What you like about writing mysteries?

 

What would you do if you did not write?

 

Again welcome.

 

ReadingPatti

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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


EdKovacs wrote:

Becke,

 

Wow!  Thanks for a fantastic intro and all of your hard work here at the B&N book community.  It's a pretty cool set-up, don't you all think?  You have no idea how much I enjoy reading forum threads, I just wish I had more time to do it.

 

When I was young it was such a thrill to go to a bookstore signing and listen to an author speak.  But that was always a catch-as-catch-can kind of thing.  The digital age is such that we can connect so easily with so many interesting people around the world--like our favorite authors--and get insights we could seldom get before.

 

I actually enjoy:

 

--tweeting on Twitter (@EdKovacs) https://twitter.com/#!/EdKovacs  --sorry, can't seem to get the hyperlink to insert--

 

--posting on Facebook:   https://www.facebook.com/#!/profile.php?id=100002233630848                           

 

--blogging on my Web site: www.edkovacs.com

 

--noodling on Goodreads:  http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1344624.Ed_Kovacs

 

The trick is not to get too distracted and allow plenty of time to keep writing.  I have two more weeks to go on this six month contract here in Central Asia, in a country-to-be-named-later, and I can't wait to rotate out.  I work 13.5 hour shifts, six days a week.  I'm bushed, but have still managed to write some articles and develop Cliff St. James #3--we'll see if St. Martin's bites!

 

Since I'm 12 hours ahead of Central Time, forgive me in advance if my responses are tardy, but I look forward to shooting the breeze with you all.

 

Cheers!

 

 


Hi Ed - Thanks for spending time with us even when your schedule is so hectic!

 

It's morning here in Ohio, but I imagine you're winding down at this point. It doesn't sound as if you EVER really unwind, though - when do you sleep??

 

I'm a big fan of the digital age! As a reader, I'm thrilled that authors have become so accessible. When I get to know an author (online or, in some cases, in real life) I become an even bigger fan of their books. 

 

But as a struggling writer, I can sympathize with the common complaint I hear from authors, that there is just not enough time to work day jobs, write to meet constant deadlines AND market their books through social media sites like Facebook, Twitter plus blogs and forums like this one. 

 

I can just imagine how horrified Agatha Christie would be by all this - she was famously shy and not fond of book signings. Writing is such solitary work - authors have to develop a sort of split personality in order to go from the writing cave into the whirlwind of social media.

 

With a schedule like yours, how do you handle all the demands on your time?

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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

*bangs head on desk* I just noticed I wrote STORM WARNING instead of STORM DAMAGE in your introduction. I just correct it - sorry about that!

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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


EdKovacs wrote:

Becke,

 

Thank heaven for the Internet, even though it's very slow where I am.  I have a rare "extra" day off today, so I get to do some slow surfing in the virtual world. 

 

Thanks for posting all those questions.  Yes, I have a book tour coming for STORM DAMAGE in January:  Los Angeles, Phoenix, Tucson, St. Louis, Houston, Thousand Oaks (CA) and San Diego.  I think we will add New Orleans to that, probably at the Barnes and Noble in Metairie, LA. I'm calling it the "Double Down Micro Tour."  I'll post the schedule on my Website blog later today.

 

BTW, we must all say our prayers to keep Barnes and Noble and our independant bookstores healthy!  The online world is fantastic, but we need to keep bricks-and-mortar bookstores thriving.  Put me in a nice bookstore and give me a coffee drink, and I'm a happy, free-spending guy. 

 

And I'm hoping to add more B&N locations to my tour, if they will have me.

 

 


You should definitely at that New Orleans B&N to your schedule - since your book is based there, it's bound to be a big draw! St. Louis looks like your only Midwest stop, which isn't far from where our General Fiction moderator, Debbie Haupt, lives. I'll give her a heads' up!

 

When you get your event schedule set up, let me know and I'll post it here!

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Fricka
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!

Welcome, Ed, to our friendly forum here at Barnes and Noble.

A very happy birthday to your mother today, too!

 

You have a very impressive resume. I note that dowsing is one of your hobbies/interests. As I'm originally from a section of a state that's been fairly dry(Western Kansas) and now live in a desert area(Arizona), the subject of water is of course significant to me. Have you ever been requested to try to locate water sources by any governmental agency? Do you think it's a topic you might someday weave into a mystery novel?

" A murder mystery is the normal recreation of the noble mind."--Sister Carol Anne O' Marie
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becke_davis
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Happy Birthday, Virginia Rose!


EdKovacs wrote:

Becke,

 

It's December 5, 2011 already over here where I am, so please let me wish HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my mother, Virginia Rose, who is 89 today and living in the St. Louis area with my brother.

 

My birthday gift to her this year was an e-book reader.  She loves it!  My brother and sisters showed her how to use it and she's buring through the books--especially the romances.  And at her age! :smileywink:

 

How cool that she can enlarge the print, thereby making it easy for her to read again.  Wish I'd bought her one earlier, but we can download from B&N and she gets the books, no problem.  I'm happy that worked out.

 

Do you have a lot of NOOK users here!  Personally, I like the trifecta: hardback books, paperback books, and ebooks.  They all have their place in my life.



Please pass this on to your mother:

 

 

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becke_davis
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Re: Please Welcome Author ED KOVACS!


EdKovacs wrote:

Becke,

 

It's December 5, 2011 already over here where I am, so please let me wish HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my mother, Virginia Rose, who is 89 today and living in the St. Louis area with my brother.

 

My birthday gift to her this year was an e-book reader.  She loves it!  My brother and sisters showed her how to use it and she's buring through the books--especially the romances.  And at her age! :smileywink:

 

How cool that she can enlarge the print, thereby making it easy for her to read again.  Wish I'd bought her one earlier, but we can download from B&N and she gets the books, no problem.  I'm happy that worked out.

 

Do you have a lot of NOOK users here!  Personally, I like the trifecta: hardback books, paperback books, and ebooks.  They all have their place in my life.


I'm with you - I like the trifecta of ebooks, hardbacks and paperbacks, too.