David Burnsworth became fascinated with the Deep South at a young age. After a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Tennessee and fifteen years in the corporate world, he made the decision to write a novel. Southern Heat is his first mystery. Having lived in Charleston on Sullivan’s Island for five years, the setting was a foregone conclusion. He and his wife along with their dog call South Carolina home.
His latest book is the southern noir/mystery, Southern Heat.
Visit his website at www.davidburnsworthbooks.com.
Would you call yourself a born writer?
First of all, thanks for the opportunity to reach your followers. As for being a born writer, I guess I have some attributes that help. (I’ve also got a truckload that get in the way, but that‘s another story.) I like to develop stories in my head and like to get lost in books. I love listening to people communicate, both in what they say and what’s implied by how they say it. I’m also very interested in motive. I’m not a great linguist and my wife always knows my motive in every situation, but I try to make my characters quicker and wittier than I could ever be in real life.
The book is set in Charleston, South Carolina. I lived there for five years and the place has never left my head. I began with a ten thousand foot overview of my experiences from that time, created some characters that I thought fit the setting, and whittled them all down to what became the book.
What themes do you like to explore in your writing?
Environmental and animal abuse—I’d like to contribute more toward conservation and preservation of our land, and protecting endangered species especially from poaching.
Taking advantage of the unfortunate—I believe that those with should be helping those in need, not abusing them.
The underdog—I love the picture from China of the one man facing off against a tank in the city street. That is who I want my protagonist to aspire to be.
How long did it take you to complete the novel?
It took six years from the first word until a contract. Thanks to the South Carolina Writers Workshop, I learned how to write. Then Killer Nashville helped me get in front of the right people.
Are you disciplined? Describe a typical writing day.
I am not so much disciplined as more of an opportunist writer. I have to work around a day job and spending time with my wife.
What did you find most challenging about writing this book?
Tying up all the loose ends. Every time I added a plot twist or new scene, I created the opportunity to leave some detail hanging.
What do you love most about being an author?
The vain side of me says seeing my name on the front cover of a book. The better side of me says hearing that people enjoy reading what I wrote.
Did you go with a traditional publisher, small press, or did you self publish? What was the process like and are you happy with your decision?
My publisher is Five Star, which is a small imprint with Thorndike / Cengage. I am very happy with them. They’ve been great to work with throughout this process, which was entirely new to me.
Where can we find you on the web?