In the summer of 1889, the ‘Jack the Ripper’ mystery was solved, and until now, the true story was never revealed.
Ghastly Jack the Ripper murders of five mutilated women in the Whitechapel district of London in 1888 ended without an arrest—though suspects were plentiful.
Two young Scotland Yard detectives, armed with only a hunch, voyage across the Atlantic to New York City to assist in investigating a string of similar murders.
Did Jack slip away to America—and is now applying his macabre trade as The Manhattan Ripper?
This is my seventh novel. Fatal Incision and other novels received praise from a number of bestselling authors and others in the business. I’ll name a few.
James Rollins wrote: “A nonstop rollercoaster…part Cussler…part Clancy…all Park.”
Jon Land wrote: “Park brought back memories of Robert Ludlum at his best.”
Robert S. Levinson wrote: “A delicious stew of storytelling from WR.PARK in his devilishly conceived thriller.”
W. Crain Reed wrote: “His latest thriller created a chilling and suspenseful plot that compels you to keep turning pages.”
R. Barri Flowers wrote: “A captivating historical thriller that is sure to win Park fans on both side of the Atlantic.”
Additional words of praise are plentiful like: “It’s ten times more exciting than The Jackal.”—Midwest Book Review
And—“It’s the best thriller I’ve read this year.” Professional reviewer, Pat Foltz
My guest today is W.R. Park, author of Fatal Incision. Welcome, Bill (or WR). I read your book and want to congratulate you on a great Ripper read. When did you first become fascinated with Jack the Ripper?
A: My first recollection of ‘Jack’ was when I was a teenager at the movies. Since then it’s popped up on TV, film, and novels. It wasn’t so much a fascination as it was a challenge. What wasn’t told in the original tale—and what would have happened if some elements of the story were changed? Thus what’s being called the most ingenious Jack the Ripper rendition in 121 years.
What books came along at just the right time to influence your reading/writing?
A: I had spent 42 years as an advertising executive writing for print, radio and television—so when I retired I had to reinvent myself. Writing was the natural way to go. My list of favorite authors is a mile long. I gravitate to suspense-thrillers, mysteries, and adventure novels—therefore those are the types of novels I write.
What are your overall writing goals?
A: I’ve given up on writing the next great American novel. Recently, my New York literary agent mutually agreed on the best of terms to part company—so I’m searching for a new agent. All my books were produced by small independent publishers and I’m looking forward to having a major publishing house to publish my next book and re-publish those that have won praise from well-known bestselling authors.
What was the most rewarding experience during the writing process?
A: I guess that comes as a result of writing. Besides the satisfaction of reading what top authors in the business think about my work—having people come up to at book signings to tell me how much they enjoyed my novels and then ask when the next one will be released.
Tell us more about Fatal Incision. Is it available in print and e-book formats?
A: Not to give away the ending—what readers tell me is that they never saw the ending coming because of so many twists and turns. The end wasn’t what people were expecting. They were surprised. And that’s what I was shooting for.
All my books are in print. The last two are on Kindle as well. No e-book as yet.
How do you develop characters? Settings?
A: I had no choice. Jack the Ripper murders took place in London—and then in New York City. I did a ton of research to place the story in the right locations as they existed in 1888-1889.
One thing that most all writers will tell you—is that the characters write the story themselves. I’ll explain that later. But, I attempt to first develop a background for my heroes and villains. With their background in mind, I try to place myself into each character to see how I’d react in any given situation if I were them.
What are your protagonist’s strength? Flaws?
A: There strengths and flaws come from their developed background. Matthew came from a privileged background—and Jimmy from the wrong side of the tracks. Somehow the two hit it off and become best of friends. They compliment each other so that strengths and flaws balance out. Together, it makes for a formidable investigative team.
How do you determine voice in your writing?
A: Voice is developed by the circumstances of the story and the characters involved. Both dedicate voice.
Do you have specific techniques you use to develop the plot and stay on track?
A: First, I usually know the beginning and end—then have some idea of the middle. As I said before—the characters tell the story. I may lie in bed at night or early in the morning thinking of where I’ll go with the story when I sit down to write. But more times than not, the character may make a right turn when I had planned he/she would go left. Again, most of the time the character’s move turns out to be far more interesting than my original plan. Often that move turns out to be justified later in the story. I have no answer for why that happens.
How does your environment/upbringing color your writing?
A: My mother was the big reader in the family, not me. But I was blessed with an animated imagination that brought success in the advertising field. Nothing that I can put my finger on colored my writing, with the exception of those books I did read as a youngster were adventure novels. My first three novels (a trilogy) came about as a result of a dream—and the story was in my mind for eighteen years before putting it to pen. In fact, my fourth book was the one that I wanted to write first—but the dream wouldn’t turn me loose.
After hours of intense writing about infamous characters like Jack, how do you unwind?
A: Well a double dirty martini with three marinated queen olives does wonders. One of my characters in five of my novels drinks those—and I must confess, I do on Mondays and Fridays. Actually I don’t feel any stress, but in the morning I look forward to sitting down and find out what’s going to happen next. How will my characters surprise me this time?
Any current projects?
A: My present publisher has the sequel to Fatal Incision: Phantom Hounds. “Were Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson wrong?” I hope to re-publish a number of my earlier novels—including three completed novels and two more that I’m working on. Some times I might work on two or three at a time—going from one to the next in the same day. I do chew gum and walk at the same time—but sometimes I have a problem keeping the characters in the right novel.
Where can folks learn more about your books and events?
A: I invite everyone to my website: www.wrparkbooks.com and read all seven pages. I even talk about my wife’s involvement in my writing and our cat.
Thanks Susan for asking me to participate.
It's been a pleasure.