From the Booking Desk:
As a reader, I am pre-programmed to always look to step into someone else’s shoes via literature, but there are those inevitable times when I hope to see reflections of myself in the books I am reading as well. Crime fiction has a decent history of including LGBTQ+ stories within its boundaries, but as with any minority there is still room for expansion. Greg Herren’s gay-themed novels are some of my favorites – whether it is a book from one of his two series, a young adult stand-alone, or a well-crafted short story, Greg always gives readers “larger concepts” to ponder after the covers are closed, while never losing sight of the need to tell an exciting story that engages the reader. I am happy to call Greg a friend and am thrilled that he agreed to take part in the Composite Sketch series. If you know Greg, you are probably anxious to see how he tackles our questions; and if you don’t yet know Greg, you will want to after reading his revealing answers.
Name: Greg Herren
Location: New Orleans
This person from my personal life is such an inspiration:
My partner of 23 years, Paul. He is one of the most positive people I’ve ever known; he rarely if ever allows emotions to affect his decision making, and he’s always solution oriented—he doesn’t allow things to throw him off, instead immediately starts trying to figure out a way to make things work and make things better. He focuses on outcomes, which is something I strive to do more regularly.
One of the people I admire most in the crime fiction community is:
Just one? Lord. There are so many people I look up to and admire for so many reasons, but I’m going to go with Wendy Corsi Staub. Ironically, she’d blurbed one of my pseudonymous books years before we met…and I never did remember; she was the one who finally did. I admire her commitment to her work and her incredible work ethic. People call me prolific; but I bow in humility before Wendy Corsi Staub. She’s also one of the most genuinely nice and funny people I’ve ever spent time with; she makes me howl with laughter until I am crying and my sides hurt. Whether it’s outlet mall shopping to escape a conference, far too many drinks in the lounge, or me forgetting we had lunch together, she also makes almost as much fun of me as I make of her…I always look forward to seeing Wendy and seeing how much trouble we can get into.
But I’m also going to shout out to Alison Gaylin, Megan Abbott, Alex Marwood, Laura Lippman, Margery Flax, and Rebecca Chance as well! I could literally be here all day.
STALKER ALERT! If this fictional character were real, they would likely need to get a restraining order against me:
Crow, from Laura Lippman’s Tess Monaghan series. Is he or is he not the absolute perfect man? So perfect, from disposition to looks to attitude, there’s not a thing about Crow that isn’t eminently lovable…to the point I get pissed at Tess for treating him badly. He was so perfect I kept waiting for him to come out during the first books in the series…and he just keeps getting more perfect.
People are always surprised that I am a fan of this individual (singer, actor, or artist):
I don’t think any of my fandoms really surprise anyone, although I suppose it might surprise people to find out I am a huge fan of Michael York’s. He was so beautiful as a young man, and that speaking voice! He’s aged remarkably well, too, but when I rewatch Cabaret and The Three Musketeers he’s so stunningly good looking it almost takes my breath away. I’ve always thought he was underrated as an actor.
My personal catch phrase is (or should be):
Life doesn’t give you anything you can’t handle; it’s how you handle it that matters.