Today I am delighted to have Steph Broadribb, author of Deep Down Dead, kick starting (in true Bounty Hunter style) my new 5WH interview blog.

A quick background check reveals that Steph (aka Crime Thriller Girl) leads a double life:


By day I’m a corporate suit, but by night (and early morning) I’m a writer, avid reader, and book reviewer of all things crime thriller.

My debut novel – DEEP DOWN DEAD – will be published by Orenda Books in early 2017. And I’m repped by Oli Munson at AM Heath.

I was born in Birmingham and grew up in Buckinghamshire. Most of my working life has been spent between the UK and USA. I’m an alumni of the MA in Creative Writing (Crime Fiction) at City University London, and trained as a bounty hunter in California. Currently, I live in Buckinghamshire surrounded by horses, cows and chickens.

So, with the interview tape running and the formalities dispensed with, let’s get on with the 5WH interview:


Who would you entrust to complete your next novel for you if you were unable to do so (alive or dead, famous or not)?

I’m not sure I’d want anyone to complete it if I’m honest. Not because I think someone else couldn’t, there are many writers who’d do a great job, but more because I think it’s hard for someone else to write ‘in the style of’ another writer. I’m a huge fan of thriller writer Michael Crichton who died in 2008.

His last novel – MICRO – was only about a third written when he died, and so the manuscript was finished and edited by novelist Richard Preston. I can remember reading the book and, although it’s very much like a Michael Crichton book, it didn’t quite work for me. It was kind of like reading ‘Michael Crichton light’ – the diet version of the real thing.


What is the most surprising thing you learned about yourself when you wrote your first novel ?

I think the most surprising thing I learnt was that I could actually write a novel! I’m dyslexic, and although I’ve always been a massive reader, spelling, grammar and sequencing have always been a big challenge – so writing a book of my own seemed like a massive long shot. But, as I’ve got older (and my laptop has spellchecker!) I’ve grown more confident with my writing. I’m also of the view that if you want to do something then you should go for it. I love books and I love crime thrillers so I decided to go for it and see what happened – Deep Down Dead was the result!


When did you first experience writer’s block and how did you deal with it?

I’m not sure I’ve ever had writer’s block as such. I’ve had days where I’ve sat and stared at the screen for an hour before writing anything, and days when the words have come quicker than others, but I’m lucky that I’ve not felt totally blocked. As I juggle a full-time day job with writing and blogging I have to be very disciplined about my writing time or I’d never get anything done. I write first thing in the morning before work – from around 5.30 am until 7.30am – and I try to make every minute count.


Why do you think crime fiction is so popular as a genre?

Maybe because there’s a puzzle at the heart of it? I love books where I can try and piece together the clues along with the protagonists – it’s the intrigue and mystery that keeps me reading.


Where is the most unusual place you have found inspiration for your novels/characters?

I guess that depends on your definition of unusual, but I find I get inspiration from loads of places. I got inspiration from the wild beauty of rural West Virginia for some of the early scenes in Deep Down Dead, and from the glittery, super happy environment of Florida theme parks for the later scenes. Researching my novel took me from climbing up a mountain in West Virginia at dawn, to bounty hunter training in California, and kayaking with Gators in the Everglades. Along the way I met some fascinating people, many of whom were generous in sharing their stories with me. I also have a very overactive imagination – so where ever I am and whatever I’m doing I’m always thinking ‘what if this happened?’ and ‘what if that happened?’


How you did celebrate your first novel being accepted?

I was on a train when Orenda Books offered me a book deal and have to admit that I squealed out loud, much to the amusement of my fellow train passengers! That night I was attending a book launch in London and I had a few drinks with my writing friends.
It all felt rather surreal though, and I think it took several weeks for it to sink in. In fact it’s only really now, having held a physical copy of Deep Down Dead in my hands, that it all seems real!




Thanks, Steph – great interview!
I’m exhausted just reading about those 5.30am starts, though!




Deep Down Dead – out in Paperback 5 Jan 2017 has now officially been added to my TBR pile. Here’s the blurb:
Lori Anderson is as tough as they come, managing to keep her career as a fearless Florida bounty hunter separate from her role as single mother to nine-year-old Dakota, who suffers from leukaemia. But when the hospital bills start to rack up, she has no choice but to take her daughter along on a job that will make her a fast buck. And that’s when things start to go wrong.
The fugitive she’s assigned to haul back to court is none other than JT, Lori’s former mentor – the man who taught her everything she knows … the man who also knows the secrets of her murky past. Not only is JT fighting a child exploitation racket operating out of one of Florida’s biggest theme parks, Winter Wonderland, a place where ‘bad things never happen’, but he’s also mixed up with the powerful Miami Mob. With two fearsome foes on their tails, just three days to get JT back to Florida, and her daughter to protect, Lori has her work cut out for her. When they’re ambushed at a gas station, the stakes go from high to stratospheric, and things become personal.
If you want to find out even more about Steph, you can find her on her Website or Twitter



Next month Hull author  Nick Quantrill has volunteered to join me in the 5WH Interview Room. I can’t wait!

If you’re an author or blogger and fancy joining me for your own 5WH, get in touch

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