MysteryPeople Q&A with Tim Dorsey

  • Interview by MysteryPeople Blogger Meike Alana

Tim Dorsey, known for his mischievous characters and their bizarre adventures, comes to BookPeople to speak and sign his latest novel of Floridian high-jinks, Clownfish Blues, on Sunday, March 5th, at 5 PM. Our Meike Alana interviewed Tim via email to give us all some insight into the weird, wonderful world of Dorsey’s novels.

Meike Alana: Your books include a lot of Florida history, but not the textbook kind–you are a master at revealing the weird and wacky side of the state.  How do you manage to unearth so much fascinating material?

Tim Dorsey: It’s simply a matter of wearing out a lot of tire rubber. I get a map and look for all of the most remote roads. It’s a labor of love driving and poking around at these places.

MA: Your novels are hilarious, but they often shed light on more serious issues.  Clownfish Blues describes the seedy underbelly of the state lottery.  What did you want to illustrate about that?

TD: I just remember—from my journalism days—all of the offshoot stories about the lottery and scams and money laundering that nobody really cared about, and I thought it would at least be entertaining.

MA: You have some very faithful readers and your books have taken on a life of their own.  They’ve spawned a new interest in Florida travel and conservation, but also some more unusual traditions. What are some of the craziest stores you’ve heard from your fans?

TD: All the tattoos they get are from my book covers – seriously, they’re posted on my website. And as far as new traditions, we have an annual Serge Swampfest, an all day music party in the Everglades, and a week-long Caribbean Serge tour.

MA: What’s your writing process like?

TD: I block off my calendar for about 4 months and then after extensive driving around and taking photos to prepare, I wake up well rested each mid-morning with the coffee pot ready and I dive into writing.

MA: What’s next for Serge and Coleman?

TD: Serge drags Coleman along for a literary tour of Florida and they get tangled up in a book tour.

You can find copies of Clownfish Blues on our shelves and via Tim Dorsey comes to BookPeople to speak and sign his latest on Sunday, March 5th, at 5 PM. 

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