Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I have a screenwriting background, however, in 2011, wrote my first prose, a short story. That short story was the first ebook I released. (The Unfinished). Since then, I have written two how-to books and have released my first novel, The Abduction of Nelly Don.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
It has been an arduous journey. When I first came across the story of Nell Donnelly back in 2013, I found her kidnapping so compelling that I knew I had to do something with it. At the time, I had no idea if it would become a book or screenplay.
As a reminder, Nell Donnelly was a self-made millionaire in the 1930s, during the Great Depression. She made her fortune by creating everyday dresses that had a bit of pizazz. At the time, the only dresses available for women were boxy, unflattering dresses for cleaning in, and glamorous dresses for a night out. She tapped into an underserved market and struck gold.
Nelly was also ahead of her time as an employer. She hired over 1000 employees, mostly women. She made sure they were paid above-average wages, had paid leave, paid vacations, paid higher education and paid childcare. In fact, when the unions tried to come in and organized in her factory, they were unsuccessful. The employees had nothing to complain about.
Her abduction came just before the Lindbergh Baby kidnapping, and after several other high-profile crimes.
But what really sparked my interest was the involvement of a US Senator who moved heaven and earth to find her; even making deals with organized crime figures.
Kidnappers, gangsters, organized crime, politics, all make for a fascinating story.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Rod Serling; yes, the mastermind behind The Twilight Zone. Derek Haas, screenwriter extraordinaire and creator of Chicago Fire inspired me, through his website, to write a short story; not just screenplays. So glad I did.
What are you working on now?
Marketing the release of The Abduction of Nelly Don. Afterwards, writing a followup to The Unfinished. After that, I have a series planned called, Montgomery Vale.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
My own, of course! Just redid it from the ground up. Check it out at www.PatriceWilliamsMarks.com
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Even if you can’t pay the bills, don’t let your finances dictate whether you write or not. Just write.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Don’t wait for a screenplay to sell; rewrite it as a novel. Then Hollywood will come knocking.
What are you reading now?
Open City; True Story of the Kansas City Crime Family – still doing research on my newly released novel (The Abduction of Nelly Don). Also, Deadly Percheron is a quick-read novel I’m into.
What’s next for you as a writer?
Follow up to The Unfinished, starting new series.
What is your favorite book of all time?
I don’t have one.