Interview with M.D. Davies, author of Undertow of Loyalty

05 Dec 2017

What can you tell us about your new release, Undertow of Loyalty?

Well, there’s a murder with a lot of confusion about who’s been murdered. About a third of the way through the story the murderer is revealed. At that point the story is about how the main character deals with the knowledge of who the murderer turns out to be and the suspense is build by the suspicions of the police and whether or not they can find enough evidence to prove guilt.

There are plot twists related to corporate espionage, police investigations, and mental stability.

I had fun writing the novel because I used the city where I grew up, Calgary, as the setting. It turned out to be a long visit home as I wrote.

What’s the last book you read?

I just finished reading a book titled, A Quiet Place by Seicho Matsumoto. It’s an odd investigation story that doesn’t have a detective. It’s translated from Japanese and the translation is very passive so it was a bit of a disappointment from the standpoint of the author trying to interact with the reader.

Who is your favorite fictional character from literature?

Lisebeth Salander in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series. She’s a bit perfect in her skills at investigation but so vulnerable in her personal thoughts and life. A very creative problem solver. You feel confident in her ability to accomplish what she’s set out to do yet you worry for her, always thinking, has she met her match? I always ask myself if I care about the characters I’m reading, and with Lisebeth there was no doubt about how much I wanted her to prevail.

You’re hosting a literary dinner party. Which three writers are invited?

Ayn Rand, John Irving and Ken Kesey. I think that group would have everyone at the table flying over a cuckoo’s nest. I’ve read all their works. Unfortunately, there’s no more coming from Rand and Kesey but I do look forward to Irving’s new releases.

Atlas Shrugged from Rand, Sometimes a Great Notion from Kesey and Son of the Circus from Irving are always on my list of recommendations.

How do you like to spend a rainy day?

I live in Arizona now so it doesn’t happen often. When it does I do appreciate the change in weather. I like to keep it quiet. I like to observe the rain a few times during the day, and if I could choose I would hope it was on a weekend and maybe some sport that I don’t normally follow would be the only thing on television. For that odd day I would watch that odd sport and experience it as a new revelation in entertainment. Something like NASCAR or Hurley that for some reason caught my attention on a strange day.

What scene in Undertow of Loyalty was your favorite to write?

There’s a scene in which a truck ambushes my main character, deliberately crashes into his car pinning him and his wife inside. The driver of the truck gets out with the intent to do more harm. The couple struggle to get out of the car, there could be no fast exit. The fun of writing the scene was building the impediments preventing the escape but also impediments to slow down the attacking driver giving my characters inside the car a chance.

I’d set up the distraction which took my characters attention off of his driving, allowing the the truck to make it’s attack unseen, earlier in the story. Using the distraction to make the scene possible made it even more fun.

Do you have a motto, quote or philosophy you live by?

I think overall my motto would be, always be useful to yourself. Keep working to make your life better, keep learning, keep going. I don’t want to think about what happens when all of that stops.

M.D. Davies is the author of the new book Undertow of Loyalty

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