Interview with P.G. Kassel, Author of Siphon

25 Oct 2023

What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write Siphon?

I grew up in Pasadena, California, and lived there for most of my life. Pasadena is well known for its annual New Year’s Day Rose Bowl game and the Rose Parade. As a resident, I’ve attended the Rose Parade many times. One year, the Tournament of Roses Association enlisted me to shoot a documentary about the activity on the parade route from sundown New Year’s Eve to the starting time of the Rose Parade the next morning. It’s hard to imagine the craziness of hundreds of thousands of people partying all night long along the parade route unless you’ve been there. The night I shot the documentary, the writer in me thought it would be cool to write a story with a climactic chase scene that takes place through all that madness. That idea became the basis for the “Siphon” story and Cayden March.

If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of Siphon, what would they be?

Theme songs? Well, maybe “Living On A Prayer” by Bon Jovi for Cayden March, but a version not emphasizing the romance. For Kate James, since she loves fashion styles from the 1960s, let’s go with “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair).” Wow, both of those songs really date me.

What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?

Well, I really enjoy thrillers along the lines of James Patterson, Lee Child, and David Baldacci. And I really enjoy supernatural thrillers as well. And I enjoy writing thrillers, but at heart. I’m just a storyteller. If I come up with an idea for a good story, I’ll want to write it. The genre becomes unimportant to me. The two novels in my Stoker’s Dark Secret series and “Siphon” are all thrillers. But when I was writing screenplays for Hollywood, besides thrillers, my stories included young adult comedy adventure, romance, World War II adventure, and straight-out comedy. I don’t like to limit myself, so I’m sure you’ll see some books coming from me in the future that aren’t thrillers.

What books are on your TBR pile right now?

I have several Jack Reacher books on my list. And several of Mark Dawson’s John Milton books I need to get to. I have to admit; I haven’t been doing as much reading as I’d like because I’ve been so busy writing “Siphon.”

What scene in your book was your favorite to write?

Any of the scenes featuring my lovely psychopath, Cyn, were great fun to write. I think writing villains is always a blast. You know, thinking up outrageous ways to make them truly fascinating but horrible characters.

Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)

Nope. I just try to be disciplined enough to write five or six days a week.

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

I really love Dorothy Parker’s, “If you have any young friends who aspire to become writers, the second greatest favor you can do them is to present them with copies of ‘The Elements of Style.’ The first greatest, of course, is to shoot them now, while they’re happy.”

If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?

I just hope my readers will come away feeling satisfied and entertained. And I hope they like my writing style.


P.G. Kassel is the author of the new book Siphon

Connect with P.G. Kassel

Author Site


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