I had the honor of interviewing author Paul Hollis, check out Hollow Man-
Me: So my first question is, for those not familiar with you, tell us some about you
PH: grew up during a time when the notion of a shrinking world was still in its infancy. People lived and rarely venturing far beyond the self-imposed borders of those lives. But as a kid, I tumbled right off the edge of the yard reaching for greener grass. Having lived in twelve states and eventually working in all fifty, I fell in love early with seeing the world on someone else’s money. Since then, I have lived abroad nine years while working in forty-eight countries, spanning five continents. These experiences helped inspire the novels in The Hollow Man series. From traveling through Europe as a young man, to flying three million miles which took me nowhere near home, to teaching companies worldwide about coming global implications, as a world tourist I bring my own unique viewpoint to my mesmerizing thrillers.
I haves a dual BA in English Literature and Psychology from the University of Illinois. In addition to having worked for IBM and others in worldwide physical and video security, I am an active member of International Thriller Writers and the St. Louis Writers Guild, as well as an international conference speaker.
Me: So you’re a lifelong traveler?, and that’s inspired your writing?
PH: Correct. I traveled almost nonstop for 30 years. I’m retired now but have a treasure trove of stories to last a lifetime.
The three books in this series are based on my true experiences in Europe during the 1970s.
Me: Where have your favorite places been?, and which continent haven’t you been to?
PH: I’ve had an opportunity to see many of the most wonderful places on earth. If I had to move now, two immediate choices come to mind. I’ve always felt comfortable in the English countryside with its rolling hills, friendly small towns, and of course, it’s history. My other option is the southern coast of France, with the growing Alps behind, the Côte d’Azur offers a shoreline to suit all wants. Everyone finds what he needs on the Riviera, whether it’s strolling on a stony beach or soaking up gentle sun rays, dining with locals or simply people-watching from the comfort of an outdoor café, shopping with supermodels or partying with rock stars.
I’ve been to North and South America, Europe, Africa and Asia. Oddly enough, I’ve never been to Australia, or (and not so oddly enough) Antarctica.
Me: Awesome!, why never Australia though?
PH: The opportunity never came up. I was as close as Singapore and Kuala Lampur, but never made it there. Both Australia and New Zealand are on my bucket list.
Me: Oh nice!, what else is on your bucket list?
PH: There’s not a whole lot on the bucket list. Maybe get back to the UK to see some friends and finish 3-4 more books.
Me: Awesome!, talking about books, you wrote a series, tell us about that
PH: The Hollow Man is based on true events during the early 1970’s, and traces some of my experiences as a young man traveling in Europe. At the time, terrorism was on the rise and I had been assigned to learn as much as I could about it. Most early acts of terror were specific, personal and damage was focused on a distinct, definable enemy. But terrorism was beginning to change its strategy to the familiar, senseless chaos we recognize today. The death of political figures no longer seemed to bother us as much as these new, random attacks against our children. Targets of innocence became preferable because they hit closer to our hearts and the fear inside us grew larger with each incident.
The Hollow Man is the first in a three-part series dealing with the growth of terrorism. The second in the series, London Bridge is Falling Down, centers around IRA and UVF activities during ‘The Troubles’ and is due out by year end. Surviving Prague is the third installment.
To be clear, I have the first book in the series published (it’s an Amazon best seller and has won several awards), the second book is with the editors, and the third book is still in my head.
Me: So you mentioned “terrorism was on the rise and I had been assigned to learn as much as I could about it”, did you used to be a journalist?, what other big subjects have you covered?
PH: The short story is: I was an unofficial, off-the-books, analyst for the government, assigned to collect emerging trends in terrorism, then it sort of expanded from there.
Me: I see, and the second “centers around IRA and UVF activities during ‘The Troubles”, how closely do they tie together?
PH: The second and third books are sequels, both event and character wise. Many of the characters have continuing roles and chronologically the events follow one another. The third will be set in Eastern Europe.
Me: Awesome!, so alot of books get turned into movies, is there any chance of the hollow man ever being a movie?
PH: My agent is working on movie possibilities, because the book is so visual, it lends itself well to that medium. Many reviewers have also mentioned it belongs on the big screen, so, we’ll see.
Me: We definitely look forward to seeing what happens!, what else can we expect from you in the future?
PH: I’m staying pretty busy these days with the relaunch of The Hollow Man (marketing, book tours, book signings, etc) with my new publisher and rewrites of London Bridge is Falling Down. My goal is to have London Bridge published by late autumn. Longer term goals are to outline the third book in the series, Surviving Prague, and begin writing before year end.
Me: Awesome!, is there anything else about you that would be of interest to fans?
PH: I can’t think of anything at the moment. I’m a pretty boring guy generally. I spend my time writing, playing a little guitar, and supporting my son who is a national level gymnast.
Me: Ever played in a band or solo anywhere?
PH: Every once in a while, but mostly after 10 years, I still consider myself a student of the instrument. Favorite genres are old time rock & roll and blues.