Ken Malovos has been practicing law in Sacramento for more than forty years. He spent twelve years with the Public Defender’s Office and twenty-five years as a business litigator. He now serves full-time as a mediator and arbitrator. Fatal Reunion is his second novel. His first novel, Contempt of Court, won first prize in the legal genre of the Mystery & Mayhem Book Writing Competition sponsored by Chanticleer Book Reviews. He and his wife, Michele, live in Sacramento.
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About the Book:
Jason Robinson attends his 20th high school reunion where he connects with his old girlfriend. The next day she is dead and he is charged with her murder. He asks attorney Mike Zorich to represent
Meanwhile, Mike is trying to cope with his own problem with alcohol. After his friends confront him, he enters rehabilitation and then begins his own investigation into what really happened at the reunion, exposing dirty secrets that leave families and lives ruined with their disclosure.
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Before you started writing your book, what kind of research did you do to prepare yourself?
In general, I read a lot. I love fiction and I love the legal mystery genre. As for the writing process, Anne Lamott’s book, Bird by Bird, was one of my main sources of help. But, I have probably read another 25 books on writing. I have taken online courses and attended writing seminars.
Specifically, I got the idea for Fatal Reunion from an article in the newspaper about a woman who wanted her lover to divorce his wife and marry her. But the man was reluctant to do that. Pretty familiar set of events. Without giving away my story, I wanted to explore the motivation for people who do horrible things in that kind of situation.
I researched physical locations for my story and found out about rehabilitation facilities for a part that deals with my protagonist, Michael Zorich. He faces his own demons in the middle of trying to figure out the main mystery of this story.
Did you pursue publishers or did you opt to self-pub?
I did pursue publishers but was unsuccessful, so I decided to self-publish through CreateSpace, a publishing arm of Amazon.com. I found the process to be very satisfying and relatively easy.
If self-published, did you hire someone to format the ebook version for you or did you do it yourself? Can you tell us what that was like?
I simply had CreateSpace do the ebook version on Kindle.com for me. It was simply and painless and did not cost much.
If self-published, how did you determine the price?
I looked at other similar books. I have to say that I have thought of all the hours I put into writing this book and had an instant aversion to pricing it low. However, I have learned that maybe a lower price will mean increased sales and that is more important in the long run, even if there isn’t much revenue.
Did you purposefully choose a distinct month to release your book? Why?
No particular month. I just did it when I was finished with the manuscript.
How did you choose your cover?
I gave instructions to CreateSpace and they came up the idea. For both of my books, I was very happy with the covers.
Did you write your book, then revise or revise as you went?
I revised as I went along. Sometimes, I would make a change at chapter 22 and then have to go back and change something in an earlier chapter. It got maddening after a while. I have revised and edited so much on both of my books. I never want the book to end, as I think of something else I can make better.
Did you come up with special swag for your book and how are you using it to help get the word out about your book?
No. Nothing yet, but I am looking into this.
What’s your opinion on giving your book away to sell other copies of your book?
That is not a problem for me. If someone is willing to read my book and give me a review or give me some comments, I am most happy to give away a copy.
What are three of the most important things you believe an author should do before their book is released?
Proof read like crazy. It is amazing how many errors can creep into a final version. Get some professional reviews so that you have something to help sell your book, when it is released or publicized. Get prepared to do the work you will need to do to properly market your book, such as writing answers to questions people are likely to ask and researching venues for marketing your book.
What are three of the most important things you believe an author should do after their book is released?
Try to obtain invitations to book clubs. Talk up your book with friends and family and ask them to pass their thoughts along. Put out the word on social media. I can do better in this regard, but I am not that socially connected.
What kind of pre-promotion did you do before the book came out?
I have not done this kind of thing, which makes me think I should.
Do you have a long term plan with your book?
Not really. I would like to get it read by a lot of people and hope that it will lead to another one.
What would you like to say to your readers and fans about your book?
Thank you for reading my book and I sincerely hope that you liked the story. If you have any ideas how I can be a better writer, I am happy to listen. If you did like the story, please tell others.