I don't necessarily love the sports per se I love the stories behind them. Also in a kind of perverse way I like to study what it does to us why we care so much. It's caring about something that's utterly meaningless.
The state of New Jersey is really two places - terrible cities and wonderful suburbs. I live in the suburbs the final battleground of the American dream where people get married and have kids and try to scratch out a happy life for themselves. It's very romantic in that way but a bit naive. I like to play with that in my work.
I am very lucky that I get to tell stories for a living. I love being able to grab people's attention to keep them turning the pages to make them stay awake all night. I want to stir the pulse yes but also to stir the heart. I hope 'The Woods' does that.
I always say three things make a writer: inspiration obviously perspiration doing the work. But the third is desperation. I'm not really fit for anything else or to have a real job. That fear drives me. The pressure has always been self inflicted.
Being a parent is not for the faint of heart. I may joke about knowing fear but the fact is the first time I ever knew real fear was the day Charlotte my first child was born. Suddenly there is someone in the world you care about more than anything.
If I'm not writing well I'm not happy. If I'm not spending enough time with my family I'm not happy. If I'm not connecting to friends or if I don't work out enough... You get the point. Everything has to be balanced. Nothing should be an extreme.
What I want to do is tell stories about normal people in the American suburbs. I don't write the book where it's a conspiracy reaching the prime minister I don't write the book with the big serial killer who lops off heads. My setting is a very placid pool of suburbia family life. And within that I can make pretty big splashes.
No characters in 'Stay Close ' including the leads are black and white. I want them to be grey. I think that makes for a much more interesting reading experience something that will stay with you a little bit longer.