Hi, I’m Rob Sinclair, author of Dance with the Enemy, the first book in the Enemy series featuring embattled intelligence agent Carl Logan.
I’m a husband and proud Dad to two young boys (who drive me mad 90% of the time but who I love to bits!)
I started writing about five years ago. It wasn’t something I had always looked to do. It really came about quite randomly. I had made an offhand comment to my wife on holiday in Spain that I betted I could write a thriller. I think it was largely borne out of frustration with some of the books I had been reading that just seemed so formulaic and uninspiring. I don’t think either of us took my comment too seriously at the time but when we got home I started drafting out some ideas for specific scenes and somehow or other the stories just seemed to flow!
I’ve found that I love writing, though, and now I can’t stop. It’s a great release when you get an exciting scene out onto the page and an even better feeling when you weave together the plot lines and end up with a finished story. I tackle books very much like a project, managing my time, setting targets, mapping out the structure of characters and chapters. The writing process itself can be tiresome and frustrating, particularly on the days (which are many) when you just don’t seem to have any ideas. But it’s such a rewarding feeling when everything finally falls into place which I’ve found it eventually does when I stick at it!
When I was writing Dance with the Enemy I never realised how hard it would be to get published. And before it was published I had no idea how hard it would be to actually get people to notice it!
Publishing was a long journey for me. When I finished my first draft of Dance with the Enemy I was just so excited to have done it, it was a great achievement. But looking back that book wasn’t really publishable. It wasn’t anywhere near as good as it’s become. I didn’t know that at the time and I touted my book to agents over a prolonged period.
To start with I got blanket rejections. And every author gets rejections. It’s a really horrible, demoralising thing to happen but it’s something you have to get used to. You have to develop a really thick hide to be a writer I’ve found. But as I was getting the rejections I made some changes to the book and sent it out again. I went round this cycle a few times, making incremental changes to the story, and slowly the rejections I was getting were more personal and I was getting at first a little and then more and more feedback too. It culminated in one agent taking an interest in my work. For whatever reason they didn’t take it on in end but did give me some really positive feedback and also some pointers for the story.
That was the wake-up call for me really. I realised at that time that this could just go on forever. How many more times was I going to edit and re-send the story? At least a couple of years had passed by at this point.
I was determined not to give up, though, so took the decision at that point to self-publish. I invested in an editor, which was something I probably should have done much earlier in the process. She helped me to really develop and polish the story and a few months later I was finally happy with it and the rest is history!
The key thing for me is that readers are enjoying my work. I’ve had some great feedback. If no-one was buying my book and people were telling me it was rubbish then I would stop. But that’s not the case. In fact on a daily basis I get people telling me to hurry up with the next in the series so that gives me the impetus to carry on. There really is nothing better than getting good feedback from readers!
Me and my wife are settled in Sutton Coldfield in the West Midlands with our two young boys. It’s a great location; close to a big city (Birmingham) but also a great, relaxed area for families with plenty of parks and things to do nearby. It’s a very comfortable, friendly place to live.
In my double life, I still work as a forensic accountant, investigating allegations of fraud and corruption. I’ve worked for the same accounting firm for the last 12 years. I’ve been to some really exciting places and I’ve worked on some jaw dropping cases where you wouldn’t believe the things that have happened – auditors being sued for billions of dollars, directors embezzling millions to fuel gambling habits, rumours of hundreds of millions of dollars being embezzled, armed stand offs between business rivals and the involvement of corrupt intelligence agencies.
You can imagine I probably have a bank load of stories that would go down well onto paper or would provide inspiration for a good plot for one of my thrillers! I have, however, tried to shy away from that so far – at the end of the day, as interesting as it can be, it’s still work to me! Writing, on the other hand, is a release from the real world, much like reading is.
Although, that said, one of the scenes in the third Carl Logan book was inspired by something that really happened, but I’ll not say any more than that!
My books Dance with the Enemy is the first of three stories I’ve written about Carl Logan. They’re fast-paced, action-packed stories that will keep readers turning the pages. They’re the type of books that I love to read myself.
The second in the series, Rise of the Enemy will be out over winter 2014, the third one hopefully summer 2015.
In Dance with the Enemy, Logan is assigned to track down and rescue Frank Modena, the Attorney General of the US, who’s kidnapped in Paris in a really brutal armed siege. It’s a book that’s packed with lots of action, twists and turns.
But the story is really about Logan himself, who’s got a dark back story that’s drip fed through the series. He’s been an agent for years, highly trained – a machine. Essentially a trained killer. He’s a loner, someone whose job was his life, who was trained to feel no emotion or pain. But all that came crashing down some months before the start of the story after he was captured and tortured by a sadistic terrorist, Youssef Selim.
So at the start of the book we have Logan, this guy who has all this talent as a black-ops agent, but who’s really just in a bit of a mess, not sure where his life is going anymore, struggling with all these new found emotions.
I think that’s what makes Logan and the Enemy series stand out. The books are more than your typical action thrillers because at the centre is this really mysterious and in some cases dark character who’s effectively got to start his life all over again. And you can be sure I don’t make it easy for him – where would be the fun in that?!
You can find me at: