Daniel Pembrey is a favourite author of mine, who writes interesting, original psychological and political thrillers set around the world, with amazingly authentic settings.
The final part of The Harbour Master trilogy is released today 5 December, read my review of the third book The Harbour Master III: Ransom here.
All three books are released as a collection today.Check out my reviews of all three books in the collection by clicking on the covers.
If you are new to Daniel and his books read on and find out more about this exciting new author.
Did you always want to be a writer? Can you describe your writing journey?
Yes, I wanted to write from a young age and finally found opportunity to do so professionally last year. The key thing for me has been writing what I like to read: thrillers, of novella length, with a charismatic investigator, told in the first person voice.
You write thrillers set in commercial or political arenas. How do you create original stories in such a popular genre?
Curiously, for such a popular genre, there’s a shortage of crime fiction set in Holland (in English translation). That allowed me a little more freedom in creating original story ideas for the Harbour Master series.
Your books always have detailed, realistic settings. How much research is involved? Do you enjoy it?
Thank you! It is a lot of observation and immersion in the relevant locales. For me, that involved living in the docklands area of Amsterdam (my policeman’s beat) for several months. I’m not aware of any shortcuts to this approach (useful though the Internet can be for other purposes!), though I didn’t really mind it since I have a close sister living in Amsterdam. Even visiting the harbour at dawn (a habit of my maverick cop, Henk van der Pol) started to grow on me!
What’s next after The Harbour Master III?
I have a new story idea set in Berlin, and I’m very excited to have received serious interest from a Luxembourg film producer for my other Kindle Single, The Candidate: A Luxembourg Thriller. I’m working on a film treatment for that. It’s early days, but fingers crossed!
Do you have a tried and tested writing process? Can you share it with us?
Writing every morning and good strong coffee! If you learn of a magic formula, please let me know. This is why a lot of journalists make good writers of fiction: they’re used to just getting the words out, no matter where their muse is that day!
Have you written books in any other genres?
I’ve written a horror tale called Simon Sixsmith: A Ghost Story. It was loosely based on The Woman in Black by Susan Hill; Susan kindly read it and gave me a nice review.
Social Media; do you love or hate it? Why?
I like it when I’m engaging with people and there is a rapport (though social media isn’t necessarily required for that). Social media has become a necessity for writers; initially I resisted, but I’ve learned to enjoy it. Please feel free to say Hi on
Your books have been very successful. Apart from a fabulous story, what does a book need to become a bestseller?
Thank you so much for saying that! The thriller genre does lend itself nicely to popular fiction. It’s fast-paced and, when done well, highly satisfying. I’d say you need to create a memorable character, use interesting locations and listen to what your readers feed back – write what they like to read!
Do you enjoy reading when you’re not writing? Do you have favourite authors/books/genres?
Absolutely. I enjoy any good psychological suspense story, or indeed any good character-led drama. One of my all-time favourites is Pride and Prejudice.
Thanks for sharing with us Daniel.
Thank you so much for having me, Jane. None of us would get very far without reader-reviewers like you!