Q: Tell us a little about your new novel, The Platinum Loop. Is this a sequel to your last book, Crimson Orgy, or is that not accurate?

A: It’s partially accurate. I don’t like to call it a sequel, because I’ve always thought of Crimson Orgy as a stand-alone novel. Having said that, one of the main characters from that book is also a prominent player in The Platinum Loop. I’d say it’s more of a companion piece than a sequel.

Q: OK. Any more details?

A: Gene Hoffman is a low-budget film producer who decided to make a horror movie in 1965 called “Crimson Orgy” and was lucky to walk away from that experience alive. Not everyone involved with the project was so fortunate, and the whole sordid tale is laid out in my first novel of the same title. The Platinum Loop catches up with Gene eight years later, and finds him getting sucked into another ill-fated scheme with violent consequences based in the shady world of illicit cinema.

Q: Did you plan to bring Gene back for another go-round when writing the first book?

A: Not at all. I wrote Crimson Orgy on a lark while living in New Orleans for a period in the spring of 2004. I didn’t know if it would ever get published, much less inspire a follow-up story. In fact, it wasn’t until I was fairly well into the development of The Platinum Loop that I realized Gene needed to play a major role in the narrative.

Q: So what does the title refer to? Sounds like it could be anything from a necklace to a freeway intersection.

A: Well, to quote Humphrey Bogart from a certain classic film noir, “The Platinum Loop” is the stuff that dreams are made of. It’s a legendary piece of celluloid few people have ever seen, and it’s an item of huge monetary value. It’s also the cause of a great deal of trouble for Gene Hoffman and numerous others. You’ll have to read the book to find out more.

Q: So is this the last we’ll be seeing of Gene Hoffman, or might he resurface again?

A: I don’t have a definite answer to that, but my gut feeling is he’ll be back for one more adventure. I have this vague image in my mind of a leather-bound set of three books with “The Hoffman Trilogy” printed in gold leaf down the spine. But that could just be a hallucination with no basis in reality. Time will tell.

Q: Any chance he’ll be in your next book?

A: No. My next book is a stand-alone thriller called Harpoon City that will be published by Upaya House in the summer of 2012.

Q: Rumor has it a movie version of Crimson Orgy is in the works. Can you comment on that?

A: Yes. The film rights were purchased by Scott Kosar, the screenwriter who conceived The Machinist, an amazing movie that's probably best known for how much weight Christian Bale lost to play the lead role. Scott also wrote the remakes of powerhouse horror movies like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Amityville Horror, and The Crazies. For someone who’s achieved such success in film, he has an incredibly strong literary sensibility, and is a big fan of Crimson Orgy. Originally Scott was going to adapt the screenplay himself, but now he’s producing the film and I’m handling the adaptation. I’ll have more to say about the project as we move it further along through development.

Q: So which is harder, writing a novel or adapting it as a screenplay?

A: They both have challenges, and they’re totally different ways of telling a story. I enjoy the variety of working in both formats.