Writing in Shorts-Neil Plakcy


This is the seventh of fourteen interviews to celebrate Happy Homicides 6: Cooking Up Crime

I’ve know Neil for at least a decade. We first met via SleuthFest. At the time, he was the chair/organizer. Ten years later and I’ve just learned the mnemonic for his name. Plakcy rhymes with taxi. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve messed up his name. Forgive me Neil. I hate to blunder someone’s name as I’ve had both my first and last names messed up more times than I can count. Rachel, Rockel, Welch, Reeze, Rays, and so many other combinations. FTR- Reyes is pronounced ray-iz.

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Neil Plakcy has written or edited over three dozen novels and short stories in mystery, romance and erotica.To research his Angus Green FBI thrillers, he participated in the FBI’s sixteen-week citizen’s academy, practiced at a shooting range, and visited numerous gay bars in Fort Lauderdale. “Seriously, it was research.”, he says. Neil knows how to pick some fun research – Bars in South Florida, Surfing in Hawaii, and Golden Retrievers.

When and why did you begin writing “in shorts”? Is it harder or easier than full-length novels?

I began writing short stories when I was a teenager—but didn’t have my first one published until I was at least a decade older. Interestingly enough, it was a short piece of erotica called “The Cop Who Caught Me” and I’ve been writing about cops and sex ever since!

What is your favorite short story anthology beside the Happy Homicide series?

I’m quite partial to the city noir series published by Akashic Books. I’ve read a number of them – including, of course, Miami Noir.

I love the noir series, too.

As an author, what has been your most embarrassing moment, typo, or gaffe?

I attended the Left Coast Crime fan conference in Kona, Hawaii, back in 2009, and at the banquet on the last afternoon I was fortunate to win their Lefty Award for best police procedural for Mahu Surfer, my second mystery. I was so excited I ran off to call people and then make social media posts—completely forgetting I had an author discussion to do! Fortunately the sun had come out after a few days of rain and everyone was outside enjoying it so no one noticed.

What is your favorite vacation spot to be in shorts? (I want you to say Miami, but no pressure. wink)

Well, since I’ve been living in the Miami area for over thirty years, I’m going to say Sanibel—totally relaxing, and fun for shell-gathering.

Since this edition of Happy Homicides is food themed, I have to ask—What is your favorite comfort food?

Mine is macaroni with butter and some grated cheese sprinkled on top. What I used to eat as a kid for lunch when I was home sick from school—and it’s still very comforting!

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I still have six interviews to go. So, check back weekly.   

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