1. What is the most interesting experience you’ve had as a writer?
When I got a very long e-mail from a reader of Loser – Director’s Cut, telling me that the only time she could lay it down was when she had to cry. The other great experience whilst writing ‘Loser’ was when I came to my girlfriend’s place and found her sitting on the sofa, crying after reading some excerpts. Immediately I thanked her for the compliment, then I asked her why she was crying. She said that she never read such a intense description of loneliness. I know this may sound silly, but this was very motivating for me to go ahead.
2. Do you own any pets? If you do, tell us about them!
I have a 13 year old cat (Upke) that has cancer. She seems to be happy, so I don’t consider to bring her to the vet for the final pinprick. Her sister (Dupke) died in my arms 4 years ago. Gosh, I thought I could never be happy again. It’s so intense when you look into those kind
eyes for the very last time. I have a rabbit with long ears that reminds me in one way or the other of a Rastaman. That’s why I call him Bob, referring to Bob Marley. Never told this anybody.
3. Describe your most recent main character. Compare his or her appearance to celebrities or other fictional characters we know.
My most recent character is Andrew (Andy) Williams, the MC of ‘Loser’. As this book is written in semi-autobiographical style, I wrote in the first person and hadn’t any celebrity in mind. It was like giving myself the leading role in a movie.
Another MC in my first book is Jack Acers. It was the first time that I wrote, and it was easier to do so when I imagined the whole story on the big screen, and in my mind I gave every character the looks of a celebrity. In the case of Jack Acers it was Nicolas Cage. Thus, if there
is any Hollywood producer out there who wants to make a movie based on this book, please cast Nicolas Cage for the the leading role.
4. What is your favorite book to read, and why?
There are so many. My first thought goes to Harry Potter 1 – 7, even though I’m absolutely no fan of fantasy. Other books that are coming into my mind are Tokyo by Mo Hayder, Immoral by Brian Freeman and Wicker by Kevin Guilfoile.
5. How do you decide on the names for your characters?
Honestly, I don’t know. It’s just like they fall from above into my lap. But the reason that I named the MC of my first book (Het Orderboek) Jack was that I had Nicolas Cage in mind and thought on his role as Jack Campbell in the movie The Family Man.
6. Do you listen to music while you write?
Most of the time, though it’s necessary that the music has a supporting character to the scenes and chapters I’m writing. Some scenes in ‘Loser’ were musically supported by “Lose Yourself” and “When I’m Gone” by Eminem. I mentioned it in the acknowledgment because this was very important to me.
7. What is the strangest way you’ve come up with an idea for a story?
For my first book it came over night. I was busy daytrading on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange, and in the past I worked as a programmer. One day I found out that under certain circumstances, there was the possibility to manipulate the orderbook if you have the right people in the right place.
Because I was considering writing a book for a while, I nurtured this idea and one morning I woke up and had the complete plot from the beginning to the end in mind. The only thing I had to do was write it down.
8. What is your favorite city in the world, and why?
This is such a mean question! It always was London. London is such a amazing city. I love London. When I visited Ilaria Papini and her family last year in New York, I found out that NY fits my needs as well. I met so many friendly people and had such a big time and felt at home there. This is the reason that New York and London are sharing the first place ever since. But I have to admit that if I had to choose where to live, it would be New York.
9. Describe what your plotting process is like.
In the first case (Het Orderboek) I described earlier it grew over night around the possibility of manipulating the orderbook of the stock exchange.
For ‘Loser’ the proces was different. I knew how it had to begin and how it had to end. So I wrote the beginning and the end first. As there are two different timelines (one in the past and one in the present) that are switching in every chapter, I wrote a couple of ‘even’ chapters and then a couple of ‘uneven.’
For my third book that’s still not yet finished, I just started writing and don’t have a clue where it is going to in the end.
10. When you aren’t writing, what do you like to do for fun?
I think that the fun part at that moment is writing itself. So I’ll write for fun whilst writing.