Interview with Desmond P. Ryan


Today we have the pleasure of speaking with Desmond P. Ryan, the author of the Mike O’Shea Crime Fiction Series! As someone with over 30 years of law-enforcement experience, Desmond has a lot of personal experience he writes his crime series from. It was interesting to get his perspective on the genre while also learning about his works! To learn about Desmond, be sure to check out his WEBSITE! 


Thriller Magazine: Thank you for the interview, Mr. Ryan! You have a very accomplished career in law enforcement. Thank you for your service to the community. How has your law enforcement experience influenced your crime/police procedural novels?

Obviously, having been a cop for almost thirty years gives me a bit of an advantage as a crime writer. I don’t have to imagine what a scene would look like, or consider how the various characters in a crime novel interact. I’ve dealt with drug addicts and their dealers, hookers and their pimps, murders, etc., pretty much every day of my working life. I’ve seen homicide scenes. I’ve been to autopsies. I get it. And, as a writer, I am hopeful that my experience translates into an authentic reader experience, which is to say that, while not everyone is cut out to be a cop or PI, every reader of crime fiction wants to feel that thrill of being right there as the action unfolds. Hopefully, my writing skills brings the reader into that world.

TM: One thing that many people ask is how realistic are all the mainstream detective/police TV shows and novels? Are they actually based on truth, or do you laugh at their absurdity?

Some are good, some…not so much. At the end of the day, however, you have to consider that a crime novel or TV show is ultimately entertainment. There is a certain reader/viewer expectation that will not, obviously be met in real life. The good guy does not always win. Not all homicides get solved in a day, a week, or…ever. That’s a tough pill to swallow, but as a crime writer, I realize that my readers are looking for a neat package, and I try to provide that. Having so said, one of the criticisms of my Mike O’Shea Crime Fiction Series is that, as a 6-book series with an over-riding arch, there are bits that don’t resolve themselves until the end of the series.

TM: Your Mike O’Shea Crime Fiction Series is a very exciting story line, and Mike is a great character. How did you go about creating the plot and characters? Is Mike similar to you?

Thanks for that. I would say that Mike is similar to me, except that he’s a bit more brash and takes a few more chances than I would have when I was a detective, which is probably why I’m still alive to write this series! The plot just kind of unfolded. Obviously, there were a lot of literary tweaks along the way, but I just kind of sat down and began the series and here we are. The characters are compilations of people I have worked with over the years. Policing is one of those occupations where there is no shortage of strong and/or quirky personalities. Over the years, I have worked with people whom, if I wrote them as they were, readers would call me out on and say that I was going over the top. In reality, some of the characters in my books are seriously based on tamed-down versions of people I have worked with or encountered during my policing career.

TM: Lastly, whenever your series is turned into a feature film or television series, who would you like to play Mike?

Thanks for the vote of confidence. I am hopeful that you know something that I don’t and have an in at Netflix or HBO! In any event, I have always purposely shied away from described Mike in great detail in the series because I want the reader to see who they want when they are reading. I did, however, do a quick call-out to my readers, and the names that came back included Kit Harrington, Jefffery Dean Morgan, or Clint Eastwood in his younger days!

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