Yes, that’s right. I’m talking about the bumbling, seemingly aloof, cigar-smoking detective that Peter Faulk so aptly brought to life in the television crime drama series of the same name.
But why? And what in the world does Columbo have to do with my pursuit of life as an author over forty years later?
For all of his affectations to the contrary, Columbo was extremely observant and quite intelligent. He was also doggedly persistent and that is what made the show work. The villain would invariably dismiss him – underestimating his ability to solve a murder they committed but in the end it was always his relentless pursuit that caused them to make a fatal mistake. That mistake would allow him to expose them for the murderer they were. Classic gotcha moments!
And still you ask what does this have to do with my writing? I will tell you.
It is no secret that I love detectives, private or otherwise and I have recently written several articles and post to that end. There is something about unravelling an intricately woven mystery that really gets my mental wheels turning and be that reading or watching one or now creating one myself, I am addicted.
When Detective Moses Byone entered my mind (and life) and walked me through my first full length novel I realized, unequivocally, there was nothing left for me to do but spend the rest of my life writing his story. In the months that followed with the reviews and conversations with fellow authors, book signings and two sequels, I finally came to understand that I could make a living writing. I could forge my writing destiny and on my terms but it would take more than sheer will. It would take persistence, dedication and that unwavering sense of endurance (for both me and Detective Byone!) The truth is all the while, I kept hearing Columbo. “There is just one more thing…” “You know there’s something I just don’t understand…” and “There’s something that bothers me…”
You see, it was also my love of Columbo and not just his dogged persistence that drew me to the genre. That feeling I get when watching the detective work, his sly manipulation that stirs trepidation in murders, is something akin to the satisfaction I get when Det. Moses Byone does it…and I understand. I know then that it all started with Columbo.
I am beginning to make a living by selling my passion. I eat or starve based on the investment I make in my writing and I take responsibility for the quality of my mysteries. I am doggedly persistent in chasing my dream as a mystery writer and I find that Detective Byone has that same stamina in pursuit of his villains. I smile all the time. My wife and I laugh, a lot…out loud. I write all the time and enjoy the occasional cigar. Life is good. Oh, and by the way…there is always a Columbo re-run playing at my home.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ricardo Fleshman is the author of the Detective Byone series. The Dying Dance (2013), The Devil’s Serum (2014) and The Cemetery Paintings (2014) are the first Detective Moses Byone novels that follow the detective through the dark and sinister cases set in 1970’s New Orleans, LA.
Ricardo is an avid reader, travels extensively with favorite destinations in the United States South and also international locations in South America and Europe. He is a fan of horror books and movies, dark art and “The Blues.” He is a graduate of Lynchburg College in Virginia. He resides in Northern Virginia with his family where he continues to write more stories of Detective Moses Byone.
Ricardo would love to hear from you! Your comments are also welcome on Gilda’s Facebook author page at https://www.facebook.com/girltalkwithgilda or send them to her on twitter at https://twitter.com/gildaevans, @gildaevans.
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Guest posts are the opinion of that author and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Gilda Evans or others posted here.