Sam Boush is a novelist and award-winning journalist.

He has worked as a wildland firefighter, journalist, and owner of a mid-sized marketing agency. Beyond writing, he enjoys taking advantage of the Pacific Northwest through backpacking, surfing, hunting, skiing, and more.

Though he’s lived in France and Spain, his heart belongs to Portland, Oregon, where he lives with his wife, Tehra, two wonderful children, and a messy cat that keeps them from owning anything nice.

He’s the editor-in-chief at Mystery and Suspense Magazine, and the author of ALL SYSTEMS DOWN (Lakewater Press, 2018), with more to come.

Q & A

Q:  What’s your writing process like?

A:  I’ve gotten better over the years, but process is tricky for me. I tend to do a lot more outlining now than when I started. I used to just write a first chapter I liked and go from there. Now, I sometimes spend months working on a story before I get the first chapter down. Not sure if there’s a happy middle ground, but I guess my process is evolving.

Q:  What’s the best part and worst part of being a writer?

A:  The best is definitely flexibility. Getting to drop my kids off at school or take the afternoon off. The worst is probably trying to explain to people that I write full time. Sometimes I just tell strangers I’m in marketing.  

Q:  Who are your writing influences?

A:  I’m not sure these are influences so much as just writers I like. Michael Crichton, Tom Clancy, Blake Crouch, Robert Ludlum, Lee Child, Andy Weir, James Clavell, and Margaret Atwood are some of my favorites.

Q:  What do you do in your free time?

A:  I sort of consider writing my “free time” even though it’s also my full-time job. But when I’m not writing or spending time with friends and family, I like to get out into the world. My wife and I just got done backpacking a section of the Pacific Crest Trail and it’s something I’d like to do more. Whether it’s fishing, duck hunting, hiking, kayaking, skiing, or surfing, I enjoy experiencing as much of the world as possible.   

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