The Thriller Zone

Welcome to The Thriller Zone, I’m your host David Temple. On the TZ we explore the thrilling world of fiction crafted by today's most compelling authors. On today’s 172nd episode, we delve into the thrilling universe of C.J. Box, the mastermind behind unforgettable tales of the American West.

From the rugged landscapes of Wyoming to the intricate webs of mystery and suspense, C.J. Box's novels captivate readers with their vivid characters and gripping plots. Join me as we journey through his acclaimed series featuring game warden Joe Pickett, and discover what sets Box apart as a writer who seamlessly blends adrenaline-pumping action with deep insights into the human condition.

We'll explore Box's unique storytelling style, his knack for creating authentic settings, and the themes that resonate throughout his body of work. His new book THREE INCH TEETH centers around a rogue Grizzly Bear and the havoc he creates, plus some underhanded characters you’ll love to despise. 

Whether you're a longtime fan or new to CJ’s books, prepare to be immersed in a world where danger lurks around every corner and justice is always worth fighting for. And take it from this CJ Newbie, this is one of those authors you can count on me reading and sharing for years to come.

So saddle up as we embark on an adventure through the pages of C.J. Box's THREE INCH TEETH…here on the home of your Front Row Seat To The Best Thriller Writers in The World…TheThrillerZone.com.

Learn more at: CJBOX.net

* * * * *

KEY TAKE-AWAYS:
The enjoyment of reading and writing is a key aspect of CJ Box's work.
The dangers and behavior of grizzly bears are explored in his books.
CJ Box's favorite outdoor activity is fly fishing.
Realistic dialogue is important in writing.
CJ Box aims to provide different perspectives on controversial issues in his books.
Nature's power and the importance of respecting bears are recurring themes in his writing.
CJ Box is working on the next Joe Pickett book, which will focus on Nate Romanowski seeking revenge.
CJ Box's role as an executive producer involves providing source material and cashing checks.
TV shows can serve as a gateway for new readers to discover books.
AI has limitations in creative writing.
Breaking through as a writer can be challenging, especially in a competitive landscape.
Reading widely and understanding point of view are important for writers.
CJ Box realized he had become a writer around his third book.
The importance of awards in the writing industry has changed over time.
The best piece of writing advice from CJ Box is to read books and understand point of view.

Chapters
00:00 Introduction 
01:28 The Enjoyment of Reading and Writing
09:57 Grizzly Bear Behavior and Human Interactions
10:38 Mama Bears and Bear Activists
12:29 Favorite Outdoor Activity: Fly Fishing
13:19 Realistic Dialogue in Writing
15:01 Writing About Controversial Issues
16:00 Nature's Power and Respect for Bears
19:17 Upcoming Joe Pickett Book
20:29 CJ Box's Role as an Executive Producer
22:12 The Impact of TV Shows on Book Sales
23:41 The Limitations of AI in Writing
25:46 The Challenges of Breaking Through as a Writer
26:51 The Importance of Reading and Understanding Point of View
30:23 Realizing the Craft of Writing
31:46 The Difficulty of Winning Awards and New Challenges in the Writing Landscape
32:14 Best Piece of Writing Advice



The Thriller Zone with David Temple is sponsored in part by Blackstone Publishing.

What is The Thriller Zone?

Join podcast host and thriller author David Temple as he gives you a front-row seat to the best thriller writers in the world. If you like thriller fiction in Books, Movies, and TV Shows, you’ll love The Thriller Zone Podcast.

David Temple:
You know, if I didn't, if I saw you on the street, I'm so used to seeing you in your cowboy hat. I'm like, I don't even recognize this guy.

CJB:
Yeah, well, you know, I've, I've found out that cowboy hats and headphones don't work real well together.

David Temple:
Hahaha!

CJB:
Of course, my headphones aren't working either, so it didn't matter.

David Temple:
But you can hear me okay, right? Yeah,

CJB:
I can, yeah.

David Temple:
yeah. It's so funny, because that thought went through my mind, CJ, was I'm like, how is he gonna put headphones over that cowboy hat? Ha ha ha.

CJB:
You don't.

David Temple:
Well, thank you for your patience and a little technical issues, but you, you conquered it, CJ.

CJB:
I'm glad it worked. Yeah, apparently, when I went to say, when I went to about Google Chrome, it began immediately updating,

David Temple:
Oh.

CJB:
even though I downloaded it 30 minutes ago. Oh, OK.

David Temple:
It is a blessing and a curse that hold the world of Google, but we're going to deal with it. Now, are we on the same time crunch that we were before? Like are you a hard out at 11?

CJB:
Um, that would be 12 my time. No, I'm not.

David Temple:
Okay.

CJB:
Um, I've got another half an hour before my last one.

David Temple:
Okay,

CJB:
So

David Temple:
I'm going to aim for 30 minutes,

CJB:
Okay.

David Temple:
just because I'm so excited about talking about a little big three inch teeth. Let me just say, I'll agate, this was so much fun to read.

CJB:
Oh, well, good. I love to hear that.

David Temple:
And I wondered if it ever gets old. And then I thought, well, no, who doesn't like a couple of compliments from time and again?

CJB:
Absolutely. I mean, every time I get done with the book, I think, ah, they're going to, they're going to find me out as a fraud I am this time.

David Temple:
CJ, explain to me why everybody thinks that. Why does every single author that I've spoken to go, oh man, on this one they're gonna find out.

CJB:
Yeah, I don't know the answer to that other than you're such a free agent. You're completely flying blind. It's just you. There's no feedback. You just hope that when you get to the end that readers are as satisfied as you are or not.

David Temple:
Well, I am relatively new. I'll admit it right up front, relatively new to the CJ box fan club, but you can count me now an avid front row fan. Yeah.

CJB:
Well, thank you so much. I appreciate that.

David Temple:
Uh, you may have seen on social media the day I was talking about how fast I read this book

CJB:
I did.

David Temple:
and

CJB:
Yeah, I did see that. Thank you.

David Temple:
Yeah, and I hope that's a compliment. It's one of those things where when I find something I really enjoy, I try my hardest to tap the brakes and slow down. But dad gummit, dude, you just you wrote this thing to where the pages just melted into each other. So I couldn't help myself.

CJB:
Well, I always figure as writing, if I'm starting to get bored, the reader's starting to get bored. So let's move it along, you know.

David Temple:
Yeah. Well, my wife often asked Tammy, she, uh, who's a semi regular on the show. She, she, she'll catch me off reading in the corner and she'll ask me, you know, uh, every once in a while, you know, well, how do you like this author's work and, and what are you enjoying most about this guy? And how does it compare to others? And it's funny, cause we were out to a dinner the other night and I said, you know, I boil it down to three things. Yeah. I'm either going to read for. this show, interviews and so forth, so it's a little bit of work and business. Then I'll read for things that I wanna learn. I wanna learn mastery, creativity, I wanna see how you work your mechanics because I'm an analytical guy. And then third, there are those books that I read just for pure enjoyment where I go, okay, there's no pressure, there's no tie, I don't have to do a damn thing. And I'll just grab a book. And CJ, if your book didn't click off every single one of those things.

CJB:
Wow, that's a huge compliment. I'm not even sure how to respond to that. Thank you.

David Temple:
Well, it is one of those, you know, you remind me this storytelling mastery of yours is, and I don't want to spend too much time just blowing, I'm not blowing smoke up your skirt. I shoot it like it is. And I'm like, there's something about his storytelling. You've gotten all and you what are you 24 with the pick it now. Yeah. 30 plus total. But I'm like, you should you should know what you're doing. But there is a there is a finesse that you. have mastered that is just, it's like watching, it's watching a great quarterback make that unbelievable throw.

CJB:
Well, thank you. Thank you

David Temple:
Yeah.

CJB:
so much.

David Temple:
All right. All that glowing praise aside, since I know we've got, you know, kind of limited time. Another neat thing when I'm reading, uh, three inch teeth is, uh, the way that you made me feel like, uh, man, life can be a lot simpler out there in nature.

CJB:
Yeah, simpler like when a grizzly bear charges out of the trees and chomps your head.

David Temple:
Okay, that's

CJB:
Yeah.

David Temple:
not so simple. I think it was the building up the story to the way that you create this thing in my mind about how we really just, and you live right in the middle of nature. I think you're on a pretty good size spread. So you're just,

CJB:
Mm-hmm.

David Temple:
nature's all around you. So you're spoiled that way. But yeah, to your point about the grizzly and when you describe the way he's just clamping down on the skull and then... I learned, well, here you go. I learned pounds per square inch and I'm like, holy bananas.

CJB:
Right. Yeah, that's one of the things I've got is I really do enjoy with every book is the research part of it. Sometimes, you know, subjects because I take on subjects that I'm not familiar with to some degree in order to write about them because I write a lot about environmental and energy issues, resource issues, outdoor ethics kind of things. And in this case, you know, anybody who goes out into the wild thinks about bears. I mean, it's just natural. They're bigger than us. They're faster. They're meaner. Could be. But in the last five years or so in Wyoming, there have been more what the wildlife officials call grizzly human encounters than ever before. Two years ago, there were three fatalities, all hunters. And in one of those cases in particular, it was a elk hunting guide and his client had just knocked an elk down around Jackson Hole. And the elk, the guide was starting to take care of that elk and two grizzly bears just came charging out of the trees, right at him. Never stopped, never did the bluff charge, never roared, just went right at the guide and killed him. The client got away, but I was able to talk to the. the head of the predator, in the book, there's the predator attack team, that really exists. And it's like a SWAT team that goes after big wild animals after an incident like that. And when the helicopter arrived, the two bears were kind of just standing around the body. They weren't eating it, they weren't cashing it, they were guarding it. And one of the bears actually attacked the helicopter. And they killed that bear, they killed the other bear the next day. And the, the head of the attack team is a biologist, he's a PhD. He's a large carnivore specialist for the state of Wyoming. He'd never seen behavior like this, unprovoked attack. And they thought that maybe the bear had a brain tumor or something. So they actually cut the head off the bear. And as they were transporting it by helicopter to a lab, There was so much bear spray in the fur of that bear that the pilot teared up as he was driving. So the guy did everything right. He sprayed the bear with bear spray. He couldn't get to his gun in time, but the attack was totally unprovoked. And the bears had never been, they didn't have a rap sheet, you know? They know a lot of these bears, and these two bears had never encountered before, never had a human interaction.

David Temple:
Is this true? You reference this in the book about the psychology or the fact that the bear gets aggressive and then it triggers something in their mind to... once they've... we'll use the phrase taste of human flesh, then now they're driven for that more often. That's a real thing.

CJB:
not so much driven as once they cross that line, you get bears tend to be hardwired to avoid humans, the human contact, but of those few that have crossed that line, they lose that fear. That's one reason why some, you know, not all bears, but a number of them who are in these encounters have to be killed. Sometimes the bears who attack people are simply relocated. Like when a person walks between a sow and her cubs, and the sow's trying to protect her cubs and attack someone, that's not necessarily a homicidal bear. That's a mama bear. And that bear might be more likely relocated. But when it's an unprovoked attack, like the one I talked about earlier, in order to save other people's lives, those bears need to be taken out.

David Temple:
And define for me, what is caching?

CJB:
That means hiding, basically. What a grizzly bear does once they kill a big animal, they may feed on it a little, but then they hide it away. They cover it with sticks and leaves, so then they can come back later and finish it.

David Temple:
Got it. OK. All right. Another thing. Oh, so you're talking about this group that the group comes out and researches the murder scene and so forth. Is there a real actual group called Mama Bears, something like that, where these activists are just, I see by the grin.

CJB:
It's more something like that. I made up the name mama bears.

David Temple:
Oh, it's...

CJB:
There's no doubt that there's activists.

David Temple:
Yeah.

CJB:
You know, they're generally very well-meaning. They love bears. There are celebrity bears in Yellowstone Park and around that area that have a designated name and number. And there are people who wait every year for them to come out of their dens to see how many cubs they have. There's one called 399 that's more popular than I am in Wyoming. Every year, everybody's tracking these bears. I'm going to say this word wrong. Amomorphosize,

David Temple:
Oh yeah.

CJB:
meaning they tend to give human characteristics to wild animals.

David Temple:
Yeah.

CJB:
We all do it. We all have pets. We all do that. But in this case, some of them have interfered with wildlife officials who are trying to dispatch bears because they will try to save the bears at any cost, no matter what they've done.

David Temple:
So you made a comment that these bears are more popular than you are. Do you find yourself, are you, do you get, uh, is there a little bit of Hollywood mystique around you? Like when you're walking through town, is it just every, I see J what's that? Or, or can you kind of disappear?

CJB:
I can pretty much disappear. I live in a very small community in Southern Wyoming, and the people here all know who I am and what I do, but they tend to just be, you know, they're great. They let us maintain our privacy. When people, there's always fishermen, it's a big fly fishing area, fly fishermen who are fans of the books, ask the guides where I live, they'll always tell them the wrong direction. And I appreciate that.

David Temple:
What is your favorite outdoor activity? So we know you're a prolific writer, but when you just want to tap the brakes and get out and just, you know, chill, what's your favorite pastime?

CJB:
Definitely fly fishing. I fish as much as I can, primarily in this area for trout and

David Temple:
Yeah.

CJB:
you know, floating and wading. But I also do some saltwater fly fishing down in Mexico for big, big fish.

David Temple:
Wow.

CJB:
And so that's kind of my passion. I do hunt elk, not because I have three adult daughters who are all foodies and they love to invite people over and give them help steaks. So they pressure me every year. So that's part of my job.

David Temple:
And you can't get much better eating than that, right? I mean,

CJB:
That's great.

David Temple:
another one of the things CJ that I like about your books is the way that when I'm listening to conversations and this is going to sound a little bit like a duh statement, except for the fact that not all writers do this and you have mastered that craft and that is when I listen to your speak, your character speak, it sounds, it's like I'm just eavesdropping on the conversation. You're, you don't throw out. conversations that are mechanical or seem false. That's another thing I'm so attracted to, is the way that it's just like, you know, it's just guys sitting around and it's vernacular, it's cadence and...

CJB:
Well, thank you. Yeah, that as a reader myself, I get really annoyed when the dialogue takes you out of the story because you think people don't really talk like that. Maybe William F. Buckley talks like that, but nobody else talks like that. And when there's too much of it and it gets too writerly and it gets too show-offy, I think.

David Temple:
Well, and that's so well put is that, yeah, you don't want if it takes you anything that takes you out or makes you stop or go, what time is it? Is this story ever going to end? Yeah, you're in trouble. Besides good entertainment, what do you hope and I'm sure there's a little bit of something in every book and you've got Jesus, you got every single book you've written behind you. When you write a book, do you have something do you have a message or a feeling or an emotion that you go, oh, I want them to take away this.

CJB:
Yeah, I mean the answer is yes. I tried with every book, even though there's certainly a whodunit or a procedural element to it, they're really not about whodunits. They're really about topics or big issues or controversies that happen in the Mountain West. And what I tried to do... is talk to people on both sides, because so many issues start here, especially when it comes to energy development, wind, you know, wind. We were talking about wind turbines 15 years ago before anybody knew they were out there. So I talk to people on both sides and then I have the issue in the book. And I always have characters on each side make their point, trusting the reader to come down where they may. And I think for some readers, it may be the first time they heard the other side of some of these things.

David Temple:
Oh.

CJB:
I try not to write agenda books by any means, but to give both sides and trust the reader. You know, so I guess what I hope is, you know, some number of years from now, if anybody is interested in what it was like in the Mountain West during the, you know, in 2024, they can read these books and get it. pretty good idea of what people were like, what the issues were like, what the society was like. But other than that, I'm not trying for some grand message.

David Temple:
And maybe a healthy respect for bears.

CJB:
Hopefully, hopefully,

David Temple:
Yeah.

CJB:
yeah, they may need more and more of that.

David Temple:
There, my wife and I were sitting there watching, of course, the minute I go to say it, I'll drop it. But it's the climbing Mount Everest, crack hour. Anyway.

CJB:
into the blue or into

David Temple:
Into

CJB:
the

David Temple:
the, into the, into the, Jesus, into the blue, into, anyway, you know what I'm talking about.

CJB:
I loved it. Yeah.

David Temple:
And here's one thing I was so struck with. And when I'm watching it, one of the guides said, when you get up that mountain, the mountain always has the last word.

CJB:
Mm-hmm

David Temple:
I don't care how you're prepared, how you've trained, how much oxygen or food or fitness, blah, blah. Mountain gets the last word. And it's so funny because as you see that into the air, when you see that proceed, you're like, wow, I hadn't thought about that. And it made me think of your book, because we were watching this movie last night, and I'm of course prepping for this today. And I'm like, you know, whether it's bears or a weather front coming in, you really do have to be aware and yield to, Mother Nature is... The big queen, she's in control,

CJB:
Right,

David Temple:
right?

CJB:
and that's one thing I think I've portrayed in my mind accurately since the very first book, is the fact that nature is amoral. Things can happen, just because you're a good person doesn't mean you may not freeze to death, or you have all the right thoughts in mind when you go out there and support the right causes. that things can happen and do. And nature's not, it's not kind necessarily, it just operates. And we're a small part of it. And I love to portray that, I love to portray the weather and all the things that can happen. I think in a realistic way.

David Temple:
And PS nature was here first. Okay.

CJB:
That's right.

David Temple:
Yeah, they were atop the hill first. I would be remiss if I did not ask and I know we're of course on three inch teeth but what's next for Joe back Joe picket I got to I got to figure I know you're already working on the next one because I'm sitting here looking at your flow and I'm like wait a minute is he doing one or two a year.

CJB:
For some years I was doing like a book and a half a year. The Joe Pickett book every year and then I had another series and a couple of standalones. I'm working on the next Joe Pickett book now and as you can imagine having finished it it's going to be very Nate Romanowski centric. The next one because

David Temple:
Yeah.

CJB:
Nate is going after revenge.

David Temple:
Man, I love that. When you saw him, basically, oh, I don't want to give anything away.

CJB:
I'm sorry.

David Temple:
When he got it in his head of what he was going to do, there's no stopping him.

CJB:
That's right. And that's

David Temple:
Is that

CJB:
what

David Temple:
safe?

CJB:
he's famous for.

David Temple:
Yeah. Wow. That is just yet again a great character. Now, I love the fact that you have been an EP, for those not know what that is, executive producer on the Joe Pickett series, and then also on Big Sky, based on the Cassie Newell novels. Do you like that end of the business? And do you see yourself getting more and more involved in the Hollywood scene? And you can take that however you mean. In the Hollywood scene? Yeah.

CJB:
Yeah.

David Temple:
Or in, or just doing lunches and making business happen.

CJB:
No, I think, you know, I've been asked many times what I do as an executive producer. And my answer really basically is I provide the source material and I cash the checks. That's about it. I have been on the sets of the shows. I find it really, really tedious and boring to be there to watch the same scene shot 27 times and listen to it through headphones in a tent. I'd rather not be there, but although I have, you know, I've consulted with the producers and the showrunners on a big, you know, 30,000 foot scale on what kind of what they're going to do in this next season or not or which books they're going to use. And in the Joe Pickett series in particular, they were very close to the source material, which I very much appreciated actually hearing some of those lines of dialogue, you know, back. was pretty great. But mainly, the most important thing we read, my wife and I have realized, is that TV shows are one hour commercials for the books. And

David Temple:
Hehehehehehe

CJB:
if I don't think they're going to be more than that, then I'm pretty pleased. And in fact, they have attracted a lot of new readers. Readers are smart. You know, like you are and I think I am where If you see something that's really intriguing you want to know where it came from and you'll go find those books and

David Temple:
Yeah.

CJB:
you know I just hear constantly from people saying I saw one of the shows I went and got all the books I'm all caught up now and they wouldn't have known about it. Otherwise, so from that standpoint, it's terrific

David Temple:
And you're the personification of having nailed this thing. And I think about this as I'm looking at the books behind you. You know, you find one. This is my first, excuse me, my first CJ Box book. And I go, if I liked it this much, in that rare free time that I have, I have to now go backwards. So here's my point. Your back library is sitting there waiting for the audiences to go, oh, well, if there's this, then there's more over here.

CJB:
Yeah,

David Temple:
You're in.

CJB:
the pandemic was very, very good for me.

David Temple:
Oh, I bet.

CJB:
Some writers I have talked to said exactly the opposite. But in my case, an awful lot of people, you can't ever put a number on this, but an awful lot of people communicated with me that they've been wanting to read these books, they've heard about these books and they finally had the time to read them and they read them all. And so because I don't expect anybody to pick up. 24 books and start at the beginning necessarily, but I appreciate it that those who have.

David Temple:
Something that just popped into my head, CJ, and I was having this conversation with Greg Hurwitz, and it's about AI, and we were talking about the fears and or the pluses and the minuses of AI, especially as it pertains to writing, story, creation, et cetera. Do you have any thoughts, fears, anxieties, insights on that?

CJB:
Um, I ha you know, from what I understand, and I have been reading a lot about it, um, you know, AI is a data minor. Um, so it, it spits out things that are, that already exists sometimes in really interesting fashion, but it's not creative.

David Temple:
Mm-mm.

CJB:
Um, it can't come up with a new concept unless it's already been put down digitally somewhere. So I think for most, at least. authors like me, I'm not too worried about that.

David Temple:
Yeah.

CJB:
You know, I don't think AI could conceive of, you know, a mechanical bear face and teeth put together in the back of a pickup truck. Maybe it could, but I kind of doubt it.

David Temple:
When you came up with that, I thought, okay, he has to either have a little bit of engineering background or just an over the top imagination or a combination of both.

CJB:
That's what my wife says something like that. Like, what is wrong with you?

David Temple:
It's kind of like when I'm talking to somebody and I mention to my wife, I'm like, you know, I think I've got to come up with a pretty good way to kill that person. And she looks at me like, where did that come from?

CJB:
Yes.

David Temple:
No, just imagination, honey. Or

CJB:
Well, you

David Temple:
is it?

CJB:
know that old saying, if you walk around with a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail. You know, every object looks like a murder weapon if you're in that frame of mind.

David Temple:
Yeah. All right. Well, we got to start wrapping up because I don't want to crush you here. It's been what 15 years since you won that first Edgar and I wonder it asked me, do you think it's gotten easier or harder to win awards today? And I'm, I'm not, I'm kind of directing that at you. But since you're so active in the writing community, I know you have a 30,000 view of what it probably is for the system in general. So do you think The award winning is harder, easier now. Do you think it's as important now?

CJB:
Wow, no one has ever asked that question. I haven't given that a lot of thought. But I think, I actually think it's harder once you're very well established because I think that the tendency of award committees is to reward newcomers, new voices, the new hot thing, rather than those who are very well established. There's nothing wrong with that. I've been on some of those committees myself and I get really excited when I discover somebody as opposed to the tried and true my favorites out there that I probably wouldn't consider.

David Temple:
And on a similar note, what do you see as some of the maybe, I'm going to call them new challenges that faces people today than when you began your career? Because you're a couple of decades in and it was a whole different landscape and the competition is fierce. What kind of new challenges or landscape do you see?

CJB:
I think it's harder now to break through. I think when my first book was published 2001, there were a lot of what they called mid-list writers, writers in the middle, not hugely popular. I think at that time publishers were more willing to give somebody they believed in two or three books. in order to maybe establish themselves and earn out. Whereas now I think they get one shot and that's it. And if that second book doesn't outsell the first, goodbye, find a new job. I think there's a lot more of that than there used to be.

David Temple:
Yeah, that phrase earned out. I'm hearing more and more in conversations with guys that are struggling to get that fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh one. And it is a tough landscape. But this is going to lead me up to my finale question that I ask all of my author guests, CJ. And that is, what is your best piece of writing advice? And here's what I'm getting at. There's a lot of listeners who get turn to the show for sure a little bit of entertainment. Hopefully we were giving them that, but also they love the advice of guys who have gone before, guys and gals who have gone before them, paved the way and has, you know, gained the insight. So I hope that was enough of lead up to really give you a time to craft

CJB:
Sure, I can

David Temple:
that.

CJB:
think of two things offhand, one's more general and one's more specific. And I think in general, I'm always amazed to meet fledgling writers at conferences or at book signings who say they've got six or seven books ready to go. And how do I get published? And I'll say, who do you read? And often, fledgling writers aren't readers. They're so in love with their own voices that they really don't necessarily want to see what else is out there. And I always advise people read books, not only in what your genre is and your interests, but outside of that, so you can learn how, you know, learn how are books constructed? How did that bestselling author pull that one off? You know, how is it done? You know, look at these books clinically as opposed to just my favorite, my favorite kind of book. And the other thing, the biggest mistake I see most of the time is that writers can't, they can't figure out point of view, whether the point of view of the characters in the book, is it told from their perspective? Is it omniscient? Is it, you know, God speaking, telling the reader what everybody is thinking, or are they just actually thinking on the page and they're thinking what? And I, I see that point of view mistake. in some really established, well-known authors' books. Sometimes it'll, and it takes me out of it immediately.

David Temple:
And what part of that point of view is the most annoying to you?

CJB:
when it goes from, when the point of view goes from the character to the writer telling you what the character is thinking as opposed to the character simply thinking it. You know,

David Temple:
Oh yeah.

CJB:
show, don't tell.

David Temple:
Yeah. Oh, that's so good, CJ. So good. And it seems so simple too, doesn't it?

CJB:
It really is, but it's really easy to mess that one up.

David Temple:
yeah

CJB:
I tend to do a lot of points of view in every book from different characters, and it's really hard not to kind of screw them up, screw that up. You've got to concentrate on that.

David Temple:
And how many books do you think, last question, how many books do you think you were in before you went, oh, I see what I've been doing, or, oh, I got

CJB:
You

David Temple:
it now, I'm in.

CJB:
know, I can actually really believe it. I remember it was the third book called Winterkill. And I remember I was about three quarters of the way through it and I thought, oh my God, I think I am a writer now. I think these first two flukes got by, but this one feels like I sort of know what I'm doing. And

David Temple:
Ah.

CJB:
then I remember telling my wife exactly that. I

David Temple:
And

CJB:
feel

David Temple:
you

CJB:
more

David Temple:
knew

CJB:
like

David Temple:
that...

CJB:
a writer now when I do what I was doing.

David Temple:
Yeah, I'm off to the races now, baby.

CJB:
Yeah.

David Temple:
Well, folks, once again, the book is three inch teeth. Uh, it is a book I could not put down. I think I read it in two sittings. It was just absolutely delightful. You want to learn more about CJ, of course, CJ box.net and buddy. I'll tell you, I have, I have watched you from afar. I haven't, I hadn't read you, but I watched you from afar. I saw you at thriller Fest. I'm always in the back going, Oh man, that guy's smart. And look at that hat. And,

CJB:
I don't know if

David Temple:
uh,

CJB:
that's it.

David Temple:
Well, but listen, this was a real honor, and I mean that with all sincerity. So thank you for your time.

CJB:
Thank you, this was really fun. Welcome aboard. Yeah.

David Temple:
Yes.

CJB:
Thank you.

David Temple:
Welcome aboard the box train. All right. Well, folks, we're gonna again, CJ box.net. You can follow them on all the social angles as I do and just so good to meet you.

CJB:
Thank you. Thanks so much.