Friday, February 15, 2013

#CharacterInterview Rad Sanders from Mary Maddox's book TALION

Conrad (Rad) Sanders Demands Respect

Rad is the villain of my thriller TALION, but like most psychopaths he sees himself as the only one who matters. In the interview that follows, he takes issue with my decision to cut some of his story. Neither the interview nor the omitted scenes contain violence or extremely harsh language, but the novel does. It will scare and perhaps disturb you.

MARY: Thanks for agreeing to come, Rad.

RAD: I agree to nothing. I’m here to set the record straight. And tell the world what an underhanded liar you are.

MARY: Why the hostility? Talion is published. People will read about you now.

RAD: Okay, we’ll begin with the title since you brought it up. The book used to be Rad’s Kiss. You waste-canned a sexy title like Rad’s Kiss and replaced it with Talion. Sounds like the title of a trashy fantasy novel. But maybe that’s fitting. Lu is trash, and angel boy is her screwed-up fantasy.

MARY: Well, from a marketing perspective, you could be right.

RAD: You finally worked that out? I’m the only interesting character in the story. Look at your parade of losers–that slut Norlene and her moron husband, humdrum hotel owners, insipid teenagers.

MARY: That’s unfair. Maybe Hank and Debbie have humdrum lives, but they’re far from boring. And Lu and Lisa are anything but insipid.

RAD: I’ll tell you what’s unfair, the twisted fate that cast me into your imagination and left me at the mercy of your idiotic decisions.

MARY: Come on, what’s really bothering you?

RAD: You cut my seduction of Andrea Altman.

MARY: You’re angry about that? I thought you wouldn’t mind. You hate everything about Andrea, even her perfume. Remember? The scent of tuber roses reminds you of your mother.

 RAD: My scenes with Andrea are among the best in the novel, right up there with me doing the girl with cinnamon hair.

MARY: Those scenes slowed down the action.

RAD: I bang her. Isn’t that enough action? Did you want me to kill her too? Believe me, I’ve dreamed of dragging her to my farmhouse in the country and tying her down in the basement, where she could scream to my heart’s content.

MARY: Your interlude with Andrea had no effect on the story’s outcome. Its only purpose was to reveal the depravity of your character, which was already obvious.

RAD: That’s hardly the only purpose of my “interlude,” as you call it. Everything else in your novel gives the impression I’m a loser who gets off on torturing women to punish them for my inadequacy. But I seduce Andrea on our second date. And I don’t have a problem getting it up.

MARY: I’m surprised you care what readers think.

RAD: I don’t. This is about you and me. It’s about respect. A woman’s got no business telling my story anyway, but it wasn’t like anyone gave me a choice. You have an obligation to me.

MARY: I have larger obligation to the story and my readers. Look, I didn’t mean any disrespect. It was an editorial decision. I can’t put your scenes with Andrea back in the book, but I can post them online.

RAD: What kind of sorry consolation prize is that?

MARY: It’s the best I can do.

RAD: The best you can do isn’t much, as usual. Okay. I’ll be checking to make sure my scenes are up there. Another thing–you better watch your back when you’re dreaming. I can still get inside your head any time I want.

Read about Rad’s seduction of Andrea at

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  1. It definitely sounds like Rad is a tad upset there, but you made the right choice, Mary. Have to do what's best in the reader's interest, instead of the villain's. :)

    1. Thanks for commenting, Cherie. The reader should come first. Unfortunately it's easier to say no to the villain than it is to my own ego :)

  2. bone-chilling. I wouldn't want to meet with this guy Rad and am glad he's only in your imagination. ha, ha, bet that would p*** him off.

    1. It would tick him off, Rachelle. But he's welcome hardly anywhere. I'm relieved that he's mostly gone from my imagination. Thank you for hosting me here.

  3. I love these character interviews. It's one way for me to read your writing, Mary. I admit I can't read the novel - I'd never get him out of my head. He's already threatened you! I'd be easy pickings.

  4. Carol, The novel is not for everyone. People who are sensitive to depictions of violence won't enjoy the story. I kind of regret making my protagonist a teenager since some readers have thought TALION is YA, and it definitely is not.