Dead End Deal

Interview: Allen Wyler, Author of Dead End Deal

I’m pleased to welcome Allen Wyler to the blog today. Allen is the author of Dead End Deal and joins me for a brief interview to talk about the ins-and-outs of writing a medical thriller.

Quick fire interview: Allen Wyler

What is your writing ritual? Why is that important and how has being a surgeon shaped it?

For me writing is a difficult process that takes discipline. First thing I do every morning is pour a cup of coffee and sit down in front of my computer, the door to the room shut, the blinds drawn. No distractions. Then I get to work. One to four hours every day, no exceptions. Each day I set a goal and don’t quit until I reach that goal. If it takes the whole four hours, fine. If it takes only two hours, even better. But the point is I work at it daily. So what does this have to do with being a surgeon? Well, surviving neurosurgical training took a great deal of motivation and self-discipline. It taught me that I could succeed at a task if I gave it 100% effort. As far as how my career might flavor my writing, I think being a neurosurgeon given me a wealth of experience on which to base some pretty interesting stories.

What was the research behind Dead End Deal?

This is a blitz-pace thriller about a Seattle neurosurgeon who, while in Korea, is framed for a murder. Now hunted by police he must evade a professional hit man while trying to find a way back to the United States. I figure it’s Three Days of The Condor meets Michael Crichton.

I got the idea for the story when I was a guest lecturer at a medical school in Seoul, South Korea. I was staying at the Walker Hill Sheraton hotel across the Han river from the hospital. So all the scenes (hotel, downtown Seoul, and the Korean hospital) were from notes and snapshots I took while there. (I always travel with a small point and shoot camera in my pocket). The brief description of the surgical procedure comes from my own experience.

My neurosurgeon protagonist, Jon Ritter, escapes via a route I personally took when figuring out how he might return to the United States without a passport. Again, the scenes were written with the help of snapshots. So, the short answer to the question is that all the research for the story came from personal experience. By the way, I find digital photography a great help when writing. I view a relevant snapshot on the screen as I write. This help me accurately describe what I’m seeing.

 What are the challenges of writing a medical thriller?

People who read medical thrillers are usually interested in medical details, just as readers of legal thrillers find law interesting. What is difficult is adding sufficient medical detail to satisfy a reader without making descriptions or facts boring. This is one reason I try to move my stories along at a fast clip. Thrillers are intended to thrill, not lecture. Fast pace, good plot, interesting characters are the elements that should be in a medical thriller.

About Dead End Deal (2012)

Dead End DealWorld renowned neurosurgeon Jon Ritter is on the verge of a medical breakthrough that will change the world. His groundbreaking surgical treatment, using transplanted non-human stem cells, is set to eradicate the scourge of Alzheimer’s disease and give hope to millions. But when the procedure is slated for testing, it all comes to an abrupt and terrifying halt. Ritter’s colleague is gunned down and Ritter himself is threatened by a radical anti-abortion group that not only claims responsibility, but promises more of the same.

Faced with a dangerous reality but determined to succeed, Ritter turns to his long-time colleague, corporate biotech CEO Richard Stillman, for help. Together, they conspire to conduct a clandestine clinical trial in Seoul, Korea. But the danger is more determined, and more lethal, than Ritter could have imagined.

After successful surgical trials, Ritter and his allies are thrown into a horrifying nightmare scenario: The trial patients have been murdered and Ritter is the number one suspect. Aided by his beautiful lab assistant, Yeonhee, Ritter flees the country, now the target of an international manhunt involving Interpol, the FBI, zealous fanatics and a coldly efficient assassin named Fiest.

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About Allen Wyler
Allen Wyler is a renowned neurosurgeon who earned an international reputation for pioneering surgical techniques to record brain activity.  He has served on the faculties of both the University of Washington and the University of Tennessee, and in 1992 was recruited by the prestigious Swedish Medical Center to develop a neuroscience institute.

In 2002, he left active practice to become Medical Director for a startup med-tech company (that went public in 2006) and he now chairs the Institutional Review Board of a major medical center in the Pacific Northwest.

Leveraging a love for thrillers since the early 70’s, Wyler devoted himself to fiction writing in earnest, eventually serving as Vice President of the International Thriller Writers organization for several years. After publishing his first two medical thrillers Deadly Errors (2005) and Dead Head (2007), he officially retired from medicine to devote himself to writing full time.

He and his wife, Lily, divide their time between Seattle and the San Juan Islands.

Website Astor & Blue
Author: Donna Brown Donna is a longtime book lover and sometime book reviewer and has devoured books from an early age. She writes short (or long) stories as and when inspiration hits and is married to fantasy author David M. Brown (Fezariu's Epiphany, A World Apart). She was also co-contributor to David's book, Man vs Cat, a humorous look at life with six rambunctious rescue cats. Donna has lived in many different areas of the UK over the last 30-something years but has remained in Yorkshire for the past decade. She ardently disputes the misnomer that 'It's grim up north'.

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0 Responses to "Interview: Allen Wyler, Author of Dead End Deal"

  1. Ann G Morrone
    Ann G Morrone 3 years ago .Reply

    Fantastic stuff…

  2. Troon Village
    Troon Village 3 years ago .Reply

    Sounds like a good read!

    I'm glad it has a Kindle version, I'm thinking of downloading it! Thanks!

    • David M. Brown
      David M. Brown 3 years ago .Reply

      Thank you for visiting :)

      I hope you enjoy the book if you choose to download it :)

  3. Kristi
    Kristi 3 years ago .Reply

    Great suggestion about using digital photography to help your writing process – I love to hear the little tips and tricks other writers use! This sounds like an exciting read – I love the plot, and I love the Seattle reference. Do you include any little details about the PNW in the book? I’m also happy to read that you get to split your time between rain and shine!

  4. Wanda
    Wanda 3 years ago .Reply

    I love medical thrillers!! I haven't read anything from Allen Wyler yet but I'l surely get this one!

  5. David M. Brown
    David M. Brown 3 years ago .Reply

    Thanks for commenting Kristi. Glad you enjoyed the interview :)

  6. keith jones
    keith jones 3 years ago .Reply

    hI donna what a Great article – I love the Kay scarpetta novels and they are obviiously written in a similar way. I write ghost stories and I'm working on illustrated ghost locations here in Ireland and that' the way I'm working too

    Keith

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