Welcome to Robert Banfelder's Website

Award-Winning Crime Thriller Novelist & Outdoors Writer

About the Author
Reviews: Fiction & Nonfiction
Publications (Fiction, Nonfiction, TV, Articles, Interviews)
Synopses: Published Fiction & Nonfiction
Synopses: Manuscripts
Autographed & Personalized Copies
North Fork / South Fork Bays & Beyond
Bimonthly Report (1st & 2nd of each month) at Nor'east Saltwater
BROADWATER BOOKS:
Looking to Have Your Book Professionally Published?
Professional, Private Tutoring ~ Writing Made Easy and Most Affordable
Writing Credentials ~ Education
Events: Talks, Lectures, Book Signings
YouTube Channel Videos ~ Special Interests with Bob & Donna
CABLEVISION TV
Restaurant Reviews


The All New for 2019 YouTube Channel Videos ~ Special Interests with Bob & Donna.

After seven (7) years presenting our monthly shows on Public Access Cablevision, limited to Suffolk & Nassau Counties on Long Island, our all new Special Interests with Bob & Donna channel now reaches the world!

Donna and I give you uncensored product information and opinion on topics such as fishing (spin, bait, fly, clamming, crabbing, canoeing, kayaking); hunting (shotguns, rifle(s) [air rifle, rim fire & high-caliber weapons]; muzzleloaders, handguns, compound bows, crossbows); telescopic sights & laser sights.

For my award-winning fiction & nonfiction literary canon of works, see the Publications Link above.

For serious writers: Please see The Essential Guide to Writing Well & Getting Published *Bonus Feature* Making Decent Dollars Writing Plus Little-Known Reward-Reaping Benefits.

Our criminal justice system (how it works and how it fails): Connivers, Con Artists, Career Criminals, the Death of the Death Penalty [New York State].

Lifetime Achievement Award from Who’s Who in America

Stay tuned for much, much more.


TYING BOB B'S UNIQUE BULL'S EYE FLY FOR FLY-FISHING SUCCESS Go to YouTube. Posted March 21, 2019

WICKED EDGE LOW ANGLE ADAPTER FOR ASIAN CUTLERY & SMALL, NARROW BLADES Go to YouTube. Posted March 14, 2019

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO WRITING WELL & GETTING PUBLISHED Go to YouTube. Posted March 11, 2019

NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE TWO-WEEK HOLIDAY FROM HELL Go to YouTube. Posted March 5, 2019

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIM SENTENCED TO 30 YEARS FOR KILLING HER MONSTER HUSBAND Go to YouTube. Posted March 1, 2019

BEST SERIAL-KILLER NOVELS PART THREE Go to YouTube. Posted February 27, 2019

BEST SERIAL-KILLER NOVELS PART TWO Go to YouTube. Posted February 25, 2019

BEST SERIAL-KILLER NOVELS PART ONE Go to YouTube. Posted February 23, 2019

WICKED EDGE PRECISION WE130 KNIFE SHARPENING SYSTEM Go to YouTube. Posted February 21, 2019

EDGE PRO APEX A4 KNIFE SHARPENING SYSTEM Go to YouTube. Posted February 21, 2019

LANSKY CONTROLLED-ANGLE KNIFE SHARPENING SYSTEM Go to YouTube. Posted February 6, 2019



INTERVIEW WITH ROBERT BANFELDER


Author: Robert Banfelder (left) and Interviewer: Brendan Byrne

Brendan P. Byrne is a licensed sales broker for The Corcoran Group in the Hamptons, former COO of Epiphany Trading, LLC
and President of Big League Entertainment


March 2007


Good afternoon, Bob.

Good afternoon, Brendan.

Bob, I’d like to begin our interview where you would be most comfortable.

How about we go into the living room, Brendan?

Great. Lead the way.

Where were you brought up, Bob?

I was raised in Lake Hiawatha, New Jersey, situated in the north central portion of the state. It was a small community of mostly summer homes and recognized early on when Bobby Darin bought a home there for his mom. Later, the town was put on the map—so to speak—when folks learned that Mariah Carey spent part of her childhood there. Before that, ‘you couldn’t get there from here.’

How did you spend your childhood in that area?

Well, being that I was out of step with Darin and Carey, I listened to the song of the wild; fishing lakes, streams, rivers, and reservoirs; hunting every wood, field, meadow, and marsh.

When did you first know—or thought you knew—that you were going to be a writer?

In grade school when my English teacher first told me that I had potential. I really wasn’t sure what that meant, but I knew it had to be a good thing by the smile of approval on Mr. McNowski’s face when he handed back my writing assignment. Then suddenly that smile vanished as he stated that I couldn’t spell ‘worth a crap.’ That phrase I understood completely but chose to focus on the positive. Had I been older, wiser, and quick on the uptake, I would have told him, “Thank God the world has editors.” Today, thank God we have spell-check before sending anything off to editors, agents, publishers, et cetera. Otherwise, I might still be hearing that I have potential. In high school, hope was elevated from potential to talent. I had a ‘gift,’ I was told. In college, Professor Wallace Markfield informed the director of the Queens College Creative Writing Program that, “Mr. Banfelder is not simply a promising talent; he has arrived.” It was the inspiration and impetus I needed.

Who are your favorite authors, past and present, and how have they influenced you?

Mark Twain, Oscar Wilde, Ernest Hemingway, and John Steinbeck immediately come to mind. Later in life, Jeffrey Deaver, James Patterson, and Thomas Harris would head the list. The former group of gentlemen shed light upon and offered brilliant insights into human nature: Twain through the use of satire, Wilde’s witticism in turning a phrase, Hemingway’s economy of language, and Steinbeck’s down-to-earth dialogue. The second circle, really too many to mention, encompasses the criminal mind—of which my genre is comprised. That led me into the dark and terrifying world of the multiple murderer.

It’s a somewhat curious juxtaposition in that you paint a rather positive picture with regard to those early writers by using such words as “light” and “brilliant,” then on to “dark” and “terrifying” to depict the essence of a modern stable of authors.

In light of your comment, Brendan, allow me to portray a rather dark side to those authors of the first category. In the use of Twain’s satire, I’m thinking specifically of a not-so-often read book titled, Letters from the Earth, largely a treatise on atheism in which the author lashes out most vehemently against God and Christianity. Keep in mind that Mr. Samuel Clemens lost loved ones both early and late in his life: two sisters, two brothers, mother, father, wife, and favorite daughter. In Wilde’s witty epigrams and often acerbic prose and poetry, I’m reminded of The Picture of Dorian Gray, as well as his Ballad of Reading Gaol (jail/prison), in which he was literally incarcerated, released, and died shortly thereafter—a brokenhearted man. Then there is Hemingway’s eventual suicide. Lastly, I’m left with Steinbeck’s somber examinations of the downtrodden. Surely a world of darkness, at times, surrounded these writers’ lives. Not as dark a world, I trust, as the world of the serial killer—which leads us into the second group of masters: Deaver, Patterson, and Harris. Ah, and keep your eye on an up-and-coming female author who’s likely to give that trio a run for their money. Literally. In fact, she’s already achieved international distinction with her first novel titled Body Count. She’s Australia-born Phillipa Deanne Martin; abridged to P.D. Martin: easy on the eyes; pure dynamite on the page.

I understand that all your works involve one type of antagonist. Why serial killers, Bob?

The darkest of the dark. The most frightening by far.

In moving into that dark realm, what exactly is the difference between a mass murderer and a serial killer? There seems to be some confusion.

Number of victims, events, locations, and whether or not there is a cooling-off period between homicides. There are two types of mass murderer: classic and family. A classic example of a classic mass murderer is Charles Whitman—having shot and killed 16 people and wounding 31 from a tower in Austin, Texas. This style of homicide is generally categorized as involving 4+ victims, 1 event, and 1 location. The murdering of these groups is unrelated to the killer’s problems. Most recently, you'll recall Seung-Hui Cho at Virginia Tech, who claimed the lives of 32 people.

The family mass murderer is as the name implies; example: John List, from New Jersey, murdered his mother, wife, and their three children. Again, this involves 4 or more victims, 1 event, and 1 location. The murdering of these groups is related to the killer’s problems.

With serial killers, the main element that separates them from other multiple murderers is the cooling-off period. It could be days, weeks, or months. Also, the serial killer often selects a certain type of victim. An example would be prostitutes. To be classified a serial killer, we are generally talking: 3 or more victims, 3 or more events, 3 or more locations, with a definite cooling-off period.

What do you hope to accomplish by writing such psychological thrillers?

To entertain, educate and, hopefully, make money.

What are the titles of your next three novels that surround The Teacher in your four-book series that I’m hearing so much about? Also, tell us the theme.

The Author is the prequel to The Teacher, followed by Knots and The Good Samaritans. My protagonist is Justin Barnes, an Afro-American maverick covertly working for Long Island’s Suffolk County Homicide, in the capacity of a terminator who hunts down these serial murderers.

What novels can we look forward to after The Good Samaritans?

The works that follow will fill the gap between my first published novel, titled No Stranger Than I, and those leading up to The Author.

May I ask their titles, too?

Certainly. Trumble’s Pond, The Signing, The Triumvirate, and Trace Evidence. I’m working on a current manuscript, titled 41º North~72º West. However, each novel may stand on its own.

I believe that’s a grand total of ten, yes?

That’s correct, Brendan.

How long did it take you to write the first nine novels?

Thirty-plus years, counting No Stranger Than I, which I labored over for a decade while honing my craft. A labor of love, I might add.

I’ve recently learned that The Teacher was awarded “Best Suspense Novel of the Year” for 2006, by NewBookReviews.org. Congratulations.

Thank you, Brendan.

I also understand that some heavy hitters may be looking to review The Author, which is scheduled for release this July.

That’s true. As we speak, Jean Hackensmith, Owner and Senior Fiction Editor of Port Town Publishing, has sent off the galley to The New York Times, USA Today, Publisher’s Weekly, and Newsday. Most of those reviewers request the galley three months in advance of publication.

Good luck with that end of the business, Bob.

Yes, Lady Luck! As you well know, there’s some real talent out there, Brendan. Good timing—being the luck end of it, I suppose—is an important ingredient in the recipe of one’s success, and I thank you for that mention.

There seems to be a good deal of controversy as to why serial murderers commit these heinous acts. Do you enlighten your readers as well—meaning, do you explain, precisely, why serial killers murder—and so cruelly?

The jury’s still out on that one, Brendan. Nonfiction writers on the subject, such as Dr. Helen Morrison—a world renowned forensic psychiatrist and author of My Life Among the Serial Killers—will one day answer those kinds of questions for us. If the answers do lie in the complex studies of endocrinology and the pituitary gland, which I tend to believe they do, maybe I can make a rather dry subject enlightening as Al Gore did in An Inconvenient Truth. Perhaps I’ll give it a shot. But for now, I’ll just educate and entertain by researching thoroughly and building verisimilitude—believability—into my novels.

Is there any statement you’d like to make concerning serial killers? Any myths to explode? Any avenues to explore? Any area that needs explaining?

If you are of Morrison’s mind, serial killers are born to us, not made. There are unquestionably ‘triggers’ that set these individuals off later on in life, but the mechanism is there to begin with. A time bomb, if you will. The cause may be equated to the taking of a drug—the effect tantamount to its aftermath in that the body may produce that very drug. There would, of course, have to be a preponderance of evidence to support such a hypothesis before speaking in absolutes. The danger would be to make sweeping generalizations until the majority of the scientific community reaches a definitive conclusion. I say majority for the simple reason that for every doctor who prescribes a certain course of action, you will find another who will proscribe that very treatment.

Being that there are apparently different schools of thought on the subject, what elements with regard to the serial killer might we be reasonably sure of?

To keep things simple, Dr. Morrison would tell you, as I will tell you, that serial killers have no remorse—no compunction—whatsoever for their actions. Too, there is no conscious motive for their behavior. In my talks, lectures, and novels, I attempt to slip into the mind and shoes of the serial killer, exploring apparent motives while unveiling the essence of the beast through a maze of acts and events.

It’s a fascinating subject to be sure, and your approach appears quite sensible.

Baby steps, Brendan. Baby steps.

May I take a peek in the office where you create these characters for your novels, Bob?

Absolutely, Brendan. Follow me—if you dare—into a dark recess of our humble abode. Donna, please lock the doors and pull the blinds so that Brendan and I are not ... disturbed. :o) I use that word judiciously.