Tell us about yourself and what inspired you to start writing.
Hi, I’m Cesario Picca, I’m Italian, I was born in Salento, in the South of Italy, and I live between Lecce and Bologna. I’m a a crime and judicial reporter and when I write I’m inspired by the reality, by my work, by what I see and I hear, by the life. I love hearing, seeing and feeling what happens around me and I write it in a romance way. I mix real life experiences and imagination. But I think reality is the most important mine we can draw fully from. When I feel a story and I have many elements to write it I start writing. For example, some months ago I read about a prisoner’s escape and my fantasy turned on pushing me writing a new episode with the character Saru Santacroce like protagonist in his Salento.
Tell us about your books.
I’m a crime and judicial reporter and I work breathing crimes, murders, thrillers and suspense so it was not difficult to start writing. But I think there’s always a turning point in our life, the right moment to start doing something and I was looking for it. I started in 2004. It was a frozen evening and I was waiting for police to explain what happened in an apartment where an old woman died. The real story turned the beginning on in my mind. So I started thinking about a thriller and I wrote it. I looked for a real and honest editor to publish the romance but I haven’t found it. So I put the thriller in a drawer and I wrote another one. This second one was Murder in the Tremiti Isles which is set in the Adriatic Pearls in Puglia, in the South of Italy. I created the character Rosario Santacroce, nicknamed Saru, born in Salento like me, journalist who writes about crime stories. The author reveals the often humorous interplay between fellow-journalists, refers to real news stories and packs the investigation with twists right up to the surprise ending. My stories are peppered with amusing expressions in the Salento dialect related to the food, tastes and customs of Salento, that part of South Italy surrounded by two seas, and contain the right mix of eroticism and suspense.
How did you go about getting published?
I don’t like the policy used by traditional editors. Particularly, I’ve never found a serious or professional editor and so I decided to become an indie author. In this case I be grateful for Internet and its revolution which is breaking the mortal grip of traditional editors where connection can make the difference. I don’t think all indies will become writers like someone say because readers (and market) always give you your real value. But a good prayer and some luck can help to be successful.
What is your writing process? Do you have a time, day or place you like to write?
Generally, I write when I feel the story. Then I start working and I stop when it will be finished. While I write I find the inspiration to continue and I image situations and characters.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing? Full-time job, pets, hobbies?
I love footing. Untill now I have run 12 marathons all over the world. A good way, in my opinion, to relax, feel good, think and avoid putting on weight expecially if you love eating and cooking like me. I like travelling and knowing people, new point of view, new cultures, new feelings. In my opinion the best way to spend money. Then I love reading. In the past I read lots politics and historical essays, now I prefer thrillers. And, if I can, I love the other half of the sky…
Any advice for authors about book covers?
Covers are very important. Like the story you write, so you must find a good designer who can help you to create the first impact image of your book.
Any marketing tips you’d like to share with other authors?
They must not give up easily. If they have good and interesting stories to tell they have to write them. Readers are not stupid sheeps as someone think. So if they like an author they support him despite the only thought massifying or usual editors or newspapers’ reviews.
What’s your favorite book?
I usually read classics and Bible. I don’t have a favorite author. It depends on the moment and on my readings. In the past I read Edgar Wallace, Ellery Queen, Cornell Woolrich, Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie, Jeffery Deaver, John Grisham, Ken Follett.
What are you reading now?
The Black Abbot, a Edgar Wallace’s romance
What’s your next book project?
In the second Italian episode (Gioco mortale – delitto nel mondo della trasgressione) Saru writes about a murder in the world of transgression. Thanks to him you can discover all you wanted to know about this world and nobody wanted to tell you. But it was very difficult to write about sex and licentiousness without falling in trash.