Tim Holcombe is a full-time RVer, traveling across north America with his wife, Marina learning history, searching for cultural treasures, and the perfect plate of barbecue.
While traveling, Tim writes about his alter ego, Panama Parker, in the Panama Parker adventure series. All books are available on Amazon in paperback, and for your Kindle device.
If you see them on the road, make sure to say hello!
INTERVIEW WITH DR. MELISSA CAUDLE
Okay, we’ve met Panama. But can you tell us a little about yourself?
I was raised in Marietta, Georgia. I’m a bona fide southerner, with an affection for magnolia trees, mint juleps, and college football. I share a love of travel with my wife, Marina, and we meander the roads of America in our RV, searching history, culture, quirkiness, and inspiration for the next book.
What inspires you to write books?
My love of adventure and RV living is my inspiration. Panama Ghost is the latest book in my Panama Parker Adventureseries. Panama is my alter-ego, and a full-time RVer, constantly seeking adventure, while dodging trouble-filled obstacles, seemingly at every turn.
Where do you get the inspiration for your book’s covers?
They’re all simple covers which correspond with the theme of the book. In Margaritavillain, a glass and a bandit are set against the image of a hurricane. Panama’s dealing with all that, and a lot more. But I have them designed simply, and in a way, a tad cartoonish, which I think reflects Panama’s care-free philosophy, as well as helping the book to stand out.
Who has been the most significant influence on you personally and as a writer?
Well, I love southern humorists, such as Lewis Grizzard and Jerry Clower. Among writers, I enjoy the early works of Stuart Woods, Nelson Demille and Ken Follett. I think my style hopefully combines enough drama with humor, to hopefully keep the pages turning.
What were your struggles or obstacles you had to overcome to get this book written?
Book marketing has a fairly impressive learning curve. It takes a lot of work to be successful, particularly for independent authors. The actual writing is, for me, the easiest part of the process. I’m fortunate to have a terrific editor and marketing director, who also happens to occupy the other half of our annual tax return (which she also prepares.)
Who is your target audience, and why?
My target audience is anyone who enjoys a great story, complete with a few laughs, a few tears, and enough drama to keep you engaged. The Panama Parker series isn’t gratuitous: there’s no blood, gore, sex, or offensive language. My target audience enjoys this, I believe, and they know they’re getting a fun, wholesome read, while still managing to press all the right buttons.
What one unique thing sets you apart from other writers in your genre?
I think I’m pretty good at the development of my characters, as well as plot twists. Other than that, I’d say my unique southern flair, and my determination to write an engaging novel without being gratuitous.
Panama doesn’t seem to get too involved with serious issues of the day, such as politics. Coincidence?
(laughter) Oh, Panama is much like his creator. He believes national politics to be utterly hopeless, so he chooses to live his life far away from whatever is being designed for us in Washington. Helps one to avoid ulcers and alcoholism, you know.
So, Panama Ghost is out. It’s the seventh volume of the series. May we assume it’s not the last?
Well, he’s still alive at the end, and there’s the usual cliffhanger, so that’s probably a safe assumption.
Are you writing any other non-Panama Parker books?
Not at this time. Currently, I’m all in bed with him. So to speak.
Where do you prefer to write?
Anywhere I can find some quiet. My favorite would be beachside, with a cool drink at my side.
Then what are the future plans for Panama?
Next year, I’ll be releasing Panama Knockout, which has Panama teaming up with a wiry old Irishman to train a professional boxer. After that, it’s going to be Panama Mayberry, with our guy running into all sorts of adventure and trouble where Andy and Barney once maintained law and order.
Sounds interesting and fun! How many Panama Parker books will there be? Does it ever end?
You mean, does he fall over a cliff, our ram his RV into a tree or something?
Or perhaps he marries?
Well, we’ll see. It ends when my fingers quit, I suppose. Anyway, the last book likely won’t contain a cliffhanger. Perhaps he just rides off into the sunset, like an old cowboy. Who knows? I haven’t thought that far ahead.
Any message for your readers?
Yes. I appreciate very much their devotion to Panama. I also want to remind them the books make perfect Christmas gifts, so naturally, they would want to buy them in paperback, rather than Kindle.
I have mine. Will you autograph it?
Certainly, but you only purchased one?
(laughter) Thanks for your time!
Thanks a lot.