Episode 170 – The Genre of Andrew Pyper

In this episode Mark interviews Andrew Pyper, an international award winning Canadian author with novels published in multiple countries and multiple languages, with multiple property options in play, and more interesting creative projects in the works.

Prior to the interview, Mark shares a personal update that includes the two book projects due in early 2021 and the potential that he might reschedule one a few weeks back, a “wide writer” survey he has put out. He also talks about a Christmas parody K-Tel style album that he had planned on doing, but never got to, and also shares some lyrics from it.

Mark also shares a distribution update from this episode’s sponsor.

You can learn more about how you can get your work distributed to retailers and library systems around the world at

In their conversation, Andrew and Mark discuss:

  • How Mark first discovered Andrew’s work years ago when he was shelving new books in the bookstore he worked at
  • The publishing progression that Andrew experienced, writing short fiction and earning publication credits
  • How a journal/magazine editor Andrew had sold stories to introduced him to a publisher which led to his very first book (1996), which bypassed the normal submission/rejection cycle
  • The cross genre elements of Andrew’s novels that incorporate literary, horror, mystery, thriller (which Mark suggests are the “Andrew Pyper” genre)
  • The darkness that exists in all of Andrew’s novels
  • Loving the stories of Alice Munro and the intriguing “shadowy” and “danger” elements that exist in her writing
  • The latest short fiction pieces and projects Andrew has been working on
  • Some of the properties that Andrew is involved in licensing
  • How The Residence was based on actual historical details that happened with Franklin Pierce
  • The challenge that can come with over-researching for an author
  • The fun of having some trivia info in your back pocket about the White House being haunted
  • The intriguing architectural layout of the White House and the residence, including passageways and secret doors
  • A special book and audio drama Andrew is releasing via Audible
  • The “writers killing writers” premise in THE KILLING CIRCLE
  • And more…

Links of Interest

After the interview, Mark reflects on the networking, working hard, and first impressions aspects of writing and publishing, regardless of whether an author is working in traditional publishing or indie publishing.

Mark also welcomes new patron Jeff Elkins and thanks all patrons who support the podcast and also get access to additional text, audio, and video/visual material at

Andrew Pyper was born in Stratford, Ontario, in 1968. He received a B.A. and M.A. in English Literature from McGill University, as well as a law degree from the University of Toronto. Although called to the bar in 1996, he has never practiced.

His most recent novels include The Homecoming (2019), The Only Child (2017), and The Damned (2015). His 2013 novel, The Demonologist, won the International Thriller Writers Award for Best Hardcover Novel, and was a #1 bestseller in Canada and Brazil.

A number of Pyper’s works have been acquired for TV or feature film. The Homecoming is being developed by eOne with Andrew acting as Co-Creator and Executive Producer. Other active projects have not yet been announced.

Among the earlier novels, The Guardians was published in Canada (Doubleday Canada) in January 2011, the U.K. (Orion) in February 2011, and following this internationally in various territories. It was selected a Globe and Mail 100 Best Books of the Year.

The Killing Circle, Andrew’s fourth novel, was a national bestseller in Canada, and has been published in the U.K. (HarperCollins) and U.S. (St. Martin’s/Minotaur). Translation rights have been sold in Holland, Spain, Germany, Italy, Portugal and Japan.

Kiss Me, a collection of short stories, was published to acclaim in 1996. Following its publication, Mr. Pyper acted as Writer-in-Residence at Berton House, Dawson City, Yukon, as well as at Champlain College, Trent University.

His first novel, Lost Girls, was a national bestseller in Canada and a Globe and Mail Notable Book selection in 1999 as well as a Notable Book selection in the New York Times Book Review (2000) and the London Evening Standard (2000). The novel won the Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel and is an Otto Penzler pick on Lost Girls has been published in the U.S. (Delacorte Press) and U.K. (Macmillan) in 2000, and has also been translated into Italian, Dutch, German and Japanese.

Andrew’s second novel, The Trade Mission, was published in Canada, the U.K., U.S., the Netherlands and Germany. It was selected by The Toronto Star as one of the Ten Best Books of the Year.

Andrew’s third novel, The Wildfire Season, was a Globe and Mail Best Book of the Year and has been published to acclaim in the U.K., Canada, U.S. and Holland.

Andrew’s creative writing teaching experience includes terms at Trent University, the University of Toronto, and, currently, Colorado College. He lives in Toronto.

The introductory, end, and bumper music for this podcast (“Laser Groove”) was composed and produced by Kevin MacLeod of and is Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

2 thoughts on “Episode 170 – The Genre of Andrew Pyper”

  1. I LOVED that Pyper speaks of his writing projects as people who are who they are, and will brook no nonsense about being crammed into a shape they don’t want to be! 🙂

    I also really agree with the idea of taking a bit of extra time to polish a piece so that it’s the absolute best you can make it. There are few things in this world as depressing as reading a book that “coulda bin a contenda,” but which was posted before it was truly finished.

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