I am an attorney who used to try criminal and civil cases, but no longer. After forty years, I now serve as a mediator and arbitrator, working to resolve cases before they go to court. But this is only part-time. I am also an author. I have written two books about a lawyer in Sacramento, Mike Zorich. The first was “Contempt of Court” and the second is “Fatal Reunion.” I have worked hard on both books and have learned a lot in the process, as I never wrote anything like this before. In fact, the main thing I have learned about writing is that you never stop learning.
The inspiration for my first book was an actual case where a judge decided to hold some attorneys in contempt for not complying with his order to turn over documents requested by the other party in a business case. The attorneys who were held in contempt of court argued that yet another judge had specifically forbidden them from turning over any documents and had issued a restraining order against all of them. So, it was a battle between judges. But the story developed into far more than that. The book was an opportunity for me to explore the motivations that would lead someone to do some horrible things, completely out of character.
The inspiration for my second book was a news story I read about a woman who was killed and, naturally, the police suspected her husband. But he had an airtight alibi. The case went cold but then the facts were uncovered showing that someone else was responsible, someone you would not normally even consider. I thought it was so unusual and I wanted to explore when went through this person’s head to make the decision to kill someone. Another inspiration for the story was a friend I knew who attended a reunion and found out that old lovers had met again and took up where they left off in high school. I know that people dream about this but I had not heard about it actually happening. So, I combined the two stories. In the process, I got to explore the character of the protagonist.
I tried to find an agent to publish both books but was unsuccessful. So I self-published through CreateSpace. I found the experience relatively easy to follow and I am very satisfied with the results. I used a professional editor to assist along the way. But I have also gained a new respect for some friends who have volunteered to read the various editions of my manuscripts and to give me advice. One individual, an author in her own right, also helped with final editing. My family has been very, very helpful Altogether, I am overwhelmed and most thankful for the help I have received. I continue to learn every day.
Meanwhile, I am hard at work on my third book about a man with a secret in his past. He eventually becomes a judge. I have wondered what it would be like to have something in your past that you don’t want anyone else to know. Of course, it will eventually become known and the judge will have to deal with the consequences.
Writing novels is not an easy task. It takes an awful lot of time. And there is a tremendous amount of frustration. But there is nothing quite like the occasional times when I sit down at ten in the morning to begin writing and before I know it, it is four in the afternoon. These experiences do not happen every day, but they happen often enough to keep me going.
About the Author
Ken Malovos has been practicing law in Sacramento for more than forty years. He spent twelve years with the Public Defender’s Office and twenty-five years as a business litigator. He now serves full-time as a mediator and arbitrator. Fatal Reunion is his second novel. His first novel, Contempt of Court, won first prize in the legal genre of the Mystery & Mayhem Book Writing Competition sponsored by Chanticleer Book Reviews. He and his wife, Michele, live in Sacramento.
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