LF – How did you come up with the name and idea of Project Terror? The idea for Project Terror was born out of me wanting to show lessons about the life of typical urban kids in an entertaining way. When I initially submitted the script to Prodigy Gold Books it was titled, The Young and the Reckless. A search of Amazon found books with that title and we wanted to do something fresh and new. The story takes place in a Philadelphia housing project and sometimes urban criminals are described in the media as thugs and terrorists.
LF – Project Terror touches a lot of very relevant issues nowadays, did you have any issues touching these subjects? I was a military brat and entered the US armed forces. Upon leaving the military after an injury, I was in similar circumstances as the characters in the book. I didn’t have to be, but I was there in the thick of it and I was ultimately arrested for a bank robbery charge. I am not proud of that and hopefully, this novel can teach a lesson, which is: crime really isn’t worth it.
LF – How long did it take you to write the book? Including editing. It took me three months to write the book, but six months to edit. I had to really develop the characters because I had written them for readers that could identify with them, leaving out the readers that may have no idea. I also had to add a storyline for the cops and FBI agents to build that part of the thriller. This is my first book and was a true lesson.
LF – Did you ever think you would get your book published? I guess I thought I would. I just didn’t think the book needed so much work and when I was signed with the condition of a complete revising overhaul, I was shocked, as no other publisher would have gone so far.
LF – Are you currently working on any other projects? Yes, I have another book coming out maybe at the end of the year.
LF – Any tips or advice you would give to existing Authors or aspiring Authors? Yes, please know your writing craft. Read books. Watch YouTube videos. Take a class. There are so many unknown mechanics and they could help you land a publishing deal. There is an industry formula and if you stick to it you can win.
LF – Anything you would like to add or discuss? I simply want us all to pay more attention to the criminal justice system and realize that we all need a second chance. People are forgiven every day, but ex-cons have a hard time finding employment and that has to change, as some people could be assets to a company, but they don’t even get a shot.
Jamal Lewis was born in Philadelphia, a former boxer, and military brat. He pursued a writing career while serving a federal prison term after allowing his life to take a terrible turn resulting in him being shot four times. His debut crime thriller, PROJECT TERROR (Prodigy Gold Books, 2017) released Halloween 2017 on his birthday.
My review on Project Terror