The short answer is, “No.”
I’m not a private detective in Portland, Oregon, or anywhere else. I never taught journalism at Portland State, nor have I been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. I’m not a fourth degree black belt in taekwondo.
On the other hand, I was an investigative journalist in Evansville, Indiana, and served as managing editor of a weekly newspaper in Woodland, Washington. And I am a second degree black belt in taekwondo.
I have been known, in writing group meetings, to inadvertently say “I” when describing something Clint does in the book.
None of us can write anything but ourselves, of course. In that sense, my heroine Devon Malone is me and the flamboyant black pimp Reuben Keys is me and whoever is killing young women in the first book is me…but it was Clint who first told me that I had these books to write, whose history is at least similar to mine, and who is certainly closest to my heart.
Who among us doesn’t want more than one life to live? When I finished my stint as an investigative reporter, I gave serious thought to becoming a private detective. And now, through Clint, I am. I had to retire from martial arts training just before my third degree testing because of an injury, an injury that—combined with my age—would have prevented me from coming back one hundred percent. I would have liked to continue and now, through Clint, I can.
Walter Mitty has got nothing on me. (If you’re too young to know who Walter is, here’s a link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Mitty.)
Clint McCall is me on steroids, me in my dreams, me almost invulnerable, me as I love to live out his adventures and his relationship with Devon Malone.
The long answer is, “Yes.”