May 5, 2021

Interview with Marc Cameron - NYT Bestselling Author and Chief Deputy US Marshal

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You can find Marc Cameron at 

The books we talk about in this episode are from Marc's "Arliss Cutter" series. 

*The following links are Amazon affiliate links. If you click on the link and make a purchase, a small percentage will go to support the Writer's Detective Bureau.







This episode would not be possible without the support of the following Patreon Patrons:




This week on the Writer's Detective Bureau: New York Times best-selling author and retired Chief Deputy United States Marshal Marc Cameron. I'm Adam Richardson and this is the Writer’s Detective Bureau. Welcome back to episode 108 of the Writer's Detective Bureau, the podcast dedicated to helping authors and screenwriters write professional quality crime-related fiction. Before we get into the interview, I have some Patrons that have stuck with me that I need to thank.


Namely Gold Shield patrons, Debra Dunbar from, CC Jameson from Larry Keeton, Vicki Tharp of, Chrysann Larry Darter, Natalie Barrelli, Craig Kingsman of, Lynn Vitale, Marco Carocari of, Terry Swann, Rob Kerns of and Mariah Stone of for their support,


along with my Silver Cufflink and Coffee Club patrons. You can find links to all of the patrons supporting this episode in the show notes at To learn more about using Patrion to grow your author business, or to support this podcast, check out /Patreon P A T R E O N. Today Is a big day today and marks a pretty big change at the Bureau.


Not only is it my triumphant return to the microphone after a particularly nasty and prolonged bout with a sinus infection that I will spare you the details of, today's also my last day as a college instructor. My students have their final exam today, and I've notified the college that after twelve years of teaching, this would be my last semester. It's bittersweet leaving the college that I love,


but it's the right move. And it's a move that I made for you: the writers who listen to this podcast. I've been spreading myself too thin to meet all of my commitments to the degree that they deserve. And I chose to follow my passion. So with my last labor-intensive college teaching semester behind me, I have a lot more time to devote to the Bureau. Weekly podcast episodes,


more frequent live streams on camera, TWO new courses coming this summer (more about those next week.) And finally, finally, my book, the Writer’s Detective Handbook will launch this fall. Sometimes we have to make room in our lives to accomplish the bigger and better things. And I could not be more excited. Speaking of excited, this is one heck of a special episode.


You know, I rarely do interviews that don't start with reading a Miranda card or putting someone "under caution" as our more polite international partners might say, but I certainly didn't need to read the rights to this man because I spend a lot of time reading his books instead, and you should too. So let's please give Marc Cameron a warm welcome to the Writer's Detective Bureau. [MUSIC]


My guest today is New York Times Bestselling author and retired Chief Deputy United States Marshal Marc Cameron. Marc is the author of the Arliss Cutter series of mystery novels. The New York Times Bestselling Jericho Quinn thriller series, and what I can only call the daunting duty of continuing Tom Clancy's legacy by continuing the Jack Ryan / Campus thriller series of novels. Welcome Marc to the Writer's Detective Bureau.


Thanks for having me. It sounds fun. Thanks for coming on.


ADAM: So we'll get back to those impressive writing chops here in a minute. I wanted to start by asking about the United States Marshals Service. Many of the folks listening right now are outside of the United States. So the word Marshal, much like the word sheriff, is not only frequently misspelled, it tends to immediately conjure up a Wild West mental image like Marshal Dillon of Gunsmoke,


or even the recent TV show Justified, which kind of has that Old West lawman feel. How would you describe what the modern United States Marshal Service does? Like what are their primary responsibilities?


MARC: Yeah, so just kind of ticking down the, the rotary club speech here. We, our main jobs are to protect the judiciary, to move federal prisoners to and from court and to,


and from their initial time in prison. So we don't have, in other words, we don't run jails or prisons ourselves, but when we, if somebody is taken into custody and found guilty in a trial, you know, in, in court, then the Marshals would be responsible for getting them either via vehicle, you know, like a cage sedan or van or by what everybody calls Con Air. But the real name for it is Justice Alien Transportation. So J-Pat. Justice Prisoner Alien Transportation System or J-Pats. So there are several aircraft that are involved in that, that go back to going up kind of a specific routes around the country and depuinties would meet those aircraft in vans. And so generally those duties happen early in your career when you you're just starting out,


you're pulling the, the hook and, and haulin' duties and go into, you know, spending a lot more time in court and going on long prisoner trips and things like that. And then as you kind of mature in your career, you can specialize in either witness security program or which is a comp it's competitive. You don't just say, I want to do it.


You have to compete with other people for, cause it's a inspector job, which is like a supervisory level. There's judicial security, which has to do with just what it says, you know, protecting judges on a full-time basis. So you might protect Supreme Court Justices or- cause they get protection all the time when they're outside the Beltway, but then regular United States District Judge would get protection when he or she has a bonafide threat.


And Marshal Service looks at those threats and sort of uses a specific matrix on when a, a threat needs to become a protective detail. So there, and I that's what I actually specialized in early in, in my career was judicial protection. And then we have our own Special Operations Group, which is like the, a SWAT team, but for the Marshals Service.


And there's a couple of full-time elements. And then people that work, deputies that work out in the districts and then they're called in during specific assignments. And then there's full-time fugitive work, which I also specialized in during part of the time just running the fugitive task forces, which are anybody that's in law enforcement has seen probably somebody from their agency is either their agency or a Sheriff's department near them,


or city has helped out with a task force. Some agencies do it on an ad hoc basis. Just depends on who we're after other ones supply like here in Anchorage, for instance, Anchorage PD and the State Troopers have folks on our task force full time. So it's housed in Marshals service space. We provide the overtime and things like that and gas for their cars and all of that sort of as an incentive to the agencies to put them over in the task force.


And then we don't just look for federal fugitives. We also, they can bring their, you know, village terrorists, if you will, the worst of the worst, the ones they really want to focus on. And then we, as in task force fashion, we'll focus on those state and local warrants as well. So it's, that's probably the sexiest job that,


you know, that Justified, Tommy Lee Jones:Fugitive U.S. Marshal's kind of gig. And it probably, for some people in their career, it can make up the bulk of their career for your rank and file. Deputy Marshal that's probably 30% of, of a career is, is fugitive hunting. So little bit of everything. We're very fortunate in that our, our credential,


instead of saying enforce U.S. Code, you know, 18 USC, whatever, whatever for either drug crimes or firearms or tax crimes or whatever. The United States Marshals credential says "enforce federal law," which means everything. So if, if for instance, I guess the, the best way to explain what, what we really are- people in the United States, always say,


we're the sheriffs for the federal government. Somebody overseas might not understand that. So just a really twenty-second civics lesson, there's three branches of the federal government: the Judicial, the Legislative, and the Executive. The Marshals service, although we're part of the executive branch. We execute warrants. We we're the enforcement side. We actually work very closely with the judicial branch because if a judge,


for instance says, you know, bangs his or her gavel and says, I want so-and-so in court, they have no way to get that person to court. Some person has to be the muscle. And so the best way to think about what the Marshals Service is, is although we're an executive branch, we are the muscle for the judicial branch. So that's why we call ourselves a,


or we're often described as the enforcement agency within the Department of Justice, where the FBI is an investigative agency within the Department of Justice, the Marshals Service, any, any process, any paper that comes across the bench from U.S. Courts that has to have enforcement action, is enforced by Deputy United States Marshals. So whether it's seizing ill gotten gains after, you know,


after a drug investigation, whether it's arresting someone on a fugitive warrant, whether it's bringing, going and picking up a juror, that's scoffing at the judge and not coming to jury duty, or just serving somebody a summons or subpoena. Any civil process or criminal process that comes across the, from the bench is enforced by us.


ADAM: Yeah. Having worked with quite a few agents from other federal agencies where they're quote unquote "Special Agents,"


I was always, I always learned that "Special Agent" actually was more of a limitation as far as they, they were stuck with the, whatever their legal purview is. So it sounds to me that it's actually a benefit of being a Deputy U.S. Marshal, of not having "special" in your name. It gives you kind of that catch all to enforce pretty much anything that comes across your plate.


MARC: Yeah. The, the, the Attorney General can actually, because we also have, because of the way we were formed in 1789, we have by statute the powers of a sheriff. So, and those were defined, you know, back from England, you know, British times. And so we have the power to, for instance, deputize. So that's why when you see whether there's big riots somewhere or a,


a huge event, like a Superbowl or the Olympics, they bring in Deputy Marshals and then state and local people. There's not enough. For instance, I worked in the Salt Lake City Olympics, the Winter Olympics they brought in, I don't know how many, a couple of hundred of us, but that wasn't enough people. And we were, we were assigned to the Secret Service.


They handled the logistics, but Deputy Marshals had to go in and some people from our headquarters came in and swore in all the other state and local people that didn't have authority in Salt Lake city, but we did. And so we made them Special Deputy Marshals for the- basically raised a posse- for the duration of the Olympics. And then they could enforce laws within,


within that jurisdiction, which wasn't normally their own. So we have that authority, if, if I'm early in my career, that we had a big hurricane in Miami hurricane Andrew, which blew away Homestead, Florida and Florida City, and some of the I've just, it was a terrible, a huge hurricane. And I remember I was in Texas, roofing


a lady's house a neighbor's house, and my pager went off and they said, "you need to be on a plane to Miami tomorrow and or by tonight." So I could be there tomorrow. So we had, we had state and local people that we were deputizing there. And then we just, the attorney general just said, law enforcement is having trouble in Miami,


send in the Marshals. Before my time, a couple of years before my time, there were strikes in, in West Virginia with coal miners and there was some violence going on. They sent in the Marshals. So there is a, we kind of have kind of a history of a big storm came through the Virgin islands, blew a prison down and all the prisoners escaped.


So they sent in the Marshals. So it's because of that. It's, it's, it's a really interesting job because you never know what it's going to be. It's you, you have to resign every job has its downside. Reports. Sending reports are not really a problem in the Marshals service because we're an enforcement agency. It's really obviously, if there's some violence or,


you know, you use your taser or there's a officer involved shooting or whatever, you have to write a report. But our reports are very short to the point. This is who we were after. This is who we arrested. This is what time of day it was. This is who was there. Amen. Send it on, go out and get the next person.


ADAM: "Saw felon. Arrested same."


MARC: Yeah, exactly, exactly, exactly. Weather cloudy, kind of a thing. So that's the sitting in court, that's our downside, but we don't have FBI or other agencies. My eldest son was a OSI agent for a number of years in the Air Force. And he he's a physician now, but he would tell me all the, you know,


it's just so report heavy, so many, so much paperwork you have to do. And you know, so everybody has the downside, but in the Marshals Service, even though you have that court, you have to deal with and maybe babysitting a prisoner in the hospital, the upside is phenomenal. That being able to go work a fugitive strike team in,


on the border for 10 weeks, where you, they had you, they pair you with a state or local person and hand you a stack of warrants and say, see you in six weeks and we'll go over what you got and give you some more, you know? And so it's, it's for a certain type of individual. That's pretty cool job.


And it definitely, it's very cool job.


ADAM: Especially when I have a boss that gives you the autonomy to go forth and conquer and not be micromanaged all the time. And it was fascinating learning that history as far as kind of recognizing the Marshals Service is almost the federal version of a sheriff with that posse comitatus kind of power, where we saw it as a local guy being assigned to a federal task force,


whether that's FBI, you know, violent crime or joint terrorism task force, or even a, a DEA task force, the local agents or the local cops are the ones that get that Special Deputy U.S. Marshal credential, essentially to be able to then enforce federal law and get federal warrants as part of that, but interesting to learn the history of it.


MARC: Yeah.It's pretty, pretty a fun backstory that a lot of Marshals Service has never been very good about tooting our own horn. We, when I hired on in the, I came on the Marshals Service in '91 and back then, I can't remember who was first, but the two big rental car companies, Hertz and Avis were like battling it out for number one.


And whichever one it was, I think it was Avis. And they were like, we're number two. So we try harder. And that was our motto. We were like, we're number two in the Justice Department. So we try harder. We want to be better. And it was kind of, we sort of, we gloried in the fact that we were the kind of the knuckle draggin' underdogs in the Justice Department,


but we were arresting more fugitives and still do arrest more fugitives than all the other federal, federal law enforcement agencies combined because we focus on that. It's not to demean what the other people do. They could, they just have other duties. And we really prid ourselves in that expertise of being manhunters.


ADAM: That's awesome. So several of my writers upon learning that I was going to be interviewing,


you had questions obviously about the Marshals' WIT SEC witness protection program, which you touched on briefly, and I'm sure you get questions about this all the time. So without obviously divulging sensitive information, what suggestions do you have for writers that want to include wit sec in their stories and have it be believable?


MARC: Yeah, so, so that is you're right. That's a question that comes up quite often.


And I would say that the there's good news and there's bad news. The good news is there are some things out there that I can't even talk about, even though they're in, in the public domain and you know, they're, they're in open source, but because I know about it from the Marshals Service, I'm not allowed to talk about it as a,


as a D the, the main thing that people need to remember. Two things, really one people that handle the witness security program, we call it wit sec, witness security or "the program." Those, those are called Inspectors. They're deputy marshals, but they have the rank of inspector. That's not secret Mary Shannon on, In Plain Sight or whatever Mary McCormick,


they do a good job. I think I'm pretty sure we had consultants on that show about the witness security program. So they have the same badge as us. They carry the same gun as us, but when somebody gets, and it's a competitive job, you come up through the ranks as a deputy, you go to the same training as a deputy.


I mean, you are a Deputy Marshal. We call them "do somes" DUSMs just a deputy us marshal, or sometimes jokingly, we call them pods, just a plain old deputy. They're not specialized in anything yet. So do some or a plain old deputy does their work, all the things we talked about, then they see on the computer,


they call it in promo merit promotion in promo thing will come across the computer an email and say, if you, these are the openings that come along wit sec inspector so-and-so. But even then, they're vague about where that when, even to the rank and file, they're vague about, you know, what part of the country, but then the people compete there.


There's and it depends on the year. Sometimes they bring in for interviews. Sometimes it's on the phone. Sometimes they just look at your background and talk to your bosses. But once you win that position, once you earn that position and you're put in that position, you go to more training and you really fall off the phone book. You're just not even,


you're not even, I mean, you're part of the Marshals Service, but you, and so as a brand new Deputy Marshal, as a brand new Deputy U.S. Marshal, there are certain things that you need to do as part of your career advancement. And we don't have a field training officer program like to do in a uniform thing. That's, you know,


where somebody is assigned to you and you get marked down or every day, or they try to run you off or haze ya or whatever. We don't have that when you leave Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, and then the Marshals Service Academy, you come on and you hit the ground running and you might be assigned with a jail guard, you know, maybe a retired DEA agent to go pick up a bunch of prisoners.


They expect you to know how to do that already. You do have a senior deputy that's sort of your mentor, your rabbi or Bhagwan or whatever you want to call them. But then during the first three years of your career, the headquarters wants to know that you have X number of weeks doing fugitive operations, X number of weeks, seizing some sort of assets,


seizing civil or criminal ill gotten gains assets. So many, so much time doing witness security. So during that time, you'll get assigned at some point to a witness security assignment as a post stander, or working with inspector or producing someone for court, all the open stuff that every body knows about if you're in witness, if you're on the program, you're going to have to testify.


That's part of being on the program and they need deputies to help bring all those people. And so it's just like a Secret Service detail, if you will, a protective detail, but on our protected witness, sometimes they're in custody. Sometimes there are, you know, the, it's not a secret to say that by and large, the person on the actual protectee is really the,


the first rat to the trough. You know, it's, it's not like some it's, I shouldn't say not, but rarely is it some beautiful bookkeeper that just happened to overhear a criminal act. These are other criminals that made a deal, and that's why they're on the program, right? So the deputies early in their career, that's their taste of witness security.


So when a writer's writing about it, they can have a deputy helping out or whatever, but the inspectors are the ones that do on it, or actually the day to day mission of the part I can't talk about is what goes on, you know, where people are assigned, what the inspectors are doing, how they set them up, a lot of questions or how they set them up with new identities.


There's a good discovery program about that and watch that. But it's, it's much like, I mean, I have friends that are retired Central Intelligence Agency. Okay. So when I write the Tom Clancy books or the Jericho books, if I wanna nudge on CIA, I can take what I know. And then that's enough to send me to cause some stuff they just can't talk about,


but it sends me to the open source things that I can Google and videos I can look at and things like that. And I mean, I think Sammy The Bull has even talked about it. He was on witness security in New Mexico and then was started selling drugs and ended up getting kicked off the program. So it's not, I think he's talked about what the program is like a little bit,


cause he got, he got mad so you can glean some of those things. But the reality of it is it's so some parts of it are so secret sensitive that you can make they stuff up. You know, nobody's going to call you on it. Really. If you think about it, if you wanted to hide someone and you used your common sense about a hide,


someone break them off from their normal, well, their regular life. They don't have any contact with that anymore. How would you do it? And put a WIT SEC inspector in charge of that? Another, another a book to read is got it here. I've got it signed. My son may have borrowed it, but the Pistone Joe Pistone,


ADAM: Oh yeah, Donnie Brasco


MARC: yeah. Donnie Brasco. So I've got a signed copy and he teaches undercover work and all that. Well you just read about what they did and it wasn't witness security, but what they did to protect him, it's, it's really kind of common sense. And so as long as a writer will put it in the milieu of the Marshals Service. So often it's the FBI.


And we're like, okay, say that you want to, but that's not right. Put it in the Marshals Service also to remember that nobody on The Program that kept the rules has ever been killed. And so when you write about it, if a witness is killed and it's fiction, you're going to do your thing. But the reality of it is if it gets exciting in wit sec,


somebody made an error. It's very low key, very it's that's what makes it secure is when you just have so many layers between the protectee and his or her background, that it just should never be. I mean, we don't, for instance, if you have your protective people wearing, well, your people study police work like shoot me first vests like a vest that screams police or law enforcement or Royal Robbins shirts or pants,


or, you know, 5.11 pants that is not the way to run a wit sec detail. So your person shouldn't, when you're writing about somebody that's doing any kind of protection, that's low profile, tacticool is not the way to go. You should look in fact as a, as a retired guy who, I mean, I'm, I'm a gun guy.


Like I carry a concealed and all that. I very rarely talk about that online. Nobody's going to see, for instance where I carry or what kind of holster or anything like that. It's very, and if I show that online, it's cause I'm switching to a different way of doing it. That's just not tactical to me to blurt that out to the world.


And so I bring some of my knowledge from that from my job. And I would rather be a tactical grandpa when I'm out with my grandkids where people don't know who I am. If they ever had a well meaning friends say, you know, if somebody tries to attack you, you pull your knife and kind of threaten them. And I said, Nope,


Nope, Nope. If, if, if anybody ever sees my knife, it's after I've stabbed them nine times, you know what I mean? And I'm not a knife guy when it comes to that. I'm just my point is you don't brandish things you don't, and, and the same goes with your uniform, your daily tacticool Oakleys and Royal Robbins or 5.11 I'm I'm dating myself,


calling Royal Robbins, but 5. 11's or whatever. And so when you're writing about somebody that's doing judicial protection, witness security, whatever, they just need to blend in as if you were writing about a covert op, because that's what it is. Yeah. Awesome. Does that make sense? Is that enough? I don't, I'm saying a lot without saying much,


ADAM: Which is perfect. I'm sure that's what The Program would hope for. No, definitely. I mean, I think the, you know, put yourself in that position as a writer and what would you do logically and see where that takes you.


MARC: Nobody's going to call you on it. There's not going to be anybody from the Marshals Service that goes, no,


we don't do it that way. Sorry. You've made a big error. So you'll be fine. As long as it doesn't, you know, it's like any other kind of research, you're really doing the research. So you don't get it wrong. Not, you don't have to have all the right components, just don't put it with the Bureau or have them carry a different kind of pistol than the Marshals Service regular deputies do or whatever,


just realize it's and you can get that from open source.


ADAM: So out of all of the assignments that you've had, which one was your favorite?


MARC: You know I really enjoyed, I enjoy protective work a lot. I enjoyed right after the first world trade center bombing. We, we moved when I first went there, we were moving Ramzi Yousef back and forth to court.


And then I was assigned to Judge Mukasey's wife who handled the, he was one of the judges handling the trial. Judge Mukasey later became the Attorney General. But so I was on a protective detail for his wife and she was very active in town. She was on a softball Scheider. I mean, this is just very interesting to me to do protective work.


So I, I enjoyed that. A lot of times we, as deputy marshals, since we're trained with protection, we get assigned to the department of state diplomatic security. And so several times over my career, I was assigned during the United nations general assembly to protect at one point for several weeks, I did the Japanese foreign minister. And then another time he did the Chinese foreign minister,


India, Egypt, Egypt for a while. But the Chinese one was the most interesting to me because it was, we did it twice. It was the 50th anniversary, you and gala. And then they had us come back for the regular general assembly or the other way round. I can't remember, but we did. We went home. And if they,


they liked you on the detail, they brought you back. And at the end of that one, that point I was in Idaho assigned to the Marshall service in Idaho. And at the end of that one, the DSS agent to me and said, Hey, it was, it was the time when the Dayton peace Accords were going on. And they said,


all, we need all our DS agents, diplomatic security agents for the Dayton peace Accords, but the Chinese version of air force one needs one of us on it. There's gonna be some secret service agents and a DS agent. You work for us. Would you mind flying with it as far as Alaska and dumb shell being was the president, or I think that was who it was,


was the president or the premier of China at the time. And so he, it was his airplane. The foreign minister was the vice premier vice president. They have like a dual role. So I was on there for him while we were in us airspace. So we flew from New York, landed in Anchorage, but that whole thing we got brought up to the front and the,


the premier of China, you know, the top guy that I'd seen on the news. And he gave me a tie and I was only on the detail for minutes on it. You know, just few hours on his airplane. I was on his underlings detail, but just seeing it as a writer. And I knew I was when I was writing at the time.


At that point, I was still writing westerns, but I knew I wanted to break into thrillers and being able to be on China's aircraft, being able to hang out behind the walls of the UN and watch the, what I know is, you know, an out on the streets watching some espionage go down and, you know, a little things like that.


That was, it was really thriller Writer, one Oh one and just being a fly on the wall. And so I really enjoyed those details. Amazing. So what would you just looking back if one comes off the top of your head, what would you say was the best day of your career? Hmm, well, that's a hard question that I maybe graduating the Academy.


I mean, it's such a, I had a, my youngest son, who's a police officer here in Anchorage was born while I was in the Academy. And so I, I, that was probably the best day I was, of course, you know, I knew he was coming along. I went to the Academy, she was seven and a half months pregnant.


And so we were out on a fun run, which was like, they call them fun runs, but like eight to 10 mile runs, depending on how the instructor feels, how much fun they wanted you to have. Yeah, exactly. You're running in formation and the instructors know how far they're running. So they paced themselves the rest of your, you know,


trying to stay in formation and you're singing cadence and they run you past the gym and, you know, you think you're home, but you're not home. And, you know, it's the same kind of mind games that everybody, every Academy plays and my wife at eight months, right. I guess, I think three weeks before she was due, they decided to go ahead and take the baby.


And I was, this was before cell phones. So I called once a week on the bank of payphones, you know, and, and let's see it, the federal law enforcement training center. So I really wasn't up to speed on what was going on and this limousine and a little golf cart that we had, these armored limousines we practiced with for driving and things like that.


It pulled up next to our fun run back in the woods and Georgia and said fall out, we're having a baby. And I jumped in the car and they took me back to the infamous building 20, which is Marshall service headquarters at the Academy, but no debt, no recruits ever go there. So I got to go in building 20 and talk to my wife and she told me the baby was okay,


just three weeks early, but he's doing fine. And very short talk. And then the instructors all said, so you Quintin. And I said, no, I knew it was going to happen. I'm sticking it out. And so then they drove me back out and I ran the last four miles with my class. And that was a pretty dang good day.


Last four miles went pretty sweet. But then when you graduate, you know, I want to be a deputy Marshall, much of my, much of my law enforcement. Well, my whole law enforcement life. But really since I was about 14, when I met one and you know, a real one, not the Hollywood eyes version, although he was kind of the Hollywood eyes version.


But, and as it happened, he was the one that did my background, the guy that I met when I was 14, he did my background for the job. But so when they graduate, you get a diploma of course, but to have your credentials all stacked up on a table and the Marshall service credentials are, they're different than some in that our badges on the outside of the credential.


So when you open it up, it's your actual credentials. The badge is in a cutout on the outside. So it's all stacked up on the table with all these open credentials, with a circle star. And it was when they call you up and they give you that and you realize, you, you really, you really are this deputy us Marshall.


He really always wanted to be. That was, that was pretty amazing to me. That's awesome. Yeah, I would, I would definitely say that my graduation, my Academy graduation was definitely one of the, like, not just, yeah, absolutely. I mean, man, with all the blood, sweat and tears that you put into trying to get through that thing in one piece.


Exactly. So while you were active with the Marshall service, what, what did your everyday carry your EDC look like? What did you carry on you? So a little bit of everything. When we, when I went through the Academy and again, I'm dating myself like Royal Robbins. I, I, so I carried a six 86 revolver when I was with the police Department.


And then when, when I hired on with the marshals, they were issuing that they were issuing Smith and Wesson models. 66 is, but they had, we shot so much that they were some of the spur, the screws were backing out of the adjustable sites. And so they went to this, the Ruger GP 100, which was a great revolver,


but it is a boat anchor. I mean, you can't, there's no adjustable side. It was just, it looks like the old, what the FBI used to shoot years ago, the model 13, just to ramp where your site and just to snubby three inch barrel. So we shot with the GP 100, which was a good enough gun. And I was sure having to get it on graduation day when you go by and they pass them all out to you and you actually get to fly home,


armed on the airplane for the first time and all of that kind of a Rite of passage. But as soon as I got back home, I I've always, I always wanted a 45 when I was with the patrol. In fact, I lobbied with our police department, with our chief to get the right, to carry a semi-autonomous, but I left before they allowed you to carry semi autos.


And so when I got home, I carried a 45 Oh six, a Smith and Wesson 45 of six. And then I realized that I really liked revolvers, and this is kind of embarrassing, but I, I had my partner at the time, just a super guy, an incredible law man named John Moore is a really tall effector if I called him too tall,


but he is not a very tall guy, but he made up for it and personality. He talked with those really low Clint Eastwood kind of whispers. And you knew he would kill you if you messed up. I mean, he was just former Vietnam, one 73rd, just to no nonsense kind of guy, but the best fugitive Hunter I've ever been around.


So he's my first partner. And he carried the three 57 revolver that he named Becky Sue. And it had, it was beautiful blue, like, like the same kind of bluing as a coat Python, except this was aftermarket bluing. And then it had Mexican, like three tone, Gold grips, certainly not tactical as far as sweaty, but man,


they were pretty. And the, the, the cylinder was a nickel, the hammer and the trigger were Gold and it was just this outlandish, but the guy could shoot aspirin out of the air. I mean, he was just an Craig. My, I could, I could shoot. Okay. But my tar, my targets had like fist size holes in the middle of them.


His were like nine holes wide with all 60 rounds of ammo. So I just thought, man, if John cares well where I want to carry revolver. So I ended up buying a 44 special couldn't carry a Magnum unless it was the three 57 Magnum. I bought a round, but three inch 44 or two and a half inch 44 special, I can't remember was called six 24,


something like that. And I got a perlite grips and I embedded a marshal service star on either side of it. So, and I polished the stainless so that it looked like, like a mirror, because that's what John did with his, you know? And so I, so when we would go to, and I carried that for years, I carried that up into Idaho when I transferred to Idaho and we go,


I remember going to Walla Walla state prison in Washington. We were taking prisoners across from Idaho over to we're actually going to drop them in Oregon, but we have to go drop somebody in Walla Walla Walla Walla has one of those prisons. I don't know what it's like now. But back then, when you pulled into the little, no man's land gated,


Sally port, and then their guard shack, the tower, they just lowered a canvas bucket down. And then you put your guns all in that bucket and guns and knives and whatever. My partner at that time was a guy named Dennis Brzezinski. Former army ranger saw our special operations group commander, another just fantastic partner to have. So he was carrying a 45 and five or six knives and a push dagger.


I mean, he was like the Raylan givens of his time and humongous mustache. They wouldn't let me grow a beard, but Danny had a yard and a half long curly mustache, but so we put our guns in the bucket and then we were going through and I looked up as we were pulling away and I had a little short, we call it a wit sec,


shotgun, the little living eight 70 that now they call them a tack 14. I have one now they're illegal, but ours was shorter even than that. And so I had that my six 24 that I named Clarice because John named his Becky Sue and they were, they had them all lined out. We could see them up on the tower and they were looking at our guns and knives and I thought,


yep, I've arrived where they're interested in what I'm carrying. And after that, I kind of grew up and carried in a, kind of became a little more taciturn. And I carried a, a SIG two, two nine for, until carried that through the latter part of Idaho and all through my career until they made us go to Glocks and then they mandated a Glock.


And So, so it was back then. Were you able to carry what you wanted then? And then they became department wide. You shall carry sometime after nine, Nine 11. I can't even remember when I want to say it was like 2004 or something like that. They mandated a Glock 40 caliber and you could carry it. You were, we were issued that the model 22,


the bigger 40 Cal I was, I was a judicial security inspector. So I specialized in protection. Everybody's playing close, but in their infinite wisdom, our headquarters said all deputy marshals get a Glock 22, except Marshall's the presidential appointee and judicial security inspectors. And you guys get the 23, the mid-sized Lynn. I don't know why they did it, but I,


so I ended up with a 23. Then one of the young lady deputies in our office I'd become, I was the chief. I promoted to chief and she was having a little, the bigger gun was a little bit large for her hand size and her really, her body size concealing the mile 22. And so I swapped with her. And, but then as the chief,


I carried the smaller 27 and kept the 22 in the safe most of the time. So, but we, we had to go to Glocks. And in fact, that's part of the shtick, if you will, or the character of Arlis cutter in my new books is that he, his grandfather was a Florida Marine patrol officer who carries a Colt Python.


We could carry, even now we can carry whatever we want within that three 57 Magnum or three 80, basically up to a 3.7 Magnum or a 44 special, or a 45 ACP, just not 44 Magnum or something like that as a backup gun. And so in the books, he has a little small Glock 27. He keeps over his kidney. That's his policy gun.


And his backup gun is his grandfather's coat Python that he carries on his hip. Okay. That's awesome. So, which, which brings us to one of my favorite characters, even though he's actually off camera as a mentor, if you will, but grumpy cutter. So who, who was grumpy and, or who is grumpy, I guess. And what is your personal favorite rule of his?


Well, I think grumpy is a mixture of the guy I told you about John, my own grandfather, the law men that I knew growing up, you know, the really that, and oftentimes grumpy is me grumpy is that I have two, two grandsons. I have five grandkids. And two of my, my oldest two are they're 15 months apart,


but they look like twins and one has a little darker hair. One is blonde, really quite blonde hair, you know, like toe headed hair. And so I really based the two twins on my grandsons and I try to teach them to be good young men to be good people. And so the things that I've learned over the years from my mentors,


my grandpa and my grandma for that matter, I just sort of mushed them all together and made those grumpy isms. And you know, you can't see it, but behind me, I've got like, I dunno, 30 small Molesky notebooks that I've just filled up over the years with somebody that say something cool. And I write it down and I, I have a lot of grumpy isms.


I think the, you know, I don't know that I have a favorite. I keep coming up with them all the time, but I, you know, I'm gleaning them even now, you know, and I hear something that I would want to pass on to my grandkids, my granddaughter, or my grandsons or my own kids. Just things that,


you know, that stand up when somebody shakes your hand, you know, look them in the eye. Probably the one that I quote the most often is a let no guilty man, go free. How that's, you know, you in, in the next book, the one that I, that it's number four, it's just turned in. I have,


I actually flashback to grumpy. We get to meet grumpy. Awesome. When the boys are very young in Florida and he's leaving and he, he talks about how sometimes you just have to go right out a thing. You can't wait around at it. You got to just attack it, head on. And so I try to basically, if I, if I'm hanging around with my grandsons and I see that they need some correction,


I, that ends up in a book and I, I write a grumpy rule for it, but I'm certainly not smart up to make them up myself. I'm stealing it from smart men and women that I know As it should be. Another recurring character is our list is subordinate. Deputy us Marshall, Lola. Now I'm going to ask for help on the pronunciation,


because in one of the books, you talk about how the proper pronunciation of her last name. Yeah. It's a it's it's cook Island Maori. So it's it's or like, like a Japanese or a Spanish or a hard R instead of RR. It's a D R so T at Vicki to almost, if you said tad Vicki, like a D, but it's some people when they read it,


they say teriyaki, but it's a Lola<inaudible> and it just means the Reiki or the<inaudible> a R I a R I K I, Ms. Chief. So on the ice, my wife and I go to Rotonda every winter spend a couple of months there. We have some wonderful friends there. The, the audio is the chief. So the<inaudible> just means the big chief.


So the, the, the chief and I named that character. And then we were talking to some people that run a resort there, and her name is her last name is Todd Vicki. So she's become an, and oddly enough, I'd known her from taking our family over to this resort. I just knew her, her name's Naomi and her maiden name is Todd Vicki.


So when I showed her the book, she was like, Oh my gosh, I'm, I'm mucked out. Eeky. And I had actually based some of Lola's mannerisms stuff on Naomi and this other gal that works with her name Vicki and some of the other, they're just such, they're such larger than life. Interesting, fun, loving, but tough people,


the men and women there, that they're just a, such a great culture. And they speak with these with a really marvelous Kiwi accent and New Zealand accent. And so since they speak English, sometimes we think, Oh, we're they think like I do, but they have a different way of approaching things. And, you know, they're like Australians and Kiwis are in,


in many ways, much kinder than we are and the way they think of things in life. And it's been a, it's been a great learning experience. So I, I, because she was, she has that culture. Her father was cook Island. Matt Lola's father was cook Island Maori. She can approach where our list is, is really taciturn.


He's, he's grumpy, basically. He's I think there's a line in one of the books where somebody talks about him being a grumpy cutter. And he says, well, there's, there's only, he can be a grumpy cutter, but there's only one grumpy cutter is, but he doesn't smile much where Lola is just smiling and happy. And just like Mike,


my cook Island friends. And so it's been really fun to get to know her character better and have her as a foil for our lists and him for her. So he can teach her about tracking. You can show her, even though he's from Florida and she's been in Alaska for a few months longer than him, he can, she can say, well,


this is what it's like over there. And he can say, all right, well, I don't know what it's like in Fairbanks, but I know what it's like to track a bad guy over the ground and he can teach her that. So it's a, it's a fun way as a writer to teach the reader, bits and pieces of man hunting,


man tracking as Arlis teaches her. And then also talk about humanity and how we should be as law enforcement, has she softens our rough edges? And then the way you you speak of both of them, they sound, I mean, as a reader, obviously they, they come to life, you know, like I can anticipate, like if you were reading a line,


I could tell which character it was just by their voice and what they were saying. So it's an amazing work on your part. So my question is, and I know a lot of writers kind of feel like that their characters take on a life of their own beyond what the plot would necessarily call for. So as the creator of this world, do they ever talk to you as far as,


I mean, it sounds weird to say it like that, but like, do they ever surprise you and how all of a sudden they're telling you what they would really do? Well, I think the, in my, the way I write, I wouldn't say they talked to me, but they certainly, what I try to do is rather than come up with a thing for my characters to do,


I try to come up with the plot in that the first thing I do is figure out what the bad guys are trying to get done. So I write a timeline of what are the bad guys doing. Here's what they're trying to make happen. Here's the methods they're going to go, here's their fiendish plot. And then how can my good guys, my protagonists intersect with that fiendish plot.


And so I create the world and I'll fill up three or four legal pads of just that here. What if they did this? What if they did that? And you want the bad guys to be as smart as you can so that your good guys have to work harder. Right? And so then I plunk Arlis and Lola down in that world. And I feel like I know them well enough that I'm not directing them.


I'm allowing them w what my direction is, is building their characters. And so if I know for instance, that Arlis would lose his temper in this situation, I better make sure Lola's there beside him, or he's going to do something that's going to cost him his job or worse, right. With this bad behavior. And so I wouldn't say that they talked back to me,


but they certainly, sometimes I I'm surprised I go, Oh yeah, yeah, that's right. That's what, that's what she would do. That's, you know, I'm riding along and, or I'll get to a point where I think this, this isn't working and the reason it's not working is because I'm trying to make a character, do something that's against their character,


do do something against their makeup. And then it feels wrong. It feels tinny. There was a character in the early Jericho books named Veronica Garcia. And when I first wrote her, I wrote her as a sacrificial lamb, like the bond girl that dies, right. She's a CIA uniform officer. She supposed to stop shooting an active shooter, or a couple of active shooters at Langley,


George George Bush centers for intelligence. And she, so we meet her. She's getting out of the shower from working out in the gym and she just wants friends so bad. And, and I want to make her this character. That's not just a bad-ass, but a human being, but also a bad ass. So she's getting dressed. She's trying to be friends with somebody that's in an analyst,


but in CA you know, you're careful who your friends are. And then she gets involved in the shooting and she's supposed to die in my original plot. She's just a really cool person that's sacrificed. And it makes us see how bad the people are. Well, she's been in every book and she's now Jericho's love interest because her care, if I made her that much of a tactician,


she couldn't lose, she did the right job. She was damaged, but then I just liked her too much. And she became too strong, a character for me to write off the page. And as I said, she's, she's, she appeared in the second Jericho and she's been in every one of them since. That's awesome. So in to get to your career now that we've,


so we've talked about Jericho, we've talked about the Arlis cutter series. Of course, we've had the mentioned earlier the enormous weight of taking on the world, the legacy of Tom Clancy stuff. So obviously you've had a hell of a writing career in its own, right. Nevermind your law enforcement career. So if we were to think back to the beginning of the writing,


where in your learning and implementing the craft of storytelling, at what point did it feel like it really clicked? Like where did you kind of seal it? You graduated from amateur to pro with your writing. Yeah. I think, I think I'm waiting for that day to happen. Maybe I I'm pretty self-critical and I, my wife always jokes that I,


I love the book. I'm about to write and hate the book I'm working on now and try to not ever talk about the book I just got finished with. I, I, I'm pretty hard on myself. I'm not one of those people that likes to read my own writing in an event like this. I just, some of my books, I like,


I like, I like the newest jerk or the newest cutter that's out. I really liked the one before that the most of all, any book I've ever written is called stone cross. Not that the other ones are bad. I just, that one's the most got the most of me in it, I think because of the Marshall service work and Bush,


Alaska, and all of that. But I, I wanted to ride when I was very young gut, you know, road stories. My, we took a lot of road trips to visit my grand parents when I was little. And my dad was the kind of guy that didn't like radios on the car. So the car was like quiet for days.


And so I took notepads with me and wrote in the backseat, these huge Plymouth SERP belt with Belvedere or whatever they happen to have, my sister did her thing. And I wrote that was it. So I did a lot of writing, got a lot. And then as I grew up, got older, I, I got a, I was a horrible student cause I would,


I would be studying physics when I should've been studying history and then studying about, you know, rocket surf, whatever, studying memorizing Hamlet, when I should have been doing biology. Right. I was just all over the place. And I wouldn't say that I had attention deficit, but I just didn't care. And I wanted to study what I wanted to study.


And so I, but my dad, I was really into theater at the time and kind of a weirdo, really an odd kid, I think. But I, it turned out good because I met my wife in the theater, but I really wanted to be in school plays. And my dad said, if you don't make straight, A's you don't,


you're not doing any afterschool stuff, no track, no theater, no nothing. And so I really busted my butt there. My, my junior year I took, I want to just graduate early and move to Alaska. And so I was taking summer school and all of that, I figured if I made CS, that was good enough, but my dad was a school teacher.


So he wanted me to make A's and I made A's in every class. Except at that time I was a junior, but I was taking senior English. And it, Ms. Skidmore was the hardest teacher in school. I mean, she was, if I were to put some on Facebook, in my Weatherford high school, class of 80, no one would disagree with me that she was the hardest English teacher there was,


but everybody loved her because she loved us. And I turned in a paper and I can't remember what it was about. It was, I mean, I can't remember. It was a short story. I think something about growing up and my mom growing up in Louisiana and me going back to visit some kind of a personal essay, short story, and she handed it back and it had red marks all over it.


And it was just, this was misspelled. I think I wrote it in pencil when it should have been typed. And she gave me a C minus, but at the top she wrote Mark, this looks publishable to me. And it's the only time I ever, I ever took a C minus favorite home and showed it to my dad because Ms. Skidmore said that this was a publishable and it never was.


But to me, that was like, okay, I can, I can do this. If she thinks that I can publish this then. And she actually assigned to me, she said, this isn't for a grade. This isn't for you to get extra credit, but I want you to read it was a Robert Penn Warren book called all the King's men.


And it's, it's, it's a Pulitzer winning night. It's a big, old honking, thick, novel. It's about loosely based on Huey, Huey long, the governor of Louisiana back in the twenties. And, but it's, there've been movies made about it, but it's a really great literary novel. And she said, I just want you to read It and learn from it and do it.


I'm giving you this. Cause I love you Mark. That kind of thing. So I, I w I decided then that I was going to do this for a living and then wrote for the next 20 years and just got rejection letters every month. And when my wife would shoot my wife just put up with me. And in fact, I tell the story all the time,


but she, the first year of our marriage, she bought me a, a American body armor, ballistic vest, kind with an Armadillo on it. And the bullet bouncing off because they didn't buy them for us back then. So she bought me my first ballistic vest and a Smith grown electric typewriter that first year. Cause she knew that's my passions were.


And then to her credit or just being nice. I don't know why, but she'd let me spend an hour or two most nights a week just hunched over the typewriter. Right. And silly stories that never got published. And then, like I said, about 20 years later, I got one and then another one and then another one. And I don't know that I ever felt anything click,


but I really studied though. I mean, I would take a, I would go to the bookstore and take my little notebook and, or the library and write down first lines of every book that I was interested in and see what the author did to hook the reader. From the beginning, I bought a bunch of Ken Follett books and read them the key to Rebecca I,


the needle man from St. Petersburg or three that I have that are just all lined up with notes and margin notes and highlights. And let's see what he did here and how he did that. And we ended up, I ended up when I got my literary agent, that's been my agent for 17 years now is Robin Rue with writers house who represents Ken Follett.


So it's kind of a, a cool little, ah, moment when I walked into writer's house the first time. And there's a big painting of Ken Follett with all his characters surrounding him and his study. So if I were to have a aha moment, that would probably be at when I walked into writer's house, which is a fantastic literary agent agency.


I'm one of their little fish. I'm sure they represent Stephanie Meyer and Neil Gaiman and Ken Follett and a bunch of people just realizing, okay, I'm, I'm a little part of this, but I'm at least a part of this and kind of jazzes you up. Definitely. I mean, having that kind of background, it's almost as if that manifested itself for you.


That's pretty amazing. Yeah. So what writing advice would you give? Not to like a beginning or aspiring writer, but to a writer that's squarely in the middle of their career. So like they're serious about their writing. They have a few books under their belt and they've sold some, but what advice to give them to try to elevate their game? Well,


I think in this day and age, the advice I would give them or anyone else, two things, really one go to conferences, network. Really you, you realized that you're front list sales your back list. So the more books you write, the more notice you're going to get. In fact, I'm a, I'm a big proponent of not spending a whole lot of time on social media,


but writing, we have only so much writing energy. And if you are, I shouldn't say you, cause I can only speak to myself. But if I like right now, I have a book that just came out last Tuesday. So I have to spend a certain amount of time saying, go listen to this podcast or go, you know, come to this books,


virtual book event, you know, and communicate with my readers. I use social media not to find new readers because I, I, for one, I've never bought a book because somebody on Facebook told me to buy a book, but I have readers that follow me. And so I try to basically show them what it's like to live in Alaska and pretend that I'm writing the autobiography certainly abbreviated,


but here's my life. Here's what informs my writing. So get to know their readers better without trying to sell them a book, give them added value instead of just constantly. Here's my new book. Please buy it. Please buy my book. Please buy my book, but give the reader something. That's, that's something of value. And by doing that,


it's either more written work, not just a snarky Facebook post or Twitter tweet, but what writing, you know, give them some, give them an essay, give them something that's that's value where they can say, well, I like the way that person writes or, or a podcast or whatever. Something that, something that gives them added value, but above all above all of that advice,


whether it's a, a, I think it's becoming a law, but observation is becoming a lost art. We are as writers. We're so caught up. We can be so caught up in social media and our phones that we forget to, for instance, stand at the air. I would just came back from Texas, visiting our grandkids. And I made a conscious effort to keep my phone in my pocket and just watch the people around me.


But it's so easy to just be plugged into our phone all the time and live in this virtual world. And the writers that observe, they stand head and shoulders above the writers that are just getting all their information off movies. They watched off Netflix. You really don't know what a teenager sounds like. If all you listen to is teenagers on Netflix or read about it in a book you need to be out watching and listening and getting your nose out of your phone.


And I think that's something that we all that, that I see when I, cause I get a lot of manuscripts sent to me saying, can you give me a blurb or whatever? And I've had to start saying no a little bit, because I just have too much to too many of my own deadlines. Plus people get mad if you're like, well,


how could you write about the weekers in China? I'm writing about the workers in China. Well, I didn't steal it from you. I got plenty of my own ideas, right. But I think I see in these manuscripts, definitely some of them, not all of them, certainly some of them are great, but a lack of observation, like they've,


we've lost the, the craft of writing some. So I would say that's a, that's something that I struggle with myself cause I, I could, I could easily get, especially when a book's coming out and I don't read my reviews. I would, that would be my other thing. It's really hard, but I want people to give me reviews.


That's great because it helps other readers and it helps the algorithms that get pushed out. But I think it's a error for this is just my opinion. I know that probably most writers read them, but it's no good can come with it. By the time you get a review, you're probably at least a book on two books past that. So I'm not going to go back and change anything.


And all it can do is either make me feel puffed up cause they like it or sad because they don't like it. And my time is much better spent writing than getting on, but I could get on this endless loop where I checked good reads. I checked Amazon, I answered an email, then went to Twitter and then went to Instagram and was to Facebook.


And by then somebody else has tweeted and then somebody else has sent me another email and I can spend all morning and never apply the same ground twice, but I'd also never get any writing done. And so I think that's really important that we focus on the craft and just keep, keep writing, just keep putting out good quality stories. If the best you can,


we're all going to have stinkers. That's just part of life, but just keep Doing it. Well, I, for one really enjoy your writing in the first book open-carry we meet our lists and Lola, as they start on a fugitive hunt at the start of stone cross, those two are assigned to a judicial protection detail. And then in your latest novel bone rattle,


give us a teaser. What's next for our list and Lola. Yeah. So to start off In bone rattle, they start off on another arrest on a task force, fugitive in Anchorage at spring time, it's, everything's melting and dusty and you know, list is kind of getting used to Alaska still. And then they ended up going on a sequestered jury to work as Questar jury down in Juneau in our state Capitol.


There's always, there's a kind of a joke about Southeast Alaska Juneau specifically that, you know, it's our state Capitol, but you can't drive to it. So they, they joke that there's only three ways to get to Juneau either by plane boat or birth canal. And so it's really kind of isolated, which makes people that are prone to conspiracy theories,


wonder what our politicians are doing down there. You know? And so I just have some evil politicians and basically an archeological find that happens to stall a goldmine development and the bad guys that are trying to make sure that not stalled and find that evil politicians and Lola. And one of the things that we started kind of in the beginning talking about martial service duties,


and one of the fun things about these Arlis cutter novels is that even though we don't investigate murders, it's not at all uncommon for us to be in a place in Alaska, specifically where we're the only people out there with the troopers and the troopers will say, Hey, help us out. And that's generally how I have in these books. It's not,


it's not really, not only is it possible, but it's probable that deputy marshals. If they're out in that part of the world, when something happens with their expertise, they'll jump in and help. And that's what I try to in this one in bone rattle, it's that in, in cold snap, it has to do with something is the next one that comes out next year.


It's done already. It has to do with prisoner transport in the wilds of Alaska. So I try to hit something about a lot of people don't realize how many different native cultures there are in Alaska. So it's fun for me to write different parts of Alaska, different native vastly different native cultures in Alaska, whether it's you pick<inaudible> up on the Barrow or Athabaskan or in,


in bone rattle or, or open carry as clean-cut down in Southeast Alaska, that kind of the totem pole high to clean-cut native. So native, Alaskan native. So I, I like to hit that and also some little something that the Marshall service actually does. We rub up against fusion work, judicial protection, sequester juries, transporting prisoners. And then of course they get mixed up in a murder.


Oh, that's awesome. And I'm really looking forward to checking this one out. So again, the latest book is bone rattled by our guests, New York times bestselling author, Mark Cameron bone rattle is available and wherever books are sold. Thanks so much for coming on the Bureau. Hey, thank you so much for having me appreciate it. It was great fun.


Thanks so much for listening this week and thanks to Mark for joining us here in the Bureau. This show is powered by your questions. Send them to me by going to writers, forward slash podcast. Thanks again for listening. Have a great week and write well.

Marc CameronProfile Photo

Marc Cameron

Author of the New York Times bestselling Jericho Quinn Thriller series, Marc Cameron’s short stories have appeared in The Saturday Evening Post and BOYS LIFE magazine. In late 2016, he was chosen to continue the Tom Clancy Jack Ryan/Campus Thriller series. TOM CLANCY CODE OF HONOR released in November 19, 2019.

Cameron is a retired Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal who spent nearly thirty years in law enforcement. His assignments have taken him from Alaska to Manhattan, Canada to Mexico and dozens of points in between. He holds a second-degree black belt in Jujitsu and is a certified scuba diver and man-tracking instructor.

Originally from Texas, Cameron is an avid sailor and adventure motorcyclist. His books often feature boats and bikes including OSI Agent Jericho Quinn’s beloved BMW GS Adventure.

Cameron lives in the Alaska with his wife and BMW GS motorcycle. He enjoys hearing from readers.