How long did it take to write?  Did you think about it for years or did it just flood out like a dream?

About 18 months I think. The genesis of the idea for Flight Risk was the disappearance of MH370. I expanded it from there and asked the question, what if there was a sinister force behind it going missing? And what if that sinister force took multiple planes out of the sky? I didn’t think about it for years, but when it was time to write my second book, it crept back into my head. I had this urge to ‘fill in the gaps’. Because I have a full-time job, I wrote the book by doing an hour or so in the morning before going to work. I would usually write 400-500 words in a morning before helping the kids get ready for school. It all mounts up little by little.

Has your work as a journalist influenced the writing of Flight Risk?

I’m not sure. I’ve always had a great interest in planes and aviation and read a lot about it. Closest I came was when I was briefly the Aviation reporter at The Australian in the late 90s. I volunteered to fill in because the previous reporter left and loved it. Still to this day one of my favourite jobs. In terms of the actual writing, being a journalist teaches you to write concisely, quickly and hopefully accurately. Because of the way I had to write, I didn’t have the luxury of agonising over the perfect sentence or structure. You just have to get on with it, which is often the case in my day job as well.

Flight Risk Michael McGuire
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