My real name is Jennifer Mathews, but I write as T.D. Hart.
From the moment I learned to read, my life has been filled with adventure. When I was young I rode the Black Stallion with Walter Farley, fought alongside Hazel-rah on Watership Down, and hunted vampires with Stephen King. Frank Herbert convinced me I never want to live in the desert, and Dean Koontz scared me silly while somehow reinforcing my faith in the goodness of (most) humans.
Then, because I worked with horses, a friend introduced me to Dick Francis. It was my first taste of noir, and I never looked back. Elmore Leonard, Robert Crais, and the master, Dennis Lehane, painted such beautiful, terrible pictures of humanity. I couldn't get enough. Still can't.
Noir fiction feels like my life.
Because, in between books, I had gotten down to the business of living: I fell in love. Got burned. Got a car. Burned a clutch. Learned to drive tractors and forklifts and frontloaders. Learned I could work harder--both physically and mentally--than I'd ever believed. Started college. Stopped. Started again, this time with a focus I now find scary. Became a veterinarian. Got divorced. Got remarried--this time for good. Started my practice. Had a baby. Lost a pregnancy. Cried. Had two more babies. Got fat. Got fit. Fought. Surrendered. Found a Higher Power. Found my calling. Sold my practice.
And finally, after screwing up half my life, found myself.
Noir characters fuck up, then fix it. Life goes wrong, then works out. And oh man, do they ever carry baggage: Obsessions, old wounds, addictions. They make terrible choices, do terrible things.
Noir protagonists survive, then win. Despite the deep, crawling ugliness of the crime, they find humor and beauty and honor in their fellows. Like sailors who survive a crippling hurricane, they know they will face other storms.
And they damned sure enjoy the sunshine.
Cheers...and Happy Writing!