The following is an interview with New York Times bestselling author and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Peg Tyre regarding the upcoming re-release of her critically acclaimed crime novel, Strangers in the Night, through Dead Sky Publishing. In this interview, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief Barbra Dillon chats with Tyre about her experience in revisiting the story 27 years after its initial release, the evolution of crime reporting throughout the years, and more!
Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: Congratulations on the upcoming re-release of Strangers in the Night! As you look ahead to the release, what has been your experience in revisiting the story nearly 27 years later?
Peg Tyre: It has been a delight to experience the story that I wrote, so sharply honed by my professional life at that time, again, with the benefit of time. It is a bit of time capsule — a moment when women were entering the workforce in greater numbers and making their voices heard, a time when women were grappling with what it meant to be ambitious, a moment when “news” was actually gathered from people by people – and not harvested from X formerly known as Twitter. It’s a bit of nostalgia, a bit of history. And also a “how we got here” sort of experience.
BD: In light of your own experiences in crime reporting, do you feel that the approach to reporting has evolved over time since the story’s inception?
PT: Oh lord. It’s all gone now. There used to be literally phalanxes of reporters roaming around City Hall, 1 Police Plaza and all the courts, talking, looking for stories, working on investigative pieces. Nothing like that exists now. Maybe we were wrong, but, back then, it felt like you were writing for the community, for your fellow New Yorkers and your fellow Americans. Now, it feels like “news” is aimed at creating outrage, which drives clicks, which drives advertising dollars.
BD: At Fanbase Press, our #StoriesMatter initiative endeavors to highlight the impact that stories can have on audiences of various mediums. How do you feel that Kate’s story may connect with and impact readers?
PT: I know there are a lot of people who wonder what it was like back in the day to cover crime. I mean, I can’t really turn on the TV without seeing some version of that. Mostly a bad, fake-y version, to be honest. (On TV, everyone who covers crime has way better hair and make up than any of us ever had.) This book came from someone who was actually doing that job, and having those crazy, unsettling, weird, sometimes terrifying experiences. It is also about having a job that puts you under a great deal of stress and not a small amount of danger, which in real life, I never really considered a bad thing. I mean, yeah, moment to moment, pretty bad. But week to week, kinda great. The book is about how the criminal justice system really was (not) working, up close. And reader, it’s a mess. The book is about having a warm heart in a harsh environment. It’s about having dreams for something better when you don’t really know what “better” would look like. Or how you get from here to there. It’s a romance, a mystery, and crime fiction with a strong, often flawed, female character. Who wouldn’t want to read that? I wrote it for all the women who, just like me, were trying to figure it out – and I don’t think women, or the world for work for women, has changed all that much.
BD: What makes Dead Sky Publishing the perfect home for Strangers in the Night?
PT: Well, this publisher finds great stories and gives them a new life. I’m honored to be part of it.
BD: Are there any upcoming projects on which you are currently working that you would like to share with our readers?
PT: My life has changed a great deal. After being a field reporter for years, I became a correspondent at CNN (back when they covered news) and then at Newsweek, back when that was a thing. For them, I covered education and then began writing well-received books about education. Now, I help run a foundation that helps build education-related nonprofits. Happily, Dead Sky will bring out my second novel soon, In the Midnight Hour, which is a sequel to Strangers in the Night.
BD: Lastly, what is the best way for our readers to find more information about Strangers in the Night and your other work?
PT: You can go to my website at pegtyre.com.