Meet Craig Holt – novelist, traveler, coffee geek
Greetings from Seattle! I’m an author who spent much of the last three decades traveling and working throughout Africa, Asia, Latin America and both Polar regions. Initially I traveled as a dirt poor thrill seeker, then later as an expedition leader for an ecotourism company. These days my work as a coffee buyer for my importing business satisfies my urge to wander. At this point I’ve visited more than seventy countries, and my travels have inspired a lot of my writing. In fact, my first paid writing gig came as an expedition leader when, due to an unfortunate amount of experience with the issue, I wrote the company manual on how to clear a cadaver through customs in a foreign port. It wasn’t exactly True Crime writing, but it was definitely dark stuff.
My next writing gig was on the lighter side, writing screenplays in Los Angeles. During my screenwriting days I also worked as a professional standup comedian, which introduced me to a very particular kind of sadness. Much as I loved having drunk guys yell “You suck!” at me in small town bars, I finally left the comedy world so I could focus on writing books.
The result of my switch to novel writing is my new thriller Hard Dog to Kill (coming out in early November 2017) which tells the story of an American mercenary in the modern Congo who can only save his long time brother in arms by killing the only good man he knows. (For more about what inspired me to write Hard Dog to Kill, click here.)
Hard Dog to Kill was a finalist in both the Pacific Northwest Writers Association Literary contest, and the Rocky Mountain Gold Fiction contest.
I’m currently deep into my next book, Alvaro, which follows a Colombian drug lord who flees his collapsing empire under the mistaken impression he can reinvent himself in America. You can follow my travels and read my blogs about here.
When I’m not writing (which is something I do very, very early in the morning) I’m a voracious reader. I also run a coffee importing business focused on partnering with smallholder farmers around the world to improve the quality of their coffee and then finding markets for it. Basically, I get paid to travel to amazing places, work with fantastic people, and drink great coffee. It’s a very, very good gig. I also teach courses on coffee tasting, so I have to get my tongue re-certified every two years.
Seriously. That’s a thing.
I’ve always said I’d rather wear out than rot, so in my so-called down time I’m pretty active. You could also say I self-medicate through exercise. My wife says I have obsessive tendencies and a masochistic streak. The result is that I have a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, I’ve completed an Iron-distance triathlon, I’ve run several marathons (including the Boston Marathon) and I’m an Ultramarathoner. My longest trail run was 100 miles. I want you to know that it hurt. A lot. For a very long time.
I live in the Seattle area with my remarkable family, and enjoy the company of tremendous friends new and old. It’s been a great ride so far…