Matt Witten's journey as a writer began with childhood poetry, mainly about the superiority of the Baltimore Orioles over the New York Yankees. Then, his tenth-grade drama teacher, Karen Kramer, suggested he write a play, which led to the creation of Mort-Free, an abstract one-act play that explored the idea that humanity doesn't need to be unhappy. After overcoming an undiagnosed illness, Matt held tight to his dream of becoming a writer, writing plays that weren't great until he wrote The Deal at age 28 about the FBI investigating political corruption in a small town. His favorite play, Sacred Journey, was inspired by a homeless Native American man he met in Brooklyn.
Eventually, Matt transitioned to writing mystery novels, beginning with the Jacob Burns series, which reflected his own life as a writer married to an English professor at Adirondack Community College. He never planned to become a TV writer, but after writing freelance episodes for Homicide and Law & Order, he moved to LA, where he has written for shows like House, Pretty Little Liars, and Law & Order. Despite his success in TV, Matt also enjoys writing psychological thrillers, like his novels The Necklace and Killer Story, which have been published by Oceanview Publishing and optioned for the movies. He still collaborates on TV projects, currently co-writing a pilot for NBC called 51% and a Hallmark Mystery Movie. Matt's dream is to write a novel a year until he's 80.
In this episode of Beyond the Pen, Matthew Witten talks about his book, Killer Story, and its inspiration. Join us as we dive into the world of true crime podcasts with the fictional story of Petra Kovach, a young journalist …