Interview with Ralph L Angelo Jr

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up on Long Island, NY, and when I was young I read a lot of comics and novels like Doc Savage and the Destroyer. Growing up here on Long Island really didn't influence me at all.
When did you first start writing?
When I was in Junior High School I toyed around with writing. When I started writing earnestly was 1997 when I began writing on internet sites doing fanfic and then I expanded that into writing magazine articles for motorcycle magazines like 'Backroads Motorcycle Touring Magazine', 'Motorcycle Consumer news', and 'Motorcycle Online' .
What's the story behind your latest book?
It's a sci-fi adventure novel that I had the basic idea for about twenty years ago. It's set about 70 + years from now and is the story of a genius level scientist/engineer, a real Reed Richards/ Tony Stark type, who creates the first faster than light stardrive, and leaps out of our galaxy into a deeper universe filled with intrigue and danger as a massive conspiracy is uncovered by the fledgling adventurers. It's a fast paced , high octane adventure novel. If you like Star Trek and Star Wars you'll love this book.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I'm slightly impatient. I was going to go the regular author route with my first novel, but I saw it was really a convoluted rigamaroll to get signed. Then I saw all the avenues open for indie authors and decided to give it a try.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
I've sold some titles through smashwords, but no great numbers as of yet. I was actually selling copies here of this title (The Cagliostro Chronicles) but then someone gave me a bad review because he didn't get it. His major complaints were ludicrous (He complained about my cast being all "Anglo" in his words, among other ridiculous things.) Most of my copies sell on Amazon at this point but I'm really hoping that Smashwords picks up again. I enjoyed seeing it sell here.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Seeing the completed product. But the way The Cagliostro Chronicles is selling I'm overjoyed that other people are enjoying it as well.
What do your fans mean to you?
I don't know that I have 'fans' as I have very little communication with readers, but those that have communicated with me love my stuff and have told me so. That means everything to me! I can't emphasize that enough!
What are you working on next?
The Sequel to 'Redemption of the Sorcerer' Entitled 'My Enemy, Myself!' That one is going to be very special, but you'll have to have read 'Redemption of the Sorcerer' first to know what is going on
Who are your favorite authors?
Warren Murphy, Robert E. Howard, Edgar Rice Burroughs, several comic authors over the years. Contemporaries are guys like Van Allen Plexico, Ron Fortier, and Bobby Nash, all three of which I count as author friends as I know them personally, but they are three of my favorites to read as well.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
I do a lot of different things in a day.I'm not always writing, though I tend to try to write 2,000 words a day when I do. I motorcycle quite a bit, I play guitar, in the winter I ski.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
As I said in the previous question, my spare time is filled with guitar playing, skiing, motorcycling and going to the gym. Not that I'm a gym rat, I'm not, but I try to maintain a routine with the gym.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Word of mouth, online reviews, and recommendations
How do you approach cover design?
This is a good one. I tried a service I saw someone else use called 99designs.com and did what was called a cover contest for my first book. Several artists vied for the win in the contest and I ended up with an EXCELLENT artist that I've used twice so far and will use as long as possible. He's amazing and has given me two excellent covers.
What do you read for pleasure?
Sci-Fi, Sword and Sorcery, Action/Adventure, and lots of comics
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I started out using a kindle I got for Christmas a few years back. Now I use a 7" Samsung Galaxy S2 tablet
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
Wow, I'm not even sure. I blanket everything that's low cost. Anything that's under a hundred bucks I'll try. I've done lots of $10 and $25 dollar services that market and put books up on their websites and on twitter and run interviews with me. I run a blog almost everyday that I generally talk about writing and what I'm up to in general and then I ALWAYS plug a book or my web page or my amazon authors site or smashwords. I'm always putting links up to my stuff
Describe your desk
A cluttered mess, period.
How many books have you written and what are their titles?
My first book was a non-fiction instructional book entitled "Help! They're all out to get me! The Motorcyclists Guide to Surviving the Everyday World" That's a 'How To' book I wrote for fledgling as well as returning motorcyclists. After that I started writing my first novel, 'Redemption of the Sorcerer, The Crystalon Saga, Book One' When I finished 'Redemption' I published it with a lousy publishing house (Publish America) who didn't even bother to edit my manuscript. They just printed it up set it out there at a ridiculous price and basically screwed me over. I bought the rights back almost immediately, re-wrote sections of it, paid an editor to go over it and clean it up , which she did, and she did a fantastic job of it too. Then I found my artist, had a cover drawn up and self published it.
My Next book was 'Torahg the Warrior, Sword of vengeance' which was published in June of 2013 by Pro Se publications and is available here as well, though you have to look under Pro Se to find it. Its a sword and sorcery adventure that harkens back to the great Conan stories of Robert E. Howard. I have to say it was the most fun book I wrote. I love that story! Immediately after that I wrote its sequel which has not been published as of yet but will be eventually. It's called 'Tales of Torahg the Warrior, Vol 1'.
After that I wrote my most successful novel to date, The Cagliostro Chronicles, which is a sci fi adventure novel set in 2089 when man makes his first steps into the larger universe with his first faster than light drive. This is a fast paced adventure novel that's fun and exciting as well as edge of your seat tense. As the back cover says 'In the depths of space, beyond our galaxy's furthest star awaits danger!' and that is no understatement. Before the book is over a threat to mankind is revealed that puts the entire planet in jeopardy, and only the quick thinking and the super-genius level intellect of Mark Johnson may be enough to save earth and everyone on it from an enigmatic and mysterious enemy. Every one of these titles is available here at Smashwords!
Published 2013-09-02.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

The Cagliostro Chronicles
By
Series: The Cagliostro Chronicles, Book 1. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 65,470. Language: American English. Published: July 23, 2013. Category: Fiction » Science fiction » Space opera
In the year 2089 man's first faster than light space flight is about to begin, but where it ends will be filled with action, danger, adventure and the truth about a century plus old conspiracy that is set to tear humanity and the earth apart! Join Mark Johnson and his handpicked crew of adventurers as they seek to unravel this mystery before earth's enemies destroy the planet and everyone upon it!
Redemption of the Sorcerer, The Crystalon Saga, Book One
By
Series: The Crystalon Saga, Book 1. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 89,920. Language: English. Published: February 7, 2013. Category: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
'Redemption of the Sorcerer' is about one man's journey to save his own soul while at the same time saving two universes from an evil tyrants subjugation. But will the once mighty, now powerless Crystalon be able to see past the error of his own ways and save both universes from a madman's quest for ultimate power?
Help! They're All Out to Get Me! The Motorcyclists Guide to Surviving the Everyday World.
By
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 40,580. Language: English. Published: January 11, 2013. Category: Nonfiction » Sports & outdoor recreation » Motorcycling
Instructional "How To" Safety book for Motorcyclists. As useful for returning riders as for new comers to the sport as well as seasoned vets who want to refresh a few things.