Interview with Cliff Ball

When did you first start writing?
I first started writing when I was around ten years old. I thought up wacky interview questions for classmates, asking them to make up what planet they were born on, what fake person they would vote for President of the United States, what was their favorite time traveling vehicle, stuff like that. I also wrote short stories, and I managed to get one published in high school in the early '90's through my Creative Writing class. I won a whole $35 for being third for this particular contest the short story was entered in. My mom took that and framed the check stub, a newspaper article she placed in our newspaper, and my senior class photo.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Times of Turmoil, my latest novel, is a prequel to my End Times novels, Times of Trouble and Times of Trial. I had reviews and readers who wanted the story to be fleshed out more, so I went back nearly a hundred years (the other novels are set 20+ years from now) to World War II. I explored how the Evans family gets the money and power to influence events in the United States and make it their mission to destroy Christian influence in the United States. I was inspired by some of the current happenings involving the United States government.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I actually always wanted to be independently published. I did a lot of research in high school about getting published, and seeing that I had to write query letters and send in manuscripts, only to be rejected, didn't appeal to me, so I decided to wait until the opportunity to publish my own works myself appeared. I wanted to be in control and figured doing it myself was the best way to do it. I got my chance in 2008 with the appearance of the Kindle and its publishing platform, so off I went.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords has contributed to my success by letting me get published to Apple, Sony, and even into libraries when I wouldn't be able to do it myself. Smashwords also gives me the ability to offer my novels for free when doing free promotions, and then I'm able to reach readers who probably wouldn't normally give me a chance.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I think the greatest joy for me is being able to create my books my own way without anyone looking over my shoulder telling me I'm doing it wrong or telling me I have to put in a lot of filler that I don't want just to get over a certain word count.
What are you working on next?
The next novel I'm working on is called Timothy Phillips. It's set in the same universe as my End Times Saga. It's about a Christian young man who sings and is discovered by a record producer, he gets to compete on a national talent show, and then he wins the portion of the show he's on. We follow his highs and lows as he goes through his career while the End Times rapidly approach.
Who are your favorite authors?
I have a few favorite authors. Of the traditional variety, I enjoy reading Tom Clancy, Harry Turtledove, S.M. Stirling, and a couple of the Star Trek writers. As for indies, I've read and enjoyed Seb Kirby, J.C. Phelps, Richard Stephenson, K.C. May, just to name a few.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I spend my time promoting my novels all over the internet and occasionally in person.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I've discovered them through Kindleboards, Facebook, Twitter, and some other sites as far as indie books go.
What do you read for pleasure?
I read a lot of different genres for pleasure, even nonfiction. For fiction, I read alternate history/speculative fiction, political thrillers, End Times fiction, time travel, science fiction, and sometimes fantasy.

For non-fiction, I read a lot of biographies and historical books about the United States.
Published 2013-08-21.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

The Long Journey (Christian Historical Fiction)
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 48,300. Language: English. Published: March 20, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Christian » Historical, Fiction » Christian » Romance
A Cherokee finds himself forced from his home during the Trail of Tears. His adventures find him getting married, going west, and getting involved in historical events of the 1840's and 1850's.
The End Times Saga Box Set: A Christian Fiction Series (Books 1 - 7)
Series: The End Times Saga: A Christian Fiction Series. Price: $17.99 USD. Words: 347,300. Language: English. Published: October 23, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Christian » Futuristic, Fiction » Christian » General
The End Times Saga Box Set is a Christian fiction series consisting of the seven novels in The End Times Saga. The seven novels are: Times of Turmoil, Times of Trouble, Times of Trial, Times of Rebellion, Times of Destruction, Times of Judgment, and Times of Tribulation.
Beyond the New Frontier (Alternate History)
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 84,200. Language: English. Published: January 26, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » High tech, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
This is the story of an alternate timeline where the timeline gets accidentally changed by time travelers in 1962 and all sorts of unintended consequences happen as a result.
Voyager and the Aliens: Science Fiction Short Story
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,560. Language: English. Published: September 8, 2011. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
In this short story, aliens come across television broadcasts from an unknown planet to them. Then, they come across a probe from same planet that tells them everything they need to know about this planet and its people. They decide to visit the planet, but when they arrive, not everything is as it seems.
Shattered Earth: an alternate history science fiction novel
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 74,430. Language: English. Published: October 27, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Sci-Fi & fantasy, Fiction » Science fiction » General
Advanced humans leave Earth when its threatened by a massive meteor. The remaining humans on Earth fall back into primitiveness. The advanced humans, and a group of aliens involve Earth in an interstellar war. Thousands of years later, the humans of Earth decide to do something about this. Interstellar politics will never be the same again once Earth is done with their revenge.
Out of Time: A Time Travel Novel
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 31,880. Language: English. Published: April 7, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure, Fiction » Science fiction » High tech
In the future, scientists discover that all time is fluid. Past, present, and future all exist at once, but time can still be changed. The US government decides to go to the past and right what once went wrong. The story takes place mostly in the 20th century, where our heroes meet Anne Frank, John F. Kennedy, just to name a few. Find out what happens when they return to their present.