Interview with R Frederick Riddle

What is your writing process?
I begin by choosing my topic. In the case of Bible stories, my topic is a Biblical event or person. In the case of American history, my choice is determined by a historical event or a historical person.

Next comes research. Using Google, I search for anything I can find out. This often requires time consuming energy, and, sometimes, boring research.

Third, sometimes I develop the characters first, then the plot. Other times, I create the plot first and let the characters develop around these plots.

Fourth, I focus on the subject at hand. If a real event forms the plot, then focus on both research and development pertaining to the plot. If the focus is on a person or persons, I then allow myself to be drawn into the story itself. This can be quite dangerous, but also extremely profitable.

Once I have written the entire novel, I submit it to proof reading. and editing. This sometimes leads to wholesale rewrites of chapters.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I am not sure if this book was my first or not, but War & Peace was inspiring to me as an aspiring writer. I think it was probably not only inspiring, but also foundational.
How do you approach cover design?
That is difficult. When dealing with a publisher, you don't have absolute control over the work. For example, I found a picture that I wanted to use with The Rise of Shem, but I was stopped. I had to work with them to get a similar cover design. In my novel, Dead-Eye Will, I was able to use the picture I wanted.

But my goal for the cover is to have a background that reflects the title. Sounds easy, but it is harder than it looks.
Describe your desk
I use a computer table as my desk which dates back to the days of desktop computers. Call me sentimental, but it is a very comfortable desk enabling me
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I spent my early years in Drayton Plains, which is located north of Pontiac, MI. But the years that shaped my life were in West Branch, MI. West Branch is located along the Rifle River, which is featured in my book 'Dead Eye Will.'
Aside from its appearance in the novel, the Rifle River area was where my imagination began. I don't remember anything about the Rifle River, but I still remember the stone house, which I thought was huge but was actually small. I spent many a day allowing my imagination to grow as I battled bad guys in outer space. I discovered books and loved to read the classics, including War and Peace. That is when I first flirted with the idea of writing.
When did you first start writing?
I attempted writing first as a teenager, but I was unsuccessful. In my twenties I took a writing course, but finances forced me to drop out of that. My first published book occurred when I was 60 years old in 2003.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I had been writing books based on well-known Bible stories. It occurred to me that it was time to try writing a book based on American history, which is one of my loves.
I decided to write about Michigan in the 1800s mainly because that is my home state and the early 1800s helped shape America. Though the story is fictional, there is real history within and I think that people today, especially Americans, need to revisit what made America a first class country.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
When I wrote my first novel, Refuge: The Genesis Chronicles, I found that traditional publishing was slow and crowded. Going with a self-publishing firm seemed the right choice. Later I moved to another self-publishing firm. But that still left the bulk of control in the hands of the publishers.
So I decided to do my own publishing. Now I am the author, publisher, and marketer of books. It is very exciting!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love writing!

I guess the greatest joy is seeing the completed book. But there is also joy in writing. I have an active imagination and often find myself writing stories or book scenes on restaurant napkins, 3x5 cards, and scrap paper. I love to write.
What do your fans mean to you?
Ultimately the fans are the most important.
While I love to write, if the fans don't like the results, then I have failed them and myself. When I write I try to write with the readers in mind. Since I also love to read, I can evaluate my books as a reader.
Another thing about fans importance is that I offer discounts.
What are you working on next?
My next novel will most likely be about Abraham, the third book in the series The World That Was. As for the next one in the series An American Hero, I haven't decided yet. I am also working on a non-fiction book.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I have several resources. Smashwords itself is one resource. I also use the Internet to seek books I may be interested in at any given time.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes, It was called Refuge: The Genesis Chronicles published through AuthorHouse. While Perished: The World That Was includes the Refuge story, that first book proved to me that I could write effectively. I even had a university president praise the book and encourage me as a writer.
It was foundational to my writing career.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
The Bible because it tells me all I need to know about Jesus, salvation, and life.
The Left Behind series of books because they portray what the end times will be like.
The End series because it is adventure that takes place in end times.
Lion of Babylon because it combines adventure, mystery, and danger in end times drama
The Last Operative is adventure, mystery, danger while the main character carries America's fate on his shoulders.
Published 2016-04-13.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

World of Noah and the Ark
Series: The World That Was. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 51,510. Language: American English. Published: June 27, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Christian » Historical
Building an altar, he realized he hadn't brought anything to sacrifice. "Noah." "Your servant listens, Lord." Thus begins an exciting journey. Receiving the call to build an Ark for the saving of humanity, he obeyed God. It would take 120 years of building and preaching, but only eight people would be saved. Why? Special section included: Q & A about the Ark and the world that then existed.
Perished
Series: The World That Was. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 100,810. Language: American English. Published: June 25, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Christian » Historical
When God creates heaven and earth, Lucifer refuses to believe. Adam and Woman (Eve) enjoy sweet fellowship with God, but Satan rebels and wars against God. He tricks Woman into eating the forbidden fruit, which Adam knowingly eats. God extends grace, but drives them out of Eden. What follows is murder, conflicts, and war. Faith in God is demonstrated in lives of Adam, Methuselah, Noah, and others.
Did You Know About Bible History?
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 12,020. Language: English. Published: April 9, 2016. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Biblical Studies / History & Culture
In today's world the Bible comes under constant attack from unbelievers. Their attacks are pointed and ruthless, but the Bible remains the best selling book of all time. While written with the skeptic in mind, this book is also a great resource for Bible students and new Christians.
So You Want To Write?
Price: Free! Words: 15,750. Language: American English. Published: February 5, 2016. Categories: Nonfiction » Career Guides » Arts, Nonfiction » Publishing » Self-publishing
So You Want To Write? is written for the author, both new and current, who needs basic and advanced training in writing. Aside from the writing course, the book also covers publishing and marketing. The book answers the following question: Am I a businessperson? If so, how do I set myself up? How do I publish?
Dead Eye Will
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 63,880. Language: English. Published: November 22, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Historical » Western & American frontier, Fiction » Christian » Historical
William Riddle quickly earned the moniker of 'Dead Eye' in the War of !812. Whether serving in the army or after the war as a special agent, he proved himself to be a hero. But it wasn't until he trusted Christ that he became an American hero.