Interview with Bud Stark

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in California, my home since 1941. My family moved throughout the state as the drilling rig moved, living most frequently in Bakersfield and Rio Vista. However, I finished my senior year at Excelsior High (no longer in existence) in Norwalk, in Southern California. Everything I write bears the influence of my having been raised in a fundamentalist Protestant family of eight children and having been heavily influenced by a Catholic Professor whom I studied under at Kansas University.
What's the story behind your latest book?
This short novel, The Place of Execution,was in reality a test run, a canary in a coal mine, to see if I could navigate in indie book publishing. I found that I could, clumsily, for sure, so the first purpose for the novel was successful. As for the novel, it is set in the 1950's, 60's oilfields of Bakersfield, California. Most of the characteristics of the characters in this work are drawn from people I have known. The plot and subject matter were simply pulled out of my imagination.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I was evaluating what use I had made of my retirement and realized that I had done quite a lot of research and writing in science, religion and philosophy and published none of it. I was confident that some of it would have been published had I had a PhD behind my name. It's my fault I didn't, the opportunity was made available by good people and by Boston University where I did graduate work in Christian Ethics. I left a good program and let those good people down and have regretted it ever since. When I became aware of the possibilities in eBook publications I tested the waters by publishing The Place of Execution, a short novel. That was quickly followed by Black Holes In A Brief History, a critique of Stephen Hawking's A Brief History of Time and his no-boundary theory. His theory substitutes a mathematically constructed small ball as an explanation for the nothing-into-something mystery of the big bang. Most cosmologists reject his theory as scientifically unsound. However, the general public, for whom his book and mine are written, seem to accept his every word as the most recent discovery in science. Most importantly, Hawking's Brief History of Time shows him to be an apostle of despair. This trend among popular scientists of dignity in despair is not driven by science but by a dogma as fundamentalist as my upbringing, but with none of its hope. Moreover, their attack on meaning and purpose in existence is not launched from a scientific framework but from an ethical one. To try as best I can to demonstrate their flaw and to restore hope from where it has been stolen is my purpose in writing.
Who are your favorite authors?
Hard to say, but here are a few: Job, Shakespeare, Dostoevsky, Koestler. And here are a few from current science: Roger Penrose, Simon Conway Morris, Rudolf Raff, Jeffery Schwartz.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Working around the house and in the yard, enjoying being with Reta and the kids, going to Little League games and various dance recitals, karate exercises...you get the picture, reading and watching sports, especially Jayhawk basketball. Right now I enjoy seeing what this new form of publication has to offer me, or not.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
I'm sure there were others before, wildlife and such, but the first one that impacted me was The Old Man and The Sea. It's hard for me to analyze its impact other than to say that it depicted a certain futility in life that I, from time to time in the past, had a hard time shaking. Thankfully, especially to my wife, Reta, I have shaken it.
Published 2015-03-17.
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Books by This Author

Suffocating On Mount Improbable
Price: Free! Words: 18,420. Language: English. Published: April 26, 2015. Categories: Nonfiction » Science and Nature » Evolution, Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Religion & Science
This book shows that Dawkins' theory for a simple to complex unbroken chain of evolutionary life is impossible, as fossil records indicate and new science proves. Dawkins' response: how can a good god create evil? Here Dawkins and theists draw from the same source, a sense of justice inherent in humanity. Our best hope for a salvation is that we can ask this question, because we cannot answer it.
Black Holes In A Brief History
Price: Free! Words: 43,990. Language: English. Published: March 7, 2015. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Religion & Science, Nonfiction » Science and Nature » Cosmos
Stephen Hawking, in A Brief History of Time, asks how and why the the universe began and if and how it will end, and gives the various theories that deal with these questions, including his own. But most cosmologists do not agree with Hawking’s theory nor with each other’s. But most do agree that design is not an answer. Black Holes In A Brief History asks why.