Interview with JZ Murdock

What's the story behind your latest book?
First, I do have more books and audiobooks on Amazon.
"Death of Heaven" came out in 2012 but I have a new editor and we have just about finished up with an extensive re-edit. We should be re-releasing it sometime Spring of 2014. It is a unique book about two childhood friends who grow up, despite their past into a world no one understands; until one of them begins to receive "stories" that change everything for them both. They find they can do nothing but watch the events unfold that change the world and to some degree, the entire universe. Certainly, it changes how humankind views life and history going back before the beginning of recorded time.
The book is based on a previous novella published in my book, "Anthology of Evil", and titled, "Andrew". Andrew is a five year old genius who has experienced a traumatic event that changes his life more than any human being has ever experienced change. That period of time is juxtaposed against his efforts years later in a war as an adult in the military. Through all this time he has been watched and guided by others, but who are they, what do they want with him, and what will happen to Andrew?
What motivated you to become an indie author?
My writing style and stories are unusual and hard to put into a slot that established publishing houses like to see. That is a perfect situation and opportunity to publish independently. The community of indie authors I know are interesting people and I'm happy to know and be counted among them.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Is there a greater joy as a writer, than having a reader tell you they were moved by something you wrote? I don't think so.
What are you working on next?
As of today in April 2014, I'm finishing up a re-edit of "Death of Heaven"; finishing up my new story, "In The Shade" which is a new character and outsider's view of what is happening in "Death of Heaven";
I'm also working on several other projects. One is a screenplay of a 1974 murder in Tacoma, WA by local organized crime. I was aware of that at the time when I had helped a potential witness escape town (though she saw nothing, those involved thought she had, and she was afraid).
I'm also writing my memoirs from the USAF in the last 1970s.
Also, I'm gearing up to write the sequel to "Death of Heaven" which will include some characters from my screenplay, "Gray and Lover - The Hearth Tales Incident". At the end of the screenplay, there is an allusion to the story, "In The Shade" and you get to see some of what is described in this new story.
Who are your favorite authors?
Clive Barker replaced Stephen King for me many years ago. Len Deighton as a WWII, cold war author is the best. I've been reading a lot of non-fiction the past few years on things like the wars and the sciences. Kurt Giambastiani and esp., his Fallen Cloud series are some of my favorites and I'm pleased to call him friend. His wife Ilene is now my editor. A very famous female author once said because of what she writes, she never reads similar writings by living authors. I liked that way of thinking. Edgar Allen Poe, always one of my favorites as well as others no longer living like Robert E. Howard, H. P. Lovecraft and Edgar Rice Burroughs. And no, I've never read Tarzan.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The thought that I could write something new and interesting and to get closer to my goals.
To see what my adult children are up to and what new and fascinating projects they are involved in, as they always are.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Watching films, reading, riding my bicycle or my Harley "Street Bob". Or maybe working on my couple of acres with my German Shepherd, Buddha Thai. I live on the other side of Puget Sound from just about every friend and author friend I know, so I don't get to seem many people very often. But Kitsap County here is very relaxed and not as congested as King County and its greater Seattle area.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Typically, suggestions from fellow writers and friends, or news/comedy shows like Fareed Zakaria, Bill Maher, Jon Stewart or Stephen Colbert.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes. "Ten Steps to ShaduKandom" that I wrote in 10th grade after having read "Dune" for the first time. It was about an assassin school from the perspective of a student and about his disillusionment in his chosen profession, before his graduation. I was out of school for a week with bronchitis, on codeine cough meds. I had just gotten, "Dune" and the new Black Sabbath Master of Reality album that came out that week. I listened to the album over and over while I read, on codeine, all week long. It was a unique (perfect) way to read "Dune" (except for being sick) and left me inspired to write a story that came our fairly quickly onto paper. It's worth noting that I had previously read "The Foundation Trilogy" by one of my writing heroes at the time, Isaac Asimov, which was the only other story I could relate the "Dune Universe" to. Years later Asimov inspired the title of my first published short story, "In Memory, Yet Crystal Clear" (1990) from Asimov's first autobiography, "In Memory, Yet Green". "Crystal Clear" is a social horror story of warning about putting all your eggs in one box, so to speak.
What is your writing process?
I write. I was a Senior Technical Writer, something Asimov professed was a good starting place for sci fi writers. So I got used to attention to detail and writing on demand. And harsh criticisms where you're expected to produce. So I don't really believe in "writer's block" and feel it's kind of a cop out, certainly for most amateur writers and on occasion for professionals.
I like to get up very early and write all day, but I have a day job that interferes with my writing, my energy and my creativity. One of my goals is to replace my day job with money from my fiction writings. So any readers willing to help with that, are certainly welcome. I have a lot of years left to me for writing and I hope to fill them up with good stories. Stay tuned....
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I just replaced my Kindle Fire with a Kindle Fire HD because it has Bluetooth which, when I first received my Fire, I was disappointed to note it was lacking.
Published 2014-04-21.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

SpiritQuest Weekend 1991
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 19,000. Language: English. Published: October 11, 2017. Categories: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
Journal detailing the author's experiences over the period of a weekend in 1991.
Xibalba Unleashed
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 8,060. Language: English. Published: April 24, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Crime, Fiction » Cultural & ethnic themes » Cultural interest, general
A research expedition to an ancient Mayan cave in Belize leads to dire events being released back out into the world after over a thousand years.
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 5,190. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Weird fiction, Fiction » Science fiction » Military
"Andrew" is the story of a very young boy of a brilliant married couple who were rather unusual scientists. It is a story about how Andrew deals with an event more traumatic than anyone should ever have to experience. This was one of my first and very well received stories and is also the foundation story for my book, Death of Heaven.
In Memory, Yet Crystal Clear
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 12,110. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Cyberpunk
In a world that is reminiscent of a Philip K.Dick novel since the US Presidential 2016 election, or this story here where a world-famous surgeon helps his missing son’s best friend. Only to find that his actions lead to monumental changes in the United States and as well around the world. All in ways he would never have foreseen. Available elsewhere as an audiobook.
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 14,040. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Weird fiction, Fiction » Horror » General
Sometimes we find we are immersed in Evil and even the best we can do, simply isn't good enough. At every turn we find that there is simply no good choice, only ones that get us deeper into the darkness. Evil can be found in a twisting of our mental processes through situation or disease in the formation of our thoughts. Includes the short story, "The Fall".
Expedition of the Arcturus
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 8,540. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Space opera, Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure
Earth's first generational space ship is sent to its destination. Will they all make it? Why might some of them not make it? What is really going on? In a reverse timeline, the story unpeels layer after layer of the reasons and meanings behind the lives of generations on Earth's first colonization space ship and the political motivations behind it. Available elsewhere as an audiobook.
Poor Lord Ritchie's Answer
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,640. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Historical » Medieval
A medieval Lord is sent to deliver a gift to his enemies in order to complete a negotiated peace and save his Royal family. But he has a few problems along the way. Are the problems his, or is someone trying to convince him he is insane? Or, is something else entirely going on? A winner in Rutger Hauer's International Short Story contest of 2004.
The Conqueror Worm
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 9,490. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Undead, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Psychological thriller
Jimmy and James are two young boys, best friends, adventurers in the realm of childhood. They decide to dig for buried treasure and dig up a terror beyond their ability to put into words. Unless that word is, a scream. Also available as an audiobook.
Mr. Pakool's Spice
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 12,720. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Undead, Fiction » Science fiction » Military
A father and his two children are trying to make it through the wintry backwoods of Oregon state to somewhere safe, through the zombie apocalypse. Available elsewhere as an audiobook. Book Trailer - ALSO included in this ebook is a second short-short story, called "The Regeant's Daughter - 'An Eye for an Eye'" that won a little award.
Japheth, Ishvi and The Light
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 15,630. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Undead, Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories
Based on the Biblical tale of Abraham and his son Isaac, Japheth loves his son Isaac. Along with Ishvi's siblings, they live in a religious commune known as, "The Light". Life is good. They have land, and love. Community. Until the Zombie Apocalypse burns into the ground as terrifying pillars from the skies and throws in some devastating confusion.
Quantum History
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 12,630. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Short stories, Fiction » Humor & comedy » General
A science experiment goes wrong in unforeseeable ways, affecting a man and his wife across the country, in a bizarre and humorous fashion.
Gumdrop City
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 7,600. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Crime thriller, Fiction » Horror » Crime
Gumdrop City is based on a True Crime story. This is one of my cover artist's favorite of all of my stories and is included in, Anthology of Evil. A prequel is being made into a short horror film by the author (2019). Soon to be a short film.
Mea Culpa Document of London
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 3,640. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Historical » Medieval, Fiction » Horror » Occult
A medieval Witch Hunter and Judge of the Inquisition has a problem; the same one his mentor had to deal with years before. This is a document that was found by a modern researcher, who had his own problems (further explored in “Death of Heaven” as "Vaughan's Theorem"). Available elsewhere as an audiobook.
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 10,750. Language: English. Published: October 25, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Hard sci-fi, Fiction » Horror » General
Dr. James Michaelson is working on a fantastic new technology, on a three person team of Quantum Physicists: the lead and creator of this new "tech", Dr. Garrison; a magnetic theorist, Dr. Johnson; and himself. But something is wrong at the lab. They seem to be rather light on attendance today. He can feel it, something has gone terribly, horribly wrong.... Video Trailer -
On Psychology: With Illustration in Psychopathology via Synesthesia and Schizophrenia
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 16,890. Language: English. Published: July 29, 2012. Categories: Nonfiction » Psychology » General
A brief history of Psychology and some of the systems and processes therein, with an illustration of an aspect of psychology through research in Synesthesia / Schizophrenia. Included is an op-ed piece in an Addendum about our current times and views on drugs and the political climate. Available elsewhere as an audiobook.
Death of Heaven
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 147,580. Language: English. Published: April 29, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Science fiction » Apocalyptic
2014 revised 2nd edition. Two only would discover why the entire world was dying all around them.
Anthology of Evil
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 106,930. Language: English. Published: March 30, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Horror, Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author
The tales in this anthology examine the many forms of Evil. Evil is in our relationships, on the streets we travel, in the news, and in our entertainment. At times it's right in front of us and we don't even recognize it. No matter what the circumstances, Evil surrounds us in our daily lives, It is all around us, taking many forms. It patiently waits. Choose your next step well.
Simon’s Beautiful Thought
You set the price! Words: 11,820. Language: English. Published: February 12, 2012. Categories: Fiction » Romance » General
(3.00 from 1 review)
“I love you Simon. I wish I didn't, but I do. It’s destiny, as if I were made for you.” She looked up at Simon, her eyes big, twinkling, passionate, and tracking him perfectly. He felt as if he could fall into them. “I love you too,” Simon said. “But sometimes, love is not enough. Sometimes, loving someone, is just not-- right...”