I have always wanted to write a novel. The first book, middle of Nothing, was inspired over many years and took many forms before it all came together.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Right now it has given me a platform. As I looked for traditional deals, it seemed all too strange that writing is the one medium where the artist has no ability to get his work in front of others. There are always local clubs to support musicians, and galleries for painters. Where was the writer to go?
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I enjoy the process of character development. I write more serous fiction and have used the process of organic character development. By that I mean that I do not try to plan too far in advance as I develop characters. I let them grow through my own discovery of their character traits.
What do your fans mean to you?
Well, if I had any, I might be able to answer that! Seriously, though, having written for a fan website covering Oregon football, it has been tremendous to have people who appreciate your work. We write from a muse, but we always hope that others appreciate our art.
What are you working on next?
I am working on a project which will detail four different protagonists intersecting fragmented lives. It will have much more action, language and, yes, violence. It will not be as overtly about a philosophical journey. But, it will bring to light some real societal problems; drugs, sex trafficking, the disharmony of family... these will be some cornerstones...
There will be four protagonists with varied "endings" most of which will not be happy... even the happy endings will be more pensive than happy... there will not be a "happily ever after" ending; but there will be closure.
Who are your favorite authors?
I like varied authors. James Salter for his story telling style; Gabriel García Márquez for his prose. Faulkner is an obvious choice for his brilliance.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Well, I find that waking up is such a good thing. But really, I go to work very early in the morning and write at night. I am inspired to get to the part of the day I enjoy most; writing.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I am a serious power lifter, so I spend a lot of time at the gym. I am an avid college football fan and love the Fall for game days and tailgates! Go Ducks! And, when not doing those things, I like sitting in my living room, with a glass of wine, a great book, my big yellow lab and my wife close by.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
I just look for interesting titles and synopses.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
It was a short story; when I was about 9 or 10. It was about a football player playing defense who could read minds!
What is your writing process?
My process is that there is an inspiration that hits and I try to develop the story through the writing. this keeps the story organic and real. I don't like formula writing so try to avoid that as a process.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
The first story I remember was called "All Pro Quarterback" co-written by former NFL player Y.A. Tittle. It changed the way I approached being an athlete.
Talk about your new book
The newest book is called Fragments of Humanity. It is a series of smaller stories that meld into one story. It follows the lives of four people that run away from their lives and suffer consequences they did not imagine.
What's the story behind your latest book?
This is a bit of a true story; but only in its inception. When I was an 18 year old Marine, I took off to Las Vegas with three kids I met. The rest of this story is a fictionalized account of those four choices.
Talk about some of the techniques you use in writing
One of the things I like to do is use both first and third person. Sometimes a third person narrative can give a more objective view of the character than they possess on their own.
How do you plan to link the four characters?
They start the journey together, but finish separately. With the exception of coming into brief contacts with each other over the years.
Which part are you on now?
I am working on part two which follows the Marine, here named Darrell. His story will be interesting, but probably not as much as the other three characters. He serves a purpose.
What type of purpose?
Well, each of the characters represents a flaw our society faces. Gail was pride and lust. Darrell is about sloth. But he is not physically lazy, he is emotionally lazy and dependent. The third part will be about revenge (wrath). The final part will represent something other than a problem, but he will be wrapped in a societal problem; homeless youth. Despite that he will represent hope.
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