Interview with E. Oliver Daze

Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
As a boy growing up in New Jersey, I lived near an abandoned farm that had a pond. I spent many a day there after school and weekends just exploring. It had plenty of wild 'critters' there from polliwogs to catfish that were just fascinating to me and at times they found their way to the bathtub at my house. I also had a dog, pet rabbits, and baby birds under my care. So one day at the local library I saw a book titled 'Lad of Sunnybank' by Albert Payson Terhune and because of my love for animals I checked it out. He had written a number of books about his beloved pet collie dogs. After that it was 'The Call of the Wild' by Jack London. The wonder and adventure I found in books early on brings back found memories of my boyhood and is part of who I am now as an adult. But the books by Terhune first opened the door to other worlds other then my own and I was hooked after that. I'm always on the lookout for a good story and I hope to contribute to that legacy 'of good story telling' as a writer.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
The typical stuff people do around the house. As a military couple my wife and I did a lot of traveling early on. But now we find lots to do around the house. Now as a retiree I travel because I want to and not because I have to. I like to spend time outdoors, go to sports events, play racket sports, play chess and go fishing with my grand kids. I follow politics to the detriment of my blood pressure so to counter that I'll read, write, or paint.
What is your writing process?
I love the writing part. I dread the formatting. They say it'll get easier. But basically I try to knock out the story line as fast as I can and not worry about errors so that I don't lose my train of thought. After that I'll read the whole thing from beginning to end from the point of view as a reader and not a writer to see if the story is worth sharing with others. Then basically afterwards, I keep going over it adding and/or whittling away until I'm satisfied with it.
How do you approach cover design?
I turn it over to a pro. I basically let whoever know what I'm looking for and trust them to give me a great cover. People are busy and there are a lot of books out there clamoring for attention. I like the idea of putting something on the cover that'll give people an idea of what's inside the cover. So if you can find a good cover designer early on hang on to them.
What do you read for pleasure?
Science fiction, ghost stories, horror stories, and Jack Reacher novels.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I happen to have a Kindle. It's not so much a choice as much as it's a birthday present from my wife.
Describe your desk
I know where everything is.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
As a military brat I grew up lots of places. In Brooklyn, NY my family shared a tenement with a Puerto Rican family and there was nothing to play with except the alley cats in the back yard, the front yard, in the basement, and the hallways. I got to witness gang and girl turf battles out on the streets. After that my family moved to Mt Holly, New Jersey where most of my playmates were the wildlife out at an abandoned farm close to the neighborhood. This was a time I started getting bullied by kids in the neighborhood and in school so I learned to defend myself. My father had gotten a military assignment to Alaska and I got along better with kids there but they were big on playing war games out in the woods and I got to love the outdoors. Still I found more solace in reading books than in making friends. I read Albert Payson Terhune books, Mary Shelley, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Louis L'Amour, and also a lot of science fiction books like Bradbury, Clarke, Hebert, and Heinlein. But I matured when I went into the military after high school and got to interact with people from all over the world. Many of the characters I've met here and abroad have found their way into the stories I write. All the experiences I went through made me what I am today so I have no complaints.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I've always liked stories of fantasy, mystery, horror, science fiction, and war stories. Today we are a washed with stories of superhero characters who confront evil and come out victorious. But people forget that heroes didn't originate with Marvell comics. We have to go all the way back to the Bible where good first encountered evil. So, I've tried to weave a story that encompasses elements of all these genres of interest. At the same time I tried to portray real feelings, attitudes, biases, and emotions of people's reactions to events and to each other. Of course my own biases and beliefs tended to bleed through in some instances. But overall I just tried to put together a story that was adventurous, humorous, scary, and a fun read that readers could sink their teeth into. The gist of the story portrays a time when mankind is moving towards Armageddon and the hero is dragged into the middle of the conflict between heaven and hell. His task is made more difficult due to trying to protect a group of people under his care while he tries to come up with a solution to save the world.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
There's not enough words to describe Smashword's contribution to wannabe writers like me. it's not an easy process from draft to a finished product but without Smashword it would have been so much harder if not an impossible thing to do. So I thank Smashword for the opportunity and holding my hand through the process via their '... Writer's Guide'.
Published 2015-09-08.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Arch Angelo Ghost Hunter III - 'Hoc Est Bellum'
Series: Arch Angelo Ghost Hunter. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 58,220. Language: English. Published: August 13, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Horror » Ghost
The end of the world as Arch and his followers knew it was at hand. Planes were falling from the skies and foreign invaders hidden for years were coming down from the mountains and other places of hiding to overtake American cities and institutions. But in the end it was not going to be Arch's great powers that would save the world. The solution would come from a domestic house cat.
Arch Angelo Ghost Hunter II - 'Sic Infit Bellum'
Series: Arch Angelo Ghost Hunter. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 55,290. Language: English. Published: August 13, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Adventure » Action
Arch's lover and mentor dies in the first battle with the demonic spirit Khalid. Now he is responsible for all the girls in the bordello she was caring for. He discovers that Satan is now plotting to kill him to get a head start on the apocalypse. A new demonic spirit appears in the form of Blake a detective who he defeats. But then he finds that the end of the world was right around the corner.
Arch Angelo Ghost Hunter I - 'Serviam'
Series: Arch Angelo Ghost Hunter. Price: Free! Words: 45,200. Language: English. Published: August 13, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Paranormal, Fiction » Horror » Ghost
Arch Angelo rises from despair as an ex-Marine suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to an enforcer for both Heaven and Hell and as such given great power. He is tested by the demonic spirit of Khalid bin Abu Rabi the enemy that was killed in Afghanistan who tracks him down. A great battle ensues and both Heaven and Hell combine forces to help defeat Khalid and his vast army of coy-wolves.