Roger M. Woodbury

Publisher info

Roger M. Woodbury wanted to be a teacher when he graduated from college. First he taught in the inner city and was deferred from the draft for the US war in Vietnam. After two years he decided that he needed to have the "great experience of his generation" which the Vietnam War was, and he went off to have "his" war. After that was a career in business, in real estate and in historic property restoration. "I guess I was pretty restless for most of the time," he says. "I have never wanted to stay nailed to one desk for a very long time. I have loved a woman (well, several actually); I have had my war (one was enough), and I have needed to reinvent my professional self many times."

"I've always been a writer and have used that for everything from convincing people to buy my insurance products to getting town governments to allow me to do what I wanted to do with the old building I wanted to give new life to. Whether by pen, keyboard, carpenter's pencil, or something else. The writing has been the key to my ventures, experiments, and experiences.

"Now, I find myself of a 'certain age'. The Air Force had taken away my keys to their newest jet fighter; my calls to NASA's astronaut recruiter went unanswered and I am a bit too broad to fit in a Formula One race car. But I find I am not yet done and I will continue writing about my adventures, some fiction and some not, for the rest of my time. I hope the readers will enjoy the adventures with me."

He describes his writing as "realistic". He tries to draw clear pictures of the settings that actions take place, make the characters come to life and make readers think, 'Yeah, I think I know someone like that!'". But never ever does he want to write fantasy or make believe super characters: his characters are real people working on real problems using their skills, sometimes training, and sometimes sheer luck to solve problems that might be impossible to others and totally unexpected to them.

Smashwords Interview

Describe your desk
My desk is an odd shaped thing. Initially, it began life as a computer work station that I designed and had built almost twenty years ago. That portion of it sits at an angle to the door of my study. It is painted a very dull, gray and is the top and keyboard tray are covered with a rather attractive gray laminate. Just below where my left hand sits when I type is a notch about 1/2 X 3/4 inches that got knocked out of the laminate years ago. I call it a "war wound"!

Because I took over this room as my study several years ago, and I needed more space than just this workstation, I added on to it. To the left of where I sit is one of the east facing windows looking out onto the side yard. There are two identical windows that are separated by a large bump in the wall which concealed the old chimney rising up from the basement and goes up through the roof. I cut from a large sheet of heavy plywood an addition that conforms to the desk angle and extends to the wall covering the chimney, then back along my left side as a large "return". I can now swivel my chair to the left where I have a large work space for making notes, or placing books or other research documents, then immediately swivel about 1/3 turn to the right and return to typing. The new surface is painted a hard-surface, moderately glossy white.

Oh, yes, the addition to my desk doesn't meet the window at all. In front of the window is a shelf covered with old carpeting that is a sunny place for my writing Partner to spend his mornings. His name is Opus and he's an eight year old Maine Coon Cat. It is significant to mention here that he has lots and lots of toes....seven on his right front and rear paws, and six on the left. One would almost think that might make him a terrific typist, which it probably does. The problem is that even with a spell checker, his work comes out poorly!
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a nice town about eighteen miles west of Boston. Both my mother and father were teachers and I remember both of them reading to me when I was a child. They encouraged me every step of the way, and encouraged me to be interested in everything and tell them not only what I saw and did, but what I imagined I saw and did, which is probably the chief reason I was drawn early to writing.
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