Hello Rick! Great you could drop by today and be my featured author. I have some questions lined up for you to answer, but first let’s hear a bit about the author and the man.
Fifty-seven years ago, the world welcomed me onboard. I’ve always had a passion for reading, but never for learning to use the English language properly. Things that go bump in the night don’t scare me. Hearing something breathing behind me in the dark scares me. I like to write what I like to read…thriller/mystery/horror. I’ve read most authors in these genres, from Doyle to Grisham, from Poe to King and everyone in between. The story is what compels me to read and continue reading. That’s my plan when I write and I continue to develop my abilities to give you the reader, the best possible story to entertain you.
You sound like a fun guy and an author with stories we all should read. Now be prepared for my questions, because I will grill you and eat you whole. Bwahahaha! (Not really of course I’m just kidding) 🙂
First question, can you give me your best Whoop? Unless you have another one which works better for you?
If I’m celebrating a success it’s usually a big “YES”.
Okay, sounds like a winner that one, but does it work all the time, even those times when the muse has gone and done a runner on you? And when did you first start with it?
When the muse is gone I’m completely lost. I’ll wander around the house smoking and drinking coffee until something surfaces in my mind; then I race back to the computer and start writing again.
Right, sounds like you are on the right track there. Let’s do a few of the yada yada questions before we move on to the fun.
What is the title of the book you would like to talk about?
Jack, I Am. It’s the Jack the Ripper story from the killer’s viewpoint.
Did you have difficulty coming up with the title?
Sort of until I remembered a movie titled Sam, I Am and that’s where I got the idea.
If you would have to change the genre, what would it be then?
I’d have to put it in historical fiction. If you’re asking me what other genre I’d like to write in it would have to be Mystery/ Police procedural. I like the idea of cops and robbers.
Just to confuse you we’ll take the alternative route now.
What don’t you like about writing, or whatever you need to do marketing wise?
I find the whole promotion and schmoozing thing to be a lot of pressure to perform. If I go to a party where I don’t know anyone, I talk about them and what they like. Promoting a book forces me to talk about me and my book…I know that’s the point, but I’m embarrassed by it. The same feelings and pressures are probably felt by 90% of the e-authors out there. If we could just write the book and publish it, maybe go on a book signing or two and reap the rewards we’d all be happy.
Tell me, when your muse is visiting and you’re on a roll, what would seriously drive her/him away?
Almost any interruption can chase it away. I can usually get the thread back but sometimes the thought is gone forever. I’m not getting any younger and my short term memory is very fragile these days.
What does your muse look like?
I’ve never actually turned around to look at the person speaking in my ear. I’d probably be shocked to find me looking back or at least some version of me…younger I hope.
Do you ever speak to your characters and do you get along all the time?
I yak away to my characters all the time. Sometimes, at least for me anyways, it’s the best way to figure out dialogue between characters otherwise it comes out sounding flat. Arguments happen, but I usually win because I’m in control of the keyboard.
Can you name the food and drink that will surely get you started?
Coffee, without it my day is a non-starter. I have between 4 and 10 mugs (not cups) of coffee a day when I’m on a role.
Would you be able to come up with an excuse on why you haven’t written a whole day, and have me believe it too?
Chores and a honey-do list always trump writing. I’ve been married longer than I’ve been a writer so when my wife says something needs doing I do it. That doesn’t mean I’m not thinking about the current work in progress, but I’m just not putting it down in print.
And finally why would you ever want to live life behind a keyboard slaving over a manuscript?
I’ve been a manual labour type or blue collar labourer all my life. To be able to work with my mind instead of my hands has always been a dream of mine since I learned that you can’t get rich working with your hands. I suppose gigolos are the exception, but any hope of that has long passed me by. Writing for most authors is a means of escape I think; a way to be in other worlds and become other people without actually changing who we are or where we live. And then if the money is good writing isn’t a bad profession.
Okay now that we have the mandatory questions out of the way, shoot your mouth off. Tell me whatever you want the blab about. But please no cat’s, dogs, or children. Make me laugh, or cry, or even envious. Tell me something none has ever heard before from you. hehehe, love those little dirty secrets, real or make believe. 🙂
Writing for me is hard work. I failed my high-school English classes and couldn’t care less about subjects and predicates or dangling participles. I’ve only come to be a writer in the last six years, mostly since starting to write Jack, I Am.
When I started researching Jack the Ripper, I knew that I was going to create the book from his point of view. Nothing else portrays the killer in the first person, always from the perspective of the police or the public. That’s not to say my version is any less gruesome, but it gives more reason to the crimes than just ‘he hated prostitutes’.
I gave him a life and a reality based on the FBI profile. There were also other historical characters which I incorporated into the story to make my Jack more realistic. In my version, he has a father and mother and gets married.
During the draft process, my wife was working at a camp in northern Canada. One night we were talking on Skype and the connection wasn’t very good so we couldn’t use the camera. Her room was the camp medical office so people would walk in anytime. We were talking away and then I said, “Is anyone in the room with you?” She said “No, why?” I paused and said, “I’ve just killed my first woman.” Well she knew what I meant, but you can imagine the reaction of anyone listening in to the conversation.
There is no doubt I have a lot to learn still about this writing business, but I don’t give up easily. Will I ever learn what a ‘dangling participle is? Not likely, but I know what I like to read and I’ll continue until I’m successful…whatever that means.
Thank you Rick for being so open with me, it has been a pleasure hosting you and whenever you have a new one published give me a holler and we’ll redo this thing. In a new way of course, can’t regurgitate the same old same old too long. 🙂
Thanks so much for letting me talk to you and your readers Lucy; it’s been fun. I’ve also written another book called Reality Shift about a small town in Nebraska which comes under attack by shape shifting creatures bent on destroying all living creatures. Five people decide to stay and fight for their town and for their lives. But are the things real or just very realistic nightmares? That’s the line between reality and imagination that sometimes shifts. If you can’t tell the difference, how will you know when it’s happening to you?
You are a very prolific writer indeed, but where can we find you online? You know to stalk, erm, I mean follow and admire?
“I have a blog,” Rick says and hands me over the link to it.
But where can we buy those books of yours?
Jack, I am on Amazon
Reality Shift also on Amazon