Please tell us about your latest book.
My latest book is called Certain Darkening. It is about a small group of people who were kidnapped by a family that must find a way to fight their way out only to find out they have no idea what is really going on.
What can we expect from you in the future?
I have about five other stories and one novella that have started working on. There is also series planned for two of my other books that are already written two more series that I haven’t started the first book on yet.
How do we find out about you and your books?
As the saying goes, I am an open book. Readers can find me on Facebook, Twitter, or even Goodreads if they have questions for me. There is also my blog that I write in, not as much as I want to, but they can follow and reach me there as well.
Why did you decide to write action/thriller/horror novels?
I grew up watching action movies and horror movies. Now, that’s not to say that I am getting all of my ideas from there. That is farthest from what is happening. All of the ideas I have are my own ideas.
How much of your personality and life experiences are in your writing?
There is a lot of me in my writing. I would have to say like a lot of writer’s out there, I put myself in the characters I write. My first novel, A Family Affair, is about a family man who has to stop someone from his past, but the family in that book is almost entirely based on my family with exception to a few aspects of them.
When did you first think about writing and what prompted you to submit your first ms?
I first started thinking seriously about writing during my first deployment in 2005. I didn’t finish the first draft of my first book until 2011. I thought A Family Affair was a different type of action/thriller even though it still had a lot of aspects in it that people have read before.
Generally, how long does it take you to write a book?
I wish I could say that it takes me a couple of months to do the first draft, but it definitely doesn’t. My career with the military really takes up some of my time, I try to spend a lot of time with my family, and whatever I have left is dedicated to writing. I would say that it takes me about nine to twelve months to finish a first draft.
Do you have a set schedule for writing or do you just go with the flow?
No real schedule, I just try to write at least two thousand words a day.
What is your writing routine once you start a book?
No routine. When I get time to write, I will put words to paper.
What about your family, do they know not to bother you when you are writing - or are there constant interruptions?
My family could never be considered an interruption to me. They do give me the time to write when they see that I am writing.
What do you do to relax and recharge your batteries?
I run. Starting to turn into running a lot. But I have never really needed the recharge aspect yet.
What truly motivates you in general? In your writing?
My family is my motivation. I don’t use them in all of my writing, but when I write I think of trying to do things better for them.
Where do your ideas come from?
Most of my ideas are from when I was growing up. Just a lot thoughts of “oh, that would make an interesting story.”
Do you feel humour is important in action/thriller/horror and why?
With everything in life, I believe there should be humor there somewhere. If you take life too seriously, you’ll never live a true life.
What kind of research do you do?
I don’t do any research right off the bat. If I get stuck with something I’ll look it up, but I won’t research anything of my books beforehand. There is no reason to.
Would you like to write a different genre than you do now, or sub-genre?
If I try, I think I’ll just destroy that genre and make people distance themselves from me.
What does your wife think of your writing?
My wife is not much of a reader, but she supports me all the same. She read a little of my first novel, and the only thing she doesn’t like is that I am using real locations in my books. I am trying to change that as best I can.
Do you ever ask her for advice?
The only thing I ever ask my wife to do when it comes to my writing is to write the last line. It gives the feel that she helped me.
Please tell us about yourself (family, hobbies, education, etc.)
Well, I am married. I have four beautiful daughters. Currently we are separated due to the military. I am going to be going to another country hear soon, so my wife and three of my daughters are living in Indiana right now. My hobbies are reading, running, and getting into the gym. As far as education goes, I’m just a high school grad with a lot of life experience from the military.
Fill in the blank favorites - Dessert. City. Season. Type of hero. Type of heroine.
Dessert – I try to stay away from desserts, but I would have to give it to zebra cakes and Oreo’s.
Season – Easily the fall.
When it comes to the hero and heroine type, I like the normal type of person. Think of John McClain.
What are some of your favorite things to do?
I am big movie collector. With everyone else going to all of the digital stuff for movies, I still buy discs. But there is also running and hitting gym along with reading that I thoroughly enjoy to do.
Do you have a favorite author? Favorite book?
I don’t necessarily have a favorite author, but if I had to pick it would be Lee Child. I just love the Jack Reacher books. But my favorite book is by Stephen King. It’s not his best book by leaps and bounds, and definitely not the best book ever written, but I just love Desperation for some reason. It has to be the story.
Who are some of your other favorite authors to read?
In May of 2009, I started reading every Stephen King book ever written, chronologically. I’m still not finished. I have eight books left to go. But of course I read Lee Child, James Patterson, the Harry Potter books, Dean Koontz, Robert Ludlum, W.E.B. Griffin, Clive Cussler, Tom Clancy, and Michael Crichton.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
I’ll still be in the military. And I will definitely still be writing. There is nothing that is going to stop me from doing that.
How long have you been writing - have you always wanted to be a writer?
would say, yes I have always wanted to be a writer. The first story I wrote (and I wish I still had a copy of it because I would love to fix it up) was a bit of fanfiction for the Halloween movies. I wrote it back in 1998. But there was a bit of hiatus there since I didn’t start on A Family Affair until 2011.
How many books have you written, how many have been published?
I am currently completely rewriting the fourth book I wrote. I just didn’t like the feel of it while I was going through the first rounds of edits. The third book I wrote is going to be published in the next couple of months. I also have two books that are available through Solstice Publishing and one short story. I have finished a fifth book that I am keeping under wraps for the time being. I have started a sixth and seventh book and one novella. While I spend the next year away, I am hoping that I can at least get the sixth seventh and novella completely.
After you've written your book and it's been published, do you ever buy it and/or read it?
No. No I don’t. I leave that for the fans to do.
Among your own books, have you a favorite book? Favorite hero or heroine?
With most all of my books they are all connected. So, essentially they could all be part of one big story. As for hero or heroine, most all of them have connections to each other, so there is no way of picking a favorite.
What book for you has been the easiest to write? The hardest? The most fun?
The easiest was the one about to come out, Certain Darkening. The hardest is most definitely the one I am currently working on, The First Door. The most fun was A Family Affair. The dream that got to write it was about my family, so that’s what I used as the basis.
Which comes first, the story, the characters or the setting?
The story definitely comes first. If there is no story how can you have characters or a setting?
What is the hardest part of writing/the easiest for you?
The hardest part is finding time to write. But once I do, the easiest thing is just to put the words to page. I have a basic story that I start with for the day and it comes out.
Have you experienced writer's block---> If so, how did you work through it?
I had writer’s block on The First Door, I think that’s why it was so hard to write it and why it turned out the way it did. The way I got over it was by starting another story. After working on the other story for a week or two I went back to The First Door.
What is the most rewarding thing about being a writer?
Just getting your story out there for people to read. If some people get gratification from reading my books, I have done my job.
If you weren't writing, what would you be doing?
Still being in the military. Nothing is going to change that for at least another seven years.
Are there any words of encouragement for unpublished writers?
Keep writing. That’s the best advice any unpublished writer can get. It’s what I got.