Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I am married, and the father of two beautiful children. I am a Veteran of the United States Marine Corps, and have a Bachelors degree from UNC Wilmington. I love sports, and I am a huge fan of Football. I play fantasy football. I spend my free time at my kids’ practices, games, and recitals. I try to play golf, but often don’t find the time. I’ve written two books, and I’m working on my third book. It’s a trilogy, called the Warden Series.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
Cash Me Out: Life and Death in Paradise is my latest book. It’s book two of my series. I am a Veteran of the Invasion of Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003. I was in the Marine Corps, and while I was there I heard how other people found gold or money. We thought about what would happen if we found treasures, and what would we do with it. Turn it in, keep it, transport it, get it home, etc.
Book two is what happens after they get their discovery to safety. Now my characters have to figure out what to do next. How would life go, and what would they do to make good on the discovery.
My trilogy is loosely based on true events.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
For the first book, I just wrote it out. Then I had to spend a week or so formatting the draft for dialogue, and paragraphing. I wrote it out, and dealt with everything else later.
For the second book, I planned it out, and formatted it as I wrote. I also edited it as I wrote. It saved me tons of time.
I also write at night, or during other free time I have because I have a day job.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
A few have. Tom Clancy, Steven King, Kurt Vonnegut, and a few zombie apocalypse authors inspired me. Miguel De Cervantes and Bernal Diaz del Castillo inspired me. I read a ton of military non-fiction novels that influenced me. I can go on. Lord of the Rings… Song of Ice and Fire… So so many….
What are you working on now?
I’m working on book three of my Warden series. This will end my trilogy. It’s actually the prequel. Book one was the main story I wanted to write. I couldn’t get it all in one book though. The story was too large! I didn’t want to bore readers with a gigantic book.
Book two was after the events in book one. You got to see the characters live life, and how they ended up. There’s new adventures, and it ends.
Book three came from a request. Since the discovery was made during the invasion of Iraq in book one, some wanted to hear that full story. How the characters survived the war, and what they did in it from start to finish.
Book two and three were unplanned. I could have ended it with book one, but I wanted to expand the universe that I created in the series for the reader.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I found that it depends on what you can afford. There are websites that offer cheap promotion newsletter blasts, and there are websites that offer free ones. There’s others that offer expensive ones!
I have a day job, and have little to no budget at this time for promoting. So I stick with the free ones, and Twitter. Ones like this and the Vinny owned sites are good. They always garner me a few new readers.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Write. Don’t stop, and don’t give up. Get your story out, and then work on everything else when you’re done. If you don’t write, then you have nothing to put out there. If you plan on making more novels? Keep writing, and try to fit in promoting on the side. Don’t stop writing the next work though. Write as much as you can, but find time on the side to do promoting and advertising.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Don’t worry about the bad reviews. Some people will rate the book low just because they’re not a fan of the genre! They’ll already be biased against it, and when your book didn’t change how they feel about books in that genre? They’ll one or two star it. That’s ok. Those low ratings will make the higher ratings look even better.
What are you reading now?
I self published two books this year. I am working on the third. So I’m not reading anything but notes, ideas, and drafts of my books. After I published, I re-read my published books. I know it’s bad, but I can’t help it. I feel like if I read something else, it may affect my current writing or even my writing style.
What’s next for you as a writer?
I started a blog, and I am working on novels. I want to find more work as a writer. I’d love for writing to be take over for my day job. I even want to get my kids involved. My eldest gave me a synopsis for a book idea that I’m developing for her. My eldest will be given credit for the contribution they provided, and they’ll have that in a book for the rest of their lives. I’ll do the same for my youngest.
What is your favorite book of all time?
This is hard…. The Stand by Steven King is way up there. The True History of the Conquest of New Spain by Bernal Diaz Del Castillo is another. The Jack Ryan series is up there… I would say Steven King had my attention first, and that the Stand has been the most re-read book in my library.