Exclusive Interview with
When did you start writing?
Actively writing, for the purpose of it becoming published, spring of 2020. Within one year I co-wrote five military romance novels with author Melody Anne. Since that time I have co-wrote three additional novels with Melody Anne, two military/political thrillers and co-wrote two fantasy novels with Roger L. Osborne.
What makes writing your passion?
Creating situations and stories where we have heroes, especially within a brotherhood or family unit, is a strong driving force. I enjoy the idea of someone reading through my work, evoking a sense of pride in themselves and wondering if they could be the lead character in the book because every person I create is just as real as the reader.
How long have you been writing?
I'll ask my mom, but probably around 4ish. ;)
What was the feeling when you published your first book?
A lot of odd emotions. Melody Anne is a multiple NYT and USA Today Bestselling author, so there was an underlying expectation of some success with the book(s). The book was a surprise release, and due to that, it got off to a little bit slower start than her other books, including the reviews. The first week I constantly hit refresh to see what people were saying about the book. When the first review that included my name came through, I read it one time, nodded my head in agreement and then got back to work.
What’s the story behind your choice of characters?
Military men and women
What annoys you the most in pursuing a writing career?
Doing EVERYTHING else but writing. The marketing, the social media, the covers, the this and that, and everything else but writing. It is a pain that we must go through at the beginning of our writing careers, but we won't get anywhere if we don't keep pushing at it.
"Do what you have to do until you get to do what you want to do"
How do you get over the “writer’s block”?
I'm a planner, researcher, and outliner. By the time I'm ready to sit down and write, I don't really get writers block.
We all know the writer’s path is never easy, what makes you keep going? What advice would you give to new authors?
Keep grinding. I don't mean that to create an image of prodding along but to have the discipline to not give up as you hit bumps along the way. If it matters to you, then keep grinding it out. Much of the success found is via staying with it when others quit.
If you could go back in time and talk to your younger self, what would you say?
Take a breath.
Find at least a little joy in the small things.
Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with the bad ones?
I was thankful that a mentor gave me some good advice on book reviews. She said, "If Dr. Suess gets one-star reviews, then you better believe you're going to get them."
And I have no grandiose thoughts on me being better than Dr. Suess.
What is the feeling when you get a good review?
Have you ever incorporated something that happened to you in real life into your novels?
Many times. Almost every book I've written has a situation or scenario based on real-life experiences.
Which of your characters you can compare yourself with? Did you base that character on you?
I don't compare myself completely to any of my own characters.
What do you think, the book cover is as important as the story?
The cover brings 'em in; the story keeps 'em there.
Do you connect with your readers? Do you mind having a chat with them or you prefer to express yourself through your writing?
Either / Or
How do you feel when people appreciate your work or recognize you in public?
It takes time to feel comfortable with someone connecting with you based on a book you've written, but I have the thought that if they took the time to read my book, and then to engage in conversation with me about the book, then it is my honor to speak with them.
Who is your favorite author? Why?
No chance to be able to name one.
Dickens, Twain, C.S. Lewis, Joe Abercrombie, Jack Carr, and so many more.
What’s the dream? Whom would you like to be as big as?
Wherever the road leads. The focus now is to get stories that are stored up out of my head. Then to partner with those who write stories that interest me. I enjoy the effort of writing a story with another person. Bouncing ideas off each other, bringing different styles to the pages, the tug and pull of when to not give up on an idea and when to let go and never look back.
Would you rewrite any of your books? Why?
If you could switch places with any author – who would that be?
What would you say to the “trolls” on the internet? We all know them – people who like to write awful reviews to books they’ve never read or didn’t like that much, just to annoy the author.
There will always be people who don't like your stories, your writing style, your genre, or the sight of your face. I'll take constructive criticism but if you're going to troll me, you're nothing more than a bead of water off a duck's back.
What would you say to your readers?
What I always say - thank you for giving the most valuable resource you have - your time - and spending it on something I created. I do not take that for granted and do my best to give a product worthy of that time.
Share a bit about yourself – where do you live, are you married, do you have kids?
Married, for the second time, which I have loved since the 8th grade. We brought children to the marriage and together, we have four daughters.
I've lived all over the world but currently reside in the Willamette Valley of Oregon, just outside of Eugene.
What is your day job if you have one?
My wife has started her own medical practice and we just began a lease on an office building. She has been working her butt off to get it set up and ready to go while also working her day jobs. I have a background in business operations, so I am setting up the business side of that while also trying to write and everything that comes with that. It is a lot for us to juggle but the long game has massive upside.
What are your hobbies? What do you do in your free time?
free time is a funny phrase. During the fall I hunt, but even then I am working non-stop. We took out eldest to Portugal and Spain earlier this year and if there was any free time, it was spent working on my books. There is little I do that doesn't include work. Even if I'm on the golf course I will be answering emails and doing what I can to further my career. Yes, I can detach but at this stage of my life and career, I'm grinding as much as I can.
Did you have a happy childhood?
Is there a particular experience that made you start writing?
Was asked to by Melody Anne.
Do you have unpublished books? What are they about?
Yes ... Will be a wait and read approach on that.
What do you think should be improved in the education of our children? What do we lack?
I have too many thoughts on this, with four kids in school, to type it out here
If you were allowed 3 wishes – what would they be?
What is your favorite music?
Depends on the day. Can go from 1930 Blues, to bouncing around with my teenage daughters and their teen bop music and everything in between.
Share a secret with us 🙂
I love the taste of pineapple but am allergic to it.