Chronicles of The K-9 Boys and Girls on Locus Street seriesre

Chronicles of The K-9 Boys and Girls on Locus Street seriesre
Rescued Dogs' Stories

Saturday, April 30, 2016

James McAllister

The interview with James McAllister has been sitting in queue a long time.  I met James in a group where he flashed through.  He is an aggressive promoter of his stories and his interview is indicative of why.

I was fortunate in 'winning' several of his books which in turn won him an avid reader. I picked up most of his books and am ecstatic to know he has stories in a charity collection book I have yet to read in its entirety.  More will be heard from me about his books and short stories when I post my reviews on our sister site, Paul and Paula's Books. 

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

An English teacher in college told me I could be a good writer, with a little effort. That was back in 1984. I didn’t think much about it after that until about 2005. In sort of an informal ‘bucket list’ thing, I decided I’d like to write a book. I started writing my first book, The Best Laid Plans, in 2012. I finished and published it in June 2013. I also published an anthology of short stories I had written, The Universe, Five Minutes At A Time, about the same time. I published my second book, The Page, in February 2014. In March 2014 I published The Turret, then in November I released Rods.  My latest, Staged Fright, was published in April 2015.
I’ve had a few short stories published by others. The first is Things Seem Different By Firelight in the anthology Torched in July of 2014 - not in print at this time, fortunately can be found in The Universe While You Wait. The others are The Last One, We’re Not In Kansas and The Agony of Defeat. All are in Gifts From The Dark, a Miscellany of Dread, published October 2015.

How long does it take you to write a book?

Good question. My first took about 14 months, sort of. I travel a lot, so I began writing on planes, in airports, and in hotel rooms. When I would get a stuck writing The Best Laid Plans, I would work on The Page. When I didn’t have enough time to complete a scene in either, I’d write a short story as an exercise. I wrote The Turret in about ten months, including about three months ‘off’ for hip replacement surgery. Rods and Staged Fright are novellas. Each was written in about a month.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

I consider myself more of a storyteller than a writer. I try to put an ‘Easter egg’ in my stories. In The Turret, there is a law firm name taken from a famous comedy movie. In Things Seem Different By Firelight, all of the characters are names from classic 20s, 30, and 40s comedy movies. So, if you read my stories, google the names of people, places, and ships.

How do books get published?

I publish them through my publishing company, Fortiter Publishing LLC. I publish on Amazon and in paperback formats through CreateSpace. I find it an intuitive and straightforward process.

Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?

The basic storylines are in my head. The short version is I write the stories I got tired of waiting for others to write.
The details I research. I did a lot of research on 500 A.D. Scotland, historical figures, Celtic names, flora, fauna, etc. for The Page. For The Best Laid Plans and The Turret, I researched various ethnic names, military ranks, ship names, star names and locations, famous sea battles, and more. Facts for Rods and Staged Fright came from my personal knowledge of New York City, research on NYPD ranks, geography, and history.
The internet is very helpful.

What do you like to do when you're not writing?

I love my ‘real job’ doing surveys in healthcare accreditation. It has me traveling three weeks each month, so it is hard to find enough time to spend with my family. I also like fishing, gardening, football, baseball, and basketball.
And I read and watch movies, mostly SciFi. I also beta read for a few author friends.

What does your family think of your writing?

My wife is not a SciFi or horror fan, but she genuinely likes my stories. So do the others in my family who’ve read them.
My wife’s favorite is Rods, with Staged Fright and The Page close behind.

How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

I’ve published seven books: two Starclan books, The Turret and The Best Laid Plans; Two John Martin Adventure, Staged Fright and Rods; The Page; and two short story collections, The Universe Five Minutes At A Time and The Universe While You Wait. The last one is available in paperback and Kindle formats, but my intended use for it is in waiting rooms.

Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? If so, what are they

The best thing I can tell you is to practice. Write a lot, even if it’s just short stories. Give yourself a challenge; tell a complete story on one page, etc. Then have others read it and listen to their criticisms. Use their thoughts to improve your product.
And remember, your writing is your product, so do everything you can to put out a product you can be proud of; you can never have enough proof-readers!
Lastly, write what you know, write what you like. Have fun.

Connect with James at his website: Fortiter

  On his Facebook page:

           His Twitter:  @StarclanAdmiral

                  And, Amazon

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Thomas Duder

I've been in several groups with Thomas and he is not only brash, and bold but is a very talented individual. He's chomping at the bit, so let's go on his ride ~

Hello, hello!  Let's begin, yes? :D

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer? 
A professional writer or a writer-writer?  I honestly don't know - I've always been a writer, y'know?

But a professional writer?  Roughly three years ago or so.  I just decided to take the plunge and after the first year, just...found myself here, I reckon

How long does it take you to write a book? 
If I had my druthers, all bills paid and my schedule set, I could easily kick out a 50k book every other month.  This is also considering work on music, lyrics, and other, nonesuch.

Sadly enough, life is harsh and unfair.  Naturally, there are far more factors and I'm not quite at that point yet.

But I will be, once I get this dag-fernagled machine up and running.  THEEEEEEEN I can focus on taking over the world.

Where do you get your information or ideas for your books? 
Apparently from the utter darkness of the void. grins  Honestly, some of the ideas form as I write, or during the skeletal structure.  I'm very much so a hybrid writer - an engineer at the start, but then a gardener as I write.

It's a combination of order and chaos that usually presents the story to me as I write, or during my planning process.  Even more so, sometimes characters will do things that surprise even me, making them far more alive in that sense.

What do you like to do when you're not writing? 
My geek resume is loooooong, my friend.  Video games, movies, music, reading, training and weightlifting.  I'm into tabletop games, card battle games, just...all sorts of stuff, y'know?

Internet culture is a thiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiing, and I find myself getting louder about politics again.

I'm into a loooooot of stuff, yo.

What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books? 
Having the innocence of my dreams smashed out of me thanks to the brutal reality of the industry.  Of ALL industries, really.

But that pain?

That's weakness leaving one.  Now I'm stronger, still here, still resilient about getting my dreams my way.

I may yet fail, though.  I'm willing to accept that too.

Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? 
Stay out of my genre.


Naw, seriously though?  Write.  Just write, and let everything fall where it may.

Do you like to create books for adults? 
Hell yeah!  I might try my hand at books for kids, under a nom de guerre of course.

Heeeeeey, keep an eye out for JJ Blackstone someday, friends. still grinning

What do you think makes a good story?
If it leaves an indelible memory within you, something you can never forget, perhaps a moment or a snippet of dialogue.

It could be the backstory, or the current story, or the characters.

There's no one thing that makes a good story, and for some, it IS only one thing.

As a writer, it's up to us to figure out how to write these things and present it as best as we can.

For me, there's my breathtaking scenes of violence and witty dialogue, but I've also been praised for my worldbuilding and "believable" over the top scenes of action.

Like I said earlier, write and just keep writing.  Either you yourself will recognize that you suck (in which case you should STILL keep writing, just refine where your audience is, find them and revel in your suckiness) or you will get better and be awesome.

Or you'll find that you're awesome already.

That, too, is acceptable.

Thomas is in the midst of raising funds to launch his new book -  only a month left to pledge the link

The Pen is My Sword site

Check out my review on his first two in the series The Generalist at Paul and Paula's Books
Have a look at Thomas Duder's Anubis Unit band