Today I’d like to introduce you to my fellow CIR author, Rich Bullock. Rich writes stories of ordinary people put in perilous situations, where lives are changed forever.
He is the author of the Perilous Safety Series, including Perilous Cove, Storm Song, and Desperation Falls, and the Glass and Stone Novels: Shattered Glass and Glass Revenge.
His first writing experience was at ten years old on a well-used Remington typewriter, where clearing the tangled print arms was a continual chore. The old machine lasted through high school all-nighters.
Fortunate to grow up in small-town San Luis Obispo, California, he developed an eye for settings that remind people of home, and characters you’d like to have next door (except for the killers). He now lives and writes in Redding, California where, on most days, he sees Mount Lassen and Mount Shasta. But his favorite places in the world are Perilous Cove and Storm Lake.
I, too, consider myself fortunate to have grown up in California, and it sounds like Rich lives in a very inspirational place now with views to Mount Shasta! So, Rich, you’ve got a brand new release, Glass Revenge, that just hit the shelves at Amazon a few days ago. We’ll provide links to all your books below, but how about answering three questions for me first.
Where are your books set? And have you been there, or spent significant time there?
My stories start in a variety of places around the world, but mostly take place in the fictitious town of Perilous Cove and the communities around Storm Lake, both on or near the central coast of California. The first time I put a map of Storm Lake in one of the books, several readers told me: That’s exactly how I pictured it!
Shattered Glass was an exception in that it tok place in Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, and Malibu. The main character, seventeen-year-old Lilly Glass, just wasn’t cooperating with me on that. But her parents are in the film industry, so the settings lent a lot of local flavor to the story, and I had a blast putting in references to locations, movies, and industry terms.
Thanks for that. Now, tells us, what three things would you say are the most important for an aspiring author to keep in mind as they being their writing journey?
A. Keep writing. You get better and better.
B. Learn the craft. Attend conferences and workshops. Commit yourself to excellence. It’s not as easy as it looks (if done well).
C. Make your main character the main thing. I tell aspiring writers: “It’s the character’s story. I’m just writing it down.” That means being in their head; knowing what they want, what they fear, what they love, and what will hurt them if lost. My characters are my best friends, and I know them far better than real people in my life. Sad, I know. But true.
Great advice! And lastly, do you write from your own experiences, or do you simply sit down and make stuff up?
I draw from every experience I’ve ever had, from the time I was a boy growing up to earlier today. And it’s critical to bring in the senses. For example, my younger brother and I regularly rode in the backs of pickups long before there were laws against that. I remember the hot metal of the floor, the cold air swirling around as we covered ourselves in heavy blankets, the gaseous exhaust fumes seeping up through cracks and holes, the rumble and howl of the tires on the pavement, bracing as my dad turned corners or bounced over rough road. All the senses come into play when describing a scene, and they allow the reader to relate and connect with the characters.
And I’m always bringing in current things, too. Several times a week I hear something on TV and tell my wife: that’s in my new book. It might be a place, a song title, a famous person, a business, a well-known quote. Fiction is so incredibly flexible and fun to play with.
And I have a lot to say about indie vs traditional (I’m strongly indie), but I’ll leave that for another time. 🙂
You can find all Rich Bullock’s books on Amazon, but here is a link to his New Release, Glass Revenge–just follow this link to Amazon.
Or you can visit his website, Perilous Fiction, here.