Family can be a good thing. We can thank Ron's son for giving Ron the nudge to get his stories out in the world. Ron's dedication to telling those stories is pretty inspiring. Read on to find out how this former lawyer is making his mark in the fiction world.
|From Ron's Amazon Author Pag|
* Do you like to write short or longer stories?
I have never mastered the short story and do not enjoy writing them. I am in awe of the skill of those who craft good short stories. I had some success with a 30,000-word novella, Peyote Spirits, but that is my minimum for word count. Almost everything I write falls within the 65,000-to-90,000-word range.
* Do you write for the market or yourself?
Both. My publisher son gives me his thoughts on the type of novel he thinks he can market best and then the idea strikes. For instance, Old Dogs published in April 2021 was our biggest financial success. I had assumed that the book would remain a standalone, but in December Mike said it was time for a sequel. Day of the Dog was released in April 2022 and has been a great commercial success, bringing with it a revival of the first book. We try to produce four novels annually, and the market decides when another series book is due.
|Amazon - |
2021 Peacemaker Award Winner
* What life experiences influenced your writing?
It would be more difficult to think of something that has not. It has been helpful, however, that I was a large animal veterinarian’s son and grew up in a rural atmosphere. I also have raised cattle and hogs and in my previous profession worked with many farmers and ranchers in Nebraska.
* Are you a plotter or a pantser?
I am a pantser. I’ve never outlined a project, and I have no idea what is going to happen in the next chapter till I get there. It wouldn’t do much good. In the novel Medicine Wheel, I created a female character who was fated for death, but by the time I got to that point I was so enamored of her, I couldn’t bring myself to kill her, and she recovered from her illness. I confess that I am sometimes forced to write myself out of a plotting corner.
* Is there a writing routine you follow or do you write when the muse strikes?
I try to write something every day with a goal of 2000 words. I’m not too hard on myself when I don’t reach my objective, though, and of course, quite pleased when I hit 3000.
* Is there anything else you feel people would like to know or would be surprised to learn about you?
I am 81 years old and started my writing career at age 74, not counting three best-forgotten titles published under a pseudonym for Tower/Leisure books over 40 years ago. I was a country lawyer for 50 years and wrote a few novels which I did not attempt to publish during those years. My youngest son Mike read one of them, called, and said he thought he could publish and sell that book and the several others I had lying around. Two of those novels, Last Will and Night of the Coyote were Peacemaker finalists in 2015. Changing careers was a risk, because there is no market for a small-town law practice, and I made enough bad financial decisions in my life to assure that I would not be retiring before age 95. My wife Bev, who does first edit, was supportive, and we now live most of the time in a Kansas Flint Hills cabin. It has worked out quite well, and I am very fortunate to be living my dream in my old age, although I will still need to keep writing and publishing for another 15 years or so.
* Do you write in other genres?
* Research, do you find it important?
It is important in most of my books. I have written a few historical westerns, including Cut Nose, which was a Spur finalist, and I always try to include bits of history in my novels sufficient to give the reader the illusion of my expertise.
* Do you have unique ‘marketing’ tips you are willing to share?
I write for the Amazon/ Kindle market. It was my son’s idea, and he formed his own publishing company to publish my novels. He has since worked with a few other writers but is convinced that to find commercial success in that market, a writer needs to release multiple titles during a year’s time. Some of these may be from a writer’s backlist, but it appears important to keep books in front of the reading public in that market. It’s different, of course, if one has million-book best sellers.
* What advice would you give to those who dream of writing, or what advice would you give your younger self?
Persistence. My hero Calvin Coolidge said, “Nothing in the world will take the place of persistence. Talent will not…genius will not…education will not.” I suspect most writers understand this.
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