Book Squirrel sat down recently to chat with sci-fi author, Richard Paolinelli.
Thanks, Book Squirrel. It’s great to be here.
You’re right. It IS great to be here!
Tell me, Richard, what inspired you to write?
Even as a kid, when we would be moving to the next stop (my Dad’s drilling business moved us all over the country), I would pass the time by writing these little stories in my portion of the back seat. I’ve always enjoyed writing about the worlds and characters I created.
What’s your favourite thing that you have written?
My non-fiction sports history, From The Fields, because it not only told the story of high school football in my home town of Turlock, California, it also shared some of the town’s history off the football field. In a way, it was the best thing I could do for my hometown. So many people have reached out to me since it was published to thank me for doing it and to share their experiences with the events in the book.
What are you working on writing now?
I am helping finish ‘Eerie’, the final book written by my friend Gibson Michaels, who passed away last year before he could finish it. It would have been his fourth book and we want to make sure his readers get to read it. I am co-writing a western novel with Jim Christina, with whom I co-host an online show about writers and the craft of writing – The Writer’s Block on LA Talk Radio. I’m editing one of the 11 books in the Planetary Anthology series (and have stories in several of the others) and I am helping start up a new organization for professional creators in science fiction and fantasy, the Science Fiction & Fantasy Creators Guild. By April I am hoping to start my next sci-fi novel, When The Gods Fell.
Who designs your book covers?
Aside from Escaping Infinity, which I had a great cover artist do for me, I have actually designed every cover of the books I have written on my own to this point. In the future I’ll probably still do some but try to find a cover artist for others.
Forest, country, beach or city?
A small town in the country. I’m finding that the older I’m getting the quieter and less hectic I want my surroundings to be.
What movie can you watch over and over again?
I’m going to lose my man card over this, but answer is: The Princess Bride.
I’ll lend you my squirrel card if you like. Nobody ever questions if we’ve got nuts.
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Oddly enough, what I am today, a writer. I dabbled briefly with being an astronaut but I don’t do heights so good and that is a pretty big issue for an astronaut to have. So that didn’t last too long.
What’s your favourite season? Why?
Winter, especially when it is snowing in a rural setting. There’s a clean beauty to fresh snowfall and the cold air in a clear blue sky that really appeals to me.
Who are your three greatest literary inspirations?
H.G. Wells and Edgar Allan Poe as early writers I read and enjoyed in my youth. Jack McDevitt is the third because after I read his novel, Time Traveller’s Never Die, I became a fan of his work. I discovered his path to becoming a novelist at a later age was similar to my career path and that inspired me to try to give fiction writing another try at the age of 46 – which was the same age he was when he started. A highlight for me was being a part of a Sherlock Holmes anthology and we have corresponded a few times since it was released. Him saying he really liked my story in that anthology was something I’ll not soon forget.
What’s your favourite quote, ever?
“We are all the sum of our tears. Too little and the ground is not fertile, and nothing can grow there. Too much, the best of us is washed away.” – G’Kar (Babylon 5)
What would you like people to know about being an Indie author?
It is not an easy path to walk by any stretch of the imagination. It is not without its pitfalls and perils. There is no guarantee of success. But the rewards, at least to me, are well worth it. No one else has any semblance of creative control over your work other than you and when success does come it will taste sweeter than the finest wine.
Where can readers find your books?
All my books are on Amazon.
And where can readers follow you on social media?
Thanks for having me!