Interview with 'The Couples' Richard Alan + Book Giveaway!

Richard Alan lives in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with his wife, Carolynn. They are the proud parents of three wonderful adult sons.He is a Vietnam combat and 101st Airborne Division veteran.

After an education in mathematics, a 17 year career in manufacturing engineering and a 22 year career in software engineering, he has started a career as an author. Richard writes novels about people trying to find their life-partner, soul-mate, the person they are meant to be with for life. His first two books, Meant to Be and The Couples, are available on his website and most online retailers.

Richard’s other interests range from mathematical analysis and photography to anything with an engine. His current projects include writing the third (Finding Each Other) and fourth novels in the “Meant to Be” series, and discovering the properties of functions of p-adic numbers. Having completed a potting bench for his lifepartner, Carolynn, he is busy driving her to watch salmon runs, visit National Parks, and anywhere that provides an opportunity to view her avian friends.

His latest books in the Meant to Be Series are Meant to Be and The Couples.

You can visit Richard Alan’s website, VILLAGE DRUMMER FICTION at www.villagedrummerfiction.com.

About the Book:

Acclaimed author of Meant to Be, Richard Alan, once again enchants us with characters that we really want to know. You will laugh, cry, and love with them as you seek the answers to the relationship questions posed by this talented author.

Will a tough techy lady be able to find love with a man who is still mourning his deceased fiancée?

Will an intellectually snobbish genius learn that there is more to the truck mechanic than meets the eye?

Can a nerd and a party girl find happiness together?

Can a teenage boy musician get past his unrequited love to learn to love a ranch girl instead?

Will a troubled rape victim be able to have a normal relationship with a man?

The Couples is about people who may belong together and how the world around them helps them, or sometimes defeats them in their search for a life partner. It follows the lives of couples,their friends, and their support systems,as they explore their relationships.

The Couples is Richard Alan’s second novel in the “Meant to Be” series. It continues to explore relationships, love, and life.

Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life, Richard. Can you tell us how long you’ve been writing and how your journey led to writing your latest book, The Couples?

I wrote occasional short stories when my children were young, in which they were the heroes. I did not keep those stories as my boys got older. My current career as an author started when I was asked to write an article for a blog (http://memoirsfromnam.blogspot.com/) about my experiences in Vietnam. I submitted the article and it was published. The blog owner asked how long I had been writing. I replied that I was not a writer. She said that I should be. I started writing novels fifteen months ago. While working on Meant to Be, I realized I had so many ideas for future characters and storylines, the book would never be finished. That is when I decided to create a series. The Couples continues the theme of people striving to find the person they are meant to spend their lives with.

Q: How did you choose your title and was it your first choice?

As soon as I started writing it, I knew what the title would be. The book follows many individuals as their lives change and they become couples. The Couples seemed like the logical title. It was my first and only choice.

Q: We all know that publishers can’t do all of the publicity and that some lies on the author. What has your publisher done so far to publicize the book and what have you done?

I am self-published so all of the publicity has fallen on me and my wife. She is in charge of marketing my books. The first thing we did was arrange some book signing events; one at a local bookstore, one at a writer’s organization, and one at a charity auction and sale. We used e-mail and Facebook to advertise and provided a poster to the book store. They also had their own advertising. With the help of my wife, I created and maintain a Facebook fan page. I learned to Twitter and am growing my Twitter network. I write a blog, and belong to numerous groups of authors who help each other. In addition to doing this virtual book tour, I am participating in the Fourth Writers Platform-Building Campaign.

Q: Open to a random page in your book. Can you tell us what is happening?

Oh, I love this part. Sean wants to leave his father’s accounting firm and be an author. He is inspired by a potential new girlfriend to complete a short story that he had started years earlier. The story begins with an attractive, well-dressed woman arriving by stagecoach to an old western town. Upon alighting from the coach, she “borrows” a cowboy’s gun to shoot the hat off a man’s head. The man was in the process of beating his wife. The new arrival strongly suggests he not put his hands on the woman again. The town mayor and sheriff come upon the scene and are shocked to discover that the female sharpshooter is the town’s new school teacher.

The story continues on the next few pages. You will have to read the book to find out more.

Q: Do you plan subsequent books?

Definitely. I have published two books, Meant to Be and The Couples, written a third, Finding Each Other (which is in editing now) and am currently writing my fourth novel. I hope to be able to write many more books.

Q: What is the one thing you learned about your book AFTER it was published?

It was pure joy learning how intrigued my readers were in the characters I had created. I had no idea how gratifying it would be to have people ask me when the next book is coming out because they want to know more about the people in the series. I’ve had readers tell me that the characters have become part of their families.

Q: What is your most favorite time of the day or night to write?

Anytime is a good time to write. Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night with a fully formed story in my head and spend the next several hours writing it down. Other times, I will be doing something completely unrelated to my writing and a new character or plotline will fill my imagination. I then have to stop what I’m doing, open my laptop, and start writing.

Q: What is usually better – the book or the movie?

Ninety minute novels are called screenplays. In my opinion, there is very little similarity, other than they both tell a story.

Q: You’re about to write your next book. What did you learn from your previous book to help you write your next book?

I’ve learned that writing a book primarily involves winding up my imagination and letting it go. I no longer worry if I have another story or book in my head. My worry is that I don’t have enough time to write down all the stories that are in there.

Q: Finally, what’s your best tip you can give to writers who want to be published?

Start creating buzz about your book even before you finish writing it. Create a webpage, an author page on Facebook, and a Twitter account, at minimum. Read blogs about writing. Spread the word about what you are writing. The author community is friendly and wonderfully generous with their advice. Remember to repay them by also being helpful to them and others. It’s not all about selling your novel. Even as a new writer you will have learnings and ah-hah moments to share. Help expand other authors’ networks by retweeting, sharing, and recommending their sites. They will do the same for you if you give and not just take. Good luck and have fun.

Q: Thank you for your interview, Richard. Do you have any final words?

If writing isn’t fun, don’t do it.

Thank you for giving me this opportunity to talk with you.

~ ~ GIVEAWAY ~ ~

Here are the details:

  • Richard Alan is giving away one paperback copy of his book, The Couples.
  • The giveaway starts Monday, March 12, and ends on Friday, March 23.
  • This giveaway is only available for U.S. and Canada (sorry international!).
  • The winner will be announced on March 24.
  • If you are chosen the winner, you have 48 hours to let us know by emailing Dorothy at thewriterslife(at)gmail.com.
  • Leave a comment for 5 points.
  • Follow Richard on Twitterfor 5 extra points.
  • Like Pump Up Your Book at Facebook here for 5 extra points.
  • Tweet this giveaway for 5 extra points:

Thank you for entering and good luck!







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