Interview with John Arnold, author of 'Duck Squad'

John Arnold has had his work presented in either a reading or production at American Conservatory Theater (San Francisco) playreading series; California Playwrights Festival, Sacramento; Out and About Theater, Minneapolis; Playwrights Center, San Francisco; Sacramento Theater Company; West Coat Ensemble, Hollywood; Aloha Theater, Kainaliu, Hawaii; Moving Arts, Los Angeles; Mercury Cafe, Denver; First Stage, Los Angeles; The Theater-Studio, New York, Prince William Sound Community College, Valdez, Alaska; Theater of Western Springs, Illinois; and others. His monologue “Bit” is featured on Fourth Wall His screenplays have been finalists in the Art Color Digital Cinema International Film Festival, Montreal, the San Francisco Global Movie Fest, Indie Film Fest, Switzerland and the Swedish International Film Festival.

His play “Saint George” was winner of the 2016 Play Competition – Thistle Dew Theater, Sacramento. His monologue “Aunt Velma Considers Changing Religion” was part of the 2016 One Act Play Festival, Phoenix Stage Company, Connecticut.
 He is author of “Duck Squad,” “Autobiography of a Duck” and “Going Home” - available via 

You can visit John’s blog at

About the Book:

Three ducks escape from a university lab experiment and find sanctuary in a fraternity house. They discover human beings can be their friends – and enemies. Their adventures begin righting wrongs – and getting even.

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Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life!  Now that your book has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process.  Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning?  Where did you come up with the idea to write your book?

There was a group of ducks – one Pekin duck and the rest wild ducks – that I used to encounter downtown. They usually were asleep in the shade or hunting for bugs. They were tough. They were not impressed with the humans who walked by. It gave me the idea to write about a Duck Squad who would right wrongs. Sounds crazy, but that’s what I did!

Q: How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers?

It wasn’t difficult because once I had the idea everything else seemed to fall into place. I think it’s important to listen to your inner voice. What it tells you is your best bet. Sometimes I would wake up in the middle of the night with an idea for the book.

Q: Who is your publisher and how did you find them or did you self-publish?

I self-published through Amazon’s Create Space.

Q: Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published?

No real surprises – but I was really happy with the cover design. They really nailed it.

Q: What other books (if any) are you working on and when will they be published?

I am working on a play about my Mom’s Irish American family.

Q: What’s one fact about your book that would surprise people?

Readers might be surprised that I’ve had pet ducks for over 20 years of my life, so I feel like I know ducks pretty well.

Q: Finally, what message (if any) are you trying to get across with your book?

Even though the book is a fantasy, I would like to think it shows that working together we can accomplish almost anything. Also, a gentle reminder that human beings are not the only creatures on the planet.
Q: Thank you again for this interview!  Do you have any final words?

Ducks make great – although messy – pets. They have individual personalities and I often wonder what they think of us! (And what they might think of my book!)

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