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From the Depths Online:

Twin Sisters

Penny Fiction Pages:

From the Depths, Winter Anniversary Issue

Haunted Waters Press recently published your short story, Twin Sisters, within our online literary content. Swamp Things is a very different kind of work. Tell us about it.

  1. I was motivated to write Swamp Things when I saw your call for submissions in the Fall of 2011. Once I started writing however,  I found inside me the children's book I had always wanted to create. It wasn't a piece I could submit to your HWP edition, but it did launch me in a direction I'm very excited about. I love kids, and I love writing crazy poetry. Swamp Things is for every child, and for every child within us, that loves to explore.

Can you share with our readers the inspiration behind Swamp Things?

  1. At the time I wrote Swamp Things, we were living in Bend, Oregon near the Deschutes River. The kids would play near the river bank and look for creatures among the foxtails. I loved seeing the excitement on their faces when they discovered a frog or a dragonfly.

The illustrations are beautiful. Tell us about working with Swamp Things illustrator, Chris Beatrice.

  1. Chris is a master. He only takes on a couple of projects a year, so I was thrilled when he accepted Swamp Things. After he completed the illustrations, he said that he felt a connection to the story. He brought Swamp Things to life, and I'm grateful to have worked with him.

As a long time friend of Haunted Waters Press, we've followed your career as airline pilot, scriptwriter, filmmaker, and now published author. You are a man of many talents. How has your career influenced your writing?

  1. I've been fortunate to see the world, and its inhabitants, from different perspectives. After visiting a new country, or even a different part of our country, I come away with the same conclusion; there is nothing more beautiful than nature, or the innocence of a child. My last screenplay was motivated by a teenage girl who wanted to become a country singer. I guess I'm just a kid myself.

Are there any authors who have influenced your writing?

  1. I had a great English teacher in high school who had us reading Kurt Vonnegut and Richard Brautigan, and reading the lyrics to Bob Dylan and Beatles songs. Of course Dr. Seuss is a big influence.

What are you reading right now?

  1. A new author, Jeff Cruden. We went to college together, and he just got his first novel out. Amazing. Not for children, but a great read.

What is your writing day like?

  1. I write from six in the morning until about noon. I know this is when most writers are going to bed, but after a career getting up early I'm stuck with it. If I need inspiration, I'll go down to the beach or watch people at the dog park. There's always great drama at the dog park, and of course, some serious comedy.

Where do you find yourself writing the most?

  1. I have a leather chair where I can sit and look at the ocean. 

What words do you live by? Do you have a personal motto?

  1. My father taught me honesty, and to do what you say you're going to do. I try and live by that, and I appreciate those that treat me that way.

What’s next? Do you have any writing projects on the horizon?

  1. Swamp Things is the first in a series, so I'm writing the next title as we speak. 

If you could share advice for aspiring writers, what would it be?

  1. Write what you want, not what you think will sell. Be true to the story inside you, and remember that conflict is drama, and drama is interesting. Always be in conflict.

Ronald lives in Ventura, California with his wife Jill, where he is working on the second book in the "Things" book series.

Ronald’s short story, Twin Sisters, can be found online here at Haunted Waters Press. His flash fiction is also featured in the  Winter Anniversary print issue of From the Depths.

To find out more, visit Tailwind Books online. Swamp Things is available on iTunes.