How long have you been writing?
I started seriously writing the first time around 1992. The loss of a hard drive nine years later made me walk away until 2008 when I returned to writing with the intent to accomplish what I had originally planned. I’ve been reading much longer than that.
What genre are your books?
While most of my work would fall under the heading of Contemporary Dark fiction, I do have moments when I step outside the boundaries established by the horror genre. I recently had a literary short story published by The Backbone Mountain Review. An annual literary zine put out in association with the Allegany Arts Council and the University of Maryland Center for Creative writing in Frostburg, MD. It’s a free PDF download for anyone interested.
Click below to access the 2014 issue of The Backbone Mountain Review:
What draws you to this genre?
They say write what you know. I’ve been a fan of the macabre since I was a child sitting on my grandmother’s porch listening to her ghost stories. I started reading Weird Tales and Tales from the Crypt comics before I was ten. I was reading Lovecraft when I was eleven. Didn’t understand much of what he was writing about but I enjoyed his style.
How many books have you written/ published?
Seven. Six of them were lost when a hard drive crashed in ’01. To date, I’ve published 1 novel, two novellas, and a collection of shorts.
Wow, Richard, I have lost my own work in a computer crash before, but never six books! I’m so sorry to hear that and very happy that you’re pulling through and keeping at it! How long on average does it take you to write a book?
Depends really. Shadows of the Past took three years to complete while The Gathering, which was lost on that hard drive, took me a little more than a year. White walker at 42k words took me four months.
It looks like your latest novel, Shadows Of The Past, is the first book in a soon-to-be series. What is the series about?
The alien takeover of the earth in an x-files sort of way. The truth is out there but it’s not readily apparent. An ancient ceremonial dagger with alien origins is discovered in Antarctica and serves as the catalyst that sets everything into motion. This is not an overt invasion with the aliens possessing superior technology capable of wiping man from the face of the earth. They will in time but in the beginning their numbers are small so they are forced to operate on the fringes as they build their numbers by converting humans via DNA manipulation.
Shadows of the Past II: Parasite, will be available by the end of 2014.
How do you feel you’ve evolved and grown as an author since first deciding to become one?
My writing has matured and become tighter. I feel I’ve developed a better grasp of characterization. Though I am still a bit weak in pacing, I know with practice it will all come together.
What is your greatest achievement?
Now you’ve got me stumped. When it comes to writing I don’t believe I’ve had a greatest achievement yet.
You’re too humble! If you had to pick a favorite book (written by yourself) which one would it be?
Whichever one I’m currently working on. It has to be my favorite for me to put my butt in the chair each morning and beat my forehead against my keyboard. It’s like a love/hate relationship. One day I love it, the next day I hate it. But I’m never gonna leave it.
How have your personal experiences affected your writing?
Being older I’ve had time to acquire a wealth of personal experiences to draw from. I served with the U.S Army for five years. I’ve been a truck driver, carpenter, tile setter, delivery guy, and now a retail salesperson. I’ve interacted with the public for years and have accumulated a vast array of characters for my work.
What authors have inspired your work?
Lovecrfaft, Poe, King, Koontz, Straub, McCammon, Lumley, Gifune, Malfi, Saunders, and far too many more to count. Every writer’s work inspires me in it’s own unique way.
What are you working on at the moment?
My short novel White Walker is in final edits and will be released soon.
Trapped in a call center by a blizzard, ten people struggle to survive as an ancient legend stalks them. An old god, long forgotten by civilized man, the White Walker has come to collect on a promise made by a child grieving the loss of a family pet, and to settle a score with an old adversary. The first seven chapters are available for free at my blog. The entire novella will be released June 13, 2014.
I will also be kicking off a year long promotion with monthly giveaways in preparation for the release of A Father’s Love, a contemporary ghost story, due to be released on Father’s Day 2015.
Where can we find you on the web?
I blog regularly at http://rschiver.blogspot.com
I have a personal page on facebook at : https://www.facebook.com/RickSchiver
My writers page: https://www.facebook.com/RichardSchiver