I apologize for the brief lapse in my 20 questions series. I have five interviews remaining and I will be posting them over the next couple of weeks. I will then be looking at a new author interview series beginning early next year.
Today we sit down with Ricky Dragoni. Ricky is going to tell us about his work, his inspiration and share some of his writing with us.
Please enjoy this installment of 20 Questions:
Q1) When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
When I was 12-13, but didn’t have the courage until I was 35.
Q2) How long does it typically take you to write a book?
Anywhere from 1 to 3 months, depending on the length of the book and how much editing I have to do.
Q3) What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?
Once everyone at home goes to bed, I settle down with a glass of wine or Vodka & 7Up and relax and think of the story. The story slowly forms in my head and after a couple of hours and a few drinks I am ready to write. I will type for 1 or two hours and get anywhere between 2,000 and 5,000 words. Once I am really deep into a story I will think about it all day in the back of my mind.
Q4) What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I like to tweet while I write. When I need a short break or need the story to finish loading into my head, I will tweet, distract my mind for a bit and let the story unravel in my head.
Q5) How are your books published? (traditional, indie, etc.)
My first two have been published through a Sarah Book Publishing.
Q6) Where do you get your ideas for your books?
Life, past experiences, my kids & anything going on around me. Sometimes the smallest thing you see while driving around or just going about your day, can fuel a whole chapter.
Q7) If you don’t mind sharing, when did you write your first book and how old were you (or how many years ago was it)?
My first short story I was 14. So 13 years ago. My first book two years ago.
Q8) What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Coaching my kids in sports, spending time with family& working out. The gym is quite the Zen place for me.
Q9) What is your favorite book?
I am Legend by Richard Matheson. The ending is just so perfect.
Q10) What do your family and friends think of your writing?
They support it. My kids love it, I am currently working on a Young Adult Series with my oldest.
Q11) What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
How you can read something 20 times and still miss a typo.
Q12) What do you hate most about the writing process?
Q13) How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
Three finished works so far, six short stories and one script. Currently working on a book with my son and have 3 more queued up after that. “The Angel of a Madman” my next release is my favourite. It is so close to my heart and there is so much of me in it.
Q14) Do you have any suggestions to help us become better writers? If so, what are they?
Write. People often over analyse the writing process. Just writing and seeing where the story takes you can give fruit to some beautiful things.
Q15) Do you get feedback from your readers much? How and what kinds of things do they say?
Yes, I do. I am very engaged with them on Twitter. I love hearing their feedback. So far it has been very positive. The latest one I loved hearing about Ripples was that is scared him so much he needed to take a break from it.
Q16) What is your preferred reading audience?
Anyone who wants a book to make them think. I want to entertain the reader but I also want to get the gears turning. Have the story make them think about the real world and real world issues.
Q17) What do you think makes a good story?
Honesty. There are so many times when I am writing and I am sobbing. Either the story is coming from life experience or I am feeling what the characters are going through. Writing can be emotionally exhausting but that raw honesty shows up on the page and truly elevates the story.
Q18) As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?
Oh I wanted to play in the NFL. I love football, still love coaching it.
Q19) Where can we find your books?
Amazon, Kindle, iTunes, Beaverdale Books and from the Sarah Book Publishing website.
Q20) Will you give us an excerpt from one of your own favorite works?
I had asked Lucy and others hundreds of questions and they kindly fulfilled my curiosity each time. The problem was that every answer seemed to lead to more questions. I was peppering Lucy with questions as we walked. She would listen and answer, her smile never breaking her face. We were almost to the town hall when I felt a small splatter on the right side of my face. I looked up expecting to see droplets falling down on me from a redwood. If they had fallen from them it would have been impossible to tell. The giant trees extended upward so far that their canopies were just a blur of green. I rubbed my hand against the wet spot on my face, only to find my fingers stained with crimson.
About Ricky Dragoni:
I am the author of “Prime Infinity” and “Ripples” published by Sarah Book Publishing. I am originally from Puerto Rico but have spent half of my life in Iowa. My true passions are writing and cooking. My favorite authors include Edgar Allan Poe and Gabriel Garcia Marquez. From an early age I started writing poetry and short stories. My books are born out of the nightmares of my mind then melded with my life experiences. I would describe my books as reality sprinkled with a good magical dose of faerie dust. I hope my books can be entertaining but also thought provoking.