Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Raise a cup of coffee and help me welcome author R.A. Russell, author of Raising Redemption! R.A. Russell has stopped over for an interview and a book giveaway. For your chance to win a copy of Raising Redemption, enter your name and email address in the comments below, and Good Luck!

When did you first know you wanted to be a writer, and what did you write about?

It started for me about nine years ago, as I approached a fairly significant birthday. The idea for a story had come to me several years before, and it would never leave me alone. I would tuck it away after a period of reflection, but the story would periodically come back, always in greater detail than before. Nine years ago I knew I was going to have a lifetime regret if I didn’t try to ink it. So one night I started writing. It took me two hours to write two paragraphs, but from that point I was hooked. Game on! And after a few months, I had the first draft for Raising Redemption, a Novel of Shame, Secrets, Sacrifice, and Struggle.

What is your favorite genre?

I’ve always been a big fan of historical fiction. Maybe it’s because I was a history major in college. And the time period doesn’t matter, whether the fiction runs from ancient to contemporary history. I even like pure fantasy when it’s cast in an historical setting, like the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Tolkien’s world is so full of detail that it becomes real. It’s also reflective of a lot of hard work, and I appreciate authors whose stories reek of extensive effort.

Any favorite authors?

In addition to Tolkien, I count among my favorite authors both Gore Vidal and William Styron. And when you combine history with philosophy, then you’ve really got me. I put Vidal’s Creation at the top of my favorite reads. Then look at Styron’s The Confessions of Nat Turner and Sophie’s Choice, two books that are very different as to subject matter, but are united by Styron’s unique style and his attention to detail.

What inspires you to continue writing when you lose your focus?

I can be obsessive and compulsive. Yes, I admit it. So when I start a project I have to finish it, regardless of the obstacles. That’s why I stayed with Raising Redemption for nine years, from start to publication. Were there times when I lost focus? Yes. But my commitment to the story was real. In those times of lost focus, I would always go back to the fundamentals of the story as a means of getting myself back on track. Then Mr. Fix-It would take over, and I typically would find myself making positive strides.

R. A. Russell is a practicing business-law attorney in Los Angeles and holds degrees from Claremont McKenna College and Harvard Law School. Raising Redemption is Russell’s debut novel. www.raisingredemption.com

Connect with R.A. Russell at:

Twitter: @RARussellAuthor

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