Sometimes I think these things come in waves. Today, I’d like to introduce another author to you for my Fast Fifteen feature. This is another Oghma Creative Media author, Bob Giel.
Bob was born in New York City and is now a New Jersey resident. He’s lived in several areas of the Midwest but has never resided in any area that could be termed the “West”. He’s absorbed so much of the West through books, movies, and TV that he feels like he’s been there. When he retired, he began writing and never looked back.
So let’s give Bob a warm welcome and show him some blog love in the comments below.
Five Questions About Your Book
- How did you come up with the idea for your book?
Literally, it woke me at two in the morning. It demanded to be written and, of course, I complied.
- What sort of research did you do to write this book?
Since the book takes place in a number of different Western locations, Texas, The Cherokee Outlet, Utah, New Mexico and Colorado, I did extensive research of the lay of those lands. I also did research on Dodge City, since a portion of the book takes place there. That involved a trip to Dodge to verify the facts. Guns are, of course, a big part of Westerns, so the guns of the period had to be authenticated.
- How did you come up with the title of your book?
That’s kind of a story in and of itself. Since the book is about revenge and what it does to the protagonist, how it changes him, I settled on Path of the Avenger. During the editing process, my editor pointed out that the title was already in use by a role-playing game and that a search for my book would turn up the game instead of the book. He also thought there might be a legal conflict over it. It was the editor who suggested A Crow to Pluck, a term used in the West to describe someone bent on revenge. We both agreed it would be a good fit.
- If your novel were being made into a movie, who would you pick to play the lead roles?
When I envision characters, one of the ways I use to bring them to life for me is to imagine actors in the roles of these characters. When this woke me that morning, I immediately saw, as the main character, Randolph Scott.
- Is there anything interesting about this particular book we haven’t covered yet? If so, what?
Not particularly about the book, but about the process that got it to the point of being picked up for publishing. As I said earlier, it woke me at two in the morning and I had to start it immediately. When I finished it, I submitted it to an online magazine for entry into their contest. I was surprised when it received a five-star review and wound up a finalist in the contest. I presented the review to several publishers, one of which was Oghma. I was flabbergasted when they offered me a publishing contract for the work. I still can’t believe it and I call it my Cinderella story.
Five Questions About You As An Author
- What started you on the path to writing for a living?
First of all, I can’t say I write for a living. I write because I’m fascinated by the period in the American West between 1849 and just after the turn of the century. I write because I’ve always loved to write, but life always got in the way. When I retired, I had the time to write and had also built up a wealth of ideas and characters that were screaming at me to record them. From the age of twelve, I have wanted to do what I now do full time, and will do to my dying breath.
- What were some of the challenges you faced on the road to publication?
The only challenge I can think of is a fear of rejection. I guess every author experiences that in some form. I’ve learned, over time, to face my fears and continue to reach for my goal: an exceptional novel traditionally published.
- What is your favorite part of the writing/publishing process? Least favorite?
Simply put, writing and the research required are my favorite parts. All the other stuff is my least favorite.
- Why do you write? What keeps you motivated during creative slumps?
I write because I love it and because it won’t let me alone if I don’t. I try to keep at least two projects going at the same time, in various stages of development. That staves off the creative slumps.
- Out of all the books you’ve written, do you have a favorite?
I would have to say my favorite is my first: Macarastor: The Mountain Men. It’s been with me the longest, having conceived the plot and characters when I was twelve. And it’s the one that started me on this remarkable journey of writing.
Five Questions About You As A Reader
- Who are some of your favorite authors?
I don’t read as much as I probably should because, in trying to protect my own author’s voice and style, I don’t want to be influenced by other authors’ methods. The one author who I do read regularly is Craig Johnson. He writes the Longmire mystery series which has a modern Western flair. Since he writes in first person and I don’t, there is very little danger of it influencing me. Besides, he’s just so darn good.
- Who are some authors in your genre that inspire you?
Louis L’Amour and Charles Portis are two that come to mind readily.
- What types of books do you enjoy in your downtime?
I’ll read anything that has to do with the Western genre or gun history. I’m also a fan of the Marvel and DC comic books and graphic novels.
- What are your top three favorite books of all time?
True Grit, Of Mice and Men, and Murder On The Orient Express.
- Can you recommend any new or upcoming authors to us?
My friend, Michael Lee, has written a sweeping, epic novel of Westward expansion titled Del Rio which is currently under contract with Oghma and is going into the editing stage. Watch for this one to come out. It’s a winner.
And there it is. The Fast Fifteen from author Bob Giel. Leave your questions and comments for him below.
You can also find him and information about all his work at bobgiel.com. Look for his newest work, A Crow to Pluck, coming in 2018. Until then, here’s a brief description of it:
To avenge a personal loss, a retired lawman embarks on a lone manhunt to find those responsible. As he makes his way through tracking them down, he finds himself sinking into the depths of revenge, becoming no better than the criminals he hunts.