Monday, August 18, 2014

Interview with Richard Fox, winner of Indy Book of the Day on!

1. Hello and welcome to my blog! To start off, what made you decide to take the plunge into the world of publishing?

I started off writing screenplays and was working on the script for INTO DARKNESS when I came across Joe Konrath's blog. After reading up on what he and Hugh Howey and many others had accomplished, I saw how I could succeed as an independent author.

2. Tell me about your book.

INTO DARKNESS is an Iraq War novel with a thriller backbone. Two Soldiers are kidnapped by terrorists, and an Army intelligence officer has to find them before it's too late. The intelligence officer, Ritter, used to work for a covert arm of the CIA, and they turn up offering help and carte blanche rules of engagement for the search. Ritter has to navigate complex relationships with former insurgents, the straight arrow commander of the missing Soldiers and the CIA, while searching for the kidnapper, who wants Ritter dead.

3. Who or what inspired you to write this?
I served two combat tours in Iraq while I was in the Army. During my second tour, we had to deal with a local militia called the Sons of Iraq. Most of the men in the militia had fought against us before they turned their guns against Al Qaeda. Working with people that had American blood on their hands was...complicated. I wanted to bring that moral quandary to INTO DARKNESS and get the reader to consider just how far America should go to win wars. 

4. How do you think being a war vet yourself influenced your writing a war novel?
Almost everything that happens in INTO DARKNESS is based on actual events. It is a roman a clef, but everything to do with the CIA in the book is my own invention. I add that caveat because it is true, and I don't want to move to Russia.

5. Do you have a favorite author?

Dan Abnett. He writes science fiction and fantasy for the Black Library and many many comic books. He is largely responsible for the reboot of Guardians of the Galaxy, which you may have heard of.

6. What do you do when you're not writing?

I am the father of a 3 year old and newborn, both boys. I'm convinced that baby boys are entropy made manifest. At work, I'm an intelligence analyst.

7. Can we expect more books in the future?

Yes, I'm working on a novel about the WWI fighter pilot Manfred von Richtofen, better known as the Red Baron. The focus of the book is about the Red Baron as a soldier and not the legend. Richtofen's struggles with what we call PTSD is a major part of his character arc.
After that, I'll return to Ritter and the Caliban Program. The second book in that series was going to be set in the Ukraine during a Russian invasion. That outline was overcome by current events.

Off-beat questions

1. You write war novels. Do you have a favorite war film/television show?

Being a veteran, I tend to cast a jaundiced eye to war on screen. My brain is primed to seek out errors and that tends to ruin movies. Avatar was more realistic than The Hurt Locker, for instance. But, there is a special place in my heart for the movie Glory.

2. How different would you say your life was before the military and after?

The post-Army 40 hour work week is a treat.

Author Bio:
Upon graduation from the United States Military Academy at West Point, Richard Fox began his decade-long service in the US Army as a Field Artillery and Military Intelligence officer. During that time, he served two fifteen-month tours in Iraq and was awarded the Combat Action Badge, the Bronze Star, and a Presidential Unit Citation.

Drawing upon his personal experiences, Fox infuses authentic details regarding the people, customs, languages, and ever-present threat of death that US Soldiers encountered while serving in the Iraq War. 

He lives and works in southern Arizona, with his incredible wife and two sons. 

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