I dog sit for a friend in a town across the river from where I live. A couple of times, while walking the dog, I came across one of my friend’s neighbors. Pat would also be walking his dog. One afternoon, Pat invited me to chat in his backyard while the dogs played together. I friended him on Facebook and found out he’s an author. I ran into him at Imaginarium 2019 at the Hydra Publishing booth and I asked him if I could interview him for my blog.
How did you decide to become an author?
Not sure that I really consider myself an author, but I suppose I should since I’ve actually authored a novel. I bet, deep down, most first-time authors feel that way. If they don’t, then they’re probably a little too full of themselves. Anyway, I had a pretty serious health issue about 10 years back and in its midst it occurred to me that I had better start doing some of the things that I was interested in while I had time. I’d had a seed of the story for Camelot’s Misplaced Son in my head for several years, so I finally started writing it.
How does your background help with your writing?
I’ve spent a career in banking and insurance, and a lot of time crafting carefully worded letters to attorneys. That’s the extent of my writing experience. I did, for a short time in 2008 have a website devoted to college baseball, where I wrote weekly articles. That was put aside when my health took a stumble.
I must have some sort of creative streak somewhere inside of me. I don’t know if I have talent or not but I do think that I’m fairly creative. I also like to try new things. I write and record music at home – just for fun, not for public consumption. In 2014, I had a small, uncredited part in an episode of the Fox TV show Sleepy Hollow. I also like to build things, and don’t want any instruction or help when doing it – much to my own detriment sometimes. For example, I know there’s someone on YouTube that can show you how to do just about anything. But it’s just more fun to figure it out myself. Now when it’s something where there’s no margin for error, like doing some plumbing or electrical work at my house, I will seek instruction.
So, I think writing my novel was just another outlet for my need to create something. No matter how good or bad something you create may be, when you’re done, there’s something there that didn’t exist before, and that’s kind of neat.
Can you tell us more about why you wrote your latest books?
Camelot’s Misplaced Son is currently an only child. It’s a story about a 29-year-old working class single dad who learns his real parents maybe John F and Jacqueline Kennedy. I’ve been told that it’s quite action-packed and suspenseful, with a dusting of romance and dark humor. The book is the merging of three different stories that I had been kicking around. As I started writing one of those stories, I began to think of them as a group, and they all just blended together naturally. It was really a blessing because it gave me a lot to work with. Where I felt before that each of the three stories were going to be its own book, blending them into one story made for a novel with no fluff or lulls.
What advice do you have for aspiring writers?
If you can, get objective evaluation from someone who knows what they’re doing. Most family or friends love you too much to supply the objectivity that you really need. Also, get out and meet other writers and folks in the publishing industry.
What are some upcoming publishing projects you are working on?
I was never dying to be a writer. I wrote my first book just because it was in me and I had to get it out. I’m not sure that there’s another one that’s any good inside of me. I’ve recently started a second novel. It’s not a sequel. I’m excited about it, but if I get further in and it’s not of the quality I want it to be, I won’t let it see the light of day.
Anything else you’d like to share about your books?
Only that I hope folks will come visit me on Facebook, Instagram, and at PatPaxtonBooks.com. Camelot’s Misplaced Son is available in print and Kindle everywhere books are sold online, with signed copies available on my website.