HL Interview


What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love writing my characters into a corner. Let’s tie my lead character up in bed with his arm tied to a shotgun. If he moves his arm he will pull the trigger on the shotgun. He’s suffering from a massive hangover and having trouble thinking straight. Now, let’s sit back and watch him figure his way out of the jam. This makes the character come alive, which is the coolest thing about writing.

Who are your favorite authors?
This list spans my life. Louis L’Amour (Any Sackett novel), James Webb (Fields of Fire), Edgar Rice Burroughs (Tarzan or John Carter), Mark Twain (Roughing It), Max Evans (Rounders 3), J. R. R. Tolkien (Everything), Dean Koontz (Odd Thomas), Michael E. Moon (John Medicinewolf). Fred Gipson (Savage Sam), Patricia A. McKillip (The Riddle-Master of Hed). The list goes on and on and on. These are just the ones that come to mind right now.

What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
My wife who alternately keeps me sane and drives me bug eyed crazy. My two little girls who I love more than life itself. The thought of finding a quiet hour where I can write, but I’ll settle for sitting on the couch, typing on my laptop while keeping an eye on the girls.

When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?
I work, I watch my girls, and I wrestle with the old lady occasionally between the sheets. I prepare to go hunting or fishing. I hunt, I fish. I look at a lot of hunting gear I wish I had in magazines. I read myself to sleep. Repeat.

Describe your desk
My desk is my laptop. It goes with me everywhere and I write everywhere. On the couch in the living room, on the love seat in my Dead Animal room downstairs, or sitting at Grandma’s table during the weekend visit. This last fall while elk hunting I sat in the front seat of my Ford with the laptop plugged into the DC outlet writing a chapter before turning in for the night in my tent. I have a weekly quota of words, the laptop stays with me until I make my quota.

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in rural western Montana. To survive in rural Montana you had to have some rugged individualism in you mixed with a touch of crazy or you packed up and moved to California. This meant I grew up around some unique individuals, learning how to hunt, fish, and take care of myself. I’ve always heard you write what you know. I know a little bit about hunting, a little about being out in the woods, a little about guns, and a lot of interesting characters.