My interviewee today is Ric Hofing,
Tell us about your latest project
My latest project is the second novel in the First Sniper War series. This time Erik and Michael find themselves being used as pawns between powerful German army officers and fanatic Bolsheviks who are willing to do anything to achieve their goal of assassinating the Russian Tsar.
Historical fiction can mean a great deal of research. Is the research something you find easy?
When researching my first novel I discovered that I really enjoyed research. I am fortunate that my local library has a wealth of research material. With the aid of the internet I was able to discover other great sources of research material, particularly book stores that carry out-of-print books and specialty books.
What inspires you?
Initially I was inspired by friends and family who asked me to write stories or poems for them. As I grew older the challenge of writing a novel appealed to me more and more. As the story grew I felt myself wanting to write more and more. My friends and family still inspire me, but now there is a huge new audience to write for, and share my work with.
Do you intend to publish any of the stories or poems you wrote early on?
I recently published a collection of short stories on Amazon called “The Groovy Red Camera and other stories”. This is a collection of 9 short stories that I have written over the years. I continue to write short stories as ideas come to me and plan to publish other collections in the future.
Which do you prefer, paper books or ebooks and why?
I still prefer paper books, though I am reading more and more on the Kindle. When I travel and use a Kindle I can bring many books; the weight and volume of a Kindle is a small fraction of the three or four paper books I would normally travel with and is an undeniable advantage. However, I still enjoy the feel of paper between my fingers, the smell of a paperback novel, and all the wonderful memories that come along with paper books. It will be some time before I switch completely over to ebooks, but I can see demand for paper books dwindling slowly as time goes on.
Since you prefer paper books do you also intend to put your own ebooks into paper at some point?
I have recently hired an editor to edit my first novel, which I plan to publish through CreateSpace as a paper back. The success of that endeavour will determine if I continue to publish both ebooks and paper books in the future, but I see ebooks (and ereaders) becoming more and more popular every day. I strongly suspect that ebooks will eventually replace paper books, at least for popular fiction, the way that digital cameras replaced film cameras.
What book do you wish you had written?
I would have to answer this with not a book but a series of books; the Brother Cadfael series, by Ellis Peters. I started reading these books years ago, quite by chance, after seeing a made for TV movie on A&E channel based on one of the books in the series. After reading the first one I madly read through the remainder. In fact I have read every one of the books at least twice. These novels captured me from the first page, and instilled in me a love for the historical mystery, and a desire to write historical novels of my own.
What are you planning on doing next/What else are you up to?
At the moment I am doing research for a new series of novels that will be historical mysteries that take place in second century Rome. Ancient Rome has been an interest of mine for many years, and I have read a great deal of fiction and non-fiction about this fascinating era in world history.
Do you stick to all the historical events you find out about or do you like to write about completely fictional events?
My novels are primarily fact based, tempered, of course, with artistic license. Readers of historical novels want to be entertained and, to a certain degree, educated or informed. There is a very real attraction for many readers (myself included) to immerse themselves in that other time and other world for a little while.
My short stories tend to be more fictional. With my short stories I let my imagination wander a bit, artistically speaking, and explore some of the elements of pure story telling. My primary goal when writing short stories is entertaining the reader.