Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
Professional field biologist, observer of the human primate. If you want to be happy, don’t go into ecology. You are just setting yourself up for constant despair.
I have three books, two are eco-political ‘friction’, and one is a coming (and going) of age short story.
Birdbrain evolved out of journals I kept of my field adventures, and other kinds of adventures…hmm. Phat(‘s) Chance came out of no where. I wasn’t hankerin’ to write a men’s short fiction story but there they were, Galen and Uncle Phat, waking me up in the middle of the night to write their poignant and hilarious story.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
Treed reflects my sad, hopeless journeys to go back to a natural space I once loved, and of course, they are always gone. Treed also reflects what I think is going on right now between generations, a reluctant if not slightly hostile generational reckoning.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
My writing impulse controls me. I do not control it. It usually hits in the middle of the night. When your days are taken up with surviving, working, waiting out a pandemic (!), it’s only when your head hits the pillow it seems the brain can relax, be free, get crazy, and the writer’s body, meaning mine, must abide. It’s a deal my brain seems to make with me–give me an hour of your time to get these ideas out–and then I will let you sleep. I don’t like it but this is how it is for me right now. In other words, I can’t NOT write.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
I am just clipping this out of my website because there are too many.
Rachel Carson, John Muir, Ed Abbey (of course), Mark Twain, Vine Deloria, J.D. Salinger, Kurt Vonnegut, John Irving, Hunter S., Tom Robbins, Wendell Berry, Wallace Stegner, Lewis Sinclair, Carl Sagan, Theodore Roethke, E. M. Forster, Aldo Leopold, H.D. Thoreau, Olas & Mardie Murie, Garret Hardin, Pam Houston, Mary Austin, Barbara Ehrenreich, Erma Bombeck, Sinclair Lewis, James Thurber, Emile Zola, Carl Hiaasen, T.C. Boyle, Frank Norris, George Stewart (Earth Abides, consider it a kind of preparation manual for the future), Marc Reisner (Cadillac Desert), Derrick Jensen, Chekhov, Nietzsche, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, J.J. Rousseau, Huxley (both), Flavonoid, Thylakoid, Carotenoid, and so many more…where to stop?
What are you working on now?
Trying to wrap up a book of eco-fiction short stories I hope to release next fall.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
Hang a flyer in the local laundry mat? I’m terrible with this WHICH is why I am on your site. I don’t do any active, aggressive marketing. Like so many of us, I’m a writer. I would love a great legit book agent! Give me a call!
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Write from your heart. If you don’t, people will know you didn’t.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Sheese. Ever heard? How about the four fundamental thoughts of Buddhism:
Precious human birth-don’t squander your life.
Karma-what goes around, comes around…
Impermanence- is the only permanent thing in the universe.
Desire leads to suffering.
What are you reading now?
I really dig the classics and non-fiction. Non-fiction right now.
Eat Rich, Live Long by Ivor Cummings and Jeffry Gerber. It’s changing my life–for the better.
What’s next for you as a writer?
I have no shortage of ideas and like I said, they keep me awake at night, taunt me. I want to finish my book of short stories then possibly write a non-fiction book next.
What is your favorite book of all time?
Silent Spring by Rachel Carson
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