Rich Marcello, author of “The Beauty of the Fall”, has invited you to get to know him a little bit better. Find out a bit about him as he answers just a few questions, and make sure to follow him on social media!
Have there been any authors who have influenced your work? If so, who?
I love the work of Milan Kundera, Don Delillo, Alice Walker, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and Adam Haslett, to name a few.
Out of all the characters you’ve written, who is your favorite? Why?
Dan Underlight, in The Beauty of the Fall, is my favorite because he’s so complex. As a writer, I’m trying to go deeper and deeper into the soul of each of my characters, and so I focus a lot of my effort on their inner lives. In TBOTF, I spent most of my time on Dan. I wrote him over and over until I understood his grief at some deep non-verbal level. That’s when he came into focus.
Are there any types of scenes you find more difficult to write? Which ones and why.
When I started writing, it was more difficult for me to write female characters well, especially when the scene was from their POV. But I’ve spent a lot of time working to improve my craft in that area, and now, I’m really proud of the female characters in my novels. I’m particularly fond of Willow in TBOTF and Paige Plant in The Big Wide Calm.
What would you say the most rewarding part of being an author is?
The most rewarding part of being an author is when a reader writes me or tells me that one of my novels or characters resonated in some way that made a positive difference in her life. My hope is that my novels, in some small way, connect folks more to themselves and the world, and so, when it happens, it truly is rewarding.
What advice do you have for authors just starting out in their journey?
To write your first draft of each scene quickly so you fully capture the intended emotion. After that, edit over and over again until the scene is fully realized. In my fiction class, I like to tell students to rewrite a scene five times before they workshop it. That seems to work pretty well.
Do you have a writing ritual? If so, please explain.
I write seven days a week first thing in the morning for about five hours. I’m a big believer in going from one kind of dream time ( sleeping) to another ( writing fiction). I seem to do my best work this way.
Was being an author something you always wanted to do?
I’ve been writing all of my adult life, but only full-time for the last six years. In college, I had a chance to be mentored by a novelist in residence, but I was broke and needed to make money for a time. So when I graduated, I did. Throughout those years, I kept writing––mostly songs and poetry––but I always knew I would come back to writing novels. Hopefully, I’ll get ten or so of them out into the world before I’m done.
If you could have a conversation with any one person, alive or dead, who would it be and why?
I’ll pick two. I’d love to talk with John Lennon about music and the current state of the world, and I’d like to talk with Dalai Lama about love and kindness.
Would you care to provide an excerpt from one of your books as a sample of your work?
The Beauty of the Fall Excerpt
So It Spins
“Dan, Olivia would like to see you now.”
Summoned, I hang up the phone, lift off my chair, and exit my corner office. A year in the making, it’s about to happen, and even though I had a hunch it was coming, nothing has prepared me for the end walk. As I’m heading to Olivia’s office, the last months flash in Technicolor until the credits, the epitaph rolls— He put his head down, tried to rekindle the wildfire he helped birth years ago, tried to daydream down a riven path. Didn’t work, but hey. Midway, my legs go wobbly, so I restroom to regroup. After I wash my hands and face and adjust my tie, I stare at my regrouped selves in the mirror and recite Willow. She sent me one of her poems the other day after we chatted about my current predicament: When sudden loss dances/ When the inexplicable fogs/ When you’re about to lose what you love most/ Remember this: You’re fucked. Well, that’s not exactly the poem. Her last line made some poignant point about all the “When’s” being gifts, but I like my version better.
….CONTINUE READING CHAPTER ONE OF “THE BEAUTY OF THE FALL” AT:
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