MAY’S FEATURED AUTHOR: RICHARD CROFTON

Authors

R.C21) Your Journey as an Author…..Since I was little, I’ve always enjoyed writing stories, but I never took the activity seriously enough to save my work. Most of the time, I’d reread what I’d written and cringe at the corniness. But a few years ago, the idea for The Keepers of White series came to me out of nowhere, and I found myself writing while the story in my mind continued to expand. Over a year ago, I had nearly completed the first three books of the series, but I wasn’t sure if I would ever publish. At that time however, I discovered a local short story contest for an anthology that was to be published in my town; the proceeds would all go toward the Christmas Come True Foundation. With nothing to lose and for the sake of charity, I submitted. I was soon contacted by the woman heading the project: she praised my writing skills, amazed I’d never before published, and selected my story as the one of the ten in the collection (it’s titled “The Choice” in A Night Like This: A Flagler County Anthology). This experience encouraged me take a more serious effort at writing.

2) What reading means to you…..As a former English teacher, reading is obviously a very important activity in my eyes. It expands the mind, makes us question, causes us to entertain the enigmatic “What If’s” in life, and offers a healthy escape into amazing, imaginative, and colorful worlds. Whether it be fiction or non-fiction, when we read, we gain knowledge and information, we consider alternate and opposing ideas from our own, helping us to achieve open-mindedness, and we discover a serene enjoyment. In short, reading means self-growth. Regardless of our age, experience, or level of intelligence or wisdom, we can always continue to grow, and reading provides the path to do so.

3) Whats next for you…..Agents of Shadow is the first book in The Keepers of White series. I’ve already completed Books II and III because initially, the three made up one complete story. However, together it was far too large a manuscript to publish as one book, so I had to break it up into three. The second book, The Paladin’s Message, is currently being proofread and, once I can get an artist to create the exact cover I desire for it, will hopefully be released sometime in the summer of 2017. The third book is still without a title, but I’m hoping to publish that one about six months after the second. I’m currently writing the fourth book. I also plan to write an anthology of short stories with a central theme regarding human redemption and spiritual influence, and one of the short stories in that anthology will consist of a quick adventure by the protagonist in The Keepers of White series when he was a teenager. Finally, if I ever brave the non-fiction world, I will one day a humor-toned collection of my experiences as a middle school teacher.

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