The works of Award winning author, Rick Pipito, and more

Posts tagged “interview

Interview about THE LOST HOUR

sCrypt Publishing and readers have asked a few questions about my new short story THE LOST HOUR.  Here’s a compilation of those questions in an interview like form.  Enjoy and feel free to ask your own in the comments section.  I’ll answer as quickly as possible.

Q: This is your first short story that doesn’t involve multiple different plots. What made you take this approach?

Rick: I’ve done nine shorts before this. They all had multiple stories because they were intended (and some were) for graphic novel form. The novel that this was based on, A COURSE FOR HUMANITY, was less about separate stories intertwining, and more about one narrative. I figured I could focus on one plot and make it more powerful by doing the same to the short.

Q: You mention the novel from which this was set. Where exactly does THE LOST HOUR take place in the series?

Rick: Chronologically it exists between DEVOURED UNIVERSE and A COURSE FOR HUMANITY. It fills in something referenced in the latter novel. It is meant to be read alone though, so it works if you are completely unfamiliar with the series.

Q: Why continue to do short story spinoffs between novel releases? Are there plans to bring back more graphic novel forms?

Rick: I never say never, but right now there are no plans for more comics. The reason I continue with the short stories is because they are cheaper for readers. It seems to be that once a newcomer reads the short story, they are usually interested in the novel it’s associated with. I’ve gained quite a few readers that way.

Q: Samantha Clayton is your main character in THE LOST HOUR. What made you choose her?

Rick: We’ve sort of seen her grow throughout the novels. She was a young girl, then an adult, and then an old woman. We know there’s a lot of secrecy to her that remains to be uncovered. There is only reference to her in the novel and how she laid the ground work for the Continuum organization. She made rules for them to follow with time travel, so I wanted to get into why she made those rules. Something had to have gone wrong for her to do so.

Q: What is it like writing about time travel?

Rick: It’s different than all my other books. I love and hate it. This trilogy gives me a headache, even though that’s not the focus. I have to make it believable and understandable to the reader at the same time. Sometimes I’ll write a scene and then have to edit the hell out of it because it gets so wordy that it bores me. After numerous edits it comes out being an easy and comprehendible read, but getting to that point is the challenge.

Q: What is your next release and when?

Rick: THE THIRST OF CAIN will be my next novel in early 2018. It’s not only a direct follow up to A COURSE FOR HUMANITY, but will serve as the same to BLOOD, THE SECOND HELPING.

Q: So vampires and time travel then?

Rick: Yes. I had such good feedback on BLOOD, that I felt like revisiting some of that. Plus I had this thing going on with the character of Francis Murphy in COURSE that the plot sort of set itself.

Q: Are you saying Francis will meet Cain?

Rick: Cain is such a loved character by fans. He’s the penultimate villain. He’s wicked, but also has a reason for the path he’s chosen. Time travel enables me to really go back to his early years and have Francis confront him then. He wants to be cured of his own curse, so finding Cain is his main priority.

Q: I’m confused. Won’t that technically interfere with the plots of the remaining books because time travel is involved?

Rick: Oh yes. I can’t say much, but THE THIRST OF CAIN will alter everything. We will sort of see a different history as an outcome. It’s something touched upon in THE LOST HOUR about how time travel can create alternate worlds.

Q: Where can one purchase a copy of THE LOST HOUR?

Rick: It is available on www.lulu.com in print. It will be available as part of the next trilogy release for Amazon and Barnes and Noble when that is completed. And if you buy the print from lulu you also get a digital copy to download.

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Radio shout outs

My wife was interviewed on a radio station here in Philly.  During the segment they chat briefly about my books.  Give it a listen at the link below.  Skip ahead to the 16:30 mark to hear her spot.  Follow her on social media @homemadedelish, on facebook @RobertaPipito, and on her site at http://www.homemadedelish.com

http://957benfm.com/episodes/120/


Interview: A COURSE FOR HUMANITY

With any new release I often get questions regarding my books and projects.  A COURSE FOR HUMANITY has given me the honor to receive the same, so here are a few that I’ve received recently.  Feel free to send your own questions or comment below, and I’ll be sure to answer.

Q: Is “A COURSE FOR HUMANITY” part of your Eternal Hunger Saga, or is this something new?

Rick: In a way it is both.  Like all my novels, I like them to be stand alone entries that occur within the same fictitious world.  This book begins in the future with a new cast, but for fans of the previous entries, there are subtle nods to certain things.

Q: How long did it take you to write?

Rick: Typically a novel takes me six months, once I begin actually writing it.  There is a lot of planning before hand, so the whole process is slightly longer.  For “A Course For Humanity” it was a lot different.  I actually came up with this idea back in early 2000.  I finished writing the first rough draft by mid 2001.  Then September 11th happened, and I sort of shelved the idea.  I became so engrossed in my emotion at the time that I concentrated more on my music.  When I started getting into writing books it just remained in the back of my mind.  It wasn’t until last year that I decided it was time to take my original idea and make it work.  So from concept to finish, it technically has been seventeen years.

Q: 17 years?!  Wow.  How much did your original concept change and evolve into the final product?

Rick: A lot.  My writing has become more consistent and better since then, and even my first novel.  I’m always looking forward and not back, so I wanted something that would have some staying power, and still fit in my Eternal Hunger Saga.  The core story from my original idea is still there, but with better dialogue and narrative.  It’s exciting to me to be able to tie it in with what is now in my series, and still be something old and new.

Q: Who is your main character, and what makes them a good lead?

Rick: Well in a way this novel has multiple mains.  It really focuses on the Continuum group as a solid unit, but if I had to choose a main character for this trilogy, it would be Francis Murphy.  He’s a mass murderer.  He’s a vampire.  He is struggling with the reemergence of his humanity, and while he is forced to deal with that, it’ll ultimately be up to him to save him self and the human race.  The question is whether he will do it or not, and if so what are his motives?

Q: I thought you were only doing one book about vampires.  What made you change your mind?

Rick: The fact that he’s a vampire is secondary in this book.  BLOOD THE SECOND HELPING was my core vampire novel.  I don’t want to do any of that again.  A COURSE FOR HUMANITY is really a focus on our decisions as a human race.  We become our own downfall, and the few who step up to prevent such a catastrophe may seem unqualified, but it makes for a very surreal (despite it being time travel) story.

Q: So current events had a say in what you did with this book?

Rick: I try to stay medium with my politics in my books.  I don’t push any certain way.  Some authors like to push their political opinions as a theme.  I only use them for characters.  I might have a die hard Republican or Democrat character pop in every now and then, but that is to keep it realistic.  It is never a focus.  The past election in the USA influenced my decision to make the book happen now.  There are political undertones in the prologue that basically set up everything.  It basically talks about how hateful and unaccepting of differing opinions, people have become.  I’m one of those people who has strong feelings on certain things, but I never hold it against others who don’t agree.  I try to see where they are coming from, and if I can influence my reasoning a little on them, then at the end of the day both parties are better for it.  I just don’t see why the divide is becoming greater.  It’s not a good course for humanity.

Q: Haha.  I see what you did there.  So what are the challenges in writing time travel into a book?

Rick: This one was easy to be honest.  I kept the beginning of the story a few hundred years in the future, and the finale a short jump into our future.  No events have happened yet to actually influence the narrative.  That was a relief.  The challenge came in explaining how time travel works.  I’m very acute with detail when it comes to making these things believable.  I did my best to explain why you could travel into the past, but never into the future (unless the future ripped you from your place in the past).  I also explained many alternate outcomes of our actions at any place in time.

Q: What is the deal with the cover?  It is a really eye catching design.

Rick: It’ll make more sense once you read the book, but the green waves in the sky represent a shift in the time line.  Something has changed.  Think of the wave as erasing what is there and rewriting something else.  My brother usually does the cover art, but he’s been tied up with my next children’s book, so I went and designed this one.  I still went to him for advice and for pinging cover ideas off of.  That way I didn’t feel like I was replacing him, and he was still involved in a limited capacity.

Q: You said you were writing a lot of music when you shelved this idea originally.  Did this come into play at all in your songs?

Rick: Yes, actually.  I wrote two songs about it.  The first was called “Leech,” which I performed with my old band Code Blue.  The second was called “Swallowed By The Sun” which I played with Everyone Loves Mahoney.  Both had a different feel musically, but worked well with the lyrics.

Q: Can we hear these songs anywhere or see the lyrics?

Rick: Actually, yes.  I have a few songs on Soundcloud.com.  I’m not sure what is up there, but I believe Swallowed By The Sun is definitely.  You can find some of my other songs there too if you search for “Everyone Loves Mahoney” and “Rick Pipito” (for my solo stuff).  As for the lyrics, I’ve been wanting to do a poetry book with all my song lyrics and poems at some point, so I should probably get on that sooner rather than later.

Q: How did you come up with the title for this book?

Rick: Originally it was called “Continuum: The Fight For Humanity,” but then there was a Continuum tv show and I wanted to avoid confusion, so I dropped that part.  Then the election coverage started, and I thought “fight” was too negative.  Everyone was fighting.  I wanted a positive title.  My wife suggested I keep with the food theme that I’ve used for the whole Eternal Hunger Saga so far.  After a few days of pondering I decided on “A Course For Humanity.”  It’s sort of a double entendre.  Course meaning food and direction.

Q: You said this was the final trilogy in your saga.  What is your next book with these characters? 

Rick: It’ll be interesting to say the least.  My next book will go very dark.  Francis Murphy (the leech) is going to find that he can’t fight his curse any longer.  It is beginning to completely take him over.  My original idea was to have a sequel involving the first vampire Cain.  That idea ended up becoming something else in “Blood, The Second Helping.”  I constantly get compliments on how great of a villain Cain was in that book.  I figured since time travel was involved, that I could actually take that original idea and work it somehow.  It’s no way near what it was in concept, but the plot is still the same.  Murphy will be trying to figure out a way to eliminate Cain in the past, so that he can be rid of his own curse. 

 Q: Cain is coming back?  How will this affect your continuity?

Rick: This will be Cain unlike you’ve seen him before (except in limited spurts).  Cain will be a very violent and vicious creature in this book.  It won’t involve any events that have occurred in my other books, but it will certainly feel like it fits.  At the end of the day the result of tampering with time will be evident.  There will be one last chapter (novel) afterwards to explain the aftermath if Murphy or Cain survive (or perish).

Q: Then your whole saga will be complete.  What does that mean for the future (pun intended) of your novels?  Where does Rick Pipito go from there?

Rick: Book 3 in this trilogy will wrap things up and leave the reader in a place where they will be questioning whether the series will happen as it has, or if the timeline will be replaced by our current (real world) reality.  I’ve got nine novels planned out that won’t have anything to do with this series.  Some are trilogies, others are stand alone.  To anyone who has followed all along, they could have thoughts that say “Hey, this is our world now,” but before it was changed it was something else.  One of my books will be a supernatural thriller about alzheimers patients, that will explain what they go through, and maybe they aren’t as all gone as we initially think.  In other words everything I create is in the universe of my mind.  I want to keep it that way.  This is just an easy way to do it by creating a secondary universe and separating myself from what’s been done to an extent. 

Q: You were just labeled as “Most versatile Local author” in the latest issue of Philly Current Magazine.  What’s it like to have such recognition?

Rick: I’ve been in the top 25 and 100 lists of authors before, so it’s always exciting and flattering.  I will never consider myself perfect.  I’ve still much to learn.  I think even the most veteran of writers does.  Anyone who claims they are the best, will no longer put out better work because of their ego.  It’ll become stale and unexciting.  Being called “Most versatile local author” is a very flattering sentiment.  I’ll take it.  haha.  I love knowing that my work has an impact on others in a good way, and having my name spread out there in such a great magazine is definitely a high point.  You can get a copy of this issue by the way at http://www.phillycurrent.com (it’s the #pcpicks2017 issue). 

Q: Is there anything you wish you’d be awarded or recognition you’d like to receive?

Rick: I think it’d be really cool to be interviewed with my wife.  We both are constantly getting inquiries on how we are able to juggle being parents, and hitting all of our fantastic goals.  It’d make for a really fun read or interview, and I really enjoy working with her.  We are a great team.  She tells me when my stories are hit or miss, and I do the same with her food.  To me we are the ultimate team.

Q: Where can we get a copy of A COURSE FOR HUMANITY?

Rick: It’s available on Amazon in digital form, and on http://www.lulu.com in print.  Also, my Beyond Human Trilogy will be in Barnes and Nobles soon, so be sure to check out that and my other works.

 

 


Interview about Devoured Universe

I’ve had some amazing questions sent to me over the course of the past two months.  Here’s a compilation of them in interview form.  Feel free to ask your own, and I’ll answer.  Thanks again for all of the love.

 

Q: What makes “Devoured Universe” differ from “Planet ATE”?

Rick: Planet ATE was a stepping stone into full blown sci-fi. While both involve space and aliens, ATE was about protecting humanity and Earth. Devoured takes it a step further and puts the existence of everything in the universe at risk.

Q: Your books are grounded in reality in a way that makes them believable. How did you maintain that feeling with Devoured Universe?

Rick: There was only so much I could do considering the vastness of the story, but I looked into a lot of NASA information and files on different things out in space. Some hypothetical theories served as the root for explanations of what was going on, so while it is a mostly science fiction tale, it can be perceived as believable.

Q: After reading your other novels, I found this to be a good stand alone, but it also wraps up a legacy (as mentioned in the book). What made you decide to write out a certain character?

Rick: Without going into too much detail I can say it was time, but I feel as though I’ve lost a great friend. My characters age in my stories, so I didn’t feel it necessary to continue on because that takes away from some of the grounded aspect you mentioned. But I knew this had to happen in a way that respected the character and what he/she stood for. It ends a long adventure, but leaves behind a legacy for my final trilogy.

Q: So does this mean the character could come back?

Rick: No and yes. I can say without a doubt that this character is in fact dead. There will be no resurrection or clone. The presence will still be felt however, as the new characters introduced will see this person as a historical figure and know the legacy left behind by their predecessor.

Q: Will the next book pick up right after this one?

Rick: No. I wanted to put a few hundred years’ gap between books. That way it can stand on its own as the others all have, but still be connected to the saga.

Q: Obviously this means you will be staying in the science fiction genre?

Rick: Like the other books it will be a stepping stone. If you read Devoured Universe, then you know what is hinted at as far as where it will all go. So even though it starts out in the future there will be a way to tie it into the past, and pave way for new stories.

Q: A reboot of your own novels?

Rick: Not really. More like an expansion.

Q: With your Eden’s Order Trilogy your main antagonist was Cain. For Pandora’s Chaos Trilogy you had the Network Entity. It seems that the world governments are your antagonist for this trilogy. Who or what is the threat for your next three?

Rick: I’m glad you saw politicians as the underlying evil in this (Beyond Human Trilogy). The next trilogy will be a little less obvious as we will be dealing with many different settings and periods on Earth. If I were to choose an antagonist per se, I guess I’d say humanity as a whole. It’s not that I think humans are all bad, but the main character in the next trilogy will be facing the bad sides of human nature. Even he himself will be struggling with his own morals.

Q: Is this character someone we already know or will he be new? And can you clarify the type of struggles he’ll face?

Rick: Let’s just say this will be less of a group adventure and more about this single person. You don’t know him yet, but he does have origins in the timeline of the current stories. So while he exists in this saga already, he really hasn’t been formally introduced.

Q: It sounds like you’ve had this planned out for a while. How many other works are on your slate?

Rick: Ha. I’ve countless ideas, but right now I’m currently brainstorming, writing, and outlining a few. While I’m prepping to step into the new trilogy, I’m writing the spinoff stories for this one. I’m also hard at work with my brother on finishing my second children’s book, and writing a third. Then there is also a murder mystery trilogy I’m working on with my wife. This doesn’t include the countless notes I keep adding to the other ideas I’ve got for future releases.

Q: You have a web series called “Think, Sip, Write.” In one episode you talk about eternal youth. If you could live forever would you continue to write or would you delve into other areas?

Rick: I would love to live forever; as long as I could fully function. Yes, I’d continue to write because right now I can’t see how I’d be able to publish all of the ideas I have. It’d be a waste not to. But like my everyday life I’d also continue to do other things. My music is always in the back of my mind, as well as my web series and sCrypt Publishing.

Q: Is there anything you want readers to know? Announcements or teases perhaps?

Rick: I’ve decided to try something new. I’m doing a #Scrypthalloween for the whole month of October. Details are being worked on, but I plan to have them up within the next few days. Basically everyone can get involved. On my end of it I’ll be posting a few quick read releases, as well as some giveaways and other fun things. It’ll be a lot of fun, and the more involved the merrier.

 

Q: Where can someone get a copy of your books?

Rick: As always, digital copies of my books are available on Amazon. Print copies are on Lulu.com. And you are always welcome to email me for an autographed copy.


An Interview about Planet ATE

Planet Ate WorkingWith each new release I always post questions I’ve received from fans or collective media outlets.  Here are a few of the ones I’ve received so far for Planet ATE, and I’m sure I’ll post more as they come in.

Enjoy, and feel free to ask your own questions in the comments below.

Q: Planet ATE leaps across genre boundaries for you. Was there any hesitation in doing this?

Rick: It was the logical course of where to go next. Everything in the prior books were horror centric, but since Techno Feast began the sci-fi step for me, and Genetic Morsels further grounded that, it was time to make the full on transition.

Q: Your books are very grounded in reality with that fantastical element added. Do you find that it is difficult to combine the two?

Rick: I find it more difficult to NOT combine realism with fiction. Everything that influences me is in real life, whether it be my own experiences or history itself. I’ve always tried to make explanations for the strange things this world has to offer. Genetic Morsels had a political theme underlying the main plot. With Planet ATE I chose to add government conspiracy to the list.

Q: Government conspiracy and aliens in one story seem to go hand in hand. Did you use the X-Files as inspiration at all, and how do you not step on the toes of other current works?

Rick: You know it’s funny you say that. I loved the X-Files growing up, and always wanted to do an alien related novel. It was after I started writing this book that I found out about the new season coming out, and I went into panic mode. I said to my wife, “Damnit, it’s happening again!” We laugh about it. When I was writing my first three novels the subjects were zombies, vampires and werewolves. Then the Walking Dead, and Twilight series became popular shortly after. The beauty of writing is that you can acknowledge what is there in a way by avoiding certain key elements. I’ve never had any problem staying unique in my approach and keeping it fresh. I think the stories that flop (whether in movies or book form) are because they aren’t unique enough.

Q: What makes Planet ATE so unique to alien fiction?

Rick: Aside from research on fact I spend lots of time watching and reading what is out there to keep something totally separate in mind. Planet ATE is nice because it tackles the ultimate question “Why do we exist?” We can go to science, faith or any other means to find the “truth”, but this incorporates that and goes beyond. It takes a look at fact throughout history and ties it together into many supposed sightings of UFOs etc. This book gives an answer as to the why, but then opens the door to figure out what it all means.

Q: Before each chapter you have a quote by a famous person or a fact. Are these real and what made you do it?

Rick: They are real quotes and references to historical fact. I wanted that realism in there to bring the reader back into the real world and really make them wonder about life in the universe. The amount of quotes to find the right ones was exhausting, but well worth it in the end.

Q: The title of your books blends the topic with food. Why the capital letters in this title?

Rick: This title was difficult to settle upon. The word “ate” is my connection to that food world for consistency, but it goes beyond that. Not only is it a culinary term, but it also is the 8th book (eight), and it is an acronym in the book. ATE stands for Alien Threat Elimination. It is the government agency created to take out the antagonist of this book.

Q: This series can be read as individual books, but how far do you want to take it as a series?

Rick: The next book ends the current run with a follow on trilogy that will acknowledge what has already happened. At the end of all 12 books it will sort of make the reader wonder. While all questions will be answered it will allow me to begin writing other things in the same universe as these books, but not be tied to them in any way.

Q: You release compilations in trilogies. Will you release a complete volume of all twelve?

Rick: I write in trilogy form (Eden’s Order Trilogy dealt with monster like creatures; Pandora’s Chaos dealt with the supernatural). After book 9 the Beyond Human trilogy will be released. Then another after books 10-12 are all done. At some point I would like to release a limited edition hardback of everything (the 12 novels and spinoff stories). It is already in the works for down the road, and will be called the ETERNAL HUNGER SAGA.

Q: What is the status of the spinoffs in graphic novel form? Will you be working on more with your brother?

Rick: Dan is automatically involved in whatever I do because he does the cover art. As far as sCrypt Comics goes the future is uncertain. I’m not saying we won’t do any more. In fact we both want to, but it is very time consuming and difficult to manage. It is hard enough to juggle our own schedules let alone getting nine other artists involved in each release. For now we will be focusing on sCrypt Publishing as a whole. That includes graphic novels, but isn’t the main focus. Those stories are written and being written though for the comic book spinoffs so that they are already done when we are ready to go on it.

Q: Tell us about the cover of Planet ATE?

Rick: The last cover featured a mock chalkboard with calculations pertaining to DNA and genetics. This kept with that theme and is a dry erase board. We figured we would add a few grainy UFO pictures Dan created as Polaroid shots hanging by magnets. Think of it as the research board that the characters may be using in the book.

 Q: What will the cover be for book 9? Is it something similar?

Rick: My lips are sealed for now.

Q: Politics have come into play in your books without straying too far in either direction.  How do real life scenarios and politics play into your writing?

Rick: As I mentioned previously my experiences in life truly come into play in some form in my writing.  It could be a simple situation or something more complex that I may tweak and throw the characters into.  Politics in general are entertaining.  We in the U.S. have a two party system that is honestly becoming a joke.  Both sides have candidates that are in my opinion dangerous leaders.  I stay up to date with current world events as much as one can, and it makes for great writing in a sense.  Politicians are often like the villains of books with their schemes and agendas.  I take that into account and try to find a middle ground in which to present my writing in non-biased ways.  As an author I can vent my feelings on paper with both sides being accused without actually spilling my opinions on who is right or wrong.  People are always going to disagree, but the world today needs leaders who are just and stand for the people, and at this point it’s difficult to see who that is at times; if at all.

Q: Controversy seems to be everywhere in today’s day and age.  Everything has to be “politically correct” or be geared towards a certain audience?  How does this affect your writing?

Rick: I definitely keep it in mind, but also don’t let it hold me back from creating realistic characters or situations.  You have to be careful which lines you cross, but there are ways of doing it without making it seem like those are things that you believe. A prime example is in my BLOOD, THE SECOND HELPING. I wrote a section that dealt with the Chicago mob in the early 20th century.  There are things the characters do and say that are flat out unacceptable whether by today’s standards or in general.  It was difficult to write because I in no way agree with the things the characters did or said, and I think it was done tastefully to the point where the reader realizes it is just a work of fiction and not my personal thoughts. BLOOD is still considered a fan favorite so I guess I manage my approach fairly well.

Q: How do you juggle your busy schedule?  What’s a day in the life of Rick Pipito?

Rick: It’s become such a routine, that I barely notice it anymore.  I spend 8 hours every day brainstorming my thoughts. During car rides I record dialogue into my phone (the people driving by must think I’m crazy). Then at night I write after my kids go to bed. Once I sit down at the keyboard the thoughts are ready to be put on paper, so it just flows out of me.  I also spend time helping my wife with her business, and the kids with homework and daddy time.  It’s a full plate for sure, but I love it.  It would be nice to have an extra hour or two in the day (or for sleeping at night for that matter).

Q: What can you tell us about that you are working on?

Rick: Well like I said I’ve officially called the saga the Eternal Hunger Saga. Book 9 is in the works and is called DEVOURED UNIVERSE. That will be released later this year. Dan and I are also putting the final touches on A LITTLE BOY IN THE LAND OF SLEEPLESS KNIGHTS. My prior children’s book was a success and it seemed little girls loved it, so since I wrote that one for my daughter, this one will be geared towards boys and is written for my son. It will be coming out early this summer.

 Q: Where can someone get a copy of your books?

Rick: All of my novels are available in paperback at www.lulu.com. They are also available for the Kindle at www.amazon.com. My comics are at www.indypress.com and Audible and itunes also have my first audiobook translation, and hopefully more to come soon.


Interview about GENETIC MORSELS

“Genetic Morsels” interview with author Rick Pipito.  These are questions received by beta readers and others regarding the new novel and more.  Feel free to ask your own in the comments below.

Q: Tell us about GENETIC MORSELS and what inspired this novel.

Rick: An event has caused one generation of people to take the next step in human evolution.  While they struggle with their extraordinary abilities real world physics comes into play.  They must work together to bring down a corrupt politician who wants to exploit genetics in order to build a cabinet that will do anything he orders them to.  I grew up reading comic books, but to me there was always the realization that it was fake.  Certain things wouldn’t work in real life.  So I wanted to tell the story of would be superheroes and villains if they actually existed. 

Q: Were there any difficulties in writing this book?

Rick: The research into physics was fun, but science didn’t cover it all.  In order for the characters to have some semblance of abilities I had to bend the laws of science a tiny bit while trying to keep with the realistic feel and the scifi element of it.  That and I’d written myself into a corner with something while setting up the next book.  I had to figure out a way to explain certain things while keeping with my own continuity and still going toward my ultimate goal.

Q: Is there a planned audiobook conversion?

Rick: Yes.  My conversion of FLESH AND LEFTOVERS into audio format has done well.  It took a long time to record that because of scheduling with voice actors.  Plus I feel that using one narrator will work from here on out.  I’m currently working on a solo audio conversion of BLOOD THE SECOND HELPING, and hope to knock out at least two of my books a year until I catch up.  So, we’re looking at GENETIC MORSELS being in audio form probably in 2017 sometime.  Hopefully sooner.

 Q: What’s in the works now?

Rick: I’m researching and outlining for my next novel, PLANET ATE.  There’s also my second children’s book, A LITTLE BOY IN THE LAND OF SLEEPLESS KNIGHTS that I’m having illustrations done for.  I’ve got a dozen other writing projects that I’m always working on a little at a time.  I mean literally a dozen.  Lol.

 Q: If you had to choose one superpower, what would it be and why?

Rick: I’d like to travel to any point and place in time and just observe.  I try to explain mysteries of human history in my writing because it fascinates me.  Whether it is the deepest parts of outer space or right here under our feet I just want to know what the history books got right and wrong.  I want to be able to see how things were and how they will be.  I don’t want to actually be in these places and times, but watch them however and whenever I want without interfering. 

Q: Have you had any criticism of your works and how do you handle that?

Rick: I welcome criticism.  It helps me to learn and grow from my mistakes.  The biggest critique I’ve gotten is on FLESH AND LEFTOVERS.  While people love the story there are certain writing approaches that make it the weakest of my works.  It was my first book and will always hold a special place in my heart, but were I to write it now, I’d have taken different approaches.  I really have had overwhelming positive reviews on most of my books, so that keeps me going forward.  So far people are enjoying what I have done, and I hope to continue bringing good stuff to the table.  People who have read from the beginning have commented on how experience has shown me how to captivate an audience, and I cannot agree more.  I’m always willing to learn a little more to make it right.

Q: There’s an underlying political theme in GENETIC MORSELS.  Do politics today play a big role in your life?

Rick:  Yes to a certain extent.  I have strong core values and experience that influences the way I vote.  Unfortunately there haven’t been any good options recently, and I tend to vote for the lesser of two evils.  People refuse to budge from extreme beliefs on both sides, so we are stuck with issues that will never have an appeasing resolve.  I had to bring politics into it because it is the reality of our world today.  Media bias, public perception and corruption all play a part in the game that is played.

Q: Arguments often spur from political opinions.  Since your book on arguing is a few years old have you thought about doing an updated version, just to add a few things?

Rick: For the most part it is current, but there are some addendums I’d tack on to it.  My next version of it may just be the audiobook form when I do that.  It would be more like a version 2.0. 

Q: GENETIC MORSELS introduces a mostly new cast of characters.  Do you miss utilizing the already established ones?

Rick: Absolutely.  If these were real life situations people would die, become injured, grow old, etc.  There’s only so much they can experience and make it feel realistic.  I feel as though a lot of the characters are people I know because I’ve “worked” with them for so long.  I’ll admit that I shed tears when I kill a character off, but it has to be done at times.  As much as I miss some of the old ones, I now have a new cast of protagonists to focus on for a story or two.  That is very exciting to me.

Q: It seems your writing has come a long way since the beginning.  This being your 15th publication, where do you see yourself in another 5 years?

Rick: Writing full time for a living.  It has to be that way.  I can’t keep up with the voices in my head giving me ideas.  The only path that makes sense is to assist my wife’s culinary work (Homemade Delish), and do what I love to do (which other than being a dad to my two awesome kids is writing).

 

Q: You often find a way to foreshadow future books in each release.  Other than the evident topic of PLANET ATE, is there anything you can say about other teasers to come?

Rick: hmmm.  Okay. Let’s just say some things have not been forgotten.  Something or someone from the past will resurface in some form.  I won’t say more than that.  Just stay tuned.

Q: sCrypt Comics is now sCrypt Publishing.  Why the change?

Rick: I still plan on doing comic spinoffs.  The stories are already written for the next three.  They are however very time consuming.  I can cover more ground working on my own things than to also be directing a group of artists to get it right.  sCrypt Comics isn’t gone, it’s just incorporated into a larger picture.  I’m now doing audio books, novels, children’s books, and editing.  I also have plans to expand that into helping other independent authors along the way.  It just was time to state what is already happening by making the name change.  The ideas that my brother and I have for it are really exciting.

 

Q: Speaking of Dan (Pipito), tell us about the artwork he did for this cover.

Rick: Dan has been working in trilogy themes to coincide with each cover.  The first two trilogies had their own set approaches to the type of cover art we saw.  With this trilogy he felt that since science played such a huge part in it, that a classroom chalkboard would be a different type of touch.  I won’t say what his plans are for the next two novel covers, but they will compliment this one really well.

 

Q: Where can someone get a copy of your books?

Rick: All of my novels are available in paperback at www.lulu.com.  They are also available for the Kindle at www.amazon.com. My comics are at www.indypress.com and the audio book and future ones I release are available at www.audible.com and itunes. 


My Interview on Author’s Alliance

I just wanted to share this.  I had the pleasure back in September of being interviewed by the Author’s Alliance.  They posted the interview online and it’s available to read.  I’d like to extend my thanks and gratitude toward them for this opportunity.

Interview is here:  http://authoralliance.net/rick-pipito/


Adrianna Joleigh’s interview with Rick Pipito

As part of a promo this month, Denmark’s author, Adrianna Joleigh, conducted an interview with me.  Check it out here… http://adriannajoleigh.com/2013/09/11/my-interview-with-author-and-co-founder-of-scrypt-comics-rick-pipito/


“Devil’s Dessert” Interview with author Rick Pipito

The following is an interview conducted with author Rick Pipito about the novel Devil’s Dessert:

Q: This is the fifth book in your Flesh and Leftovers series.  It is also the first book to stray a little from your previous formats, but continues to be effective for the overall arc.  Why did you decide to do it this way?

Rick: The idea is the same, but for each individual chapter, I had to take a different approach.  They still remain separate stories, but tie in directly, instead of the way that they were secondary in the prior novels.  The whole book happens in the present except for the mentions of how it all started.  It was only logical to do it this way, as I don’t feel that scattering it through history would have been as effective.

Q: By far, this is my favorite of the series.  How do you plan to top what you did here?

Rick: It will be difficult, but I think I can handle it well.  There is more at stake with the main characters now.  Moira and Gordon are dealing with a new stage in their lives, and they are all on the run.  The media knows these people exist.  The characters will have to watch their backs every step of the way, while dealing with an all new threat that is perhaps the most dangerous one yet. 

Q: Can you elaborate on this threat more?  Where will book 6 take us?

Rick: We’ve dealt with zombies, vampires, werewolves, ghosts, and demons.  It has been building up since book 1, and you may not have even realized it, but technology will be the antagonist.  How can we fight something that we depend upon for everything?  It’s going to be the most difficult thing we’ve encountered in this series; so far.

Q: Regarding the religious aspect, did you find it difficult to write?  What are your thoughts on possible controversy involved?

Rick: I was raised Roman Catholic, and have been fascinated with faith since I was a child.  The stories and mysteries involved are intriguing.  I researched a dozen other faiths as well before beginning this novel.  I wanted to appease to ALL audiences, not just one.  Even Atheists can enjoy this.  The only controversy that will be is people being offended that I’m taking into account ALL faiths and not just theirs.  If they want to cause a stir, I say go ahead.  It will only make more people want to read it.  Look what it did for Dan Brown.  The Da Vinci Code was considered so controversial, and it made people want to read it because of that fact.  Of course, it being a great novel also helped.  

Q: Do you have any favorite angel or demon stories that are not your own?

Rick: It seems a bit clichéd, but “The Exorcist” is at the top of my list, followed by “Evil Dead” (the original), and I’d say the first “Silent Hill” game.

Q: The characters at the end of this book are being thrust into this new scenario that you mentioned, and will have to adjust to this new way of life.  I was shocked by what you did here, but in a good way.  Can you give us a hint as to how the characters will cope in their new roles?

Rick: Fighting a threat, adjusting to changes, finding an old enemy, and emotional roller coasters?  You’ll have to tune in to see. 

Q: Your brother, Dan Pipito came up with the art for the cover again.  Tell us about that process.

Rick: We kept with the theme for this trilogy.  It was very simple, but has three of the main artifacts involved in the story:  The Crown of Thorns, The Spear of Destiny, and The Sword of Eden.  We went back and forth a few times on color, and detail possibilities.  We agreed that it would be better to have less detail, as to not focus on those objects before reading the novel.  It’s always a pleasure for me to see what Dan does next.

Q: Is Jason Black going to be a secondary character again in the next novel or will you bring him in as a main villain?

Rick: He will be brought in as the main baddie in the future, but not quite yet.  He will have a little more of a role than he did in this one; as we will finally see what it is that he is up to. 

Q: How much research went into the angels and demons, and where did you get the names for God and the Devil?

Rick: They were more difficult than the religions themselves.  I looked into angels and demons for each of the seven deadly sins and the virtuous counterparts.  Angel names were by the plethora, but demon names associated with particular sins were not.  I decided to take different names for the Devil himself to be the demonic names, and closely researched each one.  As far as God and the Devil, I’d rather call them what they are in the book (Light and Darkness).  I wanted them to be something godly, and equal counterparts.  Tehum literally means formless darkness in Hebrew.  In Latin, Lux Lucis means light.  Those were the only logical decisions for names of “God and the Devil”.

Q: You also have a new artist doing some amazing interior art.  Was this your decision?

Rick:  Yes.  I was halfway through writing this book and realized it was the first in the series that I hadn’t planned at least some form of art in one of the pages.  We were underway with the next graphic novel, and I didn’t have enough room for everyone with new artists on board.  Sakura Jones is an impressive artist with a great style.  She had done 2 graphic novels with us, so I asked if she could do three pieces for this book; One each for the beginning, middle and end of the story.  I’m thrilled to work with her again.

Q: What have been the biggest writing challenges with this novel and the series?

Rick: It gets harder as I go.  The first novel was a learning experience.  Then I planned out the whole series, and I have to wrap things up and transition for each one.  The closer I get to the real end of the series becomes difficult.  I have to keep it interesting and try to top the one prior to it.  If I can’t do that, then there is no point for me as a writer to continue on with it.  I have it planned in a way so that each book focuses on something different.  I don’t want to do the same thing twice.  Making each one “better” than the prior, is the biggest challenge.  I feel I’ve come a long way since the first book, and I’ve received feedback from readers that love each installment better than the last.

Q: You mentioned hints in previous books.  Are there any little “easter eggs” in this one?

Rick: Haha.  Yes.  I of course included my own Twitter account into the story to see if anyone will chime in with their thoughts for the topic discussed in the book.  It works into the story, but this way it is as if the reader is part of the universe itself.  Also, the end of the epilogue has a zeroes and ones code.  Something is hidden within that.

Q: What will the sCrypt Comics graphic spinoff be called?

Rick:  The spinoff will be sCrypt comics issue #5, and titled “Devil’s Dessert: Demonic Entities”.  Look for it sometime early next year (2014)

Q: Do you have a projected release on the next novel in this series?

Rick: “Techno Feast” will come out 4th quarter this year.  A perfect gift for the holidays.

Q: Any major sponsors or Hollywood ?

Rick: Not yet.  I’m still trying to get the word out there, but having to support my family and working 50 hours a week NOT doing writing, makes it hard to find the right connection.

Q: Where can anyone get a copy of “Devil’s Dessert”?

A: Devil’s Dessert is available on www.lulu.com in print.  Or you can get it for the Kindle on www.amazon.com .   My other novels are in both those places as well, so check them out, and spread the word.


Interview with author Rick Pipito about Souls 4 Supper

The following is an interview with author Rick Pipito about the novel Souls 4 Supper.

Q: This is the fourth book in your Flesh and Leftovers series.  Has it gone as expected so far?

Rick: The series has been great to me.  I’m still looking for that break out moment that will let me do this for a living, but until then I will continue to evolve my characters and stories.  I’m a firm believer in creating something for everyone.  That is what this series is about.  Yes, it is horror, but the stories cover such vast territory.  I guarantee if people heard more about it, they would find it much more interesting than just “any horror”.

Q: Did you follow the same format for book 4 as the others?

Rick: Flesh, Blood and Bones were fantastic parts to my first trilogy, but that was only the beginning.  Yes, I wanted to stay true to the format of 10 short stories that tie into the main plot.  At the same time, I didn’t do quite the same.  I decided to build more on the plot.  Each story in “Souls 4 Supper” now has an intro and an ending that take place in the present day world.  It allowed me to expand that universe a little more, and bring a better connection to the stories.  I also wanted it to drive the reader a little more.  Now that we’ve established the universe in the first three books, it’s time to hit it in high gear.  It’s definitely one of those books that readers will not want to put down until it’s done, and then they’ll say “I want more.  What happens next?”

Q: So even though this is book 4 it can also be read to newcomers as a book 1?

Rick: Absolutely.  I know from my own experiences that if I’m behind in something I don’t want to have to start from the beginning (especially with books).  I still want to know everything that happened, but just enough to catch up to the rest of the readers.  Souls was written with that in mind.  The first trilogy is complete.  Now the second one begins.  It can be read as a stand alone trilogy, but I’m hoping that readers of Souls 4 Supper and the following 2 novels will want to go get the first trilogy to see how it began.

Q: You’ve done Zombies, Vampires, Werewolves, and Ghosts.  Where do you go now? 

Rick: The next logical step for me was to tackle the afterlife as an entirety.  Heaven and Hell battling it out.  In book 5, demons and angels invade the earth realm and consider their eternal war more important than humanity.  The intriguing part will be seeing how the humans will have to fend for themselves.  Of course more mysteries of human past will be revealed as well.

Q: There is a very big revelation in “Souls 4 Supper” with the backstory of M.U.T.S..  Do you plan on getting into more depth with that?

Rick: Yes.  At first I thought of doing a stand alone M.U.T.S. (Military Underground Tactical Specialists) novel.  Then I realized that I don’t think I could do it justice in the way I wanted.  Because of that, I came up with the idea of doing a web comic series on it.  I’m going to get artists involved to do a drawing or painting or two.  Then it will focus on each MUTS character’s back stories, as well as getting further into the “big revelation” as you put it.  After I get a few of these done, I plan on releasing it in print form and for download as well.  All of that is in the works and it will be found on my site. www.sCryptcomics.wordpress.com

Q: Do you have any favorite Ghost stories that are not your own?

Rick: I grew up with the “Poltergeist” movies and hadn’t found a new favorite until seeing “The Ring”.  I also really love the first “Silent Hill” game and the book “Ghosts of Cape May.”

Q: Which chapter in Souls was the most difficult one to write?

Rick: Monster Weekend was the most tasking chapter.  It was based on my experiences from when I was a Boy Scout, but transferring it from my mind to paper and making it interesting to the reader was a challenge.  Of course, the ghost element wasn’t really there when I was young, but we constantly talked about ghost stories around the campfire, and all of the other elements in the story happened to some extent.

Q: How do you go about tying all of these together, and still have a load of surprises in the main plot?

Rick: The stories themselves are simple.  I have them mapped out in my mind and on paper.  This is the same with the main plot.  The challenge is when I’m trying to segue from each part and make it flow well.  In other words, even though I have it all figured out before hand, I don’t know which order the chapters will go in until I’m actually writing it.  As far as the surprises, I’ve always been fascinated with mysteries of the world.  The fact that many are unsolved gives me a desire to try to explain them in a sense.  I think it is also a good way to connect the reader to the events in the novels, because they know what I’m talking about.

Q: What a cliffhanger, but the story is still wrapped at this point.  Cain, S.H.A.N.E., heaven and hell?  Can you tell us anything else about what will happen?

Rick: <Laughs> You want me to tell you the whole book?  No, I can’t say too much, but I will tease that Cain will do something no one ever thought possible, and will be considered EXTREMELY controversial.  S.H.A.N.E.’s fate is a buildup for book 6, so I can’t say more at this time.  Everything else you will have to wait and see.

Q: You didn’t have the timeline in back of this one, as you did in book 3 and the Eden’s Order trilogy.  Why not?

Rick: I will have the timeline reserved for the back of the second trilogy.  I’m trying to establish this trilogy as a standalone as much as possible, so even though the first trilogy is part of this new one, I still want to keep them separate with the timeline until I use it as an extra for any buyers of the trilogy collections.  The only down side is that it is a ways off before we will see another trilogy collection.

Q: Did you create the Atlantean alphabet?

Rick: All of the interior art this time was done by myself.  The angelic symbol was a recreation of what exists in texts and research, but the alphabet was my design, yes.  It is said that Atlantis was a society based on science and math.  I designed the alphabet in that manner.  It is simple, but is also supposed to be the origins of all known languages on earth.  There is a hidden message in the back of the book too, just to make it a little fun.  It’s nothing big, but gives the reader a little puzzle to solve.

Q: There are parts in Souls 4 Supper that are controversial at times.  What is it like to write something like that?

Rick: I’ve done it before and I’ll do it again.  Other than the religious elements in Souls, the only thing that really stands out to me as controversial was the story about Monster weekend.  My mother didn’t understand why I had included some of the dialogue and interactions.  She also was never a teenage boy.  The guys that age at that time always talked like that.  Friend’s mothers were often targets of insults and jokes.  I expect criticism and there are going to be people that don’t like certain aspects or crossings of the line that I take.  Especially when it comes to religion and science.  Any publicity is good publicity though.  I want people to talk about it, so the name becomes familiar.

Q: Dan took a different approach for the cover art this time.  Was that your decision or his?

Rick: My brother is part of my inspiration for writing a certain way.  I gave him an idea for this one that would have stayed with the theme from the first three novels, but since it was a new trilogy, Dan really wanted to make it a new series of art.  He really has had the final say in what he is doing for each cover.  I don’t want to limit his art talents and creativity by telling him to do something.  I feel that his own ideas really represent not only his skill level, but also the way a reader may interpret the stories within.  I actually redesigned some of the tetrahedron of Pandora’s Box based on Dan’s art concept for it.

Q: Speaking of support and inspiration, you dedicated this book to www.homemadedelish.com.  Does your wife give you additional inspiration?

Rick: Of course.  She keeps me on my toes.  Her input is very valuable to me, not just from a husband stand point, but from a fan point of view.  Roberta is very critical, and tells it how it is.  If she thinks an idea won’t work, she will tell me.  Of course, she is always the first to say “Wait a minute.  What’s next?”  So, even she doesn’t know what I have going on in my head for future installments.  In a way, she is as eager as I am for the next release.

Q: In chapter 6, the plot points are based on an urban legend.  Could you elaborate on what made you go that route and how much of it is real versus fiction?

Rick: I knew that the novel would be released sometime around Halloween, so I really wanted to use that to my advantage.  There is this story that I hear every year about a haunted house where you pay a certain amount of money to get in.  If you make it through 13 floors, then you get a dollar back per floor that you make it through.  I had to research this.  It took me hours to do and hundreds of websites, but the overall conclusion is that it is an urban legend.  I hid a few things in here as well.  As far as the title of the chapter, “The House On Shadybrook,” well, I grew up on Shadybrook Lane.  That is when I first heard about this legend.  I also threw in a few other easter eggs of sorts.  For example, the article in the story mentions someone’s screen name as “Redeemerxx.”  That is my x-box gamertag.  There is also a hint at what is to come in book 5, as well as the town of Pipville, which is just a creation of mine.  And of course I mentioned my sCrypt Comics blog as well, in the hopes that people will be curious to see if it really exists.  Overall, it was a lot of fun to write.

Q: What will the sCrypt Comics graphic spinoff be called?

Rick: Issue #4 goes into production for a 2013 release, and will be called, “Souls 4 Supper: Ghostly Hauntings.”

Q: Continuum was mentioned in this novel.  Wasn’t that your first novel idea?

Rick: Yes.  “Continuum: The Fight For Humanity” was a sci-fi novel that I wrote back in 2000.  I never published it, because I didn’t feel it was up to par, but I did copyright it because I knew it was a good concept.  Recently I decided to make it tie in to the Flesh and Leftovers universe, but only as a set of book ends.  There are 9 novels in the series planned.  Continuum is being edited and altered to fit into this universe as a prequel and sequel.  It will be book 0 and book 10 in 1 book because it takes place far in the future and at the dawn of man.  The decision just seemed logical to me, and I’m excited to share it.

Q: Do you have a projected release on the next novel in this series?

Rick: I’m aiming for the second quarter of 2013 for release of “Devil’s Dessert”

Q: So “Devil’s Dessert” is the title for book 5?  Sounds enticing.  How about any major publishers for you or Hollywood prospects?

Rick: It’s funny you ask that.  My trilogy was in Hollywood for review by a movie maker.  The studio read it and loved the whole thing.  The project was then denied for a movie.  My contact there told me these exact words, “They feel that justice can’t be done to the books unless it was a television series.”  Apparently there was too much content for a two or three hour movie.  I agree.  I’d love to see it as a series.  Each novel would cover enough content for a season a piece.  Now if I can only get someone with funding to take interest, well the thought is exciting.

Q: What other projects do you have in the works?

Rick: Aside from the next comic book and next novels in the series, I’m also working on a book of my poetry from over the years, as well as another “No, It’s Not.  Yes, It Is” book with Urban Legends being the focal point.

Q: Where can I get a copy of “Souls 4 Supper”?

Rick: It is available on www.lulu.com in softback print, as well as on www.amazon.com for your Kindle.

Q: Is there anything else that you would tell this audience about this series?

Rick: <smiles> Sure.  Whether you start with book 1 or book 4, if you haven’t read this series, you’re missing out.  The more people that support independent writers like myself, gets the major publishers and filmmakers to take interest.  So, whether it is me or some other author trying to make it in the business, support us if you can.  I appreciate and love all the fans of my novels, and hope to meet some of you in person one day.