I’ve received some interesting questions over the past few days about my new short story release THE LOST DAY. These are those compiled together. Feel free to ask your own questions in the comments section, and I’ll be sure to answer and share.
Q: What is your new short story about?
Rick: A man who wakes up in a reality that isn’t his own. He’s a character from my books that changed history, and upon returning to his own time realizes that nothing is as it was. Everyone around him knows who he is, but he knows nothing about this new reality. It becomes even more of a nightmare for him when he is captured to be studied, and he realizes that his very existence puts the future of mankind at risk.
Q: Should I read the novels before reading this story?
Rick: No, not at all. As a matter of fact, I wrote THE LOST DAY to be a stand alone short. Yes, it’s a spinoff, but only to fill in the gaps for any readers of the novels that have a question about what happened to him. For newcomers, there is a total disconnect with the novels in this short, so it was intended for all audiences.
Q: There’s an interesting take on the antagonist in the story. What gave you the idea for such a character?
Rick: I don’t really see the story as having a true antagonist. I mean obviously there is that character, but it isn’t “bad.” It’s doing the thing that it thinks is right. If anything the main character is sort of the antagonist. The idea for the creature that you are referring to though came from current events. If you look back to what life was a few hundred years ago versus today, there is a difference. For the most part all races are reproducing together, and human sexuality goes beyond just straight and gay. So for a point in the human evolutionary scale, in the far future, there very well could be a grey skinned and asexually reproducing person.
Q: Do you think this approach to a character will cause controversy?
Rick: Not really. It’s done in a manner that is respectful to all people of orientation and race. I also think that it is something that could be plausible in a few million years. If it does stir controversy I’m all for it. Any type of chatter will bring others to read it. Just look at what Dan Brown did, and he’s become an outstanding well known author.
Q: Where do you stand with your beliefs on the topic of interracial breeding and sexual orientation?
Rick: That’s a touchy subject that I try to avoid, but I can say that I believe it isn’t our place to judge others. People have their own right to love who they want, but it’s when they force their beliefs on others that it becomes a problem. The same goes for the reverse point of view. If something bigger and better is out there, whether it God or aliens or both, then we would be a disgrace to a superior being with all of the turmoil we create amongst our own human species. Let the higher powers judge our own actions. My thoughts are don’t judge and don’t push agendas no matter where you stand.
Q: Do all of your books have a message like this?
Rick: Real life inspires a lot of my writing, but I want my stories to be enjoyable to a wider audience. I might have underlying themes throughout them, but there is never a message that I’m trying to push at all. I just want everyone to be able to relate and understand each other to some degree. We don’t all have to agree on everything, but understanding each other is a step toward a greater future.
Q: It seems like you think a lot about the future.
Rick: Having children does that to you. I used to be very carefree in all that I did. I took life for granted for a time. Now I realize how precious it is, and when I’m gone I want my kids, their kids, and their kids kids, and beyond to be able to be role models and be part of a greater future.
Q: How does this short-story relate or differ to your other shorts?
Rick: Other than it following the groundwork laid out in THE LOST HOUR…. THE LOST DAY is entirely self sustaining.
Q: There is a little bit of a cliffhanger at the end. Will we see Don Blake again?
Rick: I plan on it. I think there is a responsibility as an author to wrap up all loose ends. Even if it is a simple one liner in a future book that says “Don Blake’s remains were found,” or have him cameo in a minor role, or be a major character. Don Blake will return. I promise closure on that.
Q: Tell us about the cover idea. Who did the art and design?
Rick: I did the design and layout. Originally I wanted to have a sundial, but the pocket watch was my wife’s idea. It was also an element that I threw into the story at literally the last minute before sending to the editors.
Q: Where can one purchase a copy of THE LOST DAY?
Rick: It’s available at Lulu.com in print and will eventually be on Amazon and Barnes and Noble as part of my next trilogy release.
With every new release I get a handful of questions from readers and during promotions. Here’s some of the ones I’ve gathered so far for “THE THIRST OF CAIN”. Feel free to ask any that you have in the comments below or send me a message.
Q: Tell me about your new novel.
Rick: Francis Murphy wakes from a night’s sleep to discover a horror. His blood-stained hands reveal his darkest fears. With each passing minute the submerged half of his personality comes one step closer to total control. Realizing he has only days to find a cure, he must search throughout history to discover the origins of his curse. From the beginning of humanity to modern times, the mark of Cain has influenced many. What is that mark? How far will one man go in order to piece together clues to the puzzle? At what lengths will he go to save himself, and at what cost?
Q: Cain was a primary character in your earlier novels. What made you bring him back?
Rick: Reader feedback was my ultimate driving force. So many people loved the character and he slowly faded into the background as my novels progressed. I felt it was time to bring him back to the heart of the story, and see the side of him that the novels prior to this didn’t fully address.
Q: Does this go against your “I’m not going to write the same type of novel twice,” or do you feel it is a different approach?
Rick: This is a much different approach. It’s true I didn’t want to do another book involving vampires, or time travel. Both of those things sort of take a back seat in this even though they are there. It’s less a book about either of those, and more a book about discovering history in reverse. Cain is in his prime in this novel, so he’s more villain than before… he just happens to be a vampire. Murphy’s journey through time is more about solving the mystery of where his curse came from than the sci-fi element. He just uses time travel to trace the lineage back. So, this is a much different novel than BLOOD, THE SECOND HELPING or A COURSE FOR HUMANITY.
Q: There are a lot of historical refences and tie ins in this book. How much research did you have to do?
Rick: When it came to overall research it wasn’t too extensive, but I wanted each time period in the story to have actual historical significance. I didn’t really know when specifically each chapter would take place until I found some dates with events that would fit the narrative. Finding those pieces of information did consume a few weeks of my time in order to get the story right. The research actually had me rewrite my outline four or five times to better fit where I wanted the book to go.
Q: You and your family were recently featured as a cover story in your local newspaper. How does that feel and factor into what you do?
Rick: It was really a moment that made me so proud. To be called, “the Dynamic Duo” was a surprise. People have said that we are a power couple and inspiration for those who want to prove that hard work will help you reach your dreams. I’ve always been flattered by that. The interview was a lot of fun, but I didn’t expect us to be the cover story. Needless to say we framed the article and have it hanging in my office. Things like that just make me want to go above and beyond my goals even more, and it helps me to push myself harder to attain those goals.
Q: How long did it take you to write THE THIRST OF CAIN?
Rick: The concept has been in my mind for about eight years. Every few months I’d come up with ideas of where to take it, but it was shelved for my other works. Once I finally started to sit down and write it, it took about eight months from outline to draft, then to edits and final copy.
Q: Do you have a team of early reviewers? If so how did they respond to the new book?
Rick: I had 20 beta readers for this book. Of those, a dozen gave their feedback which I value immensely. The response was all very positive with one reader claiming that they wanted another few pages in the epilogue to explain what happens next. To those readers I just have to say, it will be worth the wait to find out, but the hints are there.
Q: You do a decent job of writing each novel as a standalone, but also tying into the whole series. How hard is it to do this and keep the continuity?
Rick: It becomes tedious at times. I have to explain some things in back story, which makes me go back and reread previous plot points over and over to preserve continuity. I really like the idea of having a series that gets better with each installment since the beginning, but can also be a starting point for any new reader to my works. The balance is sometimes tricky, but not an overall difficult task.
Q: I’ve read the book, and have one question… That ending was totally unexpected. What? How? Where is this going?
Rick: You’ll find out in the next novel CONSUMED BY WAR. The reset button has technically been hit, so where THE THIRST OF CAIN finds the character going backwards in time to different periods, the next installment will be the opposite, except without the time travel element. There won’t be any more vampires, just two immortal beings “The Destroyer” and “The Redeemer.” There will also be a short story spinoff that will reference the events in THIRST called THE LOST DAY, which will also come out later this year.
Q: Tell us about the cover idea. Who did the art and design?
Rick: My brother Dan, did the art and design for it. My concept was to have Stonehenge as the center of the cover. It plays a significant role in the plot as far as what its true purpose was. Having a river of blood coming from it was an idea I pitched to my brother, and he immediately went to work with a few pictures in photo editing software. When I received his final copy for approval I was blown away. I think it’s my favorite cover to date.
Q: Where can one purchase a copy of THE THIRST OF CAIN?
Rick: It’s available at Lulu.com in print for $7.99 and on Amazon.com in digital format for $3.99.
Francis Murphy wakes from a night’s sleep to discover a horror. His blood stained hands reveal his darkest fears. With each passing minute the submerged half of his personality comes one step closer to total control. Realizing he has only days to find a cure, he must search throughout history to discover the origins of his curse. From the beginning of humanity to modern times, the mark of Cain has influenced many. What is that mark? How far will one man go in order to piece together clues to the puzzle? At what lengths will he go to save himself, and at what cost? From the award winning author of BLOOD, THE SECOND HELPING and A COURSE FOR HUMANITY comes THE THIRST OF CAIN. This heart pounding adventure unlocks the secrets of Stonehenge and more.
Novel is available for $7.99 in print at http://www.lulu.com/shop/rick-pipito/the-thirst-of-cain/paperback/product-23645538.html
and in digital format for $3.99 at https://www.amazon.com/Thirst-Cain-Rick-Pipito-ebook/dp/B07D42WJHS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1526988936&sr=8-1&keywords=the+thirst+of+cain
ON THE TENTH DAY OF CHRISTMAS MY TRUE LOVE SENT TO ME… 10 Time Travelers…
9 Aliens, 8 conspiracies, 7 super heroes, 6 corrupt files, 5 Demon Spawns! 4 lost souls, 3 werewolves, 2 vampires, and zombies in a story.
The idea of time travel has fascinated me since as far back as I can remember. Watching Superman reverse the direction of the Earth in a silly interpretation of going back in time; Marty McFly visiting the past and future in a Delorean; H.G. Wells classic The Time Machine; and Sam leaping from person to person in Quantum leap are just some of the things that hooked me in my youth.
Writing A COURSE FOR HUMANITY and its spinoff THE LOST HOUR was a lot of fun for me, but it took a long time to get right. Time travel logic is difficult to maintain, but is manageable with some thought and research. Pictured here is the U.S.S. Eldrige. It is said that the government managed to send it back in time ten seconds on October 28th 1943. This was dubbed the “Philadelphia Experiment,” although no one actually knows if the program ever even existed. What do you think? There are plenty of photos and historical things that could point to time travel being possible. Do you think it’s a possibility and if so where would you go and when?
Order a copy of my novel or short for yourself or a friend. If you want personalized copies then shoot me an email (Rickpipito@hotmail.com), otherwise they can be purchased in print or digital at Lulu.com or on Amazon
Day 19 of #scrypthalloween spotlights my novel A COURSE FOR HUMANITY. While most books take me six to eight months to write, this one took sixteen years. It was something I contrived back in 2001 and after writing it sat on my shelf. It wasn’t until late last year when I decided to update it and make a story that could connect with the audiences to kick off a new trilogy…
official description: The future has been set in stone… or has it? When a group of military scientists discover a ripple in reality, they must face their ultimate challenge. Someone has travelled into the past and changed history, causing the timeline to shift. The result? Human extinction. Now humanity’s only hope lies with the Continuum group. They must break their own law against time travel, and prevent the temporal ripple from ever occurring. They will need a secret weapon to do so, but that weapon is a threat to them all… Meet Francis Murphy. He’s the last living vampire, and he’s out for revenge against those who’ve experimented on him. Will he help the Continuum group put humanity on the right course, or will he side with a traitor in their midst? Only time will tell.
Available in print and digital at lulu.com and Amazon.
Day 17 of #scrypthalloween spotlights my novel DEVOURED UNIVERSE. @dpipito gave a digital feel with the cover of my first full on sci-fi adventure. I used quotes and what we know about space and applied it to a threat bigger than all the other novels combined…
official description: Beyond the farthest reaches of the universe lies a threat to the very existence of reality. When Earth receives a signal from deep space, they must embark on a dangerous mission into the unknown. Gordon Lightcap returns to duty after a brief retirement. He will have to use what he has learned to bring together a mismatched group of astronauts, and discover the secrets to existence. Only then will they be able to prevent the annihilation of everything, but at what cost?
Available in print and digital at Lulu.com and Amazon, as well as part of the Beyond Human Trilogy at Barnes and Noble.
Day 15 of #scrypthalloween takes a look at my novel PLANET ATE. With a dry erase board for the cover art by @dpipito this book delves deep into #conspiracy . I had to research a great deal of the theories out there to bring this story to life, and it was some of the most fun research I’ve ever done…
official description: Throughout the ages human history has held many unsolved mysteries. Why were we created? Were we a product of evolution? Were we created by God’s hand? Or is the answer more complex? When a creature as ancient as the universe itself targets earth for destruction, the truth must be revealed. Enter the A.T.E., a group of government agents dedicated to uncovering that, which has been hidden for so long.
But by looking into past UFO and alien conspiracies, they may not be prepared to deal with truths that will provide proof of our real origins. An extinction event, a Biblical hero, a pilot lost at sea, an artist, and a founding father are only some who held clues to the overall puzzle. Will humanity solve it in time to stop the threat from above?
Available in print or digital at lulu.com and on Amazon as well as part of the Beyond Huma trilogy at Barnes and Noble website.
Day 13 of #scrypthalloween looks at my novel GENETIC MORSELS. The cover art by @dpipito resembles a chalk board littered with scientific notes. This is a theme that will continue through the trilogy in different ways. The novel was originally going to be a wrap up of any loose ends I’d created in the previous books, but at this point there weren’t any, so I introduced a new main cast and added substance and a political theme…
official description: Twenty five years have passed since a war with artificial intelligence has forever changed the course of humanity. Belief in the first world leader has been gained by the majority, but there are a few who can see past the media bias. As President Jason Black’s scheme unravels, the next step in human evolution begins. A passing of the torch to a newer generation of unexpected heroes occurs as they mount a resistance into the political fray. Led by Zoe Omandi the team is guided into dealing with not only their conflicting personalities, but also their extraordinary abilities. Real world physics makes this more than just a story of superheroes and villains. It is a story about survival and persistance. Can the heroes overcome the odds and unravel the truth before it is too late?
– available in print or digital at lulu.com and Amazon as well as part of the Beyond Human trilogy at Barnes and Noble.
Day 11 of #scrypthalloween looks at my novel TECHNO FEAST. Although it’s science fiction, it isn’t that far fetched. The cover art by @dpipito resembles the AI satellite in the story. My approach for this wasn’t about machines taking over. It was about our technology suddenly not being available. Imagine a totally inconvenient world where we are forced to survive without luxury or assistance from computers…
official description: Humanity has survived through countless threats, but when a super computer begins to think that the human race is flawed, survival may prove an
impossibility. In order to conquer the self proclaimed “Network Entity,” differences must be put aside. Every person on earth will be put to the test. Alliances must be forged, obstacles must be eliminated, and sacrifices will be made to ensure a future for the entire planet. Forget everything you know about the past, as technology becomes our greatest enemy yet. The Network Entity’s plan to take over everything that
makes life simpler is executed in various stages. While a team of disjointed specialists race to stop each digital upgrade, a sinister man lurks in the shadows with his own plans for the future.
Available in print and digital at lulu.com and Amazon as well as part of the Pandora’s Chaos trilogy on Barnes and Noble #technology #computer #digital #artificialintelligence