For today’s interview I am delighted to introduce Texan author Richard Stephenson, dystopian author, military and federal policeman, and all-round action man.
In my fifteen years of law enforcement, the list is long and interesting. Working in a maximum security prison, I’ve showed up to many a knife fight without a knife. As a police officer, I’ve been in car chases over 100 mph, fought off an out of control pitbull from attacking a toddler, and pulled someone out of a burning car to name a few. Not sure if that’s brave or stupid. LOL
If a genie came out of a bottle on your birthday and gave you three wishes, what would they be?
Assuming that wishing for more wishes isn’t an option, here’s my three. 1. Money, lots and lots of money. Predictable and boring choice? Sorry, deal with it, I want to be filthy rich! 2. A very, very long and healthy life. I want to live for hundreds and hundreds of years. Don’t want to be immortal, I just think it be cool to live for a very long time. 3. Gotta pick a superpower. I’d like to be able to pause time like Hiro Nakamura from Heroes.
If you could take one book to a desert island, what would it be?
The SAS Survival Handbook by John Wiseman. Okay, fair enough, I’ll pick something else since that’s cheating. I would probably bring the last Harry Potter book. It’s very long and is enjoyable every time you read it. The Harry Potter series were very unique for me because I would read them non-stop cover to cover (pausing to sleep a few hours of course). If I’m on a desert island, I want a book that I could read over and over and never tire from.
It would have to be my cat, Callie. She is very interested in books, as you can see from the photo, and she is forever jumping up onto my lap when I’m writing, which can makes things quite difficult.
You wake up at 3 a.m. It’s dark and quiet. You press the light switch, but no light comes on. What next?
I try to walk out the front door without tripping on something to see if the rest of the neighborhood is without power. If everything is pitch black, I immediately make the assumption that the zombie apocalypse has arrived and prepare myself to do battle. Okay, seriously, I grab my phone and call the electric company to see what’s going on. Then I wait for my teenage children to come running into our room scared and confused. You’d think at their age they wouldn’t freak out like they’re toddlers, but they do. It’s kinda cute, actually.
Tell us about your book, Collapse. Why did you write it and what’s it about?
America is falling, ready to join the Roman Empire as a distant memory in the annals of history. The year is 2027. Tired and desperate, the American people are deep in the middle of The Second Great Depression. The Florida coastline is in ruins from the most powerful hurricane on record; a second just like it is bearing down on the state of Texas. For the first time in history, the Middle East has united as one and amassed the most formidable army the world has seen since the Third Reich. A hidden army of terrorists is on American soil. This is the story of three men: Howard Beck, the world’s richest man, also diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome. Richard Dupree, ex-Navy SEAL turned escaped convict. Maxwell Harris, a crippled, burned out Chief of Police of a small Texas town. At first they must fight for their own survival against impossible odds. Finally, the three men must band together to save their beloved country from collapse.
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