Readers meet author R. Scott Mackey, whose first book, Barbary Baseball, achieved critical acclaim from baseball historians. MacKey later went on to write two young adult novels and is now the author of a newly acclaimed mystery series.
When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
In college. My high school teachers and college professors kept telling me that I wrote better than their other students and encouraged me to keep developing my skills. I've had a successful career as a corporate writer and along the way have written articles and books on the side. My first book was published in 1995, with my first novel released in 2001. I wrote some other books as well, but grew frustrated with the traditional publishing model and just wrote shorter pieces until a couple of years ago.
How many drafts did you go through?
For "Courage Matters" I went through four drafts of the manuscript. I spend a lot of time up front on plotting and outlining. I don't always stick to the plan but it helps me to have some structure up front. Then in the first draft I lay down the bones of the book. In the second draft I really attempt to make the book complete, though it takes two more run-throughs to clean and polish the work. For my next book, "Courage Resurrected," I have completed three drafts and am now using Beta readers to provide feedback before I make a fourth pass through the book. After that I will use a professional proofreader to correct typos, formatting and grammar mistakes. I find that after going over the manuscript four times that I get a bit numb to spotting things.
Who inspired you to start a career as a writer?
Again, I have to thank my teachers and professors for their encouragement. That started me working for the college newspaper, where I received more great feedback from readers. From there, I just kept on writing.
What in your life made you realize no matter what you were meant to be an author?
I think the fact that I just couldn't stop writing even though the publishing industry is incredibly hard and frustrating. After ten years of receiving ten or more rejections to each acceptance of my work I still couldn't stop. I kept telling myself to keep writing because that's what I want to do. When the Indie publishing market opened up that really turned things around for me. I can now control not only the work, but the production, marketing and other aspects of the book that I had little control over in the traditional marketing world.
What is your writing goal for 2015?
I will be releasing book #2 in the Ray Courage Mystery Series. Courage Resurrected will be released in March. I will be releasing book #3 in the series in December. I'm also researching a non-fiction book about college football. That project will be a couple of years in the making.
Courage Matters: A Ray Courage Mystery launches the series about a college professor turned private investigator. Critical reviews have been very strong, with one calling it "The 'Breaking Bad' of the private eye genre." For a limited time, the author is offering FREE downloads of this book at http://eepurl.com/73NOv
Ray Courage is asked by "Stockbroker to the Stars" Lionel Stroud to investigate an employee who's been acting suspiciously. Ray soon learns that not everything is as it appears at Stroud's firm. When his investigation uncovers a possible Ponzi Scheme orchestrated by Stroud himself, two people are murdered and Ray becomes Suspect Number One.
Ray needs to find answers fast to avoid prison ... or death at the hands of the killer. Complicating his efforts are threats from a Mexican drug lord, hostility from an octogenarian with a penchant for lap dances, harassment from a cop bent on putting Ray away for life, and a rekindled love affair with Stroud's daughter.
Scott Mackey lives in Northern California, where he writes both fiction and non-fiction. The second book in the Ray Courage series, Courage Resurrected, will be released early this spring, with the third book slated for release later in the year.
In addition to the FREE download of Courage Matters, readers will also receive the first portion of Courage Resurrected. Download both at http://eepurl.com/73NOv. Or visit www.rscottmackey.com