I had the absolute pleasure of sitting down with author Eric Rappe and discussing his book Redemption, his latest projects, and what inspired him to be an author. Please be my guest and sit down with a nice cup of tea, relax, and join us in our conversation. Enjoy!
The Literary Connoisseur: Hello, Eric! Thank you for joining us and answering questions for your fans. Let's begin. Some authors say that they grew up with reading and writing. Their parents read to them, they read to their kids, etc. Have you always been so passionate about reading and writing?
Eric Rappe: That is a great question. In short the answer is "no." As a young child my mom would read to me and I am sure I loved it, but as a kid that could do it on my own, I hated reading. I was very active in sports and being outdoors so reading felt like a bit of a chore. I wanted to be playing football or wrestling, so I was not able to focus enough on a story to really get into it. There were a couple of books that I read and enjoyed (Watership Down is still one of my favorites) but for the most part it was not until I joined the army and had to play "hurry up and wait" all the time, that I started to read for fun. That is also when I realized what I had been missing!
The Literary Connoisseur: I hear young Eric, your son, is an author now too! Is he also a fan of reading? Did you read to him when he was younger?
Eric Rappe: Eric Jr loves to read as long as he is not TOLD to do so. Haha. We read together every night. My heart swells with pride when he reads me his own book. I am truly a proud daddy. I have even caught him working his way through the pages of my book, and it brings a smile to my face just thinking about it.
The Literary Connoisseur: Redemption dabbles in fantasy, wizardry, and mythology...what made you veer towards this genre? Have you worked/are you working in any other genres?
Eric Rappe: I have always been fascinated by the Arthurian tale. I just think it was an exciting time in history, and the stories that spawned from that time have all of the great things a good story needs. Jack Whyte is the one that really got me hooked. His series about Merlin and Arthur is, hands down, my favorite series ever.
The Literary Connoisseur: You're very active in cruise ship safety laws, and cases involving them...please tell us a bit about your involvement with this movement.
Eric Rappe: As I mentioned my brother vanished from a ship in November of 2012. We don't know exactly what happened, and probably never will. The reason for this is that the industry has become very adept at sweeping things under the rug. I have recently been to Washington and lobbied for stricter laws that would help consumers make informed decisions before heading out to sea. I also just returned from doing an interview with 20/20 about this matter. It was a great experience, and I hope it helps to force change. It should air in January. I hope some of your readers will watch!
The Literary Connoisseur: Are you currently working on anything new? I think I've heard a bit about a sequel to Redemption...
Eric Rappe: Well there is the thriller, but that is a labor of love and stress so it is a long way out. I am in fact working on book two of the Chronicles of Caldor series. It will be called "Chaos" and follows the turmoil that can sometimes arise when a new king takes control.
The Literary Connoisseur: Have you thought about traveling on a book tour? If you could travel anywhere to promote Redemption, where would you go?
Eric Rappe: I would love to travel, but as an independent writer with young children it is tough. The cost is high, and the time hard to come by. As for where I would go, that is tough. There are a great many places that I think my book might do well, at least compared to other places, but I have a place in my heart for Florida. I am a die hard Miami Dolphins fan and even have a tattoo to prove it. I also love the warm ocean, and the sunshine. At least that way I could go see a Fins game and write the trip off as a business expense. Hahaha.
The Literary Connoisseur: Who are some of your favorite authors and what do you like to read?
Eric Rappe: Jack Whyte is far and away my favorite. He takes fantasy and puts it into a form of reality that I have never seen before. I also like Richard Adams. His tales of very human issues told through the eyes of animals is a creative and entertaining way to tell a story.
I enjoy a great many books, but I find that if it is too real, I might lose interest. I like monsters and magic and war. There are a number of reality type books that I have enjoyed, Lord of the Flies, Where the Red Fern Grows, To Kill a Mockingbird, but Medieval Fantasy is probably what I enjoy the most.
The Literary Connoisseur: Would you like to see your books be made into a mini-series or movie? How do you feel about book to movie/show adaptations?
Eric Rappe: I am really interested in having it converted into a screenplay. I think that as long as you understand going in that they are going to take some artistic freedom with your work it is typically fine. Most books are better than the movies made about them, but they do help spread the word and sell more books. It is a tough battle. If someone wanted to make a movie from Chronicles, I would probably say yes as long as I can be involved in the artistic process.
The Literary Connoisseur: In what atmosphere do you find it most comfortable to write?
Eric Rappe: I prefer my desk in my Miami Dolphins themed "man cave." I keep it surrounded with things that inspire me. Pictures of my family and friends. Statues of knights, and even Darth Vader. I know it sounds odd to say Vader, but I find him to be one of the greatest characters ever written. He has a little of everything and he inspires me. I also have a laptop, and do a great deal of my writing on it while taking care of my kids or traveling, but the desk is my favorite and most productive place to work.
The Literary Connoisseur: Where would you like to see yourself ten years from now?
Eric Rappe: In ten years I would like to be finished with the Chronicles series. I think it will be three books, but it could be as little as two or as many as four. I have another story that I want to write, but for some reason I am putting it off until this series is done. Hopefully in ten years I will have accomplished my goals with the cruise industry as well, and that will free up even more time to write. I can't lie. I have grown out of the active life I had as a child and now want to nothing more than to tell the stories that are swimming around in my head, so I guess I hope to be right where I am. A lucky and loved father, who gets to spend his days doing what he loves. Telling stories, and getting reviews from the number one book reviewer in the world. The Literary Connoisseur!
The Literary Connoisseur: Thank you so much for joining us, Eric! I wish you the best on your success.
Eric Rappe: It is my pleasure. Thank you for supporting us writers and I wish you all the best in years to come.
Eric's book Redemption...
Caldor: A country ravaged for decades by fear and uncertainty. In an attempt to undo the wrongs of the tyrannical king, Arken murdered his own father, and took the crown for himself. It was not long before King Arken fell into the same trappings of power that had consumed his father. Now; many years later the burden of freedom must fall on someone else. Torn between loyalty to his king, and love for his country, Sir Robert Betram must make a choice. Obey his sworn fealty, or take back the country he so loves. His journey will take many unexpected turns. Not only does Robert need to free Caldor from these chains of fear, he must also deal with a new and deeply personal situation. Love.
This, I'm proud to say, is my copy
My review for Redemption can be found here: http://theliteraryconnoisseur.blogspot.com/2013/11/redemption-by-eric-rappe.html
Eric and his son, Eric Jr., proudly displaying their books
My name is Eric and I am 38 years old. I went to school in Silverton Oregon, And have lived there most of my life. I have 4 children. Fernanda, Nicolas, Eric Jr., and Evan.On January 14 2013 I was voted onto the board for the International Cruise Victims Association. Having lost a brother at sea due to the negligent safety practices of Holland America Cruise lines, I am now dedicating a large portion of my life fighting for laws that make cruise ships accountable for what happens on board their vessels. This blog is both an outlet, and a way to entertain. I will try to post something new often, but with the new book, writing the second and working with ICV, there could be some times when they are fewer than others.. I want my readers to both think, and to laugh. I hope you enjoy my ramblings.
Thank you all for joining us! I hope you enjoyed Eric's and my ramblings, we're glad you stopped by! Please leave comments, share with your friends, etc.! Thank you so much and Happy Reading!!!