Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
River of Time is my eighth book. I retired from education several years ago to pursue my true loves of history, writing, travel, and photography. I try to combine real history and fictional stories into unique and thought-provoking novels. I also incorporate places I travel to and visit into each book.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
River of Time was inspired while I was jogging in a nearby regional park and was nearly struck in the head by a falling tree branch. It set off what I call my “what if” switch. What if I got hit? What if I woke up and found myself 500 years in the past? What if a person could time travel while in a coma? The questions keep coming and the story forms itself.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
Due to an injury to my right hand during the Vietnam War, I cannot keyboard properly. I write all my books out in longhand on legal tablets. I then read my writing into the computer using Dragon Speak. This is my first edit. I get to hear what I’ve written.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
Clive Cussler and Dan Brown have always been my favorite authors. I enjoy how they incorporate history and fiction into their books. My book Phantom Church: The Dead Sea Conspiracy is my effort to emulate Dan Brown’s work. While the Gods Slept is in the vein of Clive Cussler.
What are you working on now?
Walking to the Moon is my latest project. It is set in Mexico and California after a cataclysmic earthquake. It is the story of a man trying to get from Belize to his only living relative. His seven-year-old granddaughter in California.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
Amazon.com, Kindle Books, local media outlets, social media, and writer’s workshops. I also have my own website at http://www.booksbysanford.com
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Write. Tell stories. Share. Get feedback. Accept ideas, thoughts, and constructive criticism. Take classes. Then, write more. Try different styles and approaches.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Carry 3″ X 5″ cards in my pocket. When you see an interesting face, location, scene, or situation, write it down on the card. Keep them in a card box. Whenever I need a description of a face or place, I already have a box full. I got this from a class with Ray Bradbury in 1980.
What are you reading now?
The Demon Crown by James Rollins
What’s next for you as a writer?
I will finish Walking to the Moon and then start work on Time Collector. An idea inspired by my enjoyment of collecting and a very weird dream.
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
The Marine Corps Survivor Handbook and any three historical novels I haven’t yet read.
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