18 March 2013

Interview: R. Costelloe

Happy Monday! We've got quite a little thunderstorm kicking its heels up here in Cincinnati. Hope everybody else has sunshine and rainbows! Today, I'm hosting R. Costelloe, the author of Coinage of Commitment. Enjoy!

This author is offering a PDF of Coinage of Commitment, so be sure and enter here for a chance to win!

Welcome aboard! Tell us a little about yourself, please.

I wrote a few stories as a kid, and then after college I wrote a first novel that I submitted to publishers. But it was of such poor quality that I left fiction writing and got absorbed into career and raising a family. But then, whole decades later, I came back to fiction after reading an audio book whose ending was so abruptly despairing, I felt outrage on behalf of so many punished readers. Twenty months later, after two query campaigns and three rounds of professional editing, Coinage of Commitment was print published by Saga Books. Coinage finaled in the National Indie Excellence 2008 Book Awards, and I was hoping that distinction would help get my second novel, Pocket Piece Cameo, published by a major. But it was not to be. Since I was blocked on plotting a third novel, I took a break from fiction writing to become a reviewer and a writing contest judge for the RWA chapters. To my utter amazement, this work actually improved my fiction writing skills. Once I realized this, I knew instantly that I would rewrite Coinage of Commitment. Why? Because Coinage is a special story, garnished with a dramatic surprise ending. The thought that I could make the story substantially better for readers, better than what the Indie Excellence judges saw in 2008, made the rewrite mandatory. The second edition was published as an eBook in January of this year. The rewrite took seven months of full-time work.

What about your latest release?

Wayne and Nancy grow up on opposite sides of the country. And they are different in so many ways: different class and economic backgrounds, different political and religious beliefs. And on top of that, he goes to blue-collar Drexel, and she attends Ivy League Penn. But the campuses are next to each other, and in 1968 they meet in a campus tavern situation. Despite being physically attracted to each other, it could never work for them except for one factor. Each happens to want love that’s higher and better than what others will settle for. This is love soaring enough that it must have an thinking as well as an emotional basis. Once they realize this ambition in each other, the stage is set for a love story unlike any other, and they set out to overcome the obstacles in their path, one of which is opposition from both families. On top of that, fate will hand them the cruelest test of all, one that lets loose an unusual love triangle that sets the stage for the book’s surprise ending.

Ok, let’s get down to the fun stuff. If you were stranded on a lush tropical island, and all of your basic needs were met, what two items would you have with you? What person would be with you? Remember, you’re stuck there for an indefinite period with only each other to occupy the time.

The only thing that comes to mind would be a laptop with Internet access. If I need anything else, I’ll order it from Amazon.

As for the person…well, I married the girl of my dreams. And her love has always been a source of astonishment to me, so much so that it drove me to write the stories I do. Coinage of Commitment is dedicated to her. If I were on an island without her, it would be a desert no matter what else I had.

If you could play opposite any of your lead characters, which one would it be and why?

Coinage of Commitment features an unusual love triangle. It would be dramatic indeed to be in the vortex of such romantic tension.

If you could lead any of your secondary characters, which one would it be and why?

Easy choice. In Coinage, Wayne’s best friend is Henk Van Pijpen. He’s had enough appeal to readers that a few have suggested a sequel or parallel story featuring him.

You’re locked in a closet with Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell, Kate Beckinsale, three paperclips and a string. How do you get out?

Kate holds our coats while we three guys break down the door. Then collect autographs and a group photo.

Name five things you can do with a pencil.

Chop sticks
Play drums
In case of stress, break one and feel better
Murder weapon
Give as a gift

Who’s your favorite character from your book(s)? Why? Don’t worry, we won’t tell.

My favorite is in Coinage of Commitment, but I can’t really answer the question further without it having a spoiler effect. Let me just say that the character who comes through the novel’s surprise ending in triumph is my very favorite.

Where can we find you around the vast interwebs?

What about your books? Where are they being sold at?

Both books are rewritten, second edition eBooks.
Coinage of Commitment is in the Amazon Select Program

Pocket Piece Cameo is available at all the major digital outlets

Thanks for dropping in! Any last words?

My newest book will feature a teenage star of independent films who goes incognito in a small Pennsylvania town after suffering a nervous breakdown on the set of her latest movie. While there, posing as a high school senior (she actually already has a GED), she will get involved in romantic currents of some intricacy—given her secret identity and the career she hopes to return to. The story will carry beyond its original setting to something (hopefully) of even more complex proportions. I don’t have a schedule for completion, but the project is proceeding well.


Are there people who experience love at a higher plane than the rest of us? One, lofty enough, that it must have a thinking basis, as well as an emotional one? If so, what kind of drama would their love story make? Wouldn't they have unique challenges to overcome in scaling the zenith they seek, and in keeping it vibrant through time? Coinage of Commitment is the love story that establishes a new sub-genre in telling such an account.

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