Please help me welcome Auther Robert Fuller Jr. to my blog today.
Author Interview Questions
What is your name? Do you use a pen name (if so, why?)?
Robert S. Fuller Jr, I did not use a pen name. I always want to be able to point to my book and say, “Yes, I wrote that,” and not have to pull out a legal contract to prove it.
Tell me a bit about yourself:
I live in the frozen tundra of Northeast Ohio, with my wife, Jackie, my son Dustin, and 2 diva cats. When I’m not writing I’m watching movies, listening to music, or following our local sports teams.
What type of genre do you write?
A single genre can’t define me, just kidding. The first book in the Valerie trilogy is listed under romance, but has a bit of supernatural and vampires tossed in for good measure. The next 2 in the series will focus more on action and adventure, than romance.
What genre do you personally read?
I love all things vampire and as far back as I can remember, I’ve been a horror fanatic. I’ll read some crime thrillers and science fiction on occasion but give me something gory and depraved and I’m set for days.
Tell me about your latest?
Valerie is about someone searching for their true identity. We all go through stages to find ourselves, as is the case of my protagonist Samantha; she is aided in her journey by Valerie, a beautiful and mysterious vampire. They fall in love, but when an ancient adversary threatens to destroy them, that’s where we discover where our inner-strength comes from and how far will we go for the ones we love.
What sparked your passion for books and the art of a good story?
My overactive imagination led me to think up these fanciful stories, even at a young age. I loved comics and Mad magazine, so I sat down one school year and produced my own comic book. My teachers were amused at first, but when I spent more time creating than studying, I had to tone it down a bit. I kept writing as an escape more than anything, but no longer shared my work. Comics turned to full length books. I liked the details and how they transported a kid from Ohio to all of these exotic places. I was hooked.
Is there a particular book that changed or affected your life in a big way?
A few come to mind right away. The first one was something a kid should never have read, but what can I say…I was a boy with raging hormones. I found a copy of Emmanuelle, and was floored by the vivid imagery and the sensual storyline. It opened up what was possible, making me realize there are no boundaries when writing. The other book is, I Am Dracula, by C. Dean Andersson. I was struggling to find the missing piece for my own book, when I came across this book in the romance section of a used bookstore. I bought it and was blown away. It retells the Dracula legend in such a heart-breaking way, that I read it over and over. I used the book to form some of the historical context in my own book and that was the missing puzzle piece.
Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?
Every book has a hidden message, especially vampire books. They allow the reader to explore things that they normally would never dare. Valerie is about accepting who you are and loving yourself enough to be happy.
What challenges have you faced in your writing career?
Writing the book took several years, it’s a sprawling 730 pages epic, that contains enough twists and action to keep things moving, so I thought writing something like that would be the hard part. I spent 5 years trying to secure a publisher before telling myself that I had something important to say. I knew if I wanted it said and out there, I’d have to do it myself. Being a new author is a challenge, but I’ve been impressed how sites and blogs, like this one, have risen up to stand with the Indie authors.
What has been your best moment as a writer?
Seeing my name on that cover has to rank right up there. Signing my first copy is a close second. Those are moments that take your breath away. Now, one day, when I get to meet Angelina Jolie on the set of the movie adaptation, then we might have a new number one moment.
Who is your author idol?
I admire Stephen King. His books force you to engage and become immersed in the story. They are seldom weekend reads. They require time and dedication, but if you’re willing to give him that, you’re rewarded with something few authors can offer. Tolkien and Lewis offer the same thing, but I prefer modern settings and modern stories.
Do you see yourself in any of your characters?
I wrote Samantha about myself at one point in my life. She’s fun-loving and outgoing, but also suffers from self-esteem and self-doubt issues. She lives in the real world, but sometimes, that world is frightening and she doesn’t feel that she belongs.
Do you feel like your dream has come true or is there much more to do?
In some ways, just getting the first book out there is my dream realized, however, there’s so much more to tell. I have to stay focused and keep at it to complete the tale. Beyond Valerie, there are a few ideas that will take me into genres that are out of my comfort zone, but by then I’ll be ready for the next phase.
What does your workspace look like?
A mess, just as you’d imagine. There is a simple desk, desk top computer, paperwork everywhere, vampire books and atlases on the floor. You will also find a large pile of albums and CD’s out of their cases, in an attempt to set the right mood. A coffee cup and empty water bottles line a bookshelf. Yep, organized chaos is my middle name.
Have you ever had a day when you just wanted to quit?
Sure. Marketing has been harder than I expected. When Valerie was released, I expected the New York Times to call me and tell me it hit number 1, a major publisher would be calling to offer me a contract, and I could make a living doing what I love. None of that happened, and reality set in. I sold 2 copies that first day…that was a low point and I wondered if it was all worth it. The next day I got a call from someone wanting me to sign their books. They had ordered 5 of them to give as gifts. It’s been a whirlwind since.
What do you do when you’re not writing?
I think about writing. I try to keep my writing to a healthy obsession. I listen to music, hang out with my wife and son, get out and go to the movies. I also follow sports, all of them, religiously.
What are the most important attributes to remaining sane as a writer?
It takes a lot of patience and a supportive family. Everyone can write, that’s easy, its knowing that it may take a while for what you’ve written to get out there and having that support from your loved ones, to keep you grounded, that makes it all worth it.
Did you have a moment when you realized you were meant to be a writer?
My wife found the original manuscript for Valerie. It was packed away in some boxes of stuff from high school. She read it and approached me to finish it and seek out a publisher. It was when I looked into her eyes that I saw her belief in me and right then I knew; I was going to be a writer.
What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Be patient. This game isn’t for the weak-stomach. There’s a lot of doubt and loneliness, but if you believe you have something to say…shout it from the rooftops until someone hears you. Don’t give up on your dream.
After this book, what is next?
There are 2 more books in the Valerie series. Book 2, nearly completed, is due in October of 2013, and the final book, in the outline stage, scheduled for late 2014.
If anyone wants to know more about me or my writing, they can go to
My blog is available through my website.
Your followers can Like my Author page on Facebook, go to
Where can your book be found?
The author page on my Publisher’s website is:
Valerie is also available in print and for the Kindle device from Amazon.com: