As a native Californian, I have spent most of my life in the Golden State. However, the five years I lived on the Isle of Man in the British Isles not only gave me many ideas for my writing, but also a less Americentric perspective.
As a Britophile, my love of things English, Irish, Scottish and Manx influences my writing. So does my love of mystery and history, both of which also come into play in my books. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Dashiell Hammett, Raymond Chandler, Antonia Fraser and George MacDonald Fraser are a few of my favorite authors. I admit that I am a little proud that my Masters’ thesis is in the library of the Centre for Manx Studies on the Isle of Man, possibly the only American contribution on Manx history there.
I began writing fiction when I was in high school in the form of short stories. Most were of a futuristic/sci-fi theme. Although I never actively pursued having them published at the time, I have had several in ezines in the last few years. Then I wrote a short story that went too long. It might have been a novella, but I realized it was not complete and kept writing. And so my first novel was born. Friends and family liked it, however I realized that it needed some work. It is titled Foul Shot and I set it aside and wrote Christmas Cracker, which is my first Morg Mahoney mystery. These are available on Amazon. I also wrote an historical fiction, Three Legs of the Cauldron, that takes place in late 6th and early 7th century Ireland and Scotland and am just finishing editing it now. Another Morg mystery, It’s Bad Business, came next and is also available on Amazon. Currently, I am also working on my first Father Robert Bruce cozy mystery that takes place in Buggy Springs, interestingly enough a California God Rush community remarkably similar to where I live.
Since moving to the Sierra Nevada foothills in California’s Gold Rush country (a most eclectic and never boring community), I have been much more faithful in my writing. I joined the Sierra Writers and have hosted the fiction writers at my home for about twelve years. This oft-changing critique group has greatly improved my writing skills.
Rewrites are the curse of writing, but without them most writers would turn out slop. I am one of those. My wife, Kelly, has been not only my supporter and encourager, but my editor.
As a part of my left brain/right brain conflict, I also have an engineering bent. I work on my cars as well as on my word processor. Under my “Ron Cherry” byline, I have written a column on classic cars and hot rods for The Union newspaper in Grass Valley, CA, for over nine years, which reflects my passion both for such works of automotive art and for writing. My love of them is an example of how my brain steers towards the “middle of the road.” After all, cars are the epitome of combining artistic beauty of design with practical function.