has come back for a visit and today we’re chatting about his new contemporary
literary fiction, How We End Up.
Washington. His father was an officer in the U.S. Army, and by the time Douglas
finished high school he had lived in Hawaii, North Carolina, Texas, Okinawa,
South Carolina, Alabama, and Florida. He earned his B.A. and M.A. in English
from the University of South Florida and has taught English and Literature at
Douglas has a unique interest in and perspective on the tragic, comical, and
the redemptive in his characters. TouchPoint Press released his novel, The Secrets of All Secrets, on May 12,
The Secrets of All Secrets received
the Literary Titan Silver Award on August 4, 2017, was a Finalist in the 2017
Independent Author Network’s Book of the Year Awards, and was a Finalist in the
2018 Amelia Island Book Fest and Expo Book Island Literary Award.
His new novel, How We End Up,
released by TouchPoint Press on March 20, 2018, received the March Literary
Titan Silver Award, and the following are comments from reviewers:
tale as you find out how these characters ‘end up.’ Thought-provoking and
you only take one suggestion this year on what to read. Read this!”
story forces us to transcend the pages of the book. A true masterpiece.”
book has it all.”
Douglas is a Professor of English at Gulf Coast State College in Panama City,
Florida. He is the father of two grown sons, and he lives with his wife and two
cats in Panama City Beach.
Douglas, welcome back to Reviews and
Interviews. Please tell us about your newest release.
Levee, a professor, saves young twin girls, Hadley and Haley, from drowning. He
soars to literary fame by writing about the incident and from media attention.
The twins mature into troubled young women. Jackson’s success leads him to a
job at an esteemed university where he meets and marries LaVeda, with whom he
has a happy marriage, but his ascendant star falls soon thereafter. Hadley marries
a womanizer then realizes she is gay. She sinks into alcohol and drug abuse.
Haley suffers from depression then begins an ill-fated affair with her
supervisor. She later marries an army reservist who is horribly wounded in the
Iraqi War and whose PTSD threatens everything.
Through twenty-five years, Jackson’s, Hadley’s, and Haley’s
recklessness in sex, love, marriage, and life produce wild and horrific
results. Through it all, they struggle to realize their destinies and find
in a park near my house. The park gets numerous visitors, mostly families, and
I would frequently walk by young children playing in the surf. This area is
known for its rip currents, and there are always news stories about people
being caught in one and having to be rescued. It occurred to me that one day I
might have to jump in after someone, particularly a child. Fortunately, I never
had to. It got me thinking, though, about how these rescues are often called
“miracles,” but the story stops there. It did not, of course, tell us the
aftermath, so I began formulating a story that shows us how the characters were
brought together by the rescue then what happens to them over a long span of
time. People marvel that the girls’ lives were saved and at Jackson’s heroism,
but it’s only for a brief moment. We live with them as their ensuing lives
ironically often spin out of control, and we stay with them until they “end
different lives, all separated from the others.
writing a new book? (or the biggest challenge with this book)
character’s lives separate but somehow work in an oblique reference to the
others. I think I’ve found a way to do that, but I’ll have to judge how it
Do you do the research first and then write, while you’re writing, after the
novel is complete and you need to fill in the gaps?
but I wait until I reach that particular place in the story then I pause to
investigate. A good example from How We
End Up is the part when Haley’s husband is sent to Iraq. I researched the
environment he would be in, what his duties would be, and similar details. I’m
pretty sure I got it right. At least some readers have told me so.
you have a particular spot to write where the muse is more active? Please tell
us about it.
canal beyond it in which boats pass by. I insist on working where I can see out
a window. Better to stare at trees, birds, squirrels, and boats than at a wall.
within or outside of your genre?
that with a biography of John Cheever. I went through a phase of reading all of
Stephen Hawking’s books, two books on the Civil war, and my next book to read
is John Le Carre’s Legacy of Spies.
My reading choices are eclectic.
share with the readers today?
as we ramble through life.
Reviews and Interviews!