Doug Rinaldi has an amazing sense of humor and boy can he write a story. I recently read A Different Kind of Slumber and let me say….WOW! I highly recommend it. He Is engaged to be married and he loves to tease her. Their messages on Facebook always make me giggle. Please if you don’t know Doug yet make sure to meet him and check out his books you won’t be sorry. I promise. Also, don’t forget to leave him a review! Please welcome Doug Rinaldi to Roadie Notes…….
1. How old were you when you first wrote your first story?
I was in the 6th or 7th grade, so that would’ve made me… Hang on. I gotta take off my shoes. And… I was thirteen. My friend Thaddeus and I wrote a couple short stories together. One was about the cafeteria lunch ladies killing and feeding other students to us for lunch, succinctly called “The Lunch Ladies.” And the other one was called “One Dark Night.” No. For real. I have no recollection of what it was about. I think we drew up book covers in our notebooks for them as well. I’d kill to get a glimpse of those “masterpieces” again.
2. How many books have you written?
Currently under my belt, I have one short story collection called Purgatory Behind These Eyes. It contains sixteen short stories that I’ve written between 1997 and 2015. I have one novelette out, a ghost story with serial killer elements called A Different Kind of Slumber. Lately, I’ve been releasing short story chapbooks, 2-3 shorts per publication. Right now I have a two-story release titled With Great Vehemence: Two Tales of Vengeance. The other, Forever, Cried the Abyss, contains three more tales.
3. Anything you won’t write about?
I have no desire to write anything political or have any overt political leanings/opinions in my stories. None of that stuff really holds any interest for me. Everything else is fair game as long as it adds to the story and I can do the idea(s) justice with my words.
4. Tell me about you. Age (if you don’t mind answering), married, kids, do you have another job etc…
I am a 42 year-old man trapped in an 82 year-old’s body. Due to multiple issues with my back, I’m always in one sort of pain or another. Makes me walk like a pimp. No kids that I know of, but I have two fur babies.
At the moment, I make a living as a cubicle jockey doing inventory management for a medical supply company. It’s very low-key but it does occasionally afford me the opportunity to positively affect someone’s life. When they have an urgent medical need, I can assist by getting them the necessary product. I’d like to think I’ve managed to help a few people stay healthy. It also affords me the opportunity to get fatter. Sitting a desk 40+ hours a week isn’t very labor intensive. I wish I got those work out endorphin rushes people brag about; I’d might actually exercise more. But I don’t, so I don’t.
I am also a divorcee and, finally, after all these years since, I’m currently working on how to ruin my current fiancé’s life. I’m playing the long game. She’s a tough one, though… she digs me for some reason.
5. What’s your favorite book you have written?
I have a soft spot for all my releases and I am very proud overall of my short story collection. But my favorite things written to date are perhaps “Sybarites or Enmity of Perverse Existence” which is in Forever, Cried the Abyss and “City Morgue Blues” which is in my collection. Another fave would have to be my hitman story gone terribly wrong, “And the Hits Just Keep on Comin’.” That particular yarn was published in Smart Rhino Press’ Insidious Assassins anthology. It’s now featured in my revenge themed chapbook With Great Vehemence.
6. Who or what inspired you to write?
I had a friend back when I lived in Connecticut. We both worked for Barnes & Noble at the time. When we found out that we both liked to write, we started bouncing ideas off of each other and even started a writing group. He was as much a mentor as he was a collaborator. And that lit the spark and the hunger to write and create.
Besides him, I believe the stories in my noggin need to be told, the ideas need life. I write to free those ideas and to hopefully elicit emotions and responses from the reader. If the reader enjoys what I put down on paper, that’s great. But additionally it’s the catharsis of making the worlds and situations my characters experience become a reality.
7. What do you like to do for fun?
Generally, I’m a boring person to the naked eye. I call it being low-key… or lazy. I enjoy watching movies, listening to music, going to horror conventions, lounging with my cats. Every once in a while, my fiancé and I pretend Kung Fu fight with each other. More times than not, it ends with me getting hurt. So that’s always a fun way to pass the time. Other than that, I’m a big fan of sleeping and beer.
8. Any traditions you do when you finish a book?
I’ll have to get back to you on this one after I finish my actual novel. When I finished my first screenplay, I think I may have wept a few tears of joy. So, I can’t rightly imagine at this point how I’ll react once I finish the stupid thing.
9. Where do you write? Quite or music?
I tend to write mostly in my office at home. I prefer my desktop to a laptop. On the 3rd floor, it’s nice and quiet—except when Hicks won’t stop meowing. Other times, I’ll try to punch out a hundred words or so during lulls at work or on breaks. When at home though, sometimes I’ll listen to the silence (or Hicks), but mostly I prefer dark ambient music—stuff that just sounds like soundtracks to dreams. Not only is it soothing, there are no pesky lyrics to steal my attention away from the writing.
10. Anything you would change about your writing?
Perhaps the biggest change I would make is taking writing more seriously sooner. I had a rough time hurdling the basic grammar issues that I had failed to retain from school. I went to an art college, so there were no extra English classes for this guy. If I had started this journey earlier with a point to make it a profession, I might’ve been further along in that career… and more confident and disciplined.
11. What is your dream? Famous writer?
I’d be fine with making a modest living writing full-time. Or even if I was just supplementing my current income with word-monies, I’d be happy—happier than I am now for sure. I’ve always had a dream of seeing one of my stories on the screen. TV screen or Silver Screen, it doesn’t matter. It would just be an amazing feeling (as long as I stay off of the IMDb message boards). Another daydream of mine is owning and operating my own movie theater. Very expensive daydream…
12. Where do you live?
I live in an interesting little city north of Boston, on the border of Salem, NH. We just bought our first home together. There was just a huge Fentanyl bust here a few weeks ago. Very classy.
I adopted two sibling kittens in 2010 and I love their stupid faces off. Ripley is a calico and sounds like a velociraptor when she purrs. And Hicks is a mutt who meows all the time for no reason. It’s nerve-racking, really. But I couldn’t see my life without them. When they die, I’m having them stuffed. Or have their skin boiled off and keep them as poseable skeletons.
14. What’s your favorite thing about writing?
The sense of not being alone even when you are. I may be sitting there by my lonesome (or with the mutant kitties), but my characters and plots are on the screen in front of me keeping me company. Writing is tough. Even without anxiety or depression, it’s an arduous, solitary, and sometimes thankless craft. But when the words flow from page to page and create a grand picture of what I see in my head and how I see it, it can’t be beat. After all the first and second drafts, after the edits and the beta readers, when you’ve sculpted the story down to its most straightforward, yet poetic and engaging, form, that’s where the joy lies for me. Regardless if I’m able to sell it or publish it somewhere, if I end up happy with it then that’s all that matters in the long run.
15. What is coming next for you?
Grim Death, probably…
But in all seriousness, I am working on finishing my first full-length novel. Tentatively titled White Island, it’s in the middle of its second draft. I’m hoping to get it done by summer the latest, then find it a good home.
Aside from that, I’m working on a short story for an anthology invite and I just had one short, “End Game,” accepted for the third book in an anthology series with a very reputable small press publisher. I’m hoping to make 2017 bend to my will on all fronts.
You can connect with Doug Rinaldi here:
Deviant Art Page
Some of Doug Rinaldi’s books: