This week I’d like to welcome novella writer Rico Lamoureux to the Thursday Throng. His latest work is Riker’s Calling a thriller set in Los Angeles and featuring urban warrior, Riker.
The Rico Lamoureux Interview
What is one thing that no-one would usually know about you?
Well, given the fact that my autobiography hasn’t been released yet, I’d say most people don’t realize how many times life has chewed me up and spit me back out. From a harsh childhood to two life-altering health problems. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg! But to some extent, the old saying, ‘What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger’ is indeed true.
What did the best review you ever had say about you and your work?
“Exciting from the first page, Riker’s Calling is full of action, adventure, and mystery. This short novella is a nonstop, can’t put it down read. Mr. Rico Lamoureux is a master at capturing this reader and keeping me glued until the end.”
It’s always nice to come across an open-minded reader who can approach my work without being clouded by preconceived notions. I’ve spent over thirty years honing my craft, my art as a storyteller, and deeply appreciate it when someone ‘gets’ my work.
What did the worst review you ever had say about you and your work?
No artist in history has ever pleased everyone, so it’s pointless to try. All you can be is true to yourself and those who ‘get’ your writing. A writer who hasn’t received a bad review is a writer that hasn’t received many reviews at all.
I specialize in the art of the novella, and it’s no secret that most readers are used to reading novels. But you know, in most cases this doesn’t pose a problem, as most well-read minds can appreciate great storytelling no matter how it’s presented to them. But there’ll always be a certain percentage out there who have been so conditioned with what they believe is the only way to tell a story (i.e. a specific structure, pages and pages if not chapters and chapters on characterization, as opposed to layering it in as the story goes along, etc.) that they can’t just sit back and enjoy the ride, being unable to accept a different form of storytelling than what they’ve been programmed with.
This was the case in a review I got that stated, “As the author structures one event, he can often switch unexpectedly to a past event and have both running concurrently, blending plots and merging pictures when they should remain separate.”
The reviewer went on in this fashion, making it obvious that he truly didn’t understand the art of the novella, including the fact that novellas are not novels, and there must be a delicate balance with all elements of story, to make it both complete and engaging. One does not have the hundreds and hundreds of pages to go on and on wasting space in a novella, the author needing the skills to know what to say and how to say it in just the right way if it is to work well, which is why it is an art in and of itself.
It would have been a waste a time to comment back to this reviewer, as ego can oftentimes overshadow an opportunity to learn. I simply don’t have the time to enter into cyber wars-of-words, so I just move on. A tactic authors need to learn if they are to keep their sanity-LOL!
Now don’t get me wrong. Just because I’ve been at this for over thirty years doesn’t mean I can’t benefit from a suggestion every now and then. There’s been a few times where I gladly accepted someone’s opposing point-of-view, when overall it really did make a particular story better, as this is always my utmost concern. To have a story be as great as it can be. But yeah, after having spent over three decades of my life perfecting my talent, these instances don’t come along that often. I’ve dedicated my life to this art form, and as a result I can unapologetically say that I’m damn good at it! (LOL!)
Are the names of your characters important to you?
Indeed they are. They have to fit like a glove.
Are there any occupational hazards to being an author?
Unless you have a big publisher behind you or have been fortunate enough to somehow rise above the overwhelming saturation of today’s online market, being an author can be quite a financial struggle. You’re basically playing the lottery with every new release, hoping, but not expecting, that your latest will end up being ‘the one.’
I know, sounds depressing, but then you hear another success story, of how someone managed to break through and become a viral sensation, proving that it really is possible. The stars happened to align perfectly for said author, and now they can bask in their glory.
Yes, it can be a tough existence trying to get to your turn, but when you have story in your veins there’s really no other option.
Who would you like to play you in a film of your life?
We don’t look alike, but my all-time favorite actor, Daniel Day-Lewis, can pull off anything, his devotion to his art and craft awe-inspiring!
How do you remain sane while working?
The work, which is not really work, but art, is not the hard part, it’s actually the nirvana! The magic that is unlike anything else! Worrying about keeping one’s sanity comes when it’s time to release your work of art out into the world. Trying to get someone to take notice.
“Excuse me… Do you mind looking over here for a minute? No, it’s not a funny cat video… Nu-uh, not the latest app sensation. No POKEMON here.
…Just a story of substance, that may change your perspective on life, that’s all.”
Where do you find your inspiration?
First and foremost, in the eyes of my wife. She deserves the life we have always dreamed of, and I’ll keep fighting for her, for my soul, and for our future child.
What was the most important thing you learned at school?
The priceless gift of literacy. That, and the appreciation of great storytelling, from those heroes/teachers who shared such.
Tea, Coffee, Water, Juice, Wine or Beer … which do you prefer when writing?
None of the above. Coca-Cola gets my juices flowing!
WHERE CAN I FIND OUT MORE ABOUT DAVID AND HIS BOOK?
You can find Riker’s Calling in Kindle format here:
WHY ‘THE THURSDAY THRONG’?
These posts are called The Thursday Throng in honour of the throng that waits eagerly outside the book store when a new author is doing a book signing event or appearance. On this website it takes the form of a ‘Meet the Author‘ online event with some information about our author’s latest book and an interview. If you would like to take part in the Thursday Throng then why not visit Thursday Throng Author Interview Guidelines to find out more.