Welcome, Dallas A. Dixon…
Can you tell me a little about yourself?
My name is Dallas A. Dixon. I am 71 years old and have been married for 48 years to Rita, my lovely wife. We have two daughters, two son-in-laws, and three grandchildren. I enjoy spending time with family, bicycling, working out with weights, gardening, and of course, writing. Immediately after graduating from high school in 1961, I left home and spent 4 years in the US Navy, including 3 years aboard the submarine USS Bang. Soon after my discharge from the navy, I began working for an engineering and land surveying company located in Iowa. I remained with the company until I retired in 1999. I began writing after I retired.
What was the first story you wrote?
After I retired, I needed something to keep me busy, so I decided to write an autobiography about the first sixty years of my life. Three years later, I hired a local print shop to print several copies of the manuscript. Then, I did a lot of research on bookbinding, and finally hardbound seven books. About six months later, I began writing my first novel titled “Miss Nancy: June 5, 1964, to September 13, 1964”, and published it in 2009. I published the sequel to it in 2011.
Were you inspired by someone or something?
During my years of working as a land surveyor and engineering assistant, I occasionally wrote legal land descriptions, as well as construction specifications for engineering plans. I always enjoyed typing, especially after computers appeared containing word processing programs.
What do you like about writing a story?
I enjoy writing because I can travel all over the world without leaving home, and can enjoy all sorts of experiences with many different characters. Most people who know me, consider me as a very quiet, soft-spoken type of man. I guess I do write and listen more than I talk.
Can you tell us about your newest book?
The title of my third and latest novel is “Duke and Alice: November 2010 to September 2011”, published in April of 2014. Duke and Alice, a loving couple in their late sixties, live in a quiet neighborhood in Waterfield, Iowa. In the spring of 2011, they travel to California in order to bring their troubled teenage grandson, Jason, back to Iowa for a summer stay with them.
Jason’s wealthy father, Calvin, had earlier become involved with illegal drugs, and began frequenting parties offering drugs, as well as sex. Calvin soon introduced his wife, Mary, into the drug and sex scene. Jason’s parents eventually obtain a divorce, and soon afterwards, law officers arrest Calvin for illegal drug crimes.
As Jason begins bonding with Duke and Alice, Mary enters a thirty-day drug rehabilitation program in California. When Mary finishes the program, she moves to Waterfield, Iowa. Calvin blames Duke, Alice, and Mary for his arrest, and eventually drives to Iowa with plans to settle the score violently. Will Duke, Alice, and Mary survive Calvin’s drug induced, violent actions?
How did you come up with the story?
I wanted to write a story about grand-parenting and helping family members.
What genre best fits the book?
It is difficult to specify one particular genre, but I write about spicy romances mixed in with crime, action, and revenge on criminals.
Are you working on something new at the moment?
Not this summer. However, there is always a new story spinning around inside my mind. At the current time, I am contemplating writing another novel, but it is very time consuming and a lot of hard work.
Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?
I suggest he or she does a basic outline prior to writing. As he or she writes the story, keep a separate list of your characters. I like to list their appearance, how they speak, how they act, etc. It is very easy to get characters mixed up while writing. The list will help. Do not become discouraged. Just keep on writing. Keep a dictionary by your side, for you cannot always rely on automatic spell check. When the manuscript is finished, be very cautious about choosing how to publish the book. Research, research, research. I recommend either going through the traditional publishing process, or self publish the book through Amazon, Smashwords, or Createspace. I published the first two novels through a self-publishing company. It was very expensive with little return, at least in my case.
What is your writing routine?
I usually write one chapter, and then proofread and edit it three times before moving on to the next chapter. When I complete writing, proofing, and editing each chapter, I put them all together into the manuscript. Then, I edit and proofread the entire manuscript, usually three or four times. When I am finally satisfied, I add the front matter and back matter to the manuscript.
What do you enjoy the most/least about writing?
The most enjoyment I receive from writing is when someone tells me that he or she has enjoyed reading one of my books. To me, the least enjoyment is formatting the manuscript for different e-book publishers.
How important is it for you to share your writing?
It is very important to me. I am very happy when someone reads one of my books. I occasionally write informational articles on the blog that Google allows me to use, and I try to include articles from other authors. The latest blog post on my blog is by Suzan Collins. I thank you, Suzan. It is my hope that in the future, other guest bloggers will write articles on my blog about different forms of abuse they have experienced or witnessed, with the hopes of stopping the abuse that goes on in this world. If anyone is interested in guest blogging on my blog, please contact me.
Where can people go to read your work?
My first two novels are available at RoseDogBooks.com, Amazon.com, and Barnes and Noble.com. My third novel is available at Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com, Createspace.com, and Smashwords.com.
Where can people find you on the internet?
My Amazon Author’s page: http://goo.gl/wT3296
Is there anything else you would like to share with your readers?
I first thank you, Suzan, for giving me this opportunity to interview on your blog. I appreciate it very much. I thank all who have purchased and read my books, and I encourage you all to write reviews for my books and other author’s books. The reviews help other potential readers decide if they want to read the books. Thanks again.
Thank you, Dallas, for this interview. Suzan.