Welcome to the TRB Lounge, the part of TRB that helps authors and publishers promote their titles.
Today, we are featuring Rich Marcello, author of The Latecomers, for our feature, Author Interview.
About The Author
Rich is the author of four novels, The Color of Home, The Big Wide Calm, and The Beauty of the Fall, The Latecomers, and the poetry collection, The Long Body That Connects Us All. He also teaches creative writing at Seven Bridges’ Writer Collaborative. Previously, he enjoyed a successful career as a technology executive, managing several multi-billion dollar businesses for Fortune 500 companies.
The Color of Home was published in 2013. Author Myron Rogers says the novel “sings an achingly joyful blues tune, a tune we’ve all sung, but seldom with such poetry and depth.” The Big Wide Calmwas published in 2014. The US Review of Books stated, “Marcello’s novel has a lot going for it. Well-written, thought-provoking, and filled with flawed characters, it meets all of the basic requirements of best-of-show in the literary fiction category.” The Beauty of the Fall was published in 2016. The Midwest Review of Books called it “a deftly crafted novel by a master of the storytelling arts” and “a consistently compelling read from cover to cover.” The Long Body That Connects Us All was published in 2018. Publishers Daily said, “Fathers and sons have always shared a powerful and sometimes difficult bond. Rich Marcello, in a marvelous new collection of extraordinary verse, drinks deeply from this well as he channels the thoughts and feelings of every father for his son.”
As anyone who has read Rich’s work can tell you, his books deal with life’s big questions: love, loss, creativity, community, aging, self-discovery. His novels are rich with characters and ideas, crafted by a natural storyteller, with the eye and the ear of a poet. For Rich, writing and art making is about connection, or as he says, about making a difference to a least one other person in the world, something he has clearly achieved many times over, both as an artist, a mentor, and a teacher.
Rich lives in Massachusetts with his family. He is currently working on his fifth and sixth novels, Cenotaphs and In the Seat of the Eddas.
YOU CAN CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR HERE
Welcome to TRB! Please give our readers a brief introduction about yourself before we begin.
My name is Rich Marcello. I’ve been writing full time now for almost nine years and have been fortunate to have four of my novels published along with my first collection of poetry. Before I became a professional writer, I ran several multi-billion dollar hi-tech businesses. Today, I’m going to discuss my fourth novel, The Latecomers.
Please tell us something about your book other than what we have read in the blurb?
The Latecomers is the first of what I hope will be four Latecomers novels.
Who is your favourite character in this book and why?
My favorite character is Maggie Latecomer. What I love most about her is her strength, her resilience, and ultimately, her decision to embrace her destiny. When the novel starts, she believes the last third of her life is securely headed in one direction, with Charlie at her side, and when things don’t go as planned, it was wonderful to witness her grow in such an unexpected way.
What inspired you to write this book? An idea, some anecdote, a dream or something else?
I wanted to write a book about older characters in the last third of their lives who do something extraordinary. There aren’t many stories like this out there, and I think it’s a real issue with contemporary fiction. In many ways, our society devalues its elders, so I wanted to show how fifty- and sixty-something characters might evolve, do hero-like things normally reserved for the young, and become wiser as a result. I believe we’ve lost the notion of the importance of wisdom in our society; I wanted to tell a story of how at least a few people might find their wisdom.
How long did it take you to write this particular book?
What are your writing ambitions? Are you working on any new projects presently?
I’m currently working on two novels. Cenotaphs is almost complete and will be out next year. In the Seat of the Eddas is the second book in The Latecomers’ series.
Why have you chosen this genre?
I was interested in writing a novel that crossed genres. I wanted to tell a story that combined the best character-related aspects of literary fiction with a bit of magical realism. I was interested in going deep into Maggie and Charlie’s approach to life, and, at the same time, sending them on an unexpected mystical adventure.
When did you decide to become a writer?
I’ve written all of my life, but I decided to become a professional writer about nine years ago.
What is your writing ritual? How do you do it?
I write every morning in my writing studio for about five hours. I rarely take a day off. I live on a lake in Massachusetts, so my studio is an ideal place to create.
How do you prefer to write? On computer/laptop, typewriter, dictation or longhand with a pen?
Initially, I write out each scene by hand. Then I enter it into the computer, print out a copy of my work, and edit it by hand. I find the process of putting pen to paper works better when it comes to getting all of the emotion into a scene.
Your 5 favourite books?
- The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera.
- The Moviegoer by Walker Percy.
- Underworld by Don DeLillo
- Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
How do you deal with Writer’s Block?
I haven’t experienced it. I have so many ideas for books, so I’m hopeful I’ll have time to get all of them down on paper! I think I haven’t had a problem with writer’s block because this my second career and I’m more than thankful I’ve found my voice.
What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
Find a routine that works for you and stick to it. Great writers have some innate ability, yes, but most work extremely hard at their craft in a disciplined way.
Thank you, Rich, for all the insightful answers!
About The Book
AN AGING COUPLE AND THEIR CLOSEST FRIENDS PIECE TOGETHER A LIFE-CHANGING PLAN FROM AN OTHERWORLDLY TEXT.
Maggie and Charlie Latecomer, at the beginning of the last third of their lives, love each other but are conflicted over what it means to age well in a youth-oriented society. Forced into early retirement and with grown children in distant cities, they’ve settled into a curbed routine, leaving Charlie restless and longing for more
When the Latecomers and their friends discover a mystical book of indecipherable logographs, the corporeal world and preternatural world intertwine. They set off on a restorative journey to uncover the secrets of the book that pits them against a potent corporate foe in a struggle for the hearts and minds of woman and men the world over.
A treatise on aging, health, wisdom, and love couched in an adventure, The Latecomers will make readers question the nature of deep relationships and the fabric of modern society.
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