May 16, 2016

No one would be faulted for finding a retired naval officer odd among a group of writers, musicians, and artists. Most would agree that the creative arts and military matters hardly go together, and yet, as a specialist in communications, I was trained to write for absolute clarity in all reports and operational orders. 

But then, I was also a misfit, and it didn't take long in the military to realize that. I was a dreamer in school and college, often lost in a world of fantasy and imagination. I was also audacious. I sent my first poem to the college magazine. When, later, I received a summons from my professor, I thought I was in for a serious dressing down. Instead, he praised my poem and asked me to take up authoring as a profession. In fact, I think he was also saying that the math and physical sciences I was studying were too much for me.

Another professor immediately countered, stating that writing alone would hardly provide a square meal a day and recommended I concentrate on studies and take to writing after making a career in some walk of life. I worked hard, topped the list in the university and won a commission in the Indian Navy.

The itch to write persisted, however, and I was pleased one day to accept a request to write an article for a brochure for the Navy. I chose a humorous story about the different ways an Admiral and the Navy function.  The publishing officer liked the tongue-in-cheek article, but feared publishing it without the concurrence of the Admiral. By happenstance, I met the Admiral at a party, and he complimented me on my sense of military humor, kickstarting my career as a published author.

Health-releated events intervened, shortening my career in the Navy. I developed a recurring medical problem that made it near impossible for promotion. The moment I earned my pension, I put in my papers and persuaded my superiors that the Navy would function better without me. 

After leaving the Navy, I joined the Mercantile Marine and served as a ship captain for eighteen years. I had plenty of spare time at sea and I could read all the books I wanted and hone my writing skills. I wrote and sold articles and short stories to a variety of magazines. Since I was earning well as a Captain, I didn't care what pubishers paid, but valued their letters of appreciation for my fertile imagination and thinking out of the box.

When my two daughters earned their Masters in Computer Science degrees in the USA and settled down in well-paid jobs, they advised me not to wear myself out at sea and retire to a comfortable life. Since then, I have made it a point to write a minimum of three thousand words every day on blogs, and refocused on publishing short stories and books on disparate subjects. It was during this time that I won the NaNoWriMo competition for three consecutive years and began acquiring other writing awards.

Life, however, never runs on smooth grooves. Just when things were going well, my wife for forty-five years was diagnosed with stage four cancer. For the next twenty months we fought a hard battle and just as we succeeded, or so it seemed, she, abruptly one day, breathed her last. In truth, she was my mentor, muse, editor and critic all rolled into one. Her passing sounded a death knell for my literary career, and my pen and keyboard remained inactive for a long time. 

I eventually relocated to Orlando, Florida, where my two daughters live. I bear my loneliness well with the help of six grandchildren. Watching them tussel and fight amongst themselves, I threatened to write a book about them, and CAPTAIN RIDDLE'S TREASURE (Savant 2015) is the outcome. Everyone liked it so much, I even wrote a sequel.

It took more than two years for me to move on with my author's life. I am now writing again and already the words are rolling out as fast as they used to.

GV Rama Rao
Author of CAPTAIN RIDDLE'S TREASURE (Savant 2016)



May 6, 2016

Just like your first love, you never forget the first time you are published.

For me, it happened when I was taking an Advanced Fiction workshop, facilitated by Mameve Medwed, at the Cambridge Center for Adult Education. At the beginning of the workshop, Mameve (an excellent teacher and novelist) announced that if anyone had a story published during the course of the twelve-week workshop, it was a tradition to bring in champagne and sparkling cider to celebrate with the rest of the class. I...

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March 12, 2016

I was searching for a Koski and Falk adventure in-between THE CHEMICAL FACTOR (Savant 2015) and my next work, FINDING KATE (Savant, currently in editing), and blue-sky chatting with Raymond Gaynor, author of the Tripler and Clark series politico-techno-thriller TOTAL MELTDOWN (Borgo/Wildside 2013), when suddenly, in a synchronous "ah-ha" moment, we came up with the plot for QUANTUM DEATH (Savant 2016). 

The work emerged in its entirety over the next couple months, with Koski and Falk natural...

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March 12, 2016

It's difficult to put a finger on whose idea both the plot and romance twists were in QUANTUM DEATH (Savant 2016). It seemed like both came about simultaneously and serendipitously for both A. G. Hayes and myself, Raymond Gaynor, during a series of phone chats about a new Koski and Falk adventure between THE CHEMICAL FACTOR (Savant 2015) and his upcoming work, FINDING KATE (Savant, currently in production). I had the pleasure of experiencing something like this when William Maltese and I came...

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February 19, 2016

Hi! I'm Helen R. Davis. I'm an award-winning Savant author, poet, and the editor of the 2015/16 Savant Poetry Anthology, RUNNING FROM THE PACK (Savant, pending release April 2016). 

It is my honor to also become a certified Savant proofreader. I'm personally interested in historical fiction of all kinds, but have a soft spot for the ancient and medieval world. I especially like helping to bring to life lively characters and civilizations often ignored in the history books. 

My own first nov...

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February 9, 2016

After completing Savant training, Eleonor Gardner is excited to be introduced as a new proofreader for the Savant team. She is looking forward to being a positive member of the Savant, as well as a resource for authors, so please don’t hesitate to get in touch with her.  She has experience in proofreading, editing, writing, design, and business.


Eleonor is a recent graduate of Christopher Newport University, in Newport News, VA where she studied English and business. After graduating in D...

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December 5, 2015

    My first published writing credit came when as a kid I had a letter to the editor published in a "Superman" comic book. Later, I started writing art reviews for a neighborhood newspaper. I made twenty dollars an article. I didn't even have a bank account at the time, but the bank at the corner cashed the weekly checks for me anyway. Far more meaningful to me, though, was having my byline in print. The newspaper gig led to writing for other publications, including "Art News" and "Art New E...

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December 2, 2015
Author Helen Davis has been writing since the age of twenty.

An interest in strong women protagonists led her to write and publish EVITA: MY LIFE (Booksurge, 2009), an historical novel about legendary Evita Peron.

Intrigued by the legend of Cleopatra since she was in high school, as EVITA was released, Davis took up pen and began work on another historical novel surrounding this queen who sought to control nations in an era in which women had little power. A polyglot herself, the author, in t...

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August 6, 2015

If I were to diagnose myself based on the first story I ever wrote, I'd go with narcissistic idealist. This is a professional classification within the psychiatric lexicon of personality disorders.

Long before I knew anything about such pathologies, I wrote a book about an aardvark. Its title, a real grabber, was "Nire, the Purple Aardvark." Always one to see the world backwards, it doesn't surprise me that I named my quirky protagonist after myself, spelled in reverse. Six-year-old me was s...

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July 21, 2015
I started writing seriously when I entered seminary at Boston University in 1972. There I was published for the first time -- a series of poems in an alumni journal, work lost long ago. As a parish minister, though, I became a disciplined writer, having to produce a sermon each week, a literary and theological task.

The challenge was to write at the intersection of human experience and divine response. During this period I wrote many short stories, song lyrics, poems and two nonfiction manusc...

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New Author/Recording Artist/DVD Producer Blog

Daniel S. Get to know new and established Savant authors and what they're working on these days.


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