Author Interview: Randy Ribay

Reading Glasses CoverRandy Ribay is next up in our Reading Glasses Author Interview Series by Steampunk Granny Marie Gilbert.  Randy is the author of “Mason, On His Way Home,” in which a boy finds a magical turtle which helps him cope with family instability.

Reading Glasses will be released on September 2, 2014.


Marie Gilbert: Randy, thank you for joining us and I’ll start with my first question. Tell us a bit about yourself and what inspired you to become a writer?

Randy RibayRR: I have always been a reader of stories in any form—books, comics, TV, or movies. One of my favorite feelings in the world is when a fictional story moves me, when it is so powerful that I feel like I’ll never be the same for having experienced it. And so I picked up the pen (rather, set my hands on the keyboard) in order to help others feel similarly and remember what it means to be human.

MG: What was the inspiration for this story?

RR: Driving around, I often see people standing on the corner passing out flyers. I wondered it must be like to stand outside all day and pass out paper. From there, I began to wonder if they ever got harassed by passers-by. I imagined such a thing happening to someone, and then decided to explore that story.

MG: What type of stories do you enjoy writing the most? Genre?Randy and friend

RR: I write young adult fiction across a variety of genres. I’m interested in teen characters because I think that’s largely when most people become the person they’ll be for the rest of their lives.

MG: Have you been published in other anthologies? If so where?

RR: “Mason, On His Way Home” is my first published work of fiction—and also the first short story I’ve ever submitted!

MG:Do you belong to a writers’ group?

RR: I had a critique partner for a couple of years, but then his wife had a baby and he fell off the face of the earth. So I eventually joined with the South Jersey Writers’ Group because as lonely an endeavor as writing can be, connecting with other writers is invaluable.

In costumeMG: Okay, I have to ask: What’s with the wacky costume?

I helped organize a 24-hour gaming marathon to help raise money for the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia through Extra Life (www.extra-life.org). We advertised a costume contest as part of the event…but only two of us dressed up. Nonetheless, we marched proudly around the room.

MG: What a great costume. Randy, I loved your story and I want to thank you for the interview.

You can read Randy’s bio here.

Visit Randy’s website, or follow him on Twitter.


About the interviewer:
Marie Gilbert is a ghost-hunting, zombie-fighting, steampunk comic book superhero in disguise as a grandma from South Philadelphia. She blogs about television and film for Biff Bam Pop and Go Jane News, and served as co-editor of Tall Tales and Short Stories from South Jersey. Her book Roof Oasis, the first in a series of apocalyptic tales with a twist, is now available. You can read more about her adventures at her not-so-top-secret online HQ, Gilbert Curiosities.

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