About the Book
Title: Hell Holes: What Lurks Below
Author: Donald Firesmith
Genre: Apocalyptic Scifi / Horror
It’s August in Alaska, and geology professor Jack Oswald prepares for the new school year. But when hundreds of huge holes mysteriously appear overnight in the frozen tundra north of the Arctic Circle, Jack receives an unexpected phone call. An oil company exec hires Jack to investigate, and he picks his climatologist wife and two of their graduate students as his team. Uncharacteristically, Jack also lets Aileen O’Shannon, a bewitchingly beautiful young photojournalist, talk him into coming along as their photographer. When they arrive in the remote oil town of Deadhorse, the exec and a biologist to protect them from wild animals join the team. Their task: to assess the risk of more holes opening under the Trans-Alaska Pipeline and the wells and pipelines that feed it. But they discover a far worse danger lurks below. When it emerges, it threatens to shatter Jack’s unshakable faith in science. And destroy us all…
1. What made you start writing?
I actually started writing (fiction) twice. Back in high school, I read a LOT of science fiction including novels, short story anthologies, and magazines. I would often get ideas for new stories and constantly found myself writing my own short stories. Between dealing with a long series of rejections and other demands on my time including college, grad school, marriage, and work, I eventually stopped writing fiction. As I became a more experienced software and system engineer, I eventually began getting my writing fix by authoring dozens of technical papers and a series of traditionally published technical engineering books. Then, about a decade ago, I started writing fiction again as I found more stories to tell and felt that my writing had improved to the point where I could write as well as some of the novels I was reading.
2. Where is your favorite place to write?
I have my own office at home where I do most of my writing. I also occasionally write after hours at work when I stay late to avoid the rush hour crowd on the box. Neither is a perfect writing environment so I’m not sure the work “favorite” applies, but they are what they are.
3. What is your favorite part of writing?
Writing brand new material, although researching background material (e.g., advanced technology) comes a close second.
4. What is your least favorite part of writing?
Probably making the last half of the fixes and improvements based on inputs from editors and beta readers, especially when a fix has significant impacts in multiple locations of the manuscript.
5. What advice do you wish someone had given you?
I wish someone would have let me know earlier the huge impact that print on demand (POD) and ebooks would have in terms of enabling the rise of the self-published Indie author. I would have restarted writing fiction earlier if I had known that I would not be so totally dependent on finding a publisher and agent.
A computer geek by day, Donald Firesmith works as a system and software engineer helping the US Government acquire large, complex software-intensive systems. In this guise, he has authored seven technical books, written numerous software- and system-related articles and papers, and spoken at more conferences than he can possibly remember. He is also proud to have been named a Distinguished Engineer by the Association of Computing Machinery, although his pride is tempered somewhat worrying whether the term “distinguished” makes him sound more like a graybeard academic rather than an active engineer whose beard is still more red than gray.
By night and on weekends, his alter ego writes modern paranormal fantasy, apocalyptic science fiction, action and adventure novels and relaxes by handcrafting magic wands from various magical woods and mystical gemstones. His first foray into fiction is the book Magical Wands: A Cornucopia of Wand Lore written under the pen name Wolfrick Ignatius Feuerschmied. He lives in Crafton, Pennsylvania with his wife Becky and his youngest son Dane.
Lorana Hoopes is a Christian author who focuses on children’s book and adult inspirational books with a touch of romance.Her books are available at Amazon.