Tuesday, February 13, 2018

William C. Dietz Author Interview

Photo Credit: Joseph Walsh Photography

New York Times bestselling author William C. Dietz has published more than fifty novels some of which have been translated into German, French, Russian, Korean and Japanese. Dietz also wrote the script for the Legion of the Damned game (i-Phone, i-Touch, & i-Pad) based on his book of the same name--and co-wrote SONY's Resistance: Burning Skies game for the PS Vita.

Dietz grew up in the Seattle area, spent time with the Navy and Marine Corps as a medic, graduated from the University of Washington, lived in Africa for half a year, and has traveled to six continents. Dietz has been employed as a surgical technician, college instructor, news writer, television producer and Director of Public Relations and Marketing for an international telephone company.

Dietz is a member of the Writer’s Guild, and the International Association of Media Tie-In Writers. He and his wife live near Gig Harbor in Washington State where they enjoy traveling, kayaking, and reading books.


Why is storytelling so important for all of us?
Back before the printing press, radio, TV and the internet, stories were told around campfires. Tales like that of Beowulf. A horror story if there ever was one. These stories, as well as those told today, are a way to communicate values, to remember historical events, to urge change, to memorialize heroes and heroines, and to entertain.

Needless to say those purposes are not mutually exclusive. The warning implicit in the America Rising books is achingly clear. And sadly, some aspects of the trilogy are coming true.

Was there a particular event or time that you recognized that writing was not just a hobby?

I was not an especially good student, and after barely escaping high school, I joined the navy rather than live off my mother.

During my time in the service I experienced something of an epiphany, in which I realized that I needed to go to college if I was to make something of myself.

That raised the question: To study what? The answer was obvious… I loved books. So, I decided to become writer. The focus was on journalism at first because I knew that reporters were paid.

Later, during college, I set my sights even higher and promised (myself) to write a book by the time I was forty. While celebrating my thirty-ninth birthday I realized that I’d have to get cracking to fulfill that commitment. I wrote a science fiction novel called Galactic Bounty, it sold, and the rest is history.

What do you hope for people to be thinking after they read your novel?
“Damn! That was fun… I really enjoyed it. And I’ll recommend it to my friends.”

What advice would you give to someone who wanted to have a life in writing?
Go for it. But keep your day job. It’s very difficult to make a good living as a writer. The competition is fierce, market conditions suck, and people will steal what you write. So, for most of us writing is a part time job that supplements something else.

In your new book; BATTLE HYMN, can you tell my Book Nerd community a little about it
Battle Hymn is the final novel in the America Rising trilogy. It’s about a kickass female army officer, and the rightful president of the United States who, in the wake of worldwide meteor strikes battle to wrest the government away from the oligarchs who rule the southern states.

The books include lots of action, suspense, and yes, a slow-motion love affair between the Robin Macintyre and President Sloan.

What was your inspiration for the series?
I read an article about the Chelyabinsk meteor, and being a writer, had to ask myself “what if there had been more meteors?” (There’s no need to include the Wikipedia article if you don’t want to.)

Wikipedia: The Chelyabinsk meteor was a superbolide caused by an approximately 20-metre near-Earth asteroid that entered Earth's atmosphere over Russia on 15 February 2013 at about 09:20 YEKT (03:20 UTC), with a speed of 19.16 ± 0.15 kilometres per second (60,000[5]–69,000 km/h or 40,000[5]–42,900 mph).[6][7] It quickly became a brilliant superbolide meteor over the southern Ural region. The light from the meteor was brighter than the Sun, visible up to 100 km (62 mi) away. It was observed over a wide area of the region and in neighbouring republics. Some eyewitnesses also felt intense heat from the fireball.

Due to its high velocity and shallow angle of atmospheric entry, the object exploded in an air burst over Chelyabinsk Oblast, at a height of around 29.7 km (18.5 mi; 97,000 ft).[7][8] The explosion generated a bright flash, producing a hot cloud of dust and gas that penetrated to 26.2 km (16.3 mi), and many surviving small fragmentary meteorites, as well as a large shock wave. The bulk of the object's energy was absorbed by the atmosphere, with a total kinetic energy before atmospheric impact estimated from infrasound and seismic measurements to be equivalent to the blast yield of a nuclear weapon in the 400–500 kiloton (about 1.4–1.8 PJ) range – 26 to 33 times as much energy as that released from the atomic bomb detonated at Hiroshima.[9]

What part of Mac did you enjoy writing the most?
Mac is on her own most of the time, making choices that will mean life or death for the men and women in her command, as she battles the government that her father and sister support. All of which makes for what I believe is a fully developed character.

Did you learn anything from writing AMERICA RISING and what was it?
Pro-libertarian trolls launched an all-out attack on the first book. What I learned from that is what most of us already know. The dangers I warn against are real, the country is deeply divided, and the “every man/woman for themselves” philosophy advocated by those on the far right is an ever present threat to our democracy.

Which character have you enjoyed getting to know the most over the course of writing AMERICA RISING Series?
Mac, without a doubt. With Sloan as a close second.

If you could introduce Sloan to any character from another book, who would it be and why?
Sloan, and the Chien-Chu character who plays a supporting role in the Legion of the Damned TM novels have a lot in common. Both are involved in a life and death struggle to protect humans from themselves as well as from external threats.

What do you feel is the most significant change since book two?
That would be a spoiler.

What book would you recommend for others to read?
Man’s Search For Meaning, by Viktor E. Frankl.

Choose a unique item from your wallet and explain why you carry it around.
I’ve been carrying the same fifty-dollar bill for more than twenty years. Just in case I wake up in Tijuana and need to get home. Maybe two fifties would be better.

Have you ever written a love letter?
Yes, and I wish I could go back and rewrite all of them.

What is your happiest childhood memory?

If you could go back in time to one point in your life, where would you go?
To the evening when I met the girl who became my wife.

If you could live in any period in history, what would it be and why?
The present. Though far from perfect, healthcare is a lot better.

If you wrote a journal entry today, what would it say?
In spite of all that’s wrong with the world, and with our country right now, Martin Luther King was correct. “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.”

Where can readers find you?
For more about me and my fiction please visit williamcdietz.com. You can find me on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/williamcdietz and you can follow me on Twitter: William C. Dietz @wcdietz

  • I would study harder, and get good grades.
  • Thanks to better grades I would apply to ROTC, get a full ride, and go to college before entering the military.
  • I would spend more time getting into shape, even if that involved turning out for a sport. A fate I thought was worse than death.
  • I would be more analytical, and thoughtful as regards the people around me.
  • I would keep a journal, which given my age, would be filled with nonsense.
  • I would get to know my paternal grandparents.
  • I would find ways to express the full extent of my appreciation to my best friend George, and his family for their support.
  • I would find a way to keep and somehow preserve my modified ’54 Chevy.
  • I would cut back to one pack of cigarettes a day. (Fortunately, I quit 36-years ago.)
  • I would pay more attention to the world around me, politics, and the need to be involved.

From the New York Times bestselling author of the Legion of the Damned novels comes the final novel in a post-apocalyptic military science fiction trilogy about a nation wracked by a civil war.

As people fight to survive the aftereffects of more than a dozen meteor strikes, a group of wealthy individuals conspires to rebuild the United States as a corporate entity called the New Confederacy, where the bottom line is law. As a second civil war rages, with families fighting against families on opposite sides, Union president Samuel T. Sloan battles to keep the country whole.

After the fateful battle with her sister, the New Confederacy places a price on Union Army captain Robin "Mac" Macintyre's head, causing bounty hunters to try to kill her. Mac will do all that she can to help Sloan reunify the country by reclaiming a strategic oil reserve in the heart of Confederate territory, and freeing hundreds of Union prisoners of war from appalling conditions in Mexico. But, to truly have peace, they will have to take down the New Confederacy's leadership--and that includes Mac's father, General Bo Macintyre.

Praise for AMERICA RISING Series

“When it comes to military science fiction, William Dietz can run with the best.” —Steve Perry, New York Times bestselling author

“Dietz’s expertise in matters of mayhem is second to none.” —The Oregonian

“William C. Dietz has produced an action packed, barnburner of a novel…This is a big blockbuster, big budget novel and the action is relentless…Hard military sci-fi in a post-catalyst American wasteland at its explosive best.” —The Bookbeard’s Blog

“Fans of military science fiction will have another strong series to look forward to…Dietz takes readers on an emotional roller coaster.” —Amazing Stories

“An interesting and delightful read, with a good mix of action, intrigue, and the occasional bit of levity…highly recommended.” —Game Vortex

“Dietz is a must-read for all military SF fans…If you enjoy an action story, strong military SF, or a good near-future Armageddon novel, be sure to read Into the Guns…you will be longing for the next volume as you finish the last page.” —Galaxy’s Edge Magazine

You can purchase Battle Hymn (America Rising #3)  at the following Retailers:

And now, The Giveaways.
Thank you WILLIAM C. DIETZ for making this giveaway possible.
1 Winner will receive a Copy of Battle Hymn (America Rising #3) by William C. Dietz.


  1. "Choose a unique item from your wallet and explain why you carry it around." I never carry a wallet, and I don't carry around sentimental items.

  2. I don't have anything unique in my wallet. I only carry in it what I need.