Meet the author
“Above all, I believe readers are thinkers”
When any author asks his readers to invest cash and, more importantly, their valuable time by reading his books, I believe they can expect the writer to be committed to a credo. What can readers depend on when they pick up one of my novels and start turning pages? Here are the principles I adhere to when authoring a novel.
First, I believe readers are thinkers. Their sharp minds want to be challenged as they’re entertained. They look for nuggets in the gravel. They mull over the logic of what they’re reading. They value the subtle more than the obvious. They want to find a truth, a girder to strengthen the strong structure they make of their lives and that separates them from the non-reader. It’s one of the reasons all my novels have an underlying theme. For example, September on Echo Creek is a story about a young woman struggling with her fiancée’s lack of ethics and morality, but on a deeper level the book explores the way guilt strings are used to control a person and the ruinous impact on their life.
If your passion is creating fiction, entertaining your reader is as important as providing steak for their mind. Writing novels consumes me and I see great storytelling as a secret to providing great entertainment. How many memorable reads have you made where the story didn’t grip you? All the great prose Hemingway produced would fade to insignificance if the indomitable nature of his stories weren’t there. Crafting a great story requires that you know when to show, when to tell, when to summarize, when to provide excruciating detail, when to produce chuckles, when to elicit tears…
When I read another’s work, I can tell when the author isn’t totally immersed in what’s finding its way to the paper. I feel cheated. My heart and soul are in what I write. I endeavor “to not hold back, to let it all hang out.” You may disagree with my words, but you’ll know the voice is mine and you’ll also know that I respect anyone who thinks differently. We’re all entitled to our definitions of life, of right, of wrong…I see denying another person these convictions even in a literary sense as a most serious transgression. I’m mindful of that in my work.
I endeavor to create characters that are someone you’d like to meet, someone you’d despise, someone you’d fear, someone you’d root for…someone you can identify with emotionally, yet are characters that have realism emanating from them. It’s difficult to open a person’s mind to the story you wish to tell if you haven’t first touched the reader’s heart. Great characters do that. Holly Golightly, Atticus Finch, Jack Ryan, Theresa Osborne…they’re emotions, not just names, just as Capote, Lee, Clancy, and Sparks intended.
My books are stories about life; about how great and how testing it can be. Writing at my “mature” age is an advantage when discussing living; I’ve experienced it and don’t have to utilize conjecture. History is often my brick-mason for it can provide a building in which my story can live and breathe. Writing fantasy, sci-fi, or other work requiring that there be no reality fences, I cede to the young author where the lack of restricting rationale is beneficial.
What else? I promise not to bury plot, story, or theme in prose that sounds good, but says little. You won’t need a thesaurus by your side when you read my books. All we do in life is my subject matter…birth, death, charity, greed, everything, and yes, sex. I write about them all and believe that every subject requires to be dealt with honestly, but with respect for the topic and the person doing the reading. Providing you, my reader, with an insight, a perspective, a thought process that’s generated by my words without bludgeoning you with the obvious is my ultimate goal.
Promoting Outstanding Authors – 2008 Author of the Year Author’s Name: D.L. Havlin (Dennis Lee) Born: April 18, 1941
Educational Background: Elementary school – Ft. Myers , FL / High school – Cincinnati , OH , College – University of Cincinnati , BBA ’64 / College – Rollins College , Masters work
Professional Background – systems analyst and procedure writer, MIS production manager, materials manager, installed first computer based time-phased inventory system for a major manufacturer in the 60’s, product line manager, manufacturing plant manager, general manager of a chemicals distributor, call center technical service rep, president and general manager of a small manufacturing company, world-wide divisional customer service director.
Life Experiences – high school football coach, licensed boat captain, extensive world travels, fishing guide, avid hunter and camper, amateur historian studying early Florida, the Civil War, and World War II, member and former member of writers, volunteer & civic organizations.
Published work –
Novels — September on Echo Creek*, The Hangin’ Oak**, A Place No One Should Go***, The Cross on Cotton Creek, Blue Water-Red Blood (November, 2012)
Short story collection – Story Timer, (No Longer In Print)
Stories and articles in magazines – POW Writers Monthly, Southwest Florida Adventure, The Palm, GSE, and others
Awards and Honors –
*for September on Echo Creek – won 2006 Promoting Outstanding Writers, runner-up for best literary genre novel / book of the month August 2006 Knoxville News Network .
**The Hangin Oak – Royal Palm Award 2004 for best manuscript – literary fiction / 2007 Promoting Outstanding Writers 2007 best mystery genre novel / Promoting Outstanding Writers 2008 novel of the year
***A Place No One Should Go – won Promoting Outstanding Writers 2009 for best novella.
****The Hidden Door – Royal Palm Award 2004 runner-up for best manuscript – historical fiction
*****Blue Water, Red Blood – Royal Palm Award 2011 runner-up for best manuscript – historical fiction
+Caught on the Pot – won humorous short story contest Sept. 2006