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     Working as a writer is a dream that has no ending.  It was in seventh grade I attempted to write my first historical novel.  I spent time in the library researching my subject, only to realize I didn't know what writing was about.  I wrote articles for the high school newspaper, wasting one week per month playing cards because my stories weren't published that week.  Reading and writing is a passion and has been part of my life for as long as I can remember.  During the blizzard of 1978, my middle sister and I would race to finish reading the most recent copy of the Hardy Boys mysteries or one of the Nancy Drew book series my grandparents received in the mail.

       Entering college didn't change anything.  I gravitated to english classes and won the job as sports editor on the newspaper.  Little did I know then that I was squandering an opportunity.  It was all a learning process.  Graduating from Heidelberg College was a milestone, moving into a business career starting at the bottom.  Writing business letters and email became my life for many years, until it became apparent that life was more than that.  Caring more for business than life was not where I wanted to spend my time.

       One day I started writing about a man I knew, I had dreamed of him many times and thought of him in many business meetings.  His story flowed onto the pages of my computer screen, until one day Duck Hook was born.  It has been a lengthy process, learning a granule of what it takes to be a writer of fiction.

     In December 2012, I started my first fictional novel "Duck Hook.”  It was a book derived from stress and the desire to write. "Center Cut," the continuation of the Sam Snead Hook story, was started a few weeks after Duck Hook was completed. 

     I enjoy writing for several reasons, but I have to say, one of the biggest is the characters talking to me.  I must tell their story.  Sam Hook lives in my head and his story consumes my thoughts, as do many others. 

     My family begrudgingly supports my solitude to write.  My daughters, Hannah and Kirsten, are in the working world.  My spouse is a first grade teacher, giving the stability to finish what I start. 

     Then there’s Ava, my best friend.  She’s an English setter, providing the never-ending love to move forward.

- Mark Ridgely
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