Richard Keller is an author, broadcaster, narrator, humorist (hopefully you can tell) and all-around swell individual. Even with his dabbling, Richard has produced millions of words for radio, television, magazines, blogs, and newspapers. His company, Wooden Pants Media, helps others bridge the gap to their creativity through publishing, podcasting, and workshops. You can listen to the shows of the Wooden Pants Network, including his programs The Daily Author and The Unfrustrated Entrepreneur at blogtalkradio.com/woodenpantsnetwork. His main book, Coffee Cup Tales, is available on Amazon, Nook, Kobo, iBooks, Overdrive, and library catalogs.
Scene: Mrs. Courtney’s third-grade classroom
Wide Shot: A gangly eight-year-old with horn-rimmed glasses, a dress shirt, and slacks (because his parents didn’t believe in jeans back then) presents a story to one of his favorite teachers.
8YO (Confident): Here it is, Mrs. Courtney.
Scene switches to the beautiful Mrs. Courtney in her Dorothy Hamill haircut. She reads said story, smiles, frowns, and turns to the student.
Courtney: Where did you get the idea for this story about a murder victim found in a frozen pond?
8YO (Less Confident): Umm, from an episode of Another World.
End scene. Begin my official writing career, And, my first official stolen idea.
From that poignant moment on I wanted to be a writer. Oh, I had been imaginative long before this pivotal moment, but I think writing the story and Mrs. Courtney’s approval woke my creative soul.
So, off I went. A few years later I had my mother type up two of my short stories to send to Cricket and Analog respectively. Both were rejected. I kept the Analog story and rejection letter and still wonder why my Magnum P.I./Knight Rider mashup didn’t sell.
In high school, I wrote dirty versions of He-Man because, well, I was in high school. I also started a fantasy tale where the characters were people in my classes. I wish I had kept that one. I also spent plenty of time doodling superhero names and characters on notebook covers at my retail job. Hey, not everyone came at once to the Young Men’s department of Macy’s to purchase Ocean Pacific shirts and skinny ties.
Scene Break: Time given to millennial readers to look up anarchistic references.
At some point toward the end of high school and right before I entered college I stopped writing fiction and turned my sights on the news world. My first professional gig was as a newspaper stringer who covered board of education and town council meetings. The only excitement was getting the article in by 11 pm in time for the next day’s paper. In college, it was copy writing for the two radio news departments I worked for (it was the late 80s, they still had those). I discarded the world of fantasy for the world of news. All right, I discarded one fantasy for another.
And then I abandoned everything as my father encouraged me to take a manager-in-training position at an office supply store. I listened, because my head was so full of junk it drowned out the screaming of my creative soul. I dabbled here and there for many years – writing comic book and television reviews, submitting an article here or there – but it was a hobby. When my soul tried to make it more, the monkeys in my head screeched at it. So, it went into hiding.
Then I relocated to the West. I moved to Colorado and felt the call of my creative spirit from the mountains, Native American spirits, woo-woo (scientific term), or chemical influences of a certain plant. Call it what you will, but it drew my creativity out and began to lessen the monkey chatter.
Once the pieces fell into place I left the corporate world and became a fiction writer once again. I finished my first book, then a second, then two more. I started a publishing company and brought on other authors. I started a few podcasts, formed a network, and brought on others. Soon enough, I owned a creative media mecca.
Not bad for someone who started his creative life borrowing ideas from a cheesy soap.
Am I going to be the next Stephen King in writing or John Lee Dumas in podcasting? I’m not sure I want to be. While I wouldn’t mind their monthly income, I would rather write and broadcast across all genres while I help others build bridges to their own creativity. I have a plethora of knowledge and am truly blessed by my gifts, so why not give some of it away so others can be successful?
That would be a happy ending for any story.
Coffee Cup Tales
Coffee Cup Tales: Stories Inspired by Overheard Conversations at the Coffee Shop, is an anthology of short stories which stem from actions and conversations from Richard’s favorite coffee shop. It’s a mix of humor, romance, spirituality. Fantasy, and hand coughing. Richard won’t tell you what coffee shop they originated from because he may want to hear your conversations for another book.
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I'm generally pulled in a million different directions and I wouldn't trade it for the world. Here's a glimpse of my life - hope you enjoy it! And if there's a big lapse between posts, well, that's the way life goes in Amy's world.