Author Spotlight: Larry Landgraf

| January 15, 2018

Into Winter: The Armed Invasion (The Four Seasons Book 3) by Larry Landgraf

The ruthless dictator of Corpus Christi, Sandra Hawkins has blood in her eyes as she plans revenge against Peaceful Valley.

Sean Lin discovers her plan, but does the small community stand a chance against her heavily armed and well-trained army?

The valley’s residents are wary hunters skilled at camouflage and stealth, but will toughness and smarts be enough to save their way of life from overwhelming force?

Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Science Fiction, Dystopian, Post-Apocalyptic

Cold Coffee Book Review: Let me quickly recap The Four Seasons series books One and Two before jumping into book three titled Into Winter: The Armed Invasion (The Four Seasons Book 3) by Larry Landgraf.

Book One (Into Autumn by Larry Landgraf) takes one of modern man’s worst fears and makes it a reality when the grid fails leaving people to survive by any and all means possible. Communities like Peaceful Valley spring up, but not without advantages and disadvantages to belong.

Book Two (Into Spring-The Next Generation by Larry Landgraf) finds two young adults from Peaceful Valley striking out on their own to find wives. Arriving in Corpus Christi, they find a society ruled by a ruthless dictator named Sandra Hawkins. Survival takes on a different form than Sean and Robbie had known in Peaceful Valley and escape might be out of their reach.

Book Three (Into Winter: The Armed Invasion by Larry Landgraf) brings us to a point in the story where Robbie and two female allies (Florence Ingalls and Beka Livingston) are trying to escape in a Cessna Skyhawk at the Airport. This is a dangerous proposition. Back in Peaceful Valley, the community is gearing up for a standoff against Sandra Hawkins’s army which they learn may be heading their way. Their only defense might be offense with some old equipment as John states “I know a little about electronics”. Will they be able to save their small community from this tyrant and if they do, what lies ahead?

Author Larry Landgraf weaves a believable tale that takes his characters into survival mode that toys with the reader’s imagination and the ‘what ifs’. Like what if our grid was to fail? What if democracy was no more? Each character plays his and her part well and the story flows quickly from one page to the next. I encourage you to read each book in this epic series in order. Author Larry Landgraf wrote book two and three as stand-alone novels to help those who come late to the series. Now we wait for his promised conclusion titled Into Summer: Dawn Of A New Age.

I, Theodocia McLean endorse Into Winter: The Armed Invasion (The Four Seasons Book 3) by Larry Landgraf. I purchased this book from Kindle. This review was completed on January 16, 2018.

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Into Spring: The Next Generation (Four Seasons Book 2) by Larry Landgraf

Twenty years after Into Autumn, Sean and Robbie leave Peaceful Valley for Corpus Christi, hoping to find women who will join their fiercely protective group back home.

What they find is a fight to survive the violent dictatorship of ruthless Sandra Hawkins.

Meanwhile, a new family joins the group in the Valley, except that what seems like a safe addition might bring the worst kinds of change.

Into Spring continues the Four Seasons saga about building a new life in Texas after the collapse of civilization.

Award: Into Spring 2017 finalist ‘Book of the Year’ (action/adventure) Independent Author’s Network (IAN1)

Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Science Fiction, Dystopian, Post-Apocalyptic

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Into Autumn: A Story of Survival (Four Seasons Book 1) by Larry Landgraf

Lars is living alone in the Texas countryside when the economy collapses and his world becomes a dystopian nightmare.

Joined by outsider Eileen, he and his neighbors band together for survival in their “Peaceful Valley.”

They must learn to scratch out sustenance while fending off predatory invasions in an increasingly violent and lethal world.

Into Autumn is a sweeping adventure, a thought-provoking saga that could happen to us all.

Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Science Fiction, Dystopian, Post-Apocalyptic

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IA Chapter 8 Reading:
This is a very important video for anyone trying to decide whether or not to read book one of the Four Seasons Series.
A professional actor, Kaleb Alexander, will read Chapter 8 from Into Autumn to you. Just sit back, watch, and listen.

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A Tempest In Texas (Print Replica) by Larry Landgraf

A chilling account of how Lars Lindgren and Eileen Branson must face new challenges when all of humanity is forced into desperate survival mode when the grid shuts down, and government and the economy crumble.

True-life characters in gravely realistic scenarios sure to make some people squeamish.

Awards:
A Tempest in Texas 2017 finalist ‘screenplay’ New York Screenwriting Festival (action/adventure)
A Tempest in Texas 2017 finalist ‘screenplay’ Influx Magazine Festival (action/adventure)
A Tempest in Texas 2017 semi-finalist ‘screenplay’ Los Angeles Screenwriting Festival (action/adventure)
A Tempest in Texas is currently in the hands of two producers.

Genre: Comedy, Humor & Entertainment, Movies, Screenplays, Arts & Photography, Performing Arts

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How To Be A Smart SOB Like Me by Larry Landgraf

Work, money, food, relationships, life in general—these are the everyday struggles for billions crowded into our challenging world.

Larry Landgraf tells us his story and the many lessons he’s learned for finding extraordinary happiness.

How to Be a Smart SOB Like Me is a stark but heartfelt examination of a life well-lived.

You might like him, and you might not, but you can’t help but learn ways you, too, can achieve your best.

Genre: Politics & Social Sciences, Philosophy, Social Philosophy, Biographies & Memoirs

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Cold Coffee Press Author Spotlight Interview With Larry Landgraf

Larry Landgraf was born and raised on the Guadalupe River Delta on the Texas Gulf Coast.

Update: They say a picture is worth a thousand words. That being said, I have created two video slide shows set to music. They are “Who Am I?” and “Life in My Swamp”. They are the first two videos in the slideshow to the right. Know me first and you’ll know why I write what I write. Thank you.

After four years of college, Larry spent 20+ years as a commercial fisherman. When that ended he became a general contractor for another 20+ years. He wrote his first book in 1986 in an attempt to save his commercial fishing career. The book and the career failed. After retiring from the contracting business due to a death defying accident, he wrote his second book in 2012 “How to be a Smart SOB Like Me”.

Still he didn’t consider himself an author. He awoke one morning in January 2015 with a story in his head. He sat down at the computer and began to write this story. Next thing he knew, he had written 300 pages. After an extensive re-write and editing, “Into Autumn – A Story of Survival” was published in September 2015. This is his third book, but debut novel. “Into Autumn” was re-published in January of 2017.

As he left some things hanging in “Into Autumn” he had to write a sequel. “Into Spring – The Next Generation” came out in January 2017. It made “finalist” in the Independent Author’s Network (IAN1) 2017 Book of the Year contest. Larry then came up with the idea of a Four Seasons series. “Into Winter” hit the shelves in September of 2017. “Into Summer” is next and is planned for 2018, but before that, another screenplay is in the works as well as turning his “Tales From the Riverside” blog into a book. Larry finally considers himself an author, but you decide for yourself.

Larry still lives on the Guadalupe River Delta…in the swamp. He writes, tends his fruit orchard and his large garden. He enjoys fishing with Ellen, his significant other, traveling and living in the country where he resides.

Update: Hurricane Harvey hit Larry dead center. You won’t believe what happened. His home is okay, but the story is unbelievable. Read it on his blog titled Tales from the Riverside. That Son-of-a-bitch Harvey Almost Got the Best of Me. http://intoautumn.com/?p=562

Interview:

What makes you proud to be a writer from (Texas)? I’m proud to be a writer from Texas because we can write with a southern drawl and get away with it. When I say my main female character flees San Antonio, you know exactly where she is. When I say my protagonist, Lars, is a Davy Crockett type Texas country gentleman, you can visualize what he looks like, talks like, and the way he carries himself. You know he’s going to take care of his lady. Finally, you know that I write stories as big as Texas. My epic sage of Peaceful Valley, the Four Seasons Series, spans four volumes, three of which are now complete. The finale, Into Summer, will sizzle off the presses in 2018. 

What or who inspired you to become a writer? I wrote two non-fiction books, the first in 1986 to try to save my commercial fishing career. The book and career ended in failure. My second, How to Be a Smart SOB Like Me was inspired by dumb people, most of which I seemed to find up and down the highway. I did not consider myself an author at this point. A death-defying injury and a contracting business I could no longer run, forced me to retire. But I couldn’t do nothing, but I didn’t know what I was going to do. In January 2015, I awoke with a story in my head and began writing. Before I knew it, I had written 300 pages. As I left a few things hanging, there had to be a sequel. Only when the sequel was published did I decide on the Series and finally considered myself an author.

Did your environment or upbringing play a major role in your writing and did you use it to your advantage? Absolutely! I grew up wild in the country fending for myself much of the time. I have been self-employed all my life and built my own home with my own two hands. There isn’t anything I can’t do that I decide I want to do. “Can’t” has never been a part of my vocabulary. I am strong of body and mind and I feel everyone else should be as well. I know we can’t all be strong, but I like to help nudge people in that direction. Life is tough. It’s supposed to be that way and people need to learn how to take care of themselves. One day you may not have a choice, and then what are you going to do? Wish then that you had listened to me today? Remember, “What you learn today will determine how well you live tomorrow.” by Larry Landgraf.

When did you begin writing with the intention of becoming published? I knew I’d publish my first book in 1986 and my second in 2012 and wrote those knowing I would publish them. It wasn’t until the sequel, Into Spring, to my first novel, Into Autumn, that I wrote as a bona fide author. I then had a goal in mind, the Four Seasons Series, and wrote from that time forward knowing my path and that I was now and would continue to be an author.

What has been your most rewarding experience with your writing process? Acceptance and praise of my work. It feels great when others enjoy what you have written. When someone has read Into Autumn and say they can’t wait to read Into Spring, then that they want to read the entire series tells me that I am on the right path in my writing. I have always considered my work to be as unique as I am, and for others to like who I am and what I’m writing, is priceless. 

What has been your most rewarding experience in your publishing journey? Receiving awards for my work. I wrote the screenplay for the first book in my series, Into Autumn, and titled it A Tempest in Texas. It made finalist in the New York Screenwriting Festival and the Influx Magazine Screenwriting Festival. I never thought to enter Into Autumn into any contests, therefore it didn’t win anything. A Tempest in Texas won in Into Autumn’s stead. I did, however, enter Into Spring into the Independent Author’s Network (IAN1) ‘Book of the Year’ contest. It made ‘finalist’ in the action/adventure genre.

How many published books do you have? I have six published books, but Dangerous Waters published in 1986 is out of print, so I have five to sell including the screenplay.

Please list the titles of all your books:
How to Be a Smart SOB Like Me
Into Autumn – A Story of Survival
Into Spring – The Next Generation
Into Winter – The Armed Invasion
A Tempest in Texas

Do you come up with your title(s) before or after you write the manuscript? ‘Before, during, and after’ for the SOB book. The title was changed many times and when the book was complete, I settled on the current title. ‘Before’ for the rest of the series. The main character is loosely patterned after me. Lars Lindgren and I are advancing into the autumn of our lives. That’s where I came up with the title. Into Spring seemed appropriate for The Next Generation in book two. After Into Spring was finished and I had decided to write the series, Into Winter and Into Summer fell into place. That’s why the seasons aren’t sequential in the series. My best friend, after whom crazy Reggie is patterned after in Into Autumn, came up with the screenplay title. We tossed the name around for weeks while I was writing the script. He told me the title had to have the word ‘tempest’ in it. It was easy after that…A Tempest in Texas it was.

Please introduce your genre and why you prefer to write in that genre? My Four Seasons Series books are listed as action/adventure. How to Be a Smart SOB Like Me is non-fiction, but it is about life, my life mostly. The fiction series is about a major catastrophe in life. The characters are all ordinary people with their good qualities and their faults, all thrust into desperate survival mode. But, as in real life, the books are so much more. There is love, camaraderie, hardship, struggle, tough decisions, a menage a trois or two, murder, mystery, suspense, humor, sarcasm, bullying, domestic violence, hopes and dreams, girly stuff, man stuff, and lesbianism. Pretty much what you might find in real life. I look around and write about what I know. I try to hit on all the major conflicts of modern man (and woman), and maybe even a few not so major struggles.

Which book title would you like featured in this interview? Into The Winter. The Series is best if read in order, though books two and three were written as stand-alone novels.

What was your inspiration, spark or light bulb moment that inspired you to write the book (one book) that you are seeking promotion for? As I said earlier, I awoke from a dream very early one morning in January 2015, with a story in my head. I have no idea where it came from, but the story sounded good in my mind, good enough to get me out of bed and on the computer. I wrote for hours, the words spilling out of my head onto the page. I felt possessed, though I don’t believe in that sort of stuff. Before I knew it, I had written another book. I put my heart and soul into the story. I still love it whether or not anyone else does. But apparently though, quite a few people do like it.

What one positive piece of advice would you give to other authors? Don’t force the story or words. Write from your heart and soul. If you have the story in you, it will flow to the paper with ease.

Who is your favorite author and why? Mark Twain for Tom Sawyer. I was very sick with measles and mumps at the same time when I was young. My oldest sister bought this book for me. I loved the book and now that my sister is no longer with me, I think of her often and how sweet she was to me from that day forward. For poetry, I have to say Edgar Allen Poe. I love all his poetry, but Annabel Lee is my favorite.

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The Smart SOB (Save The World and Rant)
Into The Spring (Work In Progress)
Into The Winter (Work In Progress)

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