Pairs, written by D. W. Richards is the story of Kayley and Adam, a single mom who makes her living writing greeting cards and a young carpenter; and Alexandra and Henry, a former stripper with dual identities and a math teacher with some unusual gender issues. The couples are connected through Henry and Adam, who are cousins, and through Kayley’s friend Helen, who is also Henry’s step-sister. As each couple builds a connection, the joint friendship turns into family. Kayley’s daughter, Terra, becomes a central focus of both relationships; she is loved and nurtured by the village that the couples create.
With the tightening of the bond between the couples, the mission for the pairs—which begins and ends with Kayley—turns to parenthood for Henry and Alexandra. The story weaves the elements of past sexual abuse, sexual dysfunction, problem pregnancies, and absolute devotion to family into a plot that draws the reader into the lives of these very unconventional characters
Who was the author that inspired you or that you enjoyed reading?
My earliest venture into fiction directed to an adult audience was science-fiction. I was partially influenced by my father who is an avid reader with eclectic tastes. Thus, while growing up, I had a wide variety of commercial fiction titles available to me. On my own accord, I was drawn toward sci-fi during my mid-teens, which was a predilection that stayed with me into my early twenties.
However, as a consequence of my education, I was exposed to a great variety of literary works. During my final year of high school I took the most number of English courses that the board would permit for graduation. And although I graduated with a degree in psychology, again in university I stuffed my curriculum with English courses.
From that mishmash it might seem that I would have a difficult time selecting that one single influence that stands out above all others. A few leap to mind; Isaac Asimov, Frank Herbert, John Fowles, T.S. Eliot (in particular, “The Wasteland”) and even the bard himself, Shakespeare. I’m not sure what this says about my psychological makeup but “Macbeth” resonated with me when I first studied it. And it still does.
Yet my decision is not so difficult. It is clear to me that my father, simply through osmosis of his behaviour, influenced me to become a reader, and then ultimately a writer. Possessing an artistic bent that was forever seeking a means to express itself, I dabbled in many outlets for my creativity. I even toyed with the idea of becoming a comedian for awhile. I believe what lead me to becoming a novelist was first becoming a fan of reading.
I am fortunate now to have several friends who are willing to critique my work and provide honest feedback, but my father was the first. To this day, I know that I can rely on his straightforward candour. Neither a budding writer nor a son could ask for more.
About D.W. Richards
D.W. Richards is a member of the Canadian Authors Association and beyond being a novelist he is also a script-doctor and freelance writer. An excerpt from Pairs will appear in the October 2010 issue of the international literary PDF quarterly Cantarville as a standalone fiction piece. In addition to creative writing, D.W. Richards has a Bachelor Degree in Psychology from Carleton University and is a Certified General Accountant. He divides his time between Venice, Italy and Ottawa, Canada.
Visit his website at http://www.pairsthenovel.com/
or connect with him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/DW_Richards.
You can purchase a paperback copy of Pairs online by clicking here