WILLIAM PFIRRMAN: NIGHTMARE IN AURORA
Nightmare In Aurora
Rad-Reader: How difficult was it writing about what happened?
William: It was extremely difficult because some of the things I disclose in the book I have never told anyone before now. I have held them inside me, ashamed of some of the decisions I feel I was forced to make in an effort to salvage some type of normal life without the stigma of being an ex-con or a person dishonorably discharged from the military. This was extremely important to me for 2 reasons, one the Vietnam war was still going, though winding down at this stage and second, I had an exemplary military record up to that time and I didn't feel it would be fair for it to be destroyed as a result of something I was innocent of doing.
Rad-Reader: What is your relationship if any to the main characters in the story or were they strictly fact based on an event?
William: I am Charley in the book. Tom's name was actually Tom, I changed his last name and he WAS a friend and former roommate. When I sat down to write the book I made an effort to find Tom and learned he had died a month earlier. Rad-Reader: My husband had it so right on from the beginning. This was one book that I just felt from the beginning that would get him going. He wasn’t even finished and he was talking to me about. Now that is a book worth reading if it can get him stirred up.
Rad-Reader: How many people, that you come in contact with, think that this is about the recent shootings that happened in Aurora?
William: I have not met anyone in person that thinks that but I have received a couple of e-mails from people that seemed a bit angry with me, thinking I was writing about it.
Rad-Reader: Besides 1 detective being fired and 1 officer reprimanded was there any other ever officers’ misconduct brought out?
William: Not that I am aware of. I wrote for copies of the personnel records of all those involved in the event, as they are a matter of public record under Colorado law, to learn more about the men involved as well as learning the employment history of Detective Landers and to see if any of those involved continued to violate department policy, but was told due to the time that had elapsed, those records were no longer available
Rad-Reader: What changes if any has the city made since then with the way the police department is run?
William: I am not aware of any changes that were made and with the exception of Detective Landers and his influence of a young, inexperienced patrolman, who followed the detectives instructions and failed to file his reports or even notify the detectives in charge of the investigation, all the other police officers involved in this case worked honestly and diligently in their search for the truth. Had they not I would have spent many years in a Colorado prison. Rad-Reader: You can tell this happened back in the 1970’s because the things that happened to you in this book were just appalling. With all the paper trail that you were able to produce I just can’t believe that you were able to be treated this way and thing changed within the department and only one officer was fired.
Rad-Reader: Were you able to talk to any of the officers from that time? If so, what do they remember?
William: I made several attempts to locate the two lead detectives in the case to speak with them, but I am very sorry to say those efforts failed. I wanted to take the time to thank them, even Detective McCarthy, who believed Tom and made Tom's betrayal of me successful.
Rad-Reader: Is this your first book, if so why this story to start?
William: Yes, this is my first book. I wrote it for a couple of reasons, one was to finally allow the secrets out, to expose what actions I had taken to save myself from greater harm, it was like therapy for me. The second reason was I had been on my son's radio show and told the story and the feedback he received asked if I had written the story and if so where could they get the book. After learning people were interested in the story I decided to attempt to write it.
Rad-Reader: When is the next book coming out? The topic sounded like a continuation of this story? Is that correct?
William: I am in the process of writing another book. This one will have many of the same characters but will be strictly and completely fiction. However, many of those in the book actually exist and were involved in the activities I tell about in the book. I knew most of those people I write about personally. But, like I said, it is fiction and I think it is a continuation of my therapy, it is a type of "get even" story for me, titled, "The Deadly Game of Betrayal"
Rad-Reader: How difficult was it to get a hold of all of the police reports?
William: The people at the Aurora Police dept. Records Division were great and extremely helpful. They provided me with every copy of every report they could get their hands on and got them to me within 6 weeks of my requesting them. I could not be more pleased with the service they provided me and that which made writing this book possible.
Rad-Reader: Did anybody at the hall of records or wherever think you were going to write a book about the information?
William: Yes, they knew I was writing a book. I spoke with a woman by the name of Kathryn, and told her I was one of the subjects in the reports and I was going to write a book about the experience. She was very kind and helpful.
Rad-Reader: Has this story haunted you and for how long? Now that it has been written has it been cathartic for you in the way you thought it would be and can you put the ghost of the event somewhat to bed?
William: I have held many of these secrets inside me for 40 years now and yes, I feel as though I have allowed some light in what was a very dark place in my mind, heart and soul. I believe when I complete the next one, I will feel like I got my "payback", and I think I will finally be able to put it to rest in my mind. I really feel like I have to write this second one to truly be able to say I am over it. I wish I could have spoken to Tom prior to his death and hear him apologize, if he would at all, or failing that, learn exactly WHY, as all I can do is speculate as to his reasons for doing that which I know he had done to me.
Rad-Reader; What made you decide to become a writer? How and when did you realize you wanted to do it?
William: I decided to become a writer when I was forced into retirement for medical reasons. Then after telling my story on my son's morning radio show, the response he received after the show had aired, indicated to me that people wanted to read the entire story and not just hear the portions I could share in a 15 minute segment.
Rad-Reader: Tell our readers about yourself… Is there anything personal, you the writer, would like to share with our readers that they would find interesting. Something no one knows about you? How about something personal? (Funny childhood story)
William: I tell a lot about myself in the book, but a few things that I don't discuss are; I was at one time the youngest member of the International Chiefs of Police Association at the age of 21. I had lunch with a sitting President, Ronald Reagan, at the same Hilton at which he was shot approximately 6 months after that event. I am divorced for 13 years now after a 22 year marriage, and I have 2 wonderful children, a son, Brad and a daughter Ashlee both grown and successful in their own rights.
Rad-Reader: Where do you get your inspirations? How did you create the characters for your current book?
William: My inspiration is taken from my need to tell the story and my characters are all real people that I have known throughout different times in my life. Some are very shady and miserable people, but being a police officer that's the type of people you come into contact with most often, unfortunately.
Rad-Reader: What genres do you like to write and which do you write the most of?
William: I enjoy writing crime drama's and thrillers, things I feel I know well and believe I can share in a way that the reader can feel as though they know the characters as well as I have known them.
Rad-Reader: What about your characters? Are any of them real? You know based on real people you’ve known or at least some of their traits?
William: All of the characters in this first book as well as the second book I am now working on are all real people whom I have known in one way or another, some better than others but all of whom I have crossed paths with in my lifetime.
Rad-Reader: Out of your books do you have a favorite character? And why? If your book was to become of a movie who would you cast as your lead characters? Or was there an actor in mind as you wrote each character?
William: At the risk of sounding vain, I would have to say my favorite character is Charley since it is he who I know the best, since I'm Charley in the book. <smile> I would love to see this work become a movie, as for a lead character, I am not sure for the role of Charley, but perhaps Brad Pitt for the role of Tom. It is not something I have really though a lot about, though I have recently had a meeting with a screenwriter to work with me in adapting the book. Your choice:
Rad-Reader: Ok, here we go now my husband has his choices on who he thinks: Matt Damon-You, Josh Duhamel-Tom, & Max Irons-Jack and me Colton Hayes-You, I can live with Josh as Tom, & Chris Hemsworth-Jack. So, for my hubby because we have to leave the women thinking of who I want of course.
Rad-Reader: How many books do you have out?
William: I have only written this one so far, Nightmare in Aurora. I am working on a book with many of the same characters in the first book, but it will be able to stand alone in spite of the fact that many in this new work are in the first one.
Rad-Reader: Out of the books you’ve written which is your favorite and has it been the same as the publics?
William: Again, Nightmare in Aurora is my first but the reviews I have received have been excellent. I am drawing a 4.67 out of a possible 5 on Goodreads, 4.75 out of a possible 5 on Amazon and a perfect 5 out of a possible 5 on Barnes and Noble. Also the feedback I have received from those that have not written a formal review have all been excellent and better than anything I could have imagined.
Rad-Reader: How many books do you have out at the time?
William: One right now, I am hoping to sell enough copies of this one to help me pay for it and also cover the cost, if necessary, to bring the second one out.
Rad-Reader: When is your next book coming out?
William: I would love to have the second book, "The Deadly Game of Betrayal" out within the next couple of months. I am a few chapters away from completing it now.
Rad-Reader: Any other genres you want to try that you are just too afraid to?
William: I am not sure I want to venture out of the genre I feel most comfortable in, but that doesn't mean I would never touch my toe to that water in the future.
Rad-Reader: Are you a full-time writer? Or as they say, “Do you have a day job that allows you to write and give you great insight into your writing?”
William: As of now, writing is all I do. I still don't work every day on the current project, but like to devote a few days a week to it.
Rad-Reader: What other projects aside from writing can you tell us about?
William: I have a project I am working on refinishing some furniture that I have had laying around for some time. I have a few beautiful wooden tables and I am working on sanding them down, re-staining them and making them like new again.
Rad-Reader: What do you get to do during you down time for fun?
William: I enjoy cooking and spend some of my down time creating dishes. Rad-Reader: Breakfast on William!!! J
Rad-Reader: If you knew at a young age did your parents support you? How about now, do your family and friends support you?
William: My parents are gone now, but I know they would support me and be very proud of me. My children and my brother all have been very supportive and surprised as I had never given them the slightest inkling that I was going to write a book one day
Rad-Reader: Did you self-publish or go to a publisher? If so why? Was it hard and what would you recommend to up and coming writers on how to go about it?
William: I "self-published". After many attempts to obtain representation from a literary agent and getting "thanks but no thanks", time and time again, I decided to go the self-publishing route as I wanted to finally see this work in print. Once I had made the decision to go with self-publishing I took some time to research the different companies, and there are tons of them, including searching for reviews of them all. I finally selected one and just went for it. The company I chose to work with was excellent, very professional, and responsive to me with all of my questions or any concerns during the process and helped me produce a very professional finished product.
Rad-Reader: When you self-publish you don’t get to have a marketing team to promote your book for you professional as well as a marketing team. How did you spread the news about your books if you did not have a publishing company to help spread the word and did it work?
William: I am not very well accomplished in the marketing sector of this business, so it has been difficult. I had a web site for a while, but the cost to maintain it was prohibitive in relationship to hits or help so I gave that up. Now I rely on my Facebook pages and a lot of chatter on Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, and Smashwords to get the word out. I also have ads running on Bing, and Goodreads but it is too early to tell if they are helpful or not. And finally I have been lucky enough to be invited to participate on this blog. I could not be more grateful to Char and her husband for inviting me to participate on their blog. I was just glad I went with my ESP/God on this one. I knew that Pat would love it when I saw it. He did & the rest is history & God. He puts us all where we are supposed to be when we are supposed to be there. J.
Rad-Reader: Where are you going from here? Do you have any hopes and dreams for your future as a writer?
William: I am hoping to be able to adapt Nightmare in Aurora into a screenplay that will attract some interest for those in that medium and I am working on my next project, "The Deadly Game of Betrayal". From there I will just have to see what opportunities I am presented with. Rad-Reader: Enter shameless plug… if you need a halfway okay blogger I am right there for you big guy. LOL :D
Rad-Reader: Give me a name of a song that plays in your head when you think of your book. Would you like to say something to encourage our readers to read your books?
William: I would have to say I hear the theme from "Rocky" in my head. It is inspirational, someone that believed in himself when no one else would and overcame huge obstacles as Charley had to in this book. I would tell potential readers of Nightmare in Aurora, that if you enjoy true crime stories, a book written from the soul of the writer, one that WANTS you to experience the same things Charley does in this book as you read it and experience it, then please pick it up. I don't think you'll be sorry. Don't want to risk the $7.99 for the eBook or $12 or so for the paperback, then borrow it from Amazon Prime for free. Then if you like it, you can buy it. The holidays are fast approaching and it would make a wonderful gift for anyone you may know that enjoys true crime and thriller type books.
Rad-Reader: How do you chose your titles for your books?
William: So far choosing the titles have been easy for me. Nightmare in Aurora was and in many ways, is, still a nightmare in my mind. Rad-Reader: Since the beginning of our talks over the internet we have become friends. I know that our hopes for you is that you will find the peace to forgive yourself for something that was never your fault. The event that took place were totally out of your control. God, is and will take care of all those involved and you my friend need to heal mind, body and soul. For we pray for God to give you peace.
Rad-Reader: If you were not an author what would you be?
William: A little better off financially. LOL In all seriousness, I would just be a retired person living on Social Security disability and happy to be alive.
Rad-Reader: Are there ever any hidden messages in your books you want the reader to find?
William: No, nothing hidden, everything in my book, any message I may be offering is all out there for everyone to see.
Rad-Reader: What kind of books do you like to read?
William: I like true crime, thrillers and some non-fiction like that written by John Dean.
Rad-Reader: What new authors have peeked your interest?
William: I have really been too busy to seek out new authors, but I have read a few tidbits on some on Facebook pages and on Goodreads that I hope to soon be able to read.
Rad-Reader: Where you good at English/Writing in school?
William: I was an average student at best.
Rad-Reader: Are you in any writing groups? Do you use long hand, computer. Typewriter, or dictate it?
William: I am a member of a writer critique group but I don't attend every meeting. I use my computer to write and I used Microsoft Word with the grammar and spelling correction turned on. I like how it give me a word count as I go along.
Rad-Reader: Who proof reads for you? Or do you have someone do it for you?
William: I'll give it out to friends and ask them to read it and to try and catch errors. I also do a lot of it myself.
Rad-Reader: I’ve heard some authors leave their work for a month then will edit. Do you do that?
William: Yes I do. I will print it out after a month, sometimes longer, and then read the entire manuscript, or at least as much as is written to that point and make corrections on that in ink, then go back and make the corrections on the computer.
Rad-Reader: How do you select who edits your books?
William: I do most of it myself, and with Nightmare in Aurora, I paid the $4-500, I forget the exact amount to have them edit it as well.
Rad-Reader: Tell us about your cover. How did you select it? How important do you think it is to the sale of your book?
William: I think it is true, that people do judge a book, initially at least, based on it's cover. The publisher I worked with gave me a couple of options and I picked the one that I thought best caught a potential buyers attention. Rad-Reader: You are so true. I will get a book on gut instinct. Then I will have several piled up and then if one has a better cover then another I will cut it from the list unless the bio is really compelling.
Rad-Reader: What advice would you give your young self?
William: Make sure you always cover your butt. Take nothing for granted, and love what it is you do, no matter what it is. Rad-Reader: Here, Here!
Finally Rad-Reader: How can we get in touch with you? Do you have a blog, Facebook, Twitter, Web page...?
William: People can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org,
or through my Facebook page, www.facebook.com/nightmareinaurora.
My book can be purchased at Amazon, Barnes and Noble as well as at www.outskirtspress.com/nightmareinaurora.
I also have a book trailer posted on YouTube. You can find it at the following link. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgBq9TKdpAg&feature=c4-overview&list=UUCSIvrBLClCPNkPoDxqN9aQ
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