Cooper’s Crystal Deception and Crystal Conquest reflect his wonder and enthusiasm for rockets and space exploration.
“I guess I am living my childhood fantasies in my books,” he quips.
Reading science fiction authors such as Heinlein, Asimov, Clarke and Bradbury no doubt helped spark his imagination as well.
In real life, Cooper is a professor and department head of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at the University of Connecticut. He is also founder and on the board of directors of Control Station, Inc. a technology company. In these roles he has authored or co-authored more than 80 scholarly publications.
“It has given me lots of practice presenting science and technology in a manner accessible to a broad audience,” he says.
When he first began writing, Cooper was seeking a new creative outlet. He began several projects that looked interesting. Six months later he found writing to be the most appealing endeavor.
His goal in writing the Crystal series was to write books that he himself would enjoy reading. “My preference is fast-paced, action-adventure with great characters, a science tech theme and a plot with surprises.” He leaves it up to readers to determine if he succeeded that goal.
In developing his characters, Cooper describes it as being akin to a jigsaw puzzle. He says, “I enjoy being at a particular point in an adventure, with characters deployed here and there, all with histories and in certain situations, and now I must move forward in a plausible and entertaining fashion. And then each character must behave in a manner consistent with their personality.”
His characters are a collection of traits and habits observed in people, through reading or from movies. “I write in a rotating point of view style,” Cooper explains, “where the reader spends time with each of the central characters. It’s great fun to be a character for a few days.”
Cooper first began his Crystal series in July 2012. Currently he is working on the third book in his Crystal series, Crystal Rebellion. He will also be releasing a short story prequel to the Crystal series in March 2015.
“I have two goals with this short piece,” Cooper says. “One is to offer readers a free, low effort way to sample the story before making a purchase. The second reason is to give fans a backstory on Sid and Cheryl.”
Practice is the best advice writers can get, according to Cooper. In order to hone writing skills, he suggests writers try their hand at writing pieces that help society. “Neighborhood library, museum, senior center or shelter all have access to grant opportunities and would benefit from a talented individual helping them to write one.”
This type of writing may not be very creative but, as Cooper says, “like practicing your scales on an instrument, this sort of activity strengthens writing skills.”
Cooper believes the most important aspect of writing is to have fun doing it. “Write what brings you joy and satisfaction and you will produce the best work you are able and have fun doing it.”
For more information visit www.crystalseries.com
Pen has self-published 20 titles in print and e-book formats. Her latest endeavor, Nero’s Fiddle, is a fictitious account of an EMP attack on the United States with women heroes. Visit Nero’s Fiddle website at http://bit.ly/1yYsNH2 follow her on Twitter @penspen or visit her website at www.penspen.info