Like most Moms, A.R. Shaw worries about her kids. She never dreamed the worrying would lead her to write a post-apocalyptic series.
“I began thinking along the lines of survival,” says Shaw. “If he needed to get home, how would he do that? What route would he take?”
This line of thought sparked her imagination. From that she createdGraham’s Resolution series featuring Graham Morgan.
Many post-apocalyptic books contain protagonists aware of forthcoming disaster. Shaw wanted something a little different.
“I wanted someone who was much more realistic,” she says of character Graham. “A clueless guy who wasn’t prepared and scoffed at the mere mention of preparedness.” She created Graham and then threw him to the wolves.
Shaw creates her characters from scratch, deciding on features as she goes. Not one to write bios or sketch out her characters, she “thinks about them until I can stand next to them and breathe the same air they’re pulling into their own lungs. Then I know I’ve got them.”
As a former Radio Operator in the United States Air Force Reserves, then a wife and mother of four children, Shaw doesn’t hesitate to throw herself into a task. She wrote The China Pandemic, Book 1 of Graham’s Resolution series in three months. As the kids had all left home, she had only her dog Oakley and the tick-tocking of the clock for companionship.
Solitude is a necessity for writing, but in Shaw’s opinion, the storytelling is equally important. “A story that’s unique and intriguing, [that’s] the most important aspect of writing a story.”
Shaw’s father was in the oil business. This afforded her opportunities to experience life in different countries. She remembers monkeys swinging from tree to tree while living in Venezuela. “It makes for an interesting upbringing and coping mechanisms.” As a result, Shaw read a lot as a child and draws from her personal experiences in her writing. “Growing up that way also makes for a heightened sense of humor.”
One of her childhood experiences helped set the tone for Graham’s Resolution series. During hurricane season in Texas, people were expected to prepare for the worst. “We prepared so that we didn’t starve waiting for someone to help us. We kept drinking water available and extra canned food before we needed it.”
During a panel discussion at the Long Beach Comic Expo, part of the discussion revolved around post-apocalyptic scenarios. Shaw’s comment, “I think if society falls you will see the worst of humanity and the best of humanity,” was well-received as well as poignant.
Like many writers, Shaw has a long list of writers she admires: Hemingway, Steinbeck, Stephen King and Ann Quindlen just to name a few. Two authors she would most like to have a conversation with are Ray Bradbury and Ayn Rand. Bradbury had a “wicked way of foretelling the future. [Rand] was a master at description and I’d love to ask her many questions.”
Shaw has written and published two books thus far in Graham’s Resolution series: The China Pandemic and The CascadePreppers. The Last Infidels, the third installment, is due out soon. She is currently working on the fourth installment, as yet untitled. She also recently completed a novella for Stephen Konkoly’s Kindle World – Perseid Collapse series, Deception on Durham Road. Its release is slated for February 3rd.
To learn more about A.R. Shaw and her books visit
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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, follow her on Twitter @penspen or visit her website at www.penspen.info