Share This Page

Writer's works rooted in W.Pa.

| Tuesday, Sept. 17, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
David Drayer
Cover of David Drayer's latest novel.

The combination of Western Pennsylvania's landscape and people is so rich in terms of story, said author David Drayer, it's hard to believe the region isn't written about more.

Drayer, who grew up in Rimersburg, Clarion County, has published two novels. Even though he has traveled and lived in a number of cities and states, the region's influence has stayed with him and continues to permeate his writing.

“The people I've grown up with and my earlier influences are tattooed on me,” he said.

His first novel, “Strip Cuts,” published by Rowdy House Publishing in March 2000, is set in the blue-collar coal town of Cherry Run.

Drayer, who lives in the nation's capital, recently returned to his native area for a visit. He took a few minutes during the half-time of a Steelers game to talk about his new book, “Something Fierce,” which was published by Route 33 Press in June.

It's a love story with a forbidden affair that challenges definitions of love, he said.

He said his novels are character driven and told from multiple perspectives.

“I love the idea of perspectives, how if there are five people in a room and something happens, there are five totally different perspectives,” he said, adding that for him, writing allows him to slip into the lives of his characters.

But following a character's lead can sometimes be frustrating if that character takes over, as was the case with the troubled and brilliant young woman of his latest work, Kerri Engel, Drayer. said.

“Kerri really took the book over for a while,” he said, adding that she was fascinating but a hard character to write.

“I had wanted to write a beautiful love story,” Drayer said. “But it didn't exactly turn out that way.”

Drayer's publicist, Susan Kane, said that “Amazon reviews have been overwhelmingly positive.”

One review praised the complexity of Drayer's characters. Another described his writing as breath-taking and deeply engaging.

Drayer said he fell in love with reading and writing in high school and earned a master of fine arts degree from the University of Iowa.

For young writers starting out, Drayer suggests keeping a journal and reading a wide variety of styles and subject matter.

He has worked many jobs, including as a playwright, screenwriter, actor, ghostwriter, college professor and government contractor, he said, but makes sure writing is a part of his schedule.

“I'll write forever, regardless if I become famous,” he said.

Brigid Beatty is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.