This is my story and I’m stickin’ to it…
Updated: Sep 25
Okay, you’re probably asking:
Who is Robert P. Fitton?
I am he…I reside on Cape Cod, so I guess I’m Cape Cod author Robert P. Fitton. I was brought up in North Easton on the South Shore of Massachusetts.
Two things stand out pertaining to writing when I was a kid. I was forever imitating teachers, characters and public figures not a mimic but purely imitating.
Secondly and this a strange all these years later. When we received out weekly spelling list I couldn’t have cared less about the proper spelling of a word. Instead, I was connecting the words in sequence to a story. I had idea why. Well, now I do…
My major at the University of Massachusetts Amherst was connecting spelling words. No…No.. It was American Studies with emphasis on American History and politics-I sprinkled my courses with Native American Mythology, American Literature and that heresy course in Science Fiction. At this time in my life, the wild oats behind me, I buckled down and graduated cum laude-I loved what I was studying with professors who were both instructive and inspiring. It was in the course studying the myths of the American Indian that I had an assignment required that I write a native American mythological story which I later called the Legend of the Seasons as told by the old man. Two things happened. The story dazzled professor. ( Today I see the shortcomings of the story but it’s not bad) and secondly Now I knew I could make up stories!
Listen—If your really serious about writing it is never a hobby. A hobby is a joke when compared to creating stories. Writing has a much higher meaning. It beckons you; it captivates you to the level that you are drawn into the creation. If writing doesn’t hold that type of mantra for you, then you just don’t understand.
I had pent up creative energy after I graduated. Had to work for sure. Writing the first draft of the Apex of Power, a Star Trek story, opened the door as Rod Serling said of imagination and having the support of people around me (Thank you) propelled me into a new universe. A universe of meaning, a matrix of interacting characters, and I commenced this ascent into this other world on a Smith Corona portable typewriter, White out and Xerox paper not included. And from the caverns of Manhattan came a long-distance call that bantam books was saying good things about the Apex of Power.
In my early twenties I had snafued an agent and we paraded around the streets of New York city. I wore a three-piece suit, showboated my brief case containing my novel. Seeing Tommy John pitch at the old Yankee Stadium would be the legacy of the NYC trip.
Sometimes it’s not easy making the transition back to the real world of world and life. The Apex of Power is a freebee on my site. Again, it’s impossible to stop being creative if one is consumed by creativity.
The novels just kept coming. Again, with a lot of affirmation. And I’d send them down to my agent… I frequently am inside my head aka asleep at the switch never questioned what the agent was or was not doing with my work. I figured that my output would get better and I was accumulating a portfolio once something hit.
I liked my career in outside sales because I worked with an immense slew of characters-many of whom made it into my books. And I liked competing. By the time I had written five books and a number of short stories I was working in sunny Southern California but missing New England.
Things really do change on a dime. Not good. Experiences shape the psyche and sometimes change hurts. I didn’t write anything for over a year. It was like a fighter having lost badly gradually working his way back into condition. But that fighter upon his way back learns new techniques-he reinvents himself.
Then I was reluctantly prompted.(Thank you for doing so) I began over time take seminars, courses and lectures from ‘big deal’ writers, producers and screen writers. When the number one science fiction writer in the country at the time told me after reading my work-You know how to write. Yikes and thank you so saying that.
I held onto my agent way too long but jettisoned him- only when he said he was involved in Broadway now and clearly hadn’t given proper attention to my work. I wanted to control sales of my work with a copyrights and the point of sale.
The Fitton Chronicles
Concurrently, personal computers had captured the world. Again, I reluctantly shifted from typewriter to PC and Laptop. I began to utilize the web and sold books as Palm Pilot files in the US and points around the globe. That was pretty cool.
Later I invested in companies that were eager to promise great things on the web but soon were unmasked… You can figure out the rest.
Forget the moneygrubbers. By now I had developed a strong but thoughtful voice, many times humorous and buttressed by a direct style. My time travel novels reflected my history background and a sense of adventure. My writing according to one reviewer alluded to a Hitchcockian flavor like North by Northwest or a Boagie and Becall film. Remember my first effort was a Star Trek novel. To say I was enamored by the Star Trek in the 1960’s doesn’t capture how that show influenced my writing. So did Serling and the Twilight Zone. Not that I tried to write Twilight Zone or Star Trek episodes… I think you have to hit the sweet spot of what a book to TV series is all about and it becomes part of the universe of writing.
Yes my crazy sense of humor comes through especially in the Matthias Jones books. Murder mayhem and monkey business.
Sales on the East Coast
I decided to keep my web site and sell paperback books from iUniverse. This worked but with the arrival of Amazon’s program, which brought in marketing, promotion and publishing both in paperback and kindle. And then a third option—Audio Books.
When I was a kid the idea of recording my voice, surroundings or events was as important as writing became for me. As a teenager you might spot me in North Easton Massachusetts with a portable tape recorder recording events or making parodies and pretend interviews.
Portable Reel to Reel
In college I would sometimes summarize and record my notes for exams. My vacations and travels are taped from this period.
Now with my books I would read drafts I had written to hear how it sounded. I would make corrections to improve the work. But I was doing something else… I was using my voices for individual. characters.
‘My name is Bucky Driscoll. I’m a professional security officer at Hamilton College in Hamilton, New Hampshire.‘
More and more. Which I kept on cassette. With edits I had a rudimentary audio book. When I purchased a professional voice recorder everything changed again as it had with the personal computer. Edits were much easier and under control. Special effects were seamless. I began selling the audio books along with my paperbacks and kindle in multiple markets.
My website at www.fittonbooks.com has quality books and audio books. Not like a bunch of trash you see around the web.
I did my voices privately over the years— to the annoyance of other, I’m sure. Now I can take my characters and emphasize them in my audio books.
Harlan Elison said to truly get the best quality audio is to have the author himself perform the audio book. That’s Harlan speaking. But don’t think Elison went to the Fitton extreme. There are many great audio book readers better than I but they don’t have the perspective that I do so Elison is right on those counts.
So, what are you waiting for? Go over audible and listen to the audible samples. If you need more audio samples email me- I’ll get them to you. The books are good.
Thank you very much. You have a great day and a wonderful evening…