Dave Hoing lives in Waterloo, Iowa, with his wife Joni, a dog named Tree and a cat named Toro. In real life he’s a Library Associate at the University of Northern Iowa, where he has worked in one capacity or another since 1978. In his artistic life Dave is primarily a short story writer. He’s a member of Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, but now he concentrates mostly on literary, historical, and mystery fiction. His historical novel Hammon Falls, co-written with Roger Hileman, is his first published full-length work, although he has written (or, ahem, started to write) five others.
When not toiling in the library or sitting at the word processor, Dave likes to travel, compose music, collect antiquarian books, and read. His interests include virtually everything except internal combustion engines, with which he has a hate/hate relationship.
His short story experience came in handy when writing Hammon Falls. Short fiction deals in nuances and succinctness. At its best it observes and describes human behavior in few words, finding depth in brevity. That technique serves well in a novel with short chapters and a large cast of characters.
Dave’s love of history and travelling was also useful for the sections of Hammon Falls set in Paris, Dublin, and Buffalo, because it allowed him to write from experience and memory. Oddly, though, while he grew up in Iowa, where the bulk of the novel takes place, he’d never cared much about his own hometown’s past until Roger got him involved in the research for Hammon Falls. Rather like the prophet who is honored everywhere but his own home, Dave was interested in the history of every city but his own. After having done the research, though, he learned a valuable lesson: if a book has great characters and the story is well told, every place is interesting, be it Paris, Dublin, Buffalo, or, yes, even Waterloo, Iowa. It’s people who make the history, and the story, and people, wherever they are, are fascinating creatures indeed.
So why should anyone buy Hammon Falls? Quite simply, it’s got a lot of the stuff readers like—deep characterizations, interesting locations, and universal themes. It’s got war. It’s got crime. It’s got spirituality, betrayal, and redemption. Above all, it’s got a strong plot with explosive family relationships and a sweet, if tragic, love story. Add to that an innovative structure, and you have a book that’s both fun and challenging to read. Finally, it was written by two guys who love to write. They are not tortured artists. They are not driven to create. They don’t write as therapy. They don’t write to exorcise demons. They write for the sheer joy of it—and it shows.