Leominster, Massachusetts is known for four things: Johnny Appleseed, a thriving plastics industry, Robert Cormier, and New York Times bestselling author R.A. Salvatore. With over 20 million books sold worldwide, more than four dozen books and numerous game credits Salvatore has become one of the most important figures in modern epic fantasy.
A lifelong resident of Massachusetts, R.A. Salvatore, began writing shortly after receiving his Bachelor of Science degree in Communications/Media from Fitchburg State College. He penned his first manuscript in 1982, in a spiral notebook, writing by candlelight while listening to Fleetwood Mac’s Tusk album.
His first break came in 1987 when TSR, publisher of Dungeons & Dragons®, offered him a contract based on a proposal for the Forgotten Realms shared-world setting. Bob’s first published novel, The Crystal Shard, was released in February of 1988 and climbed to #2 on the Waldenbooks bestseller list. By 1990 his third book, The Halfling’s Gem, had made the New York Times bestseller list. With a contract for three more TSR books, and with his first novel and its sequel sold to Penguin, Bob remembers that “it seemed like a good time to quit my day job.”
Salvatore spends a good deal of time speaking to schools and library groups, encouraging people, particularly young people, to read. With the zeal of a religious convert, he talks about the virtues of reading and the ultimate appeal, “it is fun.” He remembers his return to reading when he was in college, “The blizzard of 1978 shut down my college for a week. My sister had given me a copy of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit, which I read while house-bound. When I got back to school, I changed my major from math to communications.”
He just finished writing Night of the Hunter due out in March 2014. His latest book, The Companions will be in stores on August 6, 2013.
Salvatore makes his home in Massachusetts, with his wife, Diane, three dogs Oliver, Artemis and Ivan and Jilseponie, a gray tiger cat. He is on the Leominster Library Board of Trustees and he spends his “free time” coaching and playing softball on a team made up of family and close friends. His gaming group still meets on Sunday nights to play games, ranging from MMORG’s to Dungeons & Dragons and board games. Of late, they have been play testing the new game R.A. is designing with Bryan Salvatore and Geno Salvatore, his sons and sometimes writing partners, DemonWars: Reformation, a role-playing game set in the World of Corona.