Archive for Announcements

Wesleyan University

November 19, 2016

I’m enrolled in a short story writing course at Wesleyan University, my first step in pursuit of an MPhil in humanities, the only nearby equivalent of an MFA program in creative writing. Each week we write a one to two page response to a prompt, and before the course is over in mid-December, I’ll write two fifteen to twenty page short stories.
Just for fun, I’ll post some of my prompt responses and the two short stories on my blog under Uncategorized. As usual, any feedback will be appreciated. Thanks.

Find The Fourth Rule on OmniLit

March 7, 2016

Oak Tree Press has now made my thriller, The Fourth Rule, available through in multiple eBook formats including adobe acrobat, E pub, and Mobi pocket. The eBook price is $4.99.
To find The Fourth Rule go to Browse All Categories on the left panel until you find Suspense/Thriller and click on the tab to open. At the top of the page on the right, type in the title The Fourth Rule, and then search. Scroll down five or six books and you will find it.

The Fourth Rule Now On Nook

It has been just over a year since The Fourth Rule debuted in trade paperback on Amazon and through the Oak Tree Press bookstore. Early in 2015, it became available on Kindle, and then the paperback was available through Barnes & Noble bookstores and online. Now, OTP has made my thriller available on the Nook.
If you haven’t yet bought all the copies you want, you have another venue. Audio next? KOBO, maybe? Who knows?


June 23, 2015

I will present my novel, The Fourth Rule, at ThrillerFest’s Debut Authors’ Breakfast in New York City on Saturday July 11. The onsite Barnes & Noble bookstore will be selling the book, and the event program will feature this year’s debut novels. If you’re attending ThrillerFest, please join me Saturday morning for breakfast.

5 Star Review

April 24, 2015

If you’re looking for a story with a lot of suspense  – and one that deals with the CIA  – The Fourth Rule by Douglass Seaver is a great novel to check out. The book is a definite page-turner, with exciting action and complex, well-developed characters. The story progresses at a nice pace, and the dialogue is engaging and believable. I thought it was really interesting how Seaver wrote the book in present tense; it added to the thrilling nature of the novel. You can tell this book is very well-written. I really enjoyed Seaver’s writing style and hope to read more of his work.


April 18, 2015 from Oak Tree Reviews

Palm Beach Peril

April 19, 2015

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Palm Beach Peril was great—over 300 people. Standing room only!

Lisa Scittoline, the New York Times bestselling author of 24 books, and five debut novelists selected by the International Thriller Writers talked about their books and writing at the latest Writers Live event  held at the Hagen Ranch Road Branch of the Delray Beach Library.  Lisa was funny and high energy, Oline Cogdill, the moderator, was thoughtful and articulate, and Stacy Alesi of the Delray Beach Library ran a smooth, hassle free event. I thank them one and all for the opportunity to participate in such a prestigious and vibrant event.

Palm Beach Peril, April 17

March 7, 2015

I’m excited to announce that I will be one of five debut thriller authors selected by the International Thriller Writers to join New York Times bestselling author Lisa Scottoline on April 17 at the Palm Beach Peril. This major event will introduce Lisa’s latest noel, Every Fifteen Minutes, and will include readings, a panel discussion and book signings. I will be there to discuss and sign copies of The Fourth Rule.

The event will be held at the Hagen Ranch Road Branch Library in Delray Beach, FL beginning at 2 p.m. If you are in the area, please join us!

Interview in the March Issue of The Big Thrill

February 19, 2015

THE FOURTH RULE by Douglass Seaver

By Dawn Ius


In his twenty-five years as a business executive and management consultant, Douglass Seaver has authored dozens of articles, guest editorials, and even a chapter in a marketing book. Now, Seaver adds a full-length novel to his already impressive publishing resume, with the debut of his international suspense, THE FOURTH RULE.


THE FOURTH RULE is the story of two brothers—one a missing Green Beret, the other, Matthew Grant, charged with keeping a secret. When the CIA approaches Grant to help solve the mystery of his brother’s disappearance, readers are taken on a twisting journey of suspense and intrigue, culminating in a high stakes gamble of life…and peace.


Here, Seaver talks about what inspired THE FOURTH RULE, his transition to fiction, and what he’s working on next.



Congrats on your debut, THE FOURTH RULE. It sounds fascinating. What was the inspiration for this story?


When I was fourteen, my dad told me a story about a man who rose every morning, got dressed, had breakfast with his family, and left for work. He rode the elevator down to the lobby, exited his apartment building, walked across the street to the local bakery, and bought a chocolate croissant. He returned to his building, went down to the basement, hid the white bakery bag with the croissant, and went on to work. At the end of the day, the man returned to his building, went to the basement, threw the bag and the chocolate croissant into the furnace, and then went up to his apartment and family.


Four decades later, I remembered the story, and it led me to think about keeping secrets. I became fascinated by the impact secrets might have on those who kept them. That curiosity became the backbone of the plot for my novel.


What’s behind the title, THE FOURTH RULE?


While doing research about secrets, I stumbled across a quote that led me to the title. I was scanning Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations when I found “Tell No Secrets”, attributed to King Charles I as the fourth of his twelve personal rules to live by. “Tell no secrets” is exactly the challenge my hero faces when the CIA pressures him to reveal what happened to his older brother after he returned from Vietnam and disappeared.

While “tell no secrets” would have been a good title, it didn’t convey the mystery I wanted. “The fourth rule” was as relevant, simple and strong, but its meaning wasn’t as explicit— a bit of mystery even in the title.


What can you tell me about the book that readers won’t find out on the back jacket cover?


First, there is a love story between the hero and a foreign correspondent that is integral to the plot. Second, the secret around which the story revolves isn’t revealed until the last paragraph of the book, when the reader learns the hero’s secret, but the characters in the story don’t. In this sense, the hero has lived up to the title’s challenge—“tell no secrets.”


You’ve had considerable success with your non-fiction work—which is often the case for many novelists. When did your love of writing begin?


My fascination with writing began in boarding school, when my “rock stars” were literary figures—Kerouac, Ginsberg and Ferlinghetti—the beats of Greenwich Village. However, I was more interested, at that point, in the freedom of their lifestyles than in the hard work of writing. Four decades later, while writing Four Across the Atlantic, a nonfiction story of crossing the ocean in a fifty-foot trawler, I became seriously interested in writing as I struggled to convey the terrors and exhilarations of that adventure.


Is THE FOURTH RULE your first full-length novel?

My first novel was Backchannel, a story that began with a missed opportunity to catch Osama Bin Laden shortly after 911, and went on to tell of the betrayal of the hero in his quest to stop a another terrorist plot. But it was a sophomoric effort, and I never let it leave the house.


Tell me about Matthew Grant, the protagonist of THE FOURTH RULE. What is his greatest vulnerability?


Matthew’s greatest vulnerability is his sixteen-year-old daughter: He has ten inches on her, but she’s already five-six, on her way to five-nine. Gangly, that’s the word for her today. Gorgeous is her future. Like her mother.


Right from the first chapter, Matthew realizes that keeping his secret places his daughter in jeopardy.


The book spans quite a geographical distance. How did you research each location? Have you traveled to them?


I have lived and worked in almost all the places I’ve written about in the book. At the risk of committing a “Brian Williams”, I must say that I have never been to Vietnam, although I served in the Army during the time of the Vietnam War, and I’ve only been to the remote Afghanistan village, to which my villain travels, in my imagination. I’ve physically been to Islamabad, attended a Christmas party in the Jeddah consulate, vacationed in Lucerne, worked in Washington, D.C., and regularly stay in Manhattan and visit Madison, CT, the home of the hero.

My experiences in these places have given me a feeling for them, for which I refreshed the particulars with research over the Internet (Wikipedia, in particular) or with a reference book or atlas.


In your bio, you reveal your wife is a painter. How do you support each other’s art?


We both work primarily on the mornings with the implicit understanding that we’ll not interrupt each other until we get together for lunch. Beyond respecting each other’s need for solitude to work, I attend a lot of art shows and gallery openings in Connecticut, and Cheryl is my first reader.


What advice would you give aspiring writers?


Always keep writing. Have patience and be persistent in the hunt for publication. Think of seeing your first published novel as a significant step toward your goal of having a New York Times, bestselling hardback, published by Farrar, Strauss & Giroux.


What are you working on next?


Now that I’ve almost finished the final draft of my coming-of-age story, Great Ambitions, I’m writing another suspense novel. In fact, I’ve enrolled in ITW’s thriller writing course that begins in March to continue improving my writing.


Valley Courier Article

January 18, 2015

On January 15 the Valley Courier ran a full page story about the publication of The Fourth Rule.

News article

Book Launch Pictures

Will and Doug at Book Launch Will and me behind the bar he tended at the party.






conversation and libations at the Book Launch                                                                                     Libations and conversation.