Security guard’s novel sold in bookstore

Multitasking master and UCC security guard Steven Rickets was watching the TV show Walker Texas Ranger, when he started complaining to his wife about how lame the plot line was. (Chuck Norris won’t be happy to hear this.) When Rickets said he could write a better one, his wife turned to him, and commented, “Why don’t you do it?”

So he did. He hadn’t written for 18 years.

It is not like Rickets doesn’t have enough to do. Besides his holiday and weekend work at UCC, he also works security for North Pacific. He does gardening and maintenance at the Garden Valley Shopping Center, and he produces jewelry with his wife. He can now add “published author” to the ever-expanding list.

Although the poor economy drove him to take on so many jobs, his writing is more of an avocation than a vocation. Rickets chuckles and says, “I write for fun, not for profit.”

Inspired by the Chuck Norris TV show, Rickets began writing a script in his car during his lunch breaks at one of his many security guard shifts. “It took me two weeks to write the script and another year to actually get it into a book.”

His book, The Secret of Spirit Mountain, co-written with Raymond D. Mason, has mystery, murder, a rancher with an attitude, time travel, a gold mine and a spirit mountain man.

The response to the book has been very positive. “All ages have liked it, which really quite surprised me.” The response from his many co-workers have also been good. “They love it. They can’t wait for the next one.”

His wife was instrumental in getting his book published. While at a convention for their jewelry, she gave his script to another vendor in the next booth, who happened to be author Raymond D. Mason. Mason read the script and decided to get involved. He ended up helping to co-author the book and got Rickets set up with a publisher.

Rickets says his book is “pure imagination,” although he himself has had many adventures. He was struck by lightning while working as a lead porter for lodges at the Grand Canyon. Rickets says he remembers seeing a bright light. “The next thing I knew I was 20 feet away from where I was standing. All I felt was pain.”

Rickets’ book is being sold in the UCC bookstore for $10 and online at Also, the book can be checked out of the campus library.

Writing his chapters wasn’t the only thing Rickets had to do to get his book published. He also designed the front cover and page layout. “Literally everything,” he said.

Rickets has already begun writing his second book. “I want to do this one without help,” said Rickets. He has a yellow legal note pad in his car, ready and waiting for him for whenever he has time. He jokes, “Don’t ask me when I sleep.” (Don’t worry, Steven, Chuck Norris doesn’t sleep either).

The Mainstream is a student publication of Umpqua Community College.