Author focuses on latest fiction releases

William Shifflett

Edinburg author William Shifflett will kick off signings for his fourth and fifth books, “The Troll in Rich Man’s Wood” and “Cassiel’s Watch,” at Winchester Book Gallery on Saturday.

This weekend’s signing will focus on “The Troll in Rich Man’s Wood,” which follows a graduating high school senior’s encounters with a local legend and investigation into a family mystery. Shifflett said the story is accessible to many different readers and has “a touch of fantasy.”

While the fiction book is a different kind of novel from some of his previous nonfiction works on Christian life and theology, Shifflett said readers may yet catch a spiritual thread in “The Troll in Rich Man’s Wood.”

“There are Christian undertones … it’s kind of an allegory of Christ woven in there about truth,” he said.

After a spark of inspiration on a drive, Shifflett said he came up with the “Troll in Rich Man’s Wood” story and wrote it out quickly. He said he worked on “Cassiel’s Watch” over a five-year period. By contrast, “The Troll in Rich Man’s Wood” took him only about two months to write.

Shifflett has written the Shenandoah Valley into both of his new books – “The Troll in Rich Man’s Wood” mentions Winchester as a nod to his hometown while “Cassiel’s Watch” takes place in the fictional “Aydenburg.”

He said he’d qualify both of his newest works as Christian fiction and family friendly stories, but “Cassiel’s Watch” is more involved with multiple points of view and a focus on religious and social issues.

Both of Shifflett’s new books are available on Amazon and in Kindle version, and “The Troll in Rich Man’s Wood” is available at the Peoples Drug Store in Strasburg. After his signing at the Winchester Book Gallery – which will also offer copies of his books for sale – he’ll be doing signings at family Christian stores in Fredericksburg and Frederick, Maryland,  later in the summer.

A sequel to Shifflett’s 2013 book “The Christmas Truce” titled “Jesse’s Journal” is set for release in the fall. Other fiction books in the works for Shifflett include “The Creatures,” with elements of sci-fi and a spiritual conclusion and “The Body in Toppen Square,” a mystery with elements of romance.

While some authors may be known for their works within a genre, Shifflett said most of his books are a blend of different genres. He said one theme that ties his stories together is the human element, calling them “relational mysteries.”

“My books don’t really fall into a neat little genre,” he said. “Much of it is really interpersonal relationships.”


• When: William Shifflett’s signing of “The Troll in Rich Man’s Woods” will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.

• Where: Winchester Book Gallery, 185 N. Loudoun St. in Winchester.

Contact staff writer Rachel Mahoney at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or