Robert Thornhill – Interview

Today we speak to Robert Thornhill.

Robert ThornhillQ) Tell us something about yourself.

I’m a seventy year old retired realtor that decided to start writing at the ripe old age of 66. My wife, Peg, & I are avid readers and we each consume a novel a week. A friend of ours turned us on to Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series. We got the first book and immediately fell in love. We acquired all 14 books in the series that were available at that time, and laughed until our sides hurt. After finishing book #14, I thought to myself, “Bob, you are just goofy enough to do this.” So I sat down at the computer, pretended I was Janet Evanovich, and began writing the next Stephanie Plum novel using her characters and my plot. I wrote three chapters and printed them for my wife to read. I hid in the office while she read, dreading the verdict. Soon, I heard her cackling in her easy chair. Now, you have to understand my wife. Even though she has a great sense of humor, she’s not a laugh-out-loud kind of person. She came into the office and with a stern look said, “You’ve got to stop this right now! Forget Stephanie Plum. Janet doesn’t need any help. You need to develop your own characters and plot and write your own novel. I know you can do it.”

You can read those first Stephanie Plum chapters here : http://booksbybob.com/stephanie-plum-free-download_382.html

 And so began my journey, writing, publishing and marketing my first novel, Lady Justice Takes a C.R.A.P. City Retiree Action Patrol. In the four years since then, I have written 14 novels in the Lady Justice mystery/comedy series, 7 chapter books for children in the Rainbow Road series, a cookbook and a mini-autobiography.

 Q) Tell us about your latest book. Why do you think the readers will like it?

I would rather talk about the Lady Justice series as a whole. The first three novels in the Lady Justice series were very light mysteries interspersed with a lot of laughs.

A review from one of my readers tells the story:

Cathy Doman rated it five stars

“What a great book to start the series! First of all, the title will definitely grab your attention. If you like mysteries, and you like comedy, you will love this book! (Think, Stephanie Plum meets Grumpy Old Men.) It’s the story of Walt, a retired realtor, who witnesses a mugging and decides he needs to help out Lady Justice, and do something meaningful with his life. So he becomes a cop. In this book, you will go along with Walt on his exciting, sometimes dangerous, and always hilarious ride to saving the day. Who says retirement has to be boring? If I didn’t have anything else to do, I would have read this whole book in one sitting. There is never a dull moment, you will find yourself laughing out loud at times, and gripping your seat in suspense at others. I highly recommend this book!”

Once Lady Justice was established and the reader reviews started pouring in, I thought it might be time to take on some more controversial topics, but present them in the same light-hearted vein as the first three.  In Lady Justice and the Avenging Angels, Walt becomes involved with religious fanatics. In Lady Justice and the Sting, Walt uncovers the collusion between giant pharmaceutical companies and corrupt politicians. In Lady Justice and Dr. Death, Walt examines the explosive topic of euthanasia. In Lady Justice and the Vigilante, vigilantism is explored. This novel came out about two months before the Trayvon Martin tragedy in Florida. That incident could have come right out of the book. Lady Justice and the Watchers came out about the same time as Hunger Games. While Hunger Games looks at a dystopian society of the future, Walt discovers that ‘Big Brother’ may be in our lives today more than we know. Lady Justice and the Candidate takes a look at our political process and is very timely considering the current state of our government. At first, I was worried that explosive topics like religion and politics might turn off some people, but again, reader reviews were positive:

“With Lady Justice and the Sting, Robert Thornhill has put an exciting and hilarious spin on one of the most important and concerning issues today: our imploding ‘healthcare’ system.        As the Founder of the New Medicine Foundation, I stay quite busy delivering scientifically backed healthcare solutions to clients around the world, and await the great transformation of our failing drug and surgery based systems. Rarely having time to read for ‘fun’, it was to my great surprise that Bob delivered to me a manuscript of ‘The Sting’ just a few days ago. Within just a few sittings I thoroughly digested and enjoyed his work while smiling ear to ear, laughing, and with excited anticipation as he efficiently and amusingly described the foundational and malicious problems behind our failing system. With ‘The Sting’ we will have something wonderfully fun and easy to provide for people to read, not only for enjoyment, but to make them aware of how misled the American public has been over the last many decades, as we are literally drugged and fed fake food to our early demise. Nearly more importantly given the current global crisis, the financial criminality and unsustainability behind the system is not only bringing on its own demise, but the demise of our entire country and possibly the current global economic system as we wallow in debt, sickness, mental and physical ailments, and the poor relationships, geopolitical problems, and life experiences that arise from these underlying issues. This may very well be the ‘Rich Dad / Poor Dad’ for the healthcare interested masses who are sick and tired of being SICK AND TIRED! Phenomenal work Bob, you have found a calling and have much more to do!” Be Well, Dr Edward W Pearson, MD, ABIHM

Q) How did you come up with the title of the book?

I knew that as a new author with only one book, I would have to do something special to draw attention. My wife and I struggled with the title for a long time before we came up with Lady Justice Takes a C.R.A.P., City Retiree Action Patrol.  The title certainly does attract attention. Many people laugh just reading the title. After that, each title was simply Lady Justice and ‘whatever the story was about’ i.e. Lady Justice and the Assassin.

Q) What kind of research did you do for your book?

Each book required a great deal of research; medical issues for Lady Justice and the Sting, political issues for Lady Justice and the Candidate, etc. My wife and I actually took an Alaskan Cruise to get everything I needed to write Lady Justice and the Cruise Ship Murders.

Q) Which of the Characters in your book are your favourites and why?

I love them all. All of the characters in the first novel appear in all fourteen volumes to some degree, and of course, new characters have been added along the way.

Q) How did you formulate this character? Is it based on someone you know?

Walt, the main character in every novel is based on someone I know very well — me! My high school English teacher told us to write about what we know the best. Walt is my alter ego. Maggie his sweetie who becomes his wife in Lady Justice Gets Lei’d, is my own sweetie, Peg. All of the other characters are based on real people that I have known over the years. As I write, I imagine myself as Walt and I have never written anything for Walt to do that I would not or could not do.

Q) Every Author has a distinct writing style. How would you describe your style and how do you think you came to form it?

I write in the first person. Every novel in the Lady Justice series is seen through Walt’s eyes. As I write, I see and experience exactly what Walt is experiencing.

Q) How long have you been working on this book and what inspired you to write it?

Again, once I start writing, I can’t stop until it’s finished. My wife calls it diarrhea of the brain. Another interesting note; although I have a master’s degree, I have never taken a creative writing class and I never learned to type. I have banged out 25 books with the middle finger of my right hand and the thumb of my left hand.

Q) When did you start writing and when did you realize you want to become an Author?

I started writing at the age of 66. Prior to that, I had never written anything for publication and had no aspirations of becoming an author, but after the first book, when I saw how much people loved the story and the characters, I knew I had found a new career.

Q) Who are some of the Authors you like and how do you think their work inspired you?

Obviously, I like Janet Evanovich’s Stephanie Plum series, as well as Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch series and Robert Crais’ Elvis Cole series. I love good mysteries and I love to laugh. There aren’t many authors that combine the two in the same book. I do!

Q) What do you think is the most difficult part about writing and publishing a novel?

For me, the writing and publishing are the easy part. Once I have the story in my head, I just keep writing and it just keeps coming out. Once started, I will finish a book in a month. The publishing business has changed dramatically in just the four years that I have been writing. No longer are authors at the mercy of big publishing companies that only cater to the established writers and celebrities.

I use Createspace exclusively now and publishing a quality novel is a breeze. The most difficult part of the whole process is marketing. No matter who the publisher is, the success of the book is entirely in the hands of the author. I spend WAAAY more time marketing a new release than it took to write it. I have literally spent hundreds of hours at the computer figuring creative ways to market.

I have compiled all of those hours in a marketing program that, hopefully, will give the new author a running start.

http://booksbybob.com/marketing-guide-for-new-authors_401.html

 Q) What is some advice you will like to give to people trying to write and get their stories published?

If you write because you are expecting huge financial returns, you will be sorely disappointed. Write because it gives you joy. Write because you have something to share with the world. You may sell thousands of copies or just a few, but if what you’ve written has touched someone’s life, it is worth it.

Q) Tell us something about what you are working on or about some of your future projects.

I am currently working on Lady Justice and the Vet, volume #15 in the series. It will be dedicated to the thousands of brave men and women in our armed forces. It should be out by the end of October.

Many of my fans have written that the Lady Justice series should be a TV series or movie. I am working with Stacy Brecht of Carder-Brecht communications in Hollywood to hopefully make that come to pass.

Q) From amongst all the novels ever published if you had to write any one, which one would it be and why?

I’m not quite sure about this one. If I had to pick a favourite novel, I couldn’t do it. The only ones that I would want to write are the ones I have already written.

Q) If you had to convince someone to read your book in 5 lines what would they be?

If you love a good mystery —

If you love to laugh —

You WILL love the Lady Justice mystery/comedy series!

Links:

Buy The Book From :

Website : http://booksbybob.com

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/#!/RobertThornhillAuthor

LinkedIn:  http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=57106640&trk=nav_responsive_tab_profile_pic

Twitter : http://www.twitter.com/booksbybob

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/Robert-Thornhill?store=allproducts&keyword=Robert+Thornhill

Goodreads : http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3115172.Robert_Thornhill

Amazon :  http://www.amazon.com/Robert-Thornhill/e/B002USLVZI/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1

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Archana Prasanna – Interview

ArchanaArchana Prasanna is a Washington, DC native, but has experienced living in England and India. Growing up around the world has been a source of inspiration for her writing. Archana has an undergraduate degree in Political Science from Virginia Tech and a J.D. from Syracuse University. She began writing news articles that appeared in The Washington Post, pr.com, and The Collegiate Times. Ganges Boy is her first novel.

Q) Tell us about your latest book. Why do you think the readers will like it?

Broadly put, “Ganges Boy” is a coming of age story, which I think everyone can relate to in some form or another. His plight is rather tragic, but I’m hoping readers don’t just read the story at the surface but actually connect with the universal themes that are throughout the book.

Q) How did you come up with the title of the book?

The title is “Ganges Boy”. The Ganges river plays a big part in the novel, almost like an inanimate character, so I knew from the conception of the novel that I wanted to highlight “Ganges”. As for “Boy”, my protagonist is a very innocent kid, still searching for his identity and purpose, and I guess labelling him as “Boy” is a subtle insinuation of his journey to come. He goes from being just a boy to becoming Kabir.

Q) What kind of research did you do for your book?

Well I lived in India for three years, although not in Varanasi, it definitely played a part in understanding the culture. I am Indian, but growing up in the United States doesn’t really give you the whole picture of what it feels to actually live in India, eating the food, celebrating the festivals, all of that. Recently though, I finally did make it to Varanasi. It is the stereotypical India that most tourists imagine. Holy-men on the street, temples on every corner, literally, and a city that is still living in the past. Travelling was the best research.

Q) Which of the Characters in your book are your favourites and why?

My main character, Kabir. He is my favorite because he is the first character that I envisioned even before the story was put together.

Q) How did you formulate this character? Is it based on someone you know?

I wanted him to be a representation of the ideal, whether it is through morals or whatever else. He is partly based on me in a way because it was easy to understand what it feels like to go through being insecure, naïve, and unsure of yourself, into growing up into what you think you’re supposed to be. For me, I guess I spent a lot of time conforming to everyone else regarding how I should live my life, to now being able to assert myself and do what I want, just as Kabir.

Q) Every Author has a distinct writing style. How would you describe your style and how do you think you came to form it?

I don’t think I can say I have a distinct writing style yet. I’ve only released one novel thus far and I need a few more pieces of work under my belt before I can declare a style. I’m working on another novel right now, and my writing is going to be vastly different. I’m 27 so I’m still trying to find my voice as a writer. It’s a learning process.

Q) How long have you been working on this book and what inspired you to write it?

It took a few years, on and off. The inspiration for it came from everywhere; I can’t really narrow it down to one thing. I will say this, I wanted to have a voice and purge my thoughts. Not being a very vocal person, I knew I had to put it in writing. There is a lot of symbolism in the book, and in a way it is also, vaguely, a representation of me. I’ve had people email me and tell me that they wish to know what happens to the character even after the book. I don’t know how to respond to that because I ended it with how I personally felt at that point in my life and that’s how it should be. It’s not just a character driven plot, there is more to it. Things that are inspired by my own ideals and beliefs.

Q) When did you start writing and when did you realize you want to become an Author?

I’ve always enjoyed writing, ever since I was a little kid. I started seriously writing in college and never really had any aspirations to become an author until recently.

Q) Who are some of the Authors you like and how do you think their work inspired you?

Salman Rushdie is a big influence for me. I like how he intertwines politics, Indian history, and fiction all together. Similarly, Arundhati Roy, she highlights social concerns through story telling. That’s what I want to be able to do, use creativity as a vessel for issues that interest me.

Q) What do you think is the most difficult part about writing and publishing a novel?

There are a lot of options in publishing, so I think you have to find what works for you. Putting together a manuscript is the tough part. It seems daunting, the writing itself, actually doing it.

In the beginning, it’s just about the work. But, when you put your novel out there, other challenges and expectations set in. You want people to support and encourage you. I’ve learned through this process that even though it would be nice to be acknowledged, sometimes that is easier said than done. It’s difficult to keep pushing forward when you get discouraged, but you just have to keep working and hopefully let the writing do the talking.

Q) Tell us something about what you are working on or about some of your future projects.

Right now I’m working on a novel that is an allegory of some Hindu mythology. It’s a frame story, and it’s set in Ancient India. I don’t want to give away too much, but I’m really excited about this upcoming novel.

Q) From amongst all the novels ever published if you had to write any one, which one would it be and why?

Homer’s The Odyssey. I love mythology and epics, and that’s exactly what this piece of work is. It seems to have transcended time and generation after generation will read it. And of course the writing is just perfection, its poetry.

Q) If you had to convince someone to read your book in 5 lines what would they be?

“Ganges Boy” is the journey of Kabir. He is an orphaned adolescent struggling to cope with the loss of his murdered mother as he tries to navigate the harsh reality of street life before getting submerged in a foreign world of luxury. This is the story of good and evil, riches and poverty, and the fight of a boy to keep his ideals no matter where he is. Kabir’s journey is emotionally engaging as his colourful experiences give insight into the lives of street children in the fascinating city of Varanasi. This novel has themes that are universal to the human condition.

Links:

Website : archanaprasanna.com                 

Facebook : facebook.com/archanaprasanna

Twitter : twitter.com/archanaprasanna

Goodreads : goodreads.com/archanaprasanna

Instagram : instagram.com/archana_prasanna

Amazon : http://www.amazon.com/Ganges-Boy-Archana-Prasanna/dp/1938467388

Any Others : http://www.koehlerbooks.com/books/ganges-boy/

John Smith – Interview

Today we speak to John Smith.

John M W SmithQ) Tell us something about yourself.

 My career was in publishing, but I burnt myself out working for one of those big corporate giants that wring young and ambitious people out like wet rags and then hang them out to dry. So I decided to follow my own star on a distant horizon. Of course, success takes a long time, and meanwhile there is a wolf howling outside the door, so I have had to take any number of humdrum jobs to keep him away while trying to find enough time to write. I first encountered success by managing to get my twist in the tale short stories published in the women’s weekly magazines. I also tried my hand at young adult books and got good reviews. Now I have 11 e-books published on Amazon. A publishing house in Russia has already published a translation of my wacky stories in paperback and has signed me up to do two more volumes of similar stories, all as paperbacks. So I am developing a good fan base there.

 Q) Tell us about your latest book. Why do you think the readers will like it?

 My latest book is another volume of twist in the tale short stories—and I have enough material for even another, follow up volume. What’s more, my Russian fans seem keen to have even more from me after that! This is really good news, and I’m very flattered. These kind of twist in the tale of stories is what appears to be my speciality, as I seem to be very good at it, even though it’s taken me years to discover this. I remain fond of my novel writing skills, however, and would like to write more stories for young adults as these, too, have been praised highly by reviewers. I know that there is a huge market out there for the kind of books that I write, as they are very commercial. The problem is to succeed in tapping into this market online. I just get so bored trying to market my e-books online when I could be writing. So this is my biggest problem. Amazon is a fantastic organisation—they have done so much for me and I have nothing but praise for them.

Q) How did you come up with the title of the book?

 The title of the ebooks in the series is Wacky Stories With Twist Endings, Volumes 1,2,3 etc, and its sister series, Scary Stories With Twist Endings. I guess the title says it all. The stories are short, just over 1000 words each, punchy and attention grabbing, with women as the central characters. How about that, then! A guy writing for women! Wacky, yes. Twist/surprise endings, yes. To make you laugh. Wonder. Learn about life and relationships— it’s all there.#

Q) What kind of research did you do for your book?

The only research I did was to read mountains of books—not women’s books necessarily, but everything. I studied the way people write. The tricks and devices they use to grab attention and, most importantly, to hold it. Whether you are writing short stories or a full length novel, it is exactly the same……you have to catch the reader in the first page and never let go. And I observed people, eavesdropped on conversations, listened to the way they talked and the things they talked about. Their fears. Their anxieties, their hopes and ambitions. The way they spoke, the phrases they used, which sometimes did not come out grammatically, but in so doing somehow seemed to have more of an “oomph!” factor. Of course you cannot and must not write ungrammatically. Ever. There is no excuse for it, even in the name of authenticity. But you can get away with speaking ungrammatically out loud, sometimes. And very occasionally something that isn’t grammatical from a purist’s point of view works better in its ungrammatical form when you write it down. But you must be careful! Let me give you an example of what I mean. It was said by a woman funeral director about her job: “I feel I’m the same as a wedding planner, only I don’t have as much time and it isn’t a joyous occasion.” Isn’t it a terrific line? Now how could anyone possibly improve on that!

Q) Which of the Characters in your book are your favourites and why?

 My favourite characters are women. Of all ages. I find women much more interesting than men, even though I am not gay. I just love women. I can’t get enough of them. And having mentioned the word ‘gay’, I have to say that I find gay people far more interesting to talk to than straight people. I don’t know why, maybe because they are usually extremely intelligent and are more in touch with their feelings.

Q) How did you formulate this character? Is it based on someone you know?

 My characters come from reading and watching films and soaps. These are people whom we all know but never get to know well enough. What really makes them tick. My job is to try to show their innermost struggles as they fight their way through life, trying to get the better of men in a still largely chauvinistic, male dominated world. Men can behave very badly. So can women. But somehow I have more sympathy for women. I’m still trying to understand why.

Q) Every Author has a distinct writing style. How would you describe your style and how do you think you came to form it?

 I touched upon this question in question 3. For short stories of the kind that I write you have to be in tune with the market even more than normally so. My sentences are short but I have to cram a whole lot of meaning and impact into them. There are loads of other things a reader could be doing in this marvellous technological age, and I have to somehow grab people’s attention and make them spend time with me. And I aim to hold onto their attention for as long as I can. That is all that matters!

Q) How long have you been working on this book and what inspired you to write it?

 The actual writing of a book does not take long at all. It’s the ideas that take long to develop. The scenarios. The characters. The twists and turns of the narrative. Sometimes I can race through three or four pages of writing. Sometimes I will spend a whole day just getting half a page right. Never, ever rush it. If it isn’t coming, go and do something else. Take a break. Refresh your mind. Entertain yourself. And then, when you are rested, come back to your writing again. I find this works for me. A single volume of short stories can take a whole year to write. Likewise a full length young adult novel in my Sandy Brown/Matt Black series ( yes, you’ve guessed it, Sandy Brown is the central girl character and Matt Black is the central guy character in the series). As for inspiration, who knows where this comes from? I certainly don’t. You either want to do something with all your heart or you don’t. And when the urge suddenly descends on you, nothing else matters. The whole world with all its distractions simply fades away and you are left in your own world, with your own characters, and they are all you care about, and you’re not done until you have written yourself to a standstill. Only then do you drop your pen from your cramped fingers, your breathing calms down, your heartbeat becomes normal, and you’re fit again to start interacting with the outside world!

Q) When did you start writing and when did you realize you wanted to become an Author?

 I started writing many years ago and quickly discovered that nothing seemed to give me more of a buzz. Listen, you can research as much as you like, read as much as you can, write as much as you are able, go on as many writing courses as you can afford, but at the end of the day (which day? Yesterday? A week ago? Who cares!) you are either born with it or you aren’t. It’s something coiled up inside you that wants to spring up and break out. Either it’s there, waiting for you to pay attention to it. To nurture it. To let it loose to do its damnedest. Or it isn’t. Simple as that. Sooner or later you have to let the beast loose to do as it will, or it will drive you insane!

Q) Who are some of the Authors you like and how do you think their work inspired you?

 O’Henry. Saki (H. H. Munro). Jeffrey Archer. Roald Dahl (big time!). Somerset Maugham (mega big time!). And young adult writers Anne Fine and Michael Morpurgo. Fantastic. Tremendous creative power. They write from their hearts. Reading them awakened my imagination and showed me how to give it expression. Their writing seems effortless, but this hides the tremendously difficult hard work that has gone into it. And this you can only see if you connect with them. So keep reading, read loads and loads, and sooner or later you will find a writer with whom you connect. Learn from them. Develop your own style and voice. Never, repeat never, try to copy them. Do your own thing that springs naturally from your own heart. Just use them as guides.

Q) What do you think is the most difficult part about writing and publishing a novel?

 Trying to get in touch with the market online, as mine are ebooks. And that, for me, is the most difficult part. Trying to get my ebooks noticed, finding the reviewers who are connected to the kind of stuff that I write. Anything non-creative tends to bore me completely to tears. That is why I could never become an accountant—even though they can be very witty and clever people. It’s hard to explain. You’re either one type of person or the other, and there’s nothing wrong with either.

Q) What is some advice you would like to give to people trying to write and get their stories published?

 Somerset Maugham once said that there are three meals that are the best in the world and they all come from England. What are they? Why, breakfast, breakfast and…er… breakfast. It’s the same with writing, what else can I say! Read more. Read even more. And even more than that. Anything. All the time. If you’re on the pot, reach out for a tube of toothpaste or a pack of paracetamol and read what it says on them. The small print. The style, what that kind of language has been used, the care that has gone into the phrasing. And listen to people talking. Sometimes you will get bored listening, and then someone will say something in a certain way, use a phrase of their own which is entirely original as it comes from deep inside them, and you go, “wow!”. And you can’t write it down fast enough to use in one of your stories. And listen, if, in the wee hours of the morning as you lie in bed with the cold, grey dawn pushing past the curtains, if you really believe, deep down in your soul, that you have it in you, don’t let anything come in your way. Keep trying. Ignore the fools whom you encounter along the way. Listen to them, but then forget them. Trust yourself. Believe in yourself. Sooner or later you will find people who are tuned into your wavelength, and there will be many, many of them out there. Never fear!

Q) Tell us something about what you are working on or about some of your future projects.

 I have just published, for FREE, an e-book called “Strange Times; Wacky Anecdotes”. It is a collection of tales from my life which I posted on my blog during 2013. This is my latest project. It is available for download, I repeat, completely free of charge, at this link. I hope you enjoy it: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/353282

Although my e-book’s are available on Amazon at dirt cheap prices in an effort to at least get them read when competing with all the other e-books out there, you might still be unsure. While this surpasses my understanding it is, nevertheless, reality. So if you are one of the doubters, why don’t you download, for FREE, my short story LEARNER DRIVER at http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/120632

I have also been working on something entirely different whenever I have had the time. A completely different kettle of fish, as it were. A philosophy book written in simple language, about life and death and how to handle them. Enough said. It’s my ‘closet’ project which fulfils another, more secret part of myself. I’ll get around to publishing it in ebook form one day. It’s just a sideline. My real love and inspiration rests in what I am already into, which is what I’ve been describing above.

Q) From amongst all the novels ever published if you had to write any one, which one would it be and why?

 Difficult one. I struggle. The Magus by John Fowles. I read it many years ago but it took my imagination into realms which I never knew existed. Not everyone’s cup of tea. Needs effort to keep going with it at times, but it is so rewarding if you stay with it and simply let it open up your mind. Let go, flow with it, immerse yourself in it.

Q) If you had to convince someone to read your book in 5 lines what would they be?

 1. Do you really want to know what makes people tick?

2. Do you want to be surprised, to wonder, all along how the story is going to end?

3. Do you want to get quickly into a story, right down to the heart of it, and find yourself standing in the same room as the characters with a minimum of fuss and effort?

4. Are you pressed for time and do you get bored easily, and looking for a quick fix, something which will make you laugh and cry in the middle of a tiring day? (Long sentence, yeah?).

5. Are you prepared to be pleasantly surprised by just how much a guy is capable of understanding women, and who seems to genuinely love the way their minds work?

Finally, I would like to thank BOOKWORM READS for allowing me this chance to talk about my writing. I really appreciate it. The questions were good, as was evidenced by my right hand simply flying over the pages as I answered them!

Links:

Buy The Book From : (In the UK)  http://www.amazon.co.uk/Stories-Endings-surprise-endings-ebook/dp/B006V3YQUA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1381504889&sr=8-1&keywords=wacky+stories+with+twist+endings

 and, in the USA from

http://www.amazon.com/Stories-Endings-surprise-endings-ebook/dp/B006V3YQUA/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1381504957&sr=8-1&keywords=wacky+stories+with+twist+endings

 Website : http://jmwsmith.webeden.co.uk/

                 and

                 http://sandybrownmattblack.moonfruit.com/

 Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/wackyscribe

Twitter : https://twitter.com/wackyscribe

                https://twitter.com/weirdadventurea

                 https://twitter.com/ohpleasesayyes

 Pintrest : http://www.pinterest.com/wackyscribe/pins/

 Goodreads : https://www.goodreads.com/author/dashboard

 Any Others :

http://johnmwsmithswackyweeklyblog.blogspot.co.uk/

http://thecomplexityofhumanbehaviour.blogspot.co.uk/

http://sandybrownandmattblack.blogspot.co.uk/

Rose Mannering – Interview

Today we speak to Rose Mannering.

Roses bio picQ) Tell us something about yourself.

Hey, my name is G. R. Mannering, but I also write under the name Rose Mannering. I was born and bred in England and my favourite things in life are tea (preferably with a baked goodie), books and yarn.

Q) Tell us about your latest book. Why do you think the readers will like it?

Roses is a retelling of the fairy tale, Beauty and the Beast with a dark twist. I hope readers will like the unusual take on this classic and come to love the quirky heroine, Beauty, as much as I do.

Q) How did you come up with the title of the book?

I toyed with different titles before settling on Roses, but they all had the word ‘rose’ in them somewhere. In the end I liked the simplicity of Roses – I felt that it had impact.

Q) What kind of research did you do for your book?

One of the things I love about fantasy is that you can just make it all up! But if I’m being honest, all of the “made-up” parts were grounded in my research about various cultures such as Brittany in France, which inspired me when creating the area called the Hillands in the novel.

Q) Which of the Characters in your book are your favourites and why?

I think my favourite character is Beauty because she’s so misunderstood by everyone else in the book. Her surly demeanour is her armour against the rest of the realm and I think she’s been through so much yet she stays so strong. I created her wishing that I was that brave ;).

Q) How did you formulate this character? Is it based on someone you know?

I think we’ve all felt misunderstood and alone at some point in our lives. I took my experience of that and emphasised it for Beauty.

Q) Every Author has a distinct writing style. How would you describe your style and how do you think you came to form it?

I wrote Roses in a new style for me. Since it’s a retelling of a fairy tale, I wanted to keep the tone traditional and archaic. It was fun to try out a new style and I hope it translates well to readers.

Q) How long have you been working on this book and what inspired you to write it?

I’ve tried to write a retelling of Beauty and the Beast – one of my favourite fairy tales – many times. Once I even got as far as 40,000 words before I stopped because something wasn’t working. On my laptop I have numerous different opening for what became Roses, but one day it just clicked. It was the last day of my holiday and I started writing and then just didn’t stop! I took a little bit from all of my previous drafts and moulded them into the finished piece. In all, I wrote it in about 6 months including edits, which seems very fast, but I had written it before so many times that it didn’t seem rushed.

Q) When did you start writing and when did you realize you want to become an Author?

I have written ever since I can remember. I was diagnosed with dyslexia at age eight and to help me combat my problems, I was encouraged to write more stories. I wasn’t sure if I would ever make it as an author, but I always hoped and it’s amazing that now I’m finally here!

Q) Who are some of the Authors you like and how do you think their work inspired you?

I am indebted to every book I have ever read – good and bad. I think I’ve learnt something from all of them. I have loads of favourite writers, as I’m sure all book-lovers do, but a few of my favourite growing up were: Dodie Smith, Robin McKinley, Roald Darhl and Enid Blyton.

Q) What do you think is the most difficult part about writing and publishing a novel?

I think hearing negative feedback is always difficult. It feels very personal and even the strongest person quakes at a bad review. If you’ve spent so long on a story then you want everyone to like it, but unfortunately, that’s not possible. I would say that the most difficult part of publishing a novel is dealing with that and not letting it get you down.

Q) What is some advice you will like to give to people trying to write and get their stories published?

Never ever give up! It seems a simple thing but it is crucial. You’ll get there in the end if you keep going. I’ve had so many setbacks but after three years, I’m finally here.

Q) Tell us something about what you are working on or about some of your future projects.

I have a picture book coming out with illustrator ,Bethany Straker, in Spring 2014 called The Spotty Dotty Daffodil, which I am so excited about! The plot was based on a silly story I wrote when I was little and Bethany’s illustrations are so beautiful.

Q) From amongst all the novels ever published if you had to write any one, which one would it be and why?

I would love to have written I Capture the Castle because it is one of my favourite books and it’s just so gorgeous! If you haven’t read it then definitely go and check it out.

Q) If you had to convince someone to read your book in 5 lines what would they be?

She bears no name. Her silvery appearance is freakish and her mother vanishes at the instance of her birth. Tauntingly named Beauty, she flees the capital in a violent uprising that sets out to massacre all Magics and journeys to the furthest point of the country. But Beauty cannot hide in the grassy Hillands forever. In a midnight blizzard she escapes into a deep, enchanted forest to a great and terrible beast who will bargain for her life.

Links:

Buy The Book From : http://www.amazon.com/Roses-G-R-Mannering/dp/1620879883

Website : www.rosemannering.com

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rose-Mannering/391310353008

Twitter : http://twitter.com/rose_mannering

Pintrest : http://www.pinterest.com/rosemannering/

Goodreads : http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6989845.G_R_Mannering

Youtube :  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5EWd5OyRDeZlIZA7Sh2WYA/videos?view=0&flow=grid

Mike Bove – Interview

Today we speak to Mike Bove.

Mike BoveQ) Tell us something about yourself.

I have had two long careers, 12 years as a teacher and coach in Vermont, and 20 years with the postal service in Massachusetts and Arizona.  I was always active in many sports and being retired I now get to play golf at least three days a week. I was involved with school and community theater in college and during my teaching days, as an actor and director. I  adapted a Russian folk tale for the stage and produced and directed it.  As an avid reader, I attacked the Mystery shelves at our library when retirement gave me the opportunity. My wife, Jane and I travel frequently to places we love, New Orleans, New Jersey , and Vermont to visit family including our five grandchildren.

Q) Tell us about your latest book. Why do you think the readers will like it?

I’ll talk about my Work In Progress, Stinger Maguire, since my first book, Willowtree is now two years old. The unexpected success of Willowtree gave me the impetus to write another and begin a series. The setting is a fictitious town in Arizona, Willowtree. The protagonist is senior sleuth, Bruce DelReno, a retired postman and avid golfer. Much of the action takes place on or near the golf course. In Willowtree Bruce helped solve three related murders which happened over a thirty year span.

In Stinger Maguire, Bruce and cohorts will solve the murder of Maguire, a pro golfer who had returned home for an exhibition and was found dead in the High School by DelReno, who is the golf coach. After his death it is discovered that Maguire was a gay athlete, the reason for the estrangement between he and his father, and his former girl friend.

Fans of Willowtree will get to see their favorite  characters, and new ones, as the small town is again home to a terrible murder. Stinger Maguire is not a ‘thriller’ novel.  There is no gory description of violence.  The story is told in the first-person by Bruce with his dry sense of humor.

Q) How did you come up with the title of the book?

In order to give  the victim a uniqueness as a pro golfer, I gave him a certain prowess and named him after it.  A ’stinger’  is a type of long and low golf shot. Maguire perfected this shot at a young age and was dubbed ‘Stinger’ by his father.  I try, but am not yet proficient. Though Stinger Maguire is found dead on page one, the book is about him and how his life has affected and influenced others.

Q) What kind of research did you do for your book?

I write my story so it unfolds in chronologic order. Bruce tells the story while going on with his day to day activities, so I have to be sure the times  or days he mentions coincide with a real calendar,  for example, holidays and real events on the PGA Tour.

Though my town is fictitious, its location is in a real part of Northern Arizona. I research to be sure places,  persons, and events that I mention are geographically and historically correct.  Since this book contains references and discussions about gay athletes and generally being gay, I have read much on the subject. I have long had gay friends and family members and this experience is of great value.

Q) Which of the Characters in your book are your favourites and why?

My favorites? The funny ones. I had to put them in both books. Squeek in Willowtree has mental and medical problems, but I still think he’s funny. Ben Samuel, Bruce’s Apache friend, brings the most humor, but is also quietly perceptive. I like Genny, Bruce’s adoring wife, because she ‘gets’ him.

Q) How did you formulate this character? Is it based on someone you know?

Ben Samuel is loosely based on an Indian friend, not Apache, but sarcastic, unpredictable, perceptive, loyal, generous, and often annoying. I recently wrote this blog post about this, if you want more: http://www.mikebove.net/1/post/2013/09/character-inspiration-ben-samuel.html

Q) Every Author has a distinct writing style. How would you describe your style and how do you think you came to form it?

I guess I write like I talk, without too many words. (I blogged about this, too.) I like to get to the point and not repeat things unnecessarily.  Many authors have given advice about being succinct, but I have read many famous authors who I’d say are not.  I enjoy reading more when the writing is direct, for the same reason I think the loud background music in a TV drama is unnecessary and annoying. My style is simple and I have not tried to write like anyone. It has been called ‘conversational’ many times.

Q) How long have you been working on this book and what inspired you to write it?

I started Stinger Maguire over a year ago. I get asked everyday when it will be published. And I know, I have to get back to writing more aggressively.  I write notes and ideas, do research, and edit almost daily. Alas, I am still only a bit over halfway done.  I’m a part time writer and want this book to be the best I can make it.  I do not need to meet a deadline or a word-count goal.  I enjoy my golf, cooking, travel and other things. They all interfere with writing.  I will be elated when it is done, but I’m in no hurry as I enjoy the process and do not depend on royalties for groceries.

The inspiration for Stinger Maguire comes from many facets of my life. It is fiction based on what is important to me: friends, family, our activities, conversations, and companionship-our lives is my life.  I have no friends or family who are murderers.

Q) When did you start writing and when did you realize you want to become an Author?

I remember the first book report I wrote in grade school, Bradford on Mount Washington by Bradford Washburn. This guy climbed a mountain and wrote about it. I thought that was cool. His name wasn’t Shakespeare or Chaucer, but he wrote a book and I understood it. While teaching and coaching I did a lot of research and thought that could be the basis for a book to help youngsters understand the principles I was trying to teach. I wanted to write a book for youth about theater or track and field. Time and life passed quickly.  Being retired gave me the time to read more and I read continuously, mostly mysteries. One day I began writing, not knowing where it would go or what it would be.  With perseverance, encouragement, and much learning, my work became Willowtree.

Q) Who are some of the Authors you like and how do you think their work inspired you?

There are many authors that I greatly admire in many genres.  Their books are the ones that make me smile, laugh, or cry while reading, and keep and treasure afterward.  If you borrow a Vonnegut from my collection, you will bring it back, or I’ll go after it.  I also save Shakespeare, Barbara Kingsolver, Joseph Wambaugh, and others.  My favorite mystery writers who have provided inspiration mainly because of their style, construction, characters and dialogue are George V. Higgins, Stuart Woods, Wambaugh, Ross MacDonald, Elmore Leonard, and William G. Tappley.  I love their clever dialogue, and I hope I can someday write something remotely similar.

Q) What do you think is the most difficult part about writing and publishing a novel?

As an Indie author and self-publisher, the hardest part is writing the manuscript, that takes the most time. As I stated before I like to do some editing as I go. The final editing is tedious, so that is hard. The actual publishing part is easy.  I enjoy all parts of the process including formatting and cover design. I test several formats and covers, play with them a lot, before making final decisions.  I am blessed that I have some computer and artistic abilities, so I am able to do a lot on my own.

Q) What is some advice you will like to give to people trying to write and get their stories published?

Keep writing. Edit again. Add and subtract. Read and read more in many genres. Be familiar with Google and Roget and Webster.  Check out some of the great ideas and help from other authors online. Meet some in the flesh if you have the opportunity. Read what authors write about writing. Then write more. Observe people and places. Take notes. Then, write more.

Q) Tell us something about what you are working on or about some of your future projects.

My focus now is on Stinger Maguire. Then book three of the series, or a book about bananas since I like bananas.

Q) From amongst all the novels ever published if you had to write any one, which one would it be and why?

Tough decision. Slaughterhouse Five. No secret Kurt Vonnegut is my favorite writer. This book deserves all of the acclaim it has received. It is a poignant narrative that contains all of the elements that I enjoy in a novel. It is historically accurate, contains interesting narrative, dialogue, and characters. The construction is masterful. The language is not flowery, but will make one re-read, laugh and at other times cry. It is perhaps the most quoted novel of our time.

Q) If you had to convince someone to read your book in 5 lines what would they be?

-It’s fun, folks have told me.

-It is partly about golf, but many readers liked it even though they don’t know golf.

-It has lots of local color, and of course, you like small town Arizona.

-Bruce DelReno is the guy next door. The one you like.

-It has murder, golf tips, beautiful women, food recipes, short sentences, an old Apache crony, a dead lawyer, and not many bad guys.

Links:

Buy The Book From : http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005DNYFZK

Website : http://www.mikebove.net

Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/BruceDelReno.Mysteries

Twitter : https://twitter.com/BoveMike

Pintrest : http://www.pinterest.com/delreno/

Goodreads : http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5128222.Mike_Bove

Amazon http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005EMQCJW

Smashwords : https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/74581

Gregory J Schroeder – Interview

Today we speak to Gregory J Schroeder.

GregQ) Tell us something about yourself.

I am a little bit of a lot of things. I work in health care IT, have an active online “pre-read” book business (50% of which is romance novels), am an avid military historian, and now have three books of poetry. I once worked for Publishers’ Clearing House, taught high school science for six years, and have coached youth soccer, baseball, and basketball and still referee recreational soccer.

Q) Tell us about your latest book. Why do you think the readers will like it?

My latest book, Transitions, is an anthology of relatively short poems. My poems are about the everyday – things, people, and events to which everyone can relate. They are understandable, positive, and work to pull the reader out of the daily grind to see the fun, the beauty, and the peace that is always right next to us. One of my first reviewers said she did not “get” most poetry, nor like it, but she both “got” and liked mine.

Q) How did you come up with the title of the book?

The majority of the poems in the collection speak to transitions of some kind – one season to the next, growing up, the parent-child relationship, changing perspective, a change in weather.  There is a tension in the word that also comes through in many of the poems. Transition insinuates change and change is often a scary thing, but it is also an opportunity. This yin-yang idea is present in a lot of the selections.

Q) What kind of research did you do for your book?

Research is probably too strong of a word. A lot of these poems came from simply slowing myself down to see what was actually going on and then writing about it. We miss a lot of life by speeding through it too quickly.

Q) Every Author has a distinct writing style. How would you describe your style and how do you think you came to form it?

My style of poetry is to see the things that are either taken for granted or thought unimportant and give them focus and meaning. My poems try to slow down the pace of modern life and find calm, reflexion, beauty, focus, and significance.

Q) How long have you been working on this book and what inspired you to write it?

I wrote the poems over a period of about six months and then spent another three formatting and editing.  I write poetry for fun and to force myself to slow down and live.

Q) When did you start writing and when did you realize you want to become an Author?

I wrote a lot when I was a kid, even submitting a handful of articles (and being rejected) to several magazines. I then wrote articles for the local paper about youth sports, the idea being to get every kid’s name into the article. Five years ago I started to develop some consistency. I published 22 online articles on various military history topics and related historical fiction. I’ve been writing poetry consistently for the past three years.

Q) Who are some of the Authors you like and how do you think their work inspired you?

My favourite poets are Robert Frost and Carl Sandburg but I loved Robert Louis Stevenson’s Child’s Garden of Verses as a kid. In prose fiction my favourites include Harper Lee, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Louis L’Amour, and Alexander Kent. I like authors who can make me feel like I am in their setting and have characters who have depth. But I also like authors who are easy to understand who say what needs to be said without too much extra. I try to use these tenets in my writing.

Q) What do you think is the most difficult part about writing and publishing a novel?

The hardest part for me is to write consistently. I know the writing gets better if I do some every day but often the time just isn’t there to write even a few hundred words. Likewise, publishing is really a matter of finding blocks of time to concentrate on the task and get it done properly.

Q) What is some advice you will like to give to people trying to write and get their stories published?

Write every day. Read every day. It doesn’t have to be a lot. I found even fifteen minutes of reading improved my vocabulary and sentence structure (and, strangely enough, my speaking). Do what you like. There is a lot to be said for “Dance like no one is watching.”

Q) Tell us something about what you are working on or about some of your future projects.

I have multiple projects in process. Another book of poems, as yet untitled, a military history of the early months of World War II in the Pacific, a high fantasy novel, a romance, and a new spin on the princess in a tower story.

Q) If you had to convince someone to read your book in 5 lines what would they be?

This is not just a book of poems, it is a book of memories. Once again you find yourself enjoying the days of your youth, the smell of grass after rain, the dust of the neighbourhood ball park, the fury of an oncoming storm. We grow up, we get busy, and we forget the magic and wonder of the world around us. These poems bring that magic back. Read one at a time, or the whole book at once. Come back often to simply relax.

Links:

Buy The Book From : http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/349495

Website :www.gsbooktutor.com

Twitter : @gsbookseller

Goodreads : http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6870906.Greg_Schroeder

Amazon :http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009DU8PSM

Any Others : http://www.blogtheeclectic.blogspot.com

C.S. Johnson – Interview

Today we speak to C.S. Johnson.

C.S. JohnsonQ) Tell us something about yourself.

I am surprised you can’t tell how charming and witty I am through the Internet, but I suppose that is the flaw of the whole thing.

There are many roles I play and things I say, but I am nearly willing on most of those, and even most of the time! I am a wife, mother, writer, teacher, and student, and of course I like to throw in the world traveler when I can.

I was born to be eccentric and I am working my way up to be able to afford goofing off on a more regular basis. I have the first novel, “Slumbering,” in my epic YA series, “The Starlight Chronicles,” published and ready to buy, and I am currently working my way through the next several books in the complete story while pursuing my master’s degree, teaching at a private school, and being a good wife to my husband Ryan, and a loving mother to my new son, Leo. Needless to say I do not get a lot of sleep and I don’t work well with deadlines. When they talk about the American dream, they don’t say anything about sleep!

Q) Tell us about your latest book. Why do you think the readers will like it?

This is a tricky question. I think people will like “Slumbering” because it’s supposed to be a fun/making-fun-of book. It has great characters, good humor, and fun and exciting adventures, both supernatural and life-events based. It’s got a bit of everything for everyone in it, for the most part.

Q) How did you come up with the title of the book?

For “Slumbering,” the title came up from a variety of ideas and inspirations, but I really wanted started out trying to explain to others the idea of belief. I am very interested in the idea of belief, and what people truly believe. It really comes out in their actions. In this story, my main character, Hamilton, has what I call a ‘sleeping soul’ where he really only cares about himself and his desires. I think this is the type of belief that characterizes most people – Hamilton is just more upfront about it. It is one of the reasons I like him and people like him.

For the series title, it became more of a hint in the direction of Hamilton’s power. He is a fallen star, with great power, and a duty to the Prince of Stars, even if he is reluctant to remember it or choose it for himself. The original title can be more explained in my blog on the inside look of “The Starlight Chronicles” where I explain the transformation over the years I was writing it.

Besides being a total astronomy geek, I thought it was great to connect the ideas of falling stars, and wishing on stars, to the beginnings of faith and belief. Belief, to me, is a lot like starlight: a light in the darkness, beaming out until the end of time, a constant guide for those who are lost or looking.

Q) What kind of research did you do for your book?

I didn’t have to do a lot of unwilling research for the book, but I did have to pull up information on astrophysics! As an avid anti-math learner, this was very difficult to understand and work with. Fortunately I had some really easy to read resources I could use as a supplement to understanding.

One of my ideas about the world – which is probably unique to me – is the idea of reality and unreality. I see the universe almost like a giant egg, where the physical universe is the yolk, and outside the universe is the egg white, and it keeps getting bigger, infinitely bigger. I see the yolk and the egg white almost like earth and heaven, respectably; they can be blended and similar but still distinct. Astrophysics, surprisingly, actually supports my claims a bit – the universe is getting bigger, and has its own radioactive signature. For my novel, there is an interfering radioactive signature which suggests and predicts the presence of the supernatural interference (this is not explained for a few books, so aren’t you lucky you got me started on explaining it!) which my protagonist must fight against.

Q) Which of the Characters in your book are your favourites and why?

Hamilton is my favourite character, no doubt about it. He is narcissistic, uncompassionate to a large degree, hypocritical, intelligent, somewhat apathetic, very charismatic, and cynical. Why would I like him? Partially because he is a lot like myself some days (minus the charisma). But more because I see the potential for him. I see him as I intend to write him, and I love him dearly because he is a young character yet, and he is not finished. That’s a principle I apply to people myself: I love people for who they could be more than who they are at the moment. And I allow myself to be that way, too; I love myself for who I can be, not necessarily who I am or what I do at any given moment.

Q) How did you formulate this character? Is it based on someone you know?

Yes and no. Like I mentioned, Hamilton is a lot like me, but it is surprising how much difference there is between us, particularly with the idea of belief. Having grown up in the Christian faith, I have very little trouble reconciling my faith with intellectual discourse; in fact, several truths found in Christianity make me automatically smarter. I know it is a big thing for intellectuals to see Christianity as a crutch, but it is a matter of pride when they do; Christianity was not made for the elite, but for all people, and there are those who choose to focus on different areas while others settle for some. Hamilton is very much unable to believe in the supernatural, or miracles, and while I see the world very differently, I do understand his reasons for this. I wanted to demonstrate my reasons for belief through his experiences; I firmly believe in the idea that people do not change for people (or they should not) but they change because of people.

Q) Every Author has a distinct writing style. How would you describe your style and how do you think you came to form it?

I would describe mine as witty whimsical (that sounds a lot like a sadistic Willy Wonka description, now that I think about it).

The world offers up experiences all the time – both in pain and pleasure, providing a resounding melody/harmony mix I in which am constantly plunging and perusing. To write for me is to engage in a wicked dance over the heart of the sea, with both salt and water for the world’s wounds. Thankfully in my mind’s picture I am able to fly.

Q) How long have you been working on this book and what inspired you to write it?

I began thinking of the original idea for it in 9th grade, so about ten years now (Wow!) Life has gotten the better of me at times – college, work, family, grad school, more work, more family, vacations – but writing is a calling on my heart I do not want to forget or ignore.

This story in particular started with “Wingdinger” the superhero name of Hamilton’s transformed, supernatural self, which is given to him by the local city press in his world. It was a nickname of a friend of mine’s, and I always thought it deserved a story to go alongside of it.

Q) When did you start writing and when did you realize you want to become an Author?

I had started writing a lot – I mean like a lot a lot, too – in grade school. In 2nd grade I wrote 11 pages about my trip to the circus, while others struggled to get 1 page in. My scholastic rival at the time (because I am very competitive as well, and have always pretty much been such) wrote around 5 or something like that.

Q) Who are some of the Authors you like and how do you think their work inspired you?

I have always loved C. S. Lewis’ work, and part of the reason (beside the fact they are my initials) I chose “C. S. Johnson” as my pen name was due to his influence. Lewis’ mother’s maiden name was Hamilton as well, so it was a sparkle of a miracle to find that out after I had decided on Hamilton’s name. There are other reasons for Hamilton, too – the name means “beautiful mountain” according to Babycenter.com, and I thought it would be great fun (my version of fun) to see faith move a mountain.

Q) What do you think is the most difficult part about writing and publishing a novel?

Getting people to care, frankly (i. e., marketing). There are a lot of people who have surprised me both ways with marketing – both people who have expressed interest in it, and others who have slightly-less-than-surprised me by their apathy.  Talking to people who haven’t read it is very difficult for me, too, because it is hard for me to encompass my story into a concise overview. There are a lot of important things in it.

Q) What is some advice you will like to give to people trying to write and get their stories published?

Find a good fit for yourself, whatever the genre, type, or length. And don’t be afraid to get help – both in therapy sense and an editing or reviewing sense.

Q) Tell us something about what you are working on or about some of your future projects.

I’ve just finished up writing what I call the ‘Christmas episode’ of “The Starlight Chronicles” entitled “Awakening.” It is a short story, and it will be available through an anthology some of my friends at Southern New Hampshire University have put together about supernatural heroes. All of the proceeds are going to be donated to Sandy Hook. In the story, Hamilton is faced with the challenges of being a superhero, and must really decide to fight despite the downsides it brings, or to let it go. There are some good talking points about it, and I highly recommend people paying attention to the cookies and the Star of Hope’s ‘gifts’ to Wingdinger and Starry Knight.

I have another series started, too – more sci-fi this time than fantasy, but definitely still fantasy – and I am hunting around for a publisher for that one. This particular project is more about trust (I like big themes with small details and huge implications, have you noticed?)

Q) From amongst all the novels ever published if you had to write any one, which one would it be and why?

I have no idea. I like to read books, but I don’t want to write any others than my own. There is something about a story that marks an author. One of the reasons I did become an author is because I got tired of stories which had such promise in their premise and then flopped (cough *”Twilight”* cough) in execution. I decided to write my own. I’m sure plenty of others will find stuff wrong with mine, too, but that’s okay. As long as they read it, frankly, I’ll be happy!

Q) If you had to convince someone to read your book in 5 lines what would they be?

I don’t imagine ‘I’ve got your best friend and/or family member in my car trunk, and if you don’t read this…’ counts as a line here. But here is my pitch:

If you like action, adventure, and meaningful battles, with funny, relatable characters and mythological creatures, then this book is for you! An epic young adult novel, this book focuses on Hamilton, an egotistical, popular, and talented high schooler who is reluctant to set up and save his city after discovering his supernatural abilities. With football, tests, the school play, and the girl of his choice crowding up his schedule, and his irritating family, parties, and natural disasters, Hamilton’s story will leave you laughing and nostalgic for your own high school years or at least more interesting ones than you currently have or will have in the near future.

Thanks so much for your time!

Best,

C. S. Johnson

Links:

Goodreads Author Profilehttp://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6889892.C_S_Johnson

Amazon Ebook link: http://www.amazon.com/The-Starlight-Chronicles-Slumbering-ebook/dp/B00AX5BRJU/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1376952987&sr=1-1&keywords=the+starlight+chronicles+slumbering

Facebook: www.facebook.com/thestarlightchroniclesslumbering

Twitter: www.twitter.com/C_S_Johnson13

Blog: https://csjohnsonetc.blogspot.com