An interview with Author G. David Walker

G. David Walker

G. David Walker was unexpectedly born in Ulysses, Kansas on a bright, sunny morning in July of 1963, the youngest of four brothers and one sister. As the internet had not yet been invented when David was a young man, he instead devoured any science fiction or fantasy book that he could get his hands on, dreaming of different worlds, fantastical creatures and strange, alien beings. As an adult, he decided to forge into the realms he had only read about, creating his own worlds to explore.

He currently lives in southwest Missouri. For more information, visit his blog, Chasing Dragons in the Ozarks, at http://gdavidwalker.com/

Describe yourself in five words
Hm, that’s not as easy a question as it looks. I don’t think about myself all that often, but I’ll give it a shot. Five words, let’s see… Homebody, analytical, casual, observer, empathetic

What fact about yourself would really surprise people?  
People meeting me for the first time might find it hard to believe that I once performed in a rock band in Las Vegas. Doesn’t quite fit the quiet, mildly reserved image I have now.

How do you work through self-doubts and fear?
Self-doubt is definitely more crippling than fear. Basically, you just have to tell yourself that the only person you have to prove anything to in the end is yourself. I think of a line from “Facing the Giants” where a kid is afraid to try out for the football team. His father tells him, “What have you got to lose? You’re already NOT on the team.” You never have a chance to move forward until you take the first step.

What scares you the most?
Other then some more common phobias, what scares me the most is letting people down who rely on me.

Why do you write?
Too many ideas in my head not to. I’ve got a Word document with almost sixty pages of story ideas, scene snippets, dialogue, character ideas, and more. If I never added another word to the document, I have enough prompts to last the rest of my life. Of course, I’m always adding to it, so I’ll never run out of stories to tell.

Have you always enjoyed writing?  
I’ve always enjoyed the written word, whether that be reading, editing, proofreading or writing. In my younger years, I read voraciously. Then, I finally decided to start creating my own worlds for others to explore in the hopes that they would enjoy my stories as much as I enjoyed others’.

What writing are you most proud of?  
Anything that helps someone get away from the real world for a little while or anything that helps someone deal with problems they may be facing.

What books did you love growing up?   
Pretty much anything science fiction. Although I mainly write fantasy now, I grew up on sci-fi. Eventually, I’ll put some of my science fiction ideas down on paper too.

Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live?  
In my younger years, we moved around a lot. My adoptive father was in construction, so by the time I finished fourth grade, I was living in my ninth city in my third state (Kansas, California, Missouri). After college, I moved to Las Vegas for about six years, but now I’m back in SW Missouri.

How did you develop your writing?
Write, write, and then write some more. I’ve read numerous books on the art of writing, even taken a couple of courses. But in the end, as they say, practice makes perfect, or if not perfect, at least better than before the practice.

What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing?   
For me, the marketing is definitely the most challenging. As someone who prefers to stay behind the scenes, putting myself out in front of the world is a little difficult. But, as a self-published author, that just comes with the territory.

Do you find it hard to share your work?
Once it’s in a state where it’s ready to be shared, not really. The hard part is getting it to where I think it’s worth sharing. Rewriting sections, fixing mistakes and typos, filling plot holes, basically going over a manuscript again and again and again until I’m satisfied it’s worth putting out there.

What else do you do, other than write?
I also work as a software developer, at least until I get a movie deal, lol. I occasionally do some editing and/or proofreading for others as well.

What other jobs have you had in your life?
I did the obligatory stints in grocery and fast food in high school and college, along with a summer of putting up sheet metal siding. After college, I moved to Las Vegas and worked in casinos for a six years. Then back to Missouri where I took over a family health food store for a few years. After that, I worked for a door and window manufacturer, first in the glass shop, then as a factory order writer, then a Special Projects AutoCAD draftsman, before ending up in the IT department as an RPGLE programmer.

If you could study any subject at university what would you pick?  
Other than writing? Probably psychology. I took a psych class my first year in college and thought it was interesting, but that wasn’t my major, so that was the only class I took on that subject.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
I’m actually pretty happy where I’m at, but I would love to visit Scotland someday and have some authentic haggis in a pub.

How do you write – laptop, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk?  
I still use a PC for my writing. If I go somewhere on vacation, I’ll move the docs to my laptop, but at home I use the PC. I know some writers feel more connected when they write by hand. I’ve tried it (had to one year when I forgot my laptop’s power cord), but I just prefer a keyboard.

How much sleep do you need to be your best?
I used to be able to function on five hours or so. Anything more than six or seven and I’d drag throughout the day. That was in my 20s and 30s. Now, I need at least seven to keep from being foggy-headed the next day.

Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you?
Well, beyond the obvious answers of writing full-time and being debt-free, my idea of a really successful writing career would allow me to use my income to help others in need and/or to help revitalize our small town. J. K. Rowling money would do it, right?

If you could have a dinner party and invite anyone dead or alive, who would you ask?
These “who would you invite” questions are not as easy as they sound. I had to think about this for a while because there are SO many figures from history who would be fascinating to speak with. Okay, assuming the language barrier is magically removed, I’ll start with (from the past) Nikola Tesla, although he’d have to severely dumb down practically everything he might say. Then add Jules Verne, Mark Twain and Isaac Asimov. From the (currently) living, I suppose Henry Cavill, Liev Schreiber, Elizabeth Mitchell, and Bree Turner (the living are all actors I’d ask to be in the movie based on Jaben’s Rift, lol).

When you are not writing, how do you like to relax?
I read, I’m guilty of a bit of binge-watching science fiction series, and PC gaming.

What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?
I mainly want people to be able to get away from the world and its problems for a while. If I can make them smile or give them something (hopefully encouraging) to think about, so much the better. I just want them to enjoy their time in the worlds I create.

Author Interview with F.M. Gomez

F.M. Gomez

From an early age, Mr. Gomez has been fascinated by subjects of mythology, folklore, ancient history, and the paranormal. He always enjoyed art but never considered becoming an author. It all started as an outlet and a way to express his creativity. His passion for writing had later resulted in several published Novellas and Short Stories. Mr. Gomez admits his love for storytelling, imagery, atmosphere, and tone. He attends College pursuing a degree in English Language and Literature. He enjoys reading, riding his bike, and collecting coins from different countries in his spare time.

· Where are you from?

I was born in Venezuela but had lived in the US for more than 20 years.

· Why do you write?

It is my passion, one that I did not know I had. Writing is an outlet and a way to express my creativity. Writing allows me to connect with others at a deeper level, no matter what their race, sex, religion, or political views.

· What do you write about?

I write Short Stories and novellas in the genre of Horror, Historical Fiction, and Cyberpunk.

· Do you have a specific writing style?

Yes, I think that by being bilingual, in a way you have a writing style. I prefer the 1st Person Point of view and Am not too crazy about dialogue. I strive to stand out from other writers, we can say I add some of my own ingredients to the stories.

· What are obstacles that come in the way of writing?

The biggest obstacle is your attitude about life. I am, however, my worst critic. It is important for me that I am satisfied with the finished work. When you are passionate about what you do there are no real obstacles.

· What’s the most memorable thing asked/said by a reader about your work?

A reader, a sweet old lady, said to me after reading one of my books: “From now on Francisco, I’m calling you Mr. Scary!” I took that as a compliment of course.

· How long have you been writing?

I started writing 8 years ago and published my first short story back in 2014.

· When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer?

Good question. It all started during a very dark period in my life. The writing was pretty much all I could do. I took pen and paper and started writing, and ten books later, here I am! To be honest with you, I never considered becoming an author in my life.

· What is your work schedule like when you are writing?

Every day of the week, I prefer the early evening and nighttime. On Sundays, I like writing after a nice relaxing bike ride.

· What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

Sometimes I do not reveal much about the protagonist or the events surrounding the characters. That forces the reader to use his/her imagination. It gives a sense of mystery to the overall theme.

· How long does it take to write a book? (if you’ve written one -published or non)

Normally, a short story or novella takes me 6-7 months.

· Do you have suggestions on how to become a better writer?

Yes, my best advice is to get started! As simple as that. Grab a pen and paper and jot down a few ideas. You have to start somewhere and go from there.

· What challenges do you come across when writing/creating your story?

Making it original. I do not want to be a copycat. I want to offer something different, what would be the point in writing things that everyone is writing about? It is important for me to make something fresh and unique.

· What do you think makes a good story?

A good story speaks to you and makes you think about it after you have finished reading it. Then again, you may get a different answer depending on what you ask. That is why I believe it is important that you never compromise your vision.

· What does your family think of your writing?

They are very supportive. My Dad, who enjoys writing as well, is always trying to help me with my books. We share a love for words and language.

· Do you see writing as a career?

I would like to do writing full-time in the future. You have to understand there is a lot of competition, and making writing a career is not easy. I believe God will set things up when the time is right.

· Do you have anything specific you’d like to tell the readers?

I am very grateful to all my readers. Your support is golden! I never take you for granted. Thank you all! Please continue supporting my work.

· When did you first consider yourself a writer?

After publishing my 8th Book that is when I considered myself a storyteller. The definition of a writer can mean different things depending on who you ask. Anyone can write, but telling a story, in my humble opinion, is a completely different thing.

An interview with Author Brendan Wilson 

Brendan Wilson

Following twenty-five years of military service as a U.S. Army ranger and paratrooper, Brendan Wilson retired as a lieutenant colonel and then joined NATO where he served as a defense planner and diplomat for the next fifteen years. During the course of his forty years of work as a soldier and diplomat, he saw service in war-torn Libya, Ukraine, Kosovo, Bosnia, and Iraq. In addition, he commanded a fire base on the DMZ in the Republic of Korea.

A former coach and team captain for military martial arts competition teams in the 101st Airborne Division and the 18th Airborne Corps, he holds master ranking (8th Dan) in three different martial arts, and he won the silver medal in the 2009 U.S. Open for Taekwondo. He was one of the founding members of Aristos, a form of martial arts based on Classical Greek principles.

In retirement, Wilson turned his efforts to filmmaking. He wrote and produced two award-winning short films (“Doug’s Christmas” and “A Child Lies Here”) and served as executive producer for the award-winning web series, “Greeting! From Prison.” Moved by seeing human lives upended in war-torn areas, Wilson enrolled in law school and, as of this writing, he is in his final year. Once he qualifies as an attorney, he plans to volunteer to help refugees. Wilson lives in Sycamore, Illinois. He spends his days, writing, studying law, and practicing his martial arts.

  • Where are you from?

I was born in Hampton, Virginia. My father was in the Army and we moved a lot. I remember living in Alabama, Germany, and New York. When I was 14, we moved back to Virginia. That’s where I attended high school and college. After graduating from college, I entered the Army as a 2nd Lieutenant. Again, on the move a lot — North Carolina, Georgia, Kentucky, Colorado, Korea, and Belgium. After more than two decades, I retired from the Army and took a job as a defense planner and diplomat at NATO headquarters in Belgium, where I stayed for another 15 years. Three years ago, I came back to the US and have settled in Sycamore, Illinois, a small town an hour West of Chicago. I love it here, and so I would have to say, this is my home now.

  • Why do you write? 

Although the answer to that question is probably more complicated than I could articulate, even to myself, I think I write mainly because there is a story in my mind and it wants to get out. That story is a vague image inside me, and only takes form when I put into words.

  • What do you write about? 

During my professional career as an Army officer and later as a diplomat, I wrote mostly professional articles about tactics, defense policy, counter terrorism, and NATO. Along with that, I wrote about a dozen articles about martial arts philosophy and history. Beginning about ten years ago, I began to write for films. I wrote the background stories for Doug’s Christmas and A Child Lies Here, both of which because award-winning short films. In parallel, I wrote the draft of The Achilles Battle Fleet. Not quite sure how that got started or even if I intended it to be a novel when I first began writing it. In 2018, when it was clear I would be retiring, I set the goal of getting the novel published and I also took up the study of law, something I had started many years before. The Achilles Battle Fleet is military sci-fi, but it has a strong martial arts theme.

  • Do you have a specific writing style?

I do try to make sure the text is readable and interesting. I think I read once that a very accomplished author said great literature is whatever gets the reader to keep reading. Whatever message I want to communicate I need to engage the reader.

  • What are obstacles that come in the way of writing? 

The Greek philosopher, Epictetus, a former slave, wrote that if you want to be a writer, write. I think the biggest obstacle is laziness. I just need to get in and do the writing.  I wrote The Achilles Battle Fleet over about seven years, and then another few years re-writing and editing. Most of that time, I was very busy with my job at NATO. My work day started at 6 a.m. and ended often late in the evening. I also travelled a lot. Some of the book was written on my cell phone while on a train, bus or plane. Some of it was written while I was in Baghdad, in a bunker.

  • What do you think makes a good story?

A good story is about the people, the characters. The purpose of the action is to show how the characters react, what decisions they make, and what happens to their personalities as the plot unfolds. In The Achilles Battle Fleet, I put the characters in situations very like those faced by most people. Under stress, they have to make a decision, for which there is no perfect solution. Every potential course of action has risks and even certain negative consequences. It’s unavoidable. The key is to show that conflict, to let the characters own their decisions and to watch how those difficult decision impact their own personalities and values.

For example, Mei Ling Lee, the main protagonist, comes to the story as an accomplished martial artists and competitor. In the battles that she fights, she is forced to use her martial arts prowess. Under the pressures of the fighting, she comes to understand her own power. She sees in herself a love of the combat, and she is not sure what that says about her. Is she a good person? Does she feel remorse? And is she fully in control? But there is no time to contemplate; she has to move on to the next challenge. That’s life, and that is a similar dilemma that most readers will relate to in everyday life, whether in their jobs, their family life or their other aspirations.  

  • Do you have anything specific you’d like to tell the readers?

Yes. My former boss, General Wesley Clark, who was the NATO commander in the late 1990s, was kind enough to write the forward for my novel. He wrote, “Readers will take from Brendan’s novel an understanding that individuals make a difference, that character counts, and with courage and competence, history is made.” The Achilles Battle Fleet is more than an adventure story. I believe readers will both enjoy it, and maybe it will even give them some perspective on their own adventure. Life is fantastic.

Describe yourself in five words

I do have five words, but they require some explanation because they are not in English. I was one of the founders of a style of martial arts called Aristos. It is based on the philosophy of classical Greece. The five words represent the philosophy of Aristos. They don’t so much describe me as they describe an aspiration I have:

Arete: Excellence. You become what you diligently practice. It transforms you.

Agon: the source of the English word, agony. It means struggle. Life is a struggle. One should embrace that reality and act accordingly.

Xenia: The guest-host relationship. It is a developed idea of courtesy. Both the guest and the host have mutual, interlocking obligations to each other. It is not the type of courtesy that means submission or subservience.

Techne: Art or technique. In martial arts it is the mechanism of coordinated movement that generates power, focus and balance.

Arche: The Greek word from which we get the English word archeology. It means foundation.

So, what do those five words mean to me? That I can shape my life and myself by my own efforts and that I am responsible for the outcome. If I want to be a writer, I will need to invest the time, effort and risk that are inherent in that effort. If I choose to be a couch potato, I know how to do that too. Either way, it’s my call and my responsibility. That life is a struggle and is not fair. I shouldn’t expect it to be. I must not fret when things don’t go my way. Life is necessarily a struggle. That my relations with others are governed by my own code of duty. I have a responsibility to others to act in such a way that they are not harmed, and I should expect that level of care from others, especially those with whom I choose to share my life. And that I have a duty to assist those in need, as I have been helped by others. That skill is important, and that I need to develop, through hard work and perseverance, the techniques in my profession and in my private life.

What fact about yourself would really surprise people? 

I think most people see me as a reasonably polite person of mild temperament. And I do think that is mostly correct. But I think most people are surprised if they learn that I was an Army Ranger, that I serve in places like Iraq, Libya, Ukraine, Bosnia and Korea. Or that I am an 8th degree black belt who won the silver medal in taekwondo competition at the US Open. People can be more than one thing.

How do you work through self-doubts and fear? 

I think the most important thing to do is put aside the fear of failure. Ultimate success requires pushing the limits of what we are capable of, and that effort, guarantees some failure. The next most important thing is to ignore those who would like you to stop trying. They’re always out there, and sometimes they be loved ones who mean well. But they are wrong. My life is my adventure.  When I was 22 years old, I wanted to go to the US Army Ranger School, well-meaning friends and colleagues shook their heads and said things like, “you have no idea what you’re doing, you’ll never make it through.”  I’m glad I ignored them.

What scares you the most? 

Of the things that are under my own control, I most fear that I won’t live up to my own potential. Life is a precious and temporary adventure; it deserves my best effort.

What makes you happiest? 

Easily, time with my wife, Kay, which is inseparable from the joy of being alive.

What writing are you most proud of?

Good question! It’s hard to say one thing. No question, my Novel, The Achilles Battle Fleet has to be at the top of the list. I am also very proud of the writing I did for the short films, A Child Lies Here and Doug’s Christmas, both of which were award-winning films. But I do have a favorite poem. It’s titled The Warrior’s Dawn Prayer. I wrote in my darkest moment and I still read it every day. I had just been sent home from overseas, having spent a good deal of that time in Iraq. I was back in the states getting treatment for PTSD. While there, my employer terminated my employment. It was a low point. I was living in a hotel room, away from family. I had decided if I couldn’t work, that would to finish law school and complete my novel. I desperately wanted to keep moving and not give up. Here it is:

The Warrior’s Dawn Prayer

Help me lift my warrior’s heart from despair

One last battle with honor, dignity and righteousness

Bathe me in the blessing of combat

Strengthen my hand

Let me breath deep the joy of life

Give me the warrior’s delight in taking my place

In the long line of those who never give up.

What are you most proud of in your personal life? 

I think my journey in the martial arts has to rank high. When I was 16, I got cut from the varsity baseball team. I went that day to a local martial arts studio and took up the study of Tae Known Do. That was 47 years ago. I’ve studied, and trained others in many places. It is a great solace to me now. My wife and I train every day at a local park. I now have an 8th Dan in three martial arts styles, and I won the silver medal at the US Open at the age of 50. It’s a great journey and it’s not over.

What else do you do, other than write? 

I retired from work three years ago. Since that time, I have been finishing The Achilles Battle Fleet, attending law school and continuing training and teaching martial arts. My daily routine is to get up and share breakfast and a walk with my wife before she goes to work, then I walk to the local park, train there in martial arts, and return to the house for study, writing and the basic chores of living.

What other jobs have you had in your life? 

As a 13-year-old, I worked nights and weekends as a dishwasher at a Greek diner in New York. It was a wonderful introduction to the adult world of work. As a teenager during the summers of high school and college, I worked construction, moving furniture, and pumping gas. After college I have had two jobs. I was an Army officer for 25 years and then a defense planner and diplomat for the next 15.

 If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? 

I’ve lived many places. I spent a total of 28 years living outside the United States, and through my work, I’ve traveled broadly throughout Europe, Asia and the Middle East. Right now, I am very happy to be living in Sycamore, Illinois. It is the perfect place for me, a small town, wonderful, friendly people, and not too far from larger areas, like Chicago, should I like to visit. In answer, if I could live anywhere, I’d be right where I am in Sycamore Illinois.

Tell us about your new book? Why did you write it?  

The novel is about a group of military people who are caught in the eruption of a galactic-level surprise attack followed by a war against an unknown enemy with a seemingly impossible technological advantage. When their rag-tag convoy of spaceships carrying civilian refugees is attacked and disabled, many of their friends and colleagues are killed, along with almost all of the convoy’s leadership. An older rear admiral, long past his prime, takes charge of the survivors and gets them working together not just to survive, but to take the attack to the enemy. The admiral’s aide, Lieutenant Mei-Ling Lee, is thrust into a key role in the preparation for the upcoming offensive. As the conflict continues, she is forced to draw upon her martial arts skill and her inner strength as she fights alongside the fleet’s marine commando unit. In the desperate war that follows, Lee struggles with a budding romance, new friendships, and startling betrayals, to become the warrior she was meant to be.

What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?

My former boss, General Wesley Clark, who was the NATO commander in the late 1990s, was kind enough to write the forward for my novel. He wrote, “Readers will take from Brendan’s novel an understanding that individuals make a difference, that character counts, and with courage and competence, history is made.” The Achilles Battle Fleet is more than an adventure story. I believe readers will both enjoy it, and maybe it will even give them some perspective on their own adventure. Life is fantastic.

An Interview with Author Hares Youssef

Hares Youssef
Hares Youssef

Hares Youssef is a futurist thinker, digital economics ideologist, philanthropist, writer and artist.

I was born in the province of Latakia into a very low-income family. We lived in a clay house, and we had no electricity, water, telephone, or TV. Nevertheless, I managed to visit the world in which people lived thousands of years ago, knowing nothing about modern civilization and its so-called benefits. I grew up close to nature, and the land gave my family everything. Since childhood, I considered the earth as a living being, as a Mother and a giver. The history of my native Latakia is connected with Mother because it’s named after Laodicea, the mother of its founder Seleucus I Nicator.

As I grew older, I moved out of my childhood home. First, I moved to a small town, then to the capital of Syria before moving to the Soviet Union, where I entered a military school. A symbolic story is related to this event, as I never intended to be a cadet. I wrote poetry, was full of creative inspiration, and constantly criticized the Army, military equipment, and everything connected with it. I entered the Damascus Institute of Architecture, I won a place in the contest, and I was delighted to become an architect. One day, my uncle invited me over. He held a high position as a well-known politician. He convinced me that I had to leave and study in the military school (through the Ministry of Defence). I believed him because, at that time, we both thought this educational institution also trained architects. But that was not the case. I was discouraged when I realized that I was going to the Soviet Union, and studying architecture wasn’t an option. I didn’t know what would come next.

I remember how I entered the office, either of the general or colonel, where I had to choose my future speciality. He put the list before me and awaited my decision. Each option involved moving to a particular city. I focused on those professions that were foreign to me, and I didn’t know what to do. None of my classmates had that choice, and, it seems, I should be happy with my privilege, but all I felt at the time was disappointment, frustration and shock. In response to the interrogatory look of a person who noticed my indecision, I admitted that I wanted to become an architect. He answered: “I don’t have a ‘career fair’ for you, so you have to choose among the options.” Behind that general or colonel, there was a geographic map with the flags of the USSR. After getting over the excitement, I asked permission to choose not from the list but from the map. There were names of cities, but they meant nothing to me. Finally, I pointed the finger at Kyiv. There were only three options: a tank school, an aviation school, or an anti-aircraft missile school. And I chose aviation.

When I arrived in Kyiv, I was depressed, I stopped eating and drinking, I refused to attend classes. I didn’t want to be there. I bide my time and waited to leave. That summer, I left Kyiv and told my uncle that I would never go back. But he confronted me and advised me that I could not do architecture because obligations bound me to the Ministry of Defence. My uncle wanted me to graduate, so I had to return. They transferred me from an aviation school to a tank school, where the cadets had more freedom, but it was four years before I left. I deserted from the Army, and they caught me. Then I spent three more years trying to escape and free myself from my obligations to the Ministry. My uncle’s friends, who had already left the country due to disagreements with the president, helped me.

How did the idea of creating Gaiia come to you? Where did it all start?

-In the beginning, there was no name Gaiia. There was an idea. An idea of a natural planet with a natural person in the role of a just king; a planet with the best way of life, where peace and harmony reign. This idea drove me and forced me to ask questions: what is the problem? Why – with his mind, intelligence and reason – has man failed to become the ‘father of all living things?’ The name Gaiia appeared later. In the long process of searching for the answers to these questions, the name came to me quite suddenly. And it seemed to contain all the answers at once.

I understand the role of names and terms. A title contains everything that included in its name. If the name of the Universe is the Universe, then the Universe will remain limited by this name until we find another word for it – one that embraces everything that we have not yet put into this concept. We can limit, even remove part of the essence of what we mean with a name. And with a name, we can create an entirely new world or transform the old one. As far as the name Gaiia is concerned. I don’t remember exactly when it came to me, but, of course, I had often heard of the Greek goddess Γαῖα. Its name has become a symbol of my entire philosophy.

https://www.gaiia.foundation/about-hares/

Why did you decide to write a book?

Writing a book is one way to share your impressions, knowledge and philosophy with the world. However, I don’t intend to limit myself to the book. I’m planning to create a Movement, a platform, film, magazine, etc. The book is just the beginning. For me, the book establishes the legitimacy of what I can introduce to the world.

What did you want to reveal to your readers?

I wanted to open my readers’ eyes to a new dimension that is above logic because I’ve discovered that, as children, we are all mentally abused. I’m talking about how teachers forced us to interact with counting and arithmetic. This violence destroys most of the human intellect. It is so harsh that it makes logic a hostage to the way we think. Even when we think, we think by counting. But reflection is not involved in this process at all. For this reason, a peaceful, harmonious, beautiful world turns into idiotic romanticism. Our entire civilisation, as it exists today, is a design project of the same counting logic.

I find it astonishing that the intellectual elite considers our civilisation an outstanding achievement of the human mind. Idiocy has reached the point where we prepare to justify the enormous expenses on energy, intellectual and financial resources thrown at exploring the neighbouring planet. And this happens at a time when we are on the verge of a nuclear war! For example, it would be more dignified of Elon Musk if he applied his intellect by amazing the inhabitants of the Earth and finding a way to protect our native planet from the barbarism of the logic that has become a measure of success.

Interviewed by Natella Speranskaya

Author interview with Vivek

Vivek Balachandran is a computer science graduate from Coimbatore. He has had a few stints in IT, working for firms in Bangalore, Gurgaon, and Mumbai. Inspired by the works of Kovai Kulangal, which has restored the lost channels of the River Noyyal, he became very interested in the subject of water management and started researching the state of water and the way it is managed across India. What started as a research study soon took shape into fiction. He quit his IT career and moved to his hometown to embark on this journey of writing. Against the Flow is his first novel.

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Where are you from?

I am Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, India.

Why do you write?

This form of expression is detailed and it helps me a paint a picture onto a reader’s mind. So I write for those most valuable one to one’s with the reader

What do you write about? 

I write about the issues that surround us and the injustices that have happened in the past. I guess I wouldn’t just stop there but widen my horizon.

Do you have a specific writing style?

Haha, I think I kind of do. I would term my writing as a Notional Faction. Because it combines fact and fiction that are based on true events. My work is mostly research oriented so that the reader gets to learn something new. Also, I try my best to wrap the facts inside a compelling plot.

What are obstacles that come in the way of writing? 

Among the many obstacles, the most difficult obstacle is oneself. We are our own boon and bane. During the process we would have to battle so many doubts and inhibitions. At the end of the day, we got to cheer ourselves up, be our own mentor and stay focused.

How long have you been writing?

I used to blog for a while in college but then I dropped it. I guess after 9 years since college I picked it up again.

When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer?

I still don’t exactly remember when I was struck with the realization, but my friends constantly appreciated my writing and it reinforced me with the confidence to write. So, all thanks to my friends, who read my work, appreciated it and encouraged me to write more.

What is your work schedule like when you are writing?

Like I said, my work involves both research and fiction. When I am researching, I am inside the library the moment it opens and I would be the last person to leave. As for writing goes, I would not go more than 600-700 words per day.

How long does it take to write a book?

Well, it took me roughly 1.5 years to research, write and get the book published. But aspiring writers can get it done faster, because I bet you all aren’t a slowpoke like me. But even if it does take time, please be patient because the rewards are something worth treasuring.

Do you have suggestions on how to become a better writer?

This is an art form that has no set rules or protocols. You set the rules and you define the boundaries. But once you do set those, please ensure you stick to them. Often times the temptation and eagerness to write more will get drag you into a loop. So clearly define what you want to write and be consistent.

What challenges do you come across when writing/creating your story?

Apart from doubting ourselves and getting impatient, I think one of the challenges I faced was not knowing how much details I had to reveal to the reader. It was very hard for me to omit most of the research I had done, from the book. But I had to keep it simple, so that the reader doesn’t get bored by too much facts.

What do you think makes a good story?

A good story would be one, that stirs our emotions up pretty intensely. Also, it has got to have an engaging plot that is moderately paced.

Do you see writing as a career?

No, I still do it for my passion. And since this is my first book, I haven’t kept my hopes up high.

Do you have anything specific you’d like to tell the readers?

Please support this form of fiction. Because, it is relevant, real and if it has truly pricked your curiosity, continue to study about these subjects. Because I believe one day, you will make a difference.

How do you work through self-doubts and fear? 
Having a clear schedule helps. Because it gives you a sense of direction and when you’re facing a writer’s block, take some time off, travel or do something out of your comfort zone.

What writing are you most proud of?
There are writers who still firmly believe that the pen is mightier than the sword. I am proud of all those writers, who have conveyed a strong and bitter message, despite the fact that it would invite trouble.

What books did you love growing up? 

Fantasy novels mostly. It gives us a free ticket into the realm of writer’s imagination.

Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live? 

I was born in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu. I have worked in Bangalore and Delhi. So all the things I have seen and experienced there have indeed played a major role.

What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing? 

Each has its own share of difficulty. But when you think about publishing, you would have forgotten the difficulties you endured during writing and while marketing you don’t factor the other two. One way to go about it is to not see them as difficulties but a small break to your long journey.

Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge and thank for their support? 

Family and friends aside. There is this one person whom I really want to mention at this moment. This person has been the revolutionary when it comes to water management in India. Her contributions and research have brought so many changes /advancements. I had referred to most of her work for my research. In return, the gift some anti-social elements have given is to try and murder her.

Sunita Narain is that person who youngsters should take up as an inspiration. If you ask me, I would say, it doesn’t matter if you don’t want to read my book. But please do read ‘Excreta Matters’, where she has written in depth about the problems with water management in India.

Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you? 

I value appreciation and it is the biggest reward I can get.

It is vital to get exposure and target the right readers for your writing, tell us about your marketing campaign? 

I haven’t started on a marketing campaign as such. But my target audience are of the age 18-30. Because it would definitely make them want to learn more about Cyber security and water management. I hope my book acts a gateway to broaden their curiosity into these fields.

Tell us about your new book? Why did you write it? 

Few incidents really disturbed me. Injustices were caused, lives were lost, yet nobody cared. I wanted to write about such incidents and the impending problems. The book covers Cyber security issues, water. Management issues and a particular incident that occurred in Tamil Nadu where 13 people lost their lives for raising their voice against environmental hazards.

An interview with Author Quinton Douglas Crawford

Mr. Quinton Douglas Crawford has been a happy but struggling educator that was born in Southern California. He was blessed with opportunities to teach in two private schools (one for wealthy families in Vallejo, California as a 5/6 combo grade class; another in Fairfield as a moderate-severe special education 6/7 combo classroom teacher; before they financially collapsed. Before serving as a Teacher-Trainer in the Teacher Training College called Watico in Sefwi-Wiawso in the Western Region of The Republic of Ghana. A few years after his return to California an offer to teach English in Shenzhen, China was extended. There was some miscommunication on his arrival time, but luckily a staff member of the organization was nearby and able to be reached by the designated hotel to respite from my long uncomfortable flight. Between these times and beyond he has done guaranteed work as a substitute teacher for the Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District in virtually all roles. He has been praised by most of the students he has taught, their parents, many school staff and administrators.

His education consists of several certifications, Associates Degrees, a Bachelors Degree, several Masters degree units and in pursuit of a Masters Degree and Credentialing through Alliant International University. Delay’s in reaching his goal of attaining his higher level degree of a Masters or possibly a Doctorate were positioned against him in several different years via college closures, a discrimination issue, and a nearly fatal traumatic hemorrhagic cranial stroke which forced me into having to endure a 2-week Coma, also during a critical time in my Masters of Education study time. He attributes his strong and medically noted quick recovery to several factors including prayers by friends and family of multiple cultures and faiths, reception of over 100 get-well cards from the 6th grade classes and a 3rd grade class of David Weir Academy in 2018. Having the vision of my deceased father at the border of heaven “ordering me to Go-Back” while I was in the Coma, and seeing what appeared to be a fading angel as I awoke one day could of all done nothing for me but help.

Describe yourself in five words

– Intelligent, Spiritual, Caring, Engaging, and Foreward-thinking.

What fact about yourself would really surprise people? 

– I have a strong romantic side.

How do you work through self-doubts and fear?  

– I embrace music with lyrics that speak the opposite terms.

What scares you the most? 

– The possibility of a major earthquake while driving across the center of a large bridge.

What makes you happiest?  

– I love teaching an engaging subject with smart interested students.

Why do you write? 

– I want to leave some type of legacy behind and always know I may be teaching someone.

Have you always enjoyed writing?  

– No, I began enjoying it after I began teaching it.

What motivates you to write? 

– I want the one I fell in love with to know I’m still alive.

What writing are you most proud of?

– I’m most proud of my book “The Global Situation” in part because I accomplished writing in the science genre.

What are you most proud of in your personal life? 

– I’m most proud that I have never given up trying to get my masters degree.

 What do you hope your obituary will say about you? 

– Mr. Quinton Douglas Crawford directly influenced thousands of students with real life wisdom to pass to others in California, Ghana, China, and millions of others via the timeless knowledge expressed in the literature he had produced in his books and organization works.

Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live? 

– I grew up mainly on U.S. Air Force Bases in southern California, Spain, England, and Travis AFB.

How did you develop your writing?

– My first book came from a collection of my bachelors programs essays. That provided the biggest template for my other published writings.

What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing? 

– The most challenging thing for me has been the writing, as it required a lot of backup research.

What marketing works for you? 

– Radio marketing and blog posts seem to work well for me.

Do you find it hard to share your work? 

– No

Is your family supportive? Do your friends support you? 

– Yes, each seems to support me.

What else do you do, other than write? 

– I am a teacher, Masters degree student of Alliant International University, and multiple health trauma survivor.

What other jobs have you had in your life? 

– I used to be a custodian for Solano County, a Library Assistant for Solano Community College, and a fast food worker for McDonalds.

If you could study any subject at university what would you pick? 

– Astrophysics

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be? 

– Philippines and Ghana

Tell us about your family? 

– Everyone has worked for a government agency.

How do you write – lap top, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk? 

– I use all of the above.

How much sleep do you need to be your best? 

– I like to get 9-10 hours of sleep but can do well with 6-7 hours for work.

Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge and thank for their support? 

– Professor Manu Ampim

Tell us about your new book? Why did you write it?  

– My newest book to be published in November is my Autobiography. I wrote in inspiration by my favorite Author Relations Officer. Told me that my life story might help others.

If you could have a dinner party and invite anyone dead or alive, who would you ask? 

– My dad, Tupac Shakur, Bob Marley, Guru, Dr. Leonard Jeffries, Prof. Manu Ampim, Prof. X,  Brother J, KRS-1, Stokely Carmichael, Kwai Chang Caine, Leonard Nimoy, Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube, Kevin Hart

When you are not writing, how do you like to relax? 

– Listening to music for inspiration and stories

What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?

 – I hope people will gain dynamic answers to the problems and issues I attempt to address in each of the books.

Home

An Interview with Author James Dittmar

James Dittmar

James Dittmar lives in Cedar Rapids, IA with his wife and two sons. When not writing or fishing, he can be found playing video games with his kids, trying to keep his motorcycle running and playing make believe in his head while he avoids any real work that he can, all with a dram of nice Irish Whiskey.

Where are you from?

Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Why do you write? 

I have a deep respect for those that put things out into the world, artists, musicians, etc. I have always enjoyed telling stories, so I wanted to add my contribution to the world. 

What do you write about? 

Fantasy and Science Fiction mostly, but I try not to limit myself.  I enjoy reading many genres, so I figure why limit myself to writing only one?   

What books did you love growing up?

I loved anything fantasy or science fiction I would get my hands on.  Tolkien, Lloyd Alexanders Prydain series, Terry Brooks Shannara series, Dune, and The Books of Lost Swords series by Fred Saberhagen.  I was also a big fan of Stephen King and Dean Koontz growing up.  Many of my books were paperbacks from garage sales, so there were always a lot of their books available to me. 

What are obstacles that come in the way of writing? 

Everyday life. Family, day job, responsibilities. There are a million things in life that will try to get in the way, the key is getting it done anyway.

How long have you been writing?

Writing? All my life.  Published?  Just this year. I have many unfinished manuscripts, but I finally found some stories that kept me involved and excited to see where the stories lead me.

When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer?

When I was a young kid, maybe ten or eleven, we had a writer (Carol Gorman) visit our school.  She published what is now called YA, but back then it didn’t really have a label.  I had a ‘job’ in the school library twice a week, and she was friends with the librarian and let me read the manuscript for her next book before it was published.  The fact that a local writer could also be a successful nationally published author blew my mind and ever since then, I wanted to be a writer too.

What is your work schedule like when you are writing?

I draft an outline and then get to work.  I try to work an hour or two a day when I am in the middle of a story.  I often find the story veering wildly outside of the outline, but that is what makes writing so exciting.

Who would you say are your influences?

Well, the easy answer is of course J.R.R Tolkien.  I first read the Hobbit when I was twelve I think and have been hooked on fantasy ever since.  R.A. Salvatore, William King are Dan Abnett are probably the biggest influences of my latest series of books.

How long does it take to write a book? (if you’ve written one -published or non)

My first published novel took me about 3 months from first draft to date of publishing

Do you have suggestions on how to become a better writer?

Just keep writing. Like anything else, the more you do something the more you excel at it.  You can’t worry about how well it is selling or reviewed.  As long as one person finds your book and is entertained by it, that is all that matter.

What challenges do you come across when writing/creating your story?

Pacing. There are times I know where I want my characters to go, but have to figure out how to get them there, and that sometimes ends up with pacing that doesn’t match the rest of the writing as I struggle to get them from plot point A to plot point B.

What do you think makes a good story?

Immersion. If you look up and are shocked to realize you have been reading for longer than you had thought or planned because you have become so engrossed in the setting and characters of a book.

What does your family think of your writing? 

They are supportive. 

Do you see writing as a career?

I would love for it to be, but even if that is not to be, I will be happy to continue it as a side project for as long as I have readers.

Do you have anything specific you’d like to tell the readers?

Review and share the books you love. There are so many books available now, and more every day, that it is easy for them to get lost in the mix. If you read a book and enjoy it, tell others about it, and put up a review on Amazon or Goodreads or just on social media, letting the world know about it.  As much as the publishing landscape has changed over the years, the one thing that holds still is that nothing moves books like word of mouth. Whether it is a mass-produced big-name author or a small self-published indie, the best thing that a reader can so to support authors they enjoy is to share that enjoyment.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?

When I was reading a proof copy of my paperback and realized that if I didn’t know that I had written it, I would have genuinely thought it had come from one of the authors whose works I do enjoy.

What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing?

Marketing for sure. I was so worried about the writing and publishing steps, I never would have realized how difficult the marketing is, especially for an indie author.

http://facebook.com/Ironfootpublishing

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/21708769.James_Dittmar

    

An Interview with Author Frankie Fegurgur

Frankie Fegurgur

Hi Everyone and welcome to the Family section of Frank Money Talk! I know that it can be difficult to discuss money at home. Whether it’s lingering beliefs from how we were raised, or fear that our children will judge us for our financial mistakes, talking about money quickly becomes off-limits. Time passes and then our children are adults, being forced to make complex financial decisions without basic knowledge about how money works. You want the best for your children, but how do you explain one of the most important aspects of life? People often tell me that they just wish they had some help breaking the ice. A way to explain any financial topic in simple terms so that children can have a solid foundation. I’m here to help! On this page and throughout this website, you’ll find free resources, including printable budget templates, savings challenges and even coloring pages from my children’s book about money!

Q: Where are you from?

A: I am from California and was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Q: What do you write about?

A:  I write about financial dignity, money mindfulness and how to retire with purpose. We need to start talking about financial literacy as early as feasible, so I began tailoring my message to a younger audience. First it was high school students, and now my latest book is for 7–11-year-olds.

Q: Do you have a specific writing style?

A: I want to distill the main ideas and cut out the fluff.  I like using examples or stories that convey an actionable message.  If the reader can’t walk away with practical tools or asking themselves better questions, then I wasn’t persuasive enough, or respectful of their time.

Q: When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer?

A: I began writing in middle school. I had a teacher who encouraged me, and that belief stuck. Writing is a skill that serves everyone, regardless of their career or interests. It’s been especially valuable to me in articulating complex financial topics in a simple, palatable way.

Q: Why do you write?

A: Writing is a creative outlet for me. There are so many possibilities when you let your imagination loose. You could fill a room with 100 people, writing on the same topic, and you’d end up with 100 unique pieces of work.

It’s also a great way to communicate with readers that I might not otherwise get to meet. It allows me to organize my thoughts and present them so that they can formulate their own opinions at their own pace. I like to provide my sources and encourage people to do their own research.

Q: Do you have suggestions on how to become a better writer?

A: Write every day, even if it’s just for five minutes. You’ll find that once you get started, the ideas will flow.  Write without judgement of your work and don’t try to edit as you go. Write about topics you enjoy, or whatever comes to mind. That way it’s fun and makes you think.

Write how you speak, as if you were speaking to a friend. Treat your audience with respect, and you’ll connect with them instantly. That’s because there is someone out there that will only connect with the way you present something. Even if it’s something they’ve heard before, it will land differently coming from you.

Q: What do you think makes a good story?

A: A good story is simple, yet immersive. The characters must be relatable, and their plight must be familiar, as if the story was about someone you know. This allows the reader to be part of the action and anticipate what might happen next. When a problem or circumstance appears, the reader must be invested in the outcome. They need to have the space to interpret what is happening, and what the consequences are for the decisions that the characters make. I enjoy reading or watching a story where after it’s over, I wonder what I’d do if I were in their shoes.

Years later, the reader might forget some details of the story, but the feelings of that journey stay with them. When they tap into those feelings, the reader is reminded of the lessons learned. And if they were to read the story again, they’d even catch something new.

Q: Do you see writing as a career?

A: I absolutely see writing as a career. There are so many ways to earn a living while feeling fulfilled as a writer. There will always be demand for someone who can articulate concepts through writing. Writing can give a voice to people who would otherwise not be heard.

Writing doesn’t have to be a full-time career. There is nothing wrong with it being just a hobby, but to write professionally requires discipline. I’d recommend someone freelancing and building up their portfolio. They can get a sense of their niche, and even get paid to learn new and exciting things. Once they know they have developed the skills, the mindset, and the industry savvy, they can transition into full-time.

Q: Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you?

A: Success in writing for me is taking the action to turn my thoughts into things. Simply getting the ideas onto the paper is enough. My hope is that as I evolve, my writing evolves too. And that I’m always courageous enough to express my thoughts.

Q: What do you hope people will take away from your writing? How will your words make them feel?

A: I want people to feel more capable. I want them to come through the journey with me and be more confident because of it. Regardless of where the reader is at in their life, from feeling at their best and most successful, to being in their most challenging times, I want to give them something to aspire to.

Q: Tell us about your new book? Why did you write it?

A: My new book follows four children who each receive $20 from their grandparents. They get to decide what to do with the money, and how each choice brings a different outcome. The pages are full color and designed to get readers thinking what they’d do in the characters’ shoes.

I wrote this book so that kids and their parents can start talking about money. Beliefs about money begin to be formed at an early age. Children are bombarded with advertisements and messaging that they need to have the newest and nicest things to be happy. This gets mixed in with the beliefs they learn from their family and form the basis for a lifetime of behaviors.

Too often young adults learn by trial and error, ending up in debt and feeling like they don’t have a lot of options. This book is the first step to having better conversations about how money works.

Q: Anything else you’d like to share? How can people learn more?

A: Head over to my website, where you can download free coloring sheets and spending trackers, learn tips to save money, and even ask me your financial questions on any topic. You can also find my latest book “What Would You Do With $20” on Amazon.

My website for more information on my books:

Connect with me on socials:

@frankmoneytalk

Author Interview with Ferleen Verneuil-Joseph

My name is Ferleen Verneuil-Joseph.
I hail from the most Beautiful Caribbean Island named Saint Lucia,West Indies!
I love travelling and thus, lived in London for many years with my husband and two wonderful Teenage boys.
In 2014, I moved to the European country named Poland!
I love meeting new people, travelling, socialising and communicating.
I am a very caring individual who solely focuses on the most Positive and good things in life.
I am an Early years educator, TEFL Teacher, Special Needs specialist, with over 15 years of experience. I love working with children and young people.
I love writing and thus, write children’s reports and news letters. I decided to try writing some children’s books as well in the process.
I’ve written two books including a children’s picture book with an Awesome cover!

As a result of my positive thinking and Always being Hopeful, I decided to put together a book of ‘Inspirational Quotes’, to help families and people to keep their heads up when difficult situations arise!

The name of my books are called “So what if you have Failed”! Be Inspired and ‘My Wonderful Mama’!
A book of pure Inspiration and motivation, enabling you to get up, rise up and look forward to only the positive, rather than dwell on the negative.
The Children’s book is about Fera and her ‘Mama’, doing many positive things together, cooking, playing, eating, communicating and teaching her. Setting an example in including the multicultural community and embracing them!
It’s very Unfortunate that many individuals after they have fallen, decided to just give up and give in, rather than to embrace and appreciate their mistakes, then use it to move forward positively.
Please check out my books 📚 and be ready to Inspire yourself and others by its Powerful content.

Describe yourself in five words

God-Fearing, ambitious, hopeful, optimistic and creative

What fact about yourself would really surprise people? 

Well, actually it’s already happening. Many are surprised that I’ve written Not 1 but 2 books and indeed very fast!

How do you work through self-doubts and fear?

Honestly, I try Not to doubt myself and many other things in life. I may tend to naturally worry a bit about a really Important issue but Certainly Never Fearful as I keep hope alive!

What makes you happiest? 

Waking up to see and know that I can actually start over again with No guilt.

Why do you write? 

I write because I’ve actually been writing for such a long time but almost Unaware of it!

So really, it’s because of my love for children.

Have you always enjoyed writing? 

Yes, I have. I was always writing way too much when asked to write a few words or sentences.

What motivates you to write? 

Due to my Frequent and constant assessments and reports about children on a weekly and termly basis, I’ve developed a Genuine love to just write for and about children!

What writing are you most proud of? 

Am very proud that I’ve written an Inspirational book that actually helps and can heal people in some cases.

What are you most proud of in your personal life? 

Honestly and Unreservedly putting God First in my life and decisions.

What books did you love growing up? 

Funny but I never really cared for reading except when I was in primary school on reading and spelling competitions.😄

What do you hope your obituary will say about you? 

Well for one she left her legacy of books behind and selfless, honest and Unselfish nature to immolate.

Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live?

I hail from the most beautiful Caribbean Island 🏝️ called:  Saint Lucia 🇱🇨 West Indies. I grew up there with lots of friends and a large family. In my early 20’s I got an opportunity to go to the UK to babysit my very young cousin. After many years living there I got an opportunity to teach English as a foreign language (TEFL) in Poland Europe.

How did you develop your writing?

Though am still learning, I can safely say that I find my writing to be decent enough through constantly writing weekly communication books and monthly newsletters, termly and year end writing final reports and assessments for children.

My Wonderful Mama

What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing? 

Getting published was for me a bit much so I got a bit of help to do it.

Marketing can be tough without the right resources and or money.

For me writing is Never an issue even when one occurs.

What marketing works for you? 

For me once I can get anyway for my books to reach an audience, I will try it once I am abled of course! Social media, YouTube advert, Sharing etc. you name it!

Do you find it hard to share your work? 

Not at all as Everyone wants an opportunity to shine and rightly so!

Is your family supportive? Do your friends support you? 

Yes! Very supportive and proud of my accomplishments. Friends and acquaintances have supported me but let’s face it; Not everyone can and will support!

What else do you do, other than write? 

Well, as part of my writing and job, I am a preschool and Nursery teacher, with a major in special needs and Safeguarding.

What other jobs have you had in your life?

I worked in the hospital and nursing homes as a Nursing auxillary and social care in some places. Taught English as a second language.

If you could study any subject at university what would you pick? 

Actually, not if but soon I will embark on doing or finishing my Special Needs and early years Training to Masters level.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be? 

I would like to try out living in Dubai and or somewhere in Afrika!

Tell us about your family? 

Earlier I stated that I have a very large family. Yes, I have many siblings between my mom and dad. Hundreds of first and second cousins, all over in the Caribbean and the United States. My immediate family however, is my husband and 2 handsome teenage boys or say one adult son (18) and the younger soon to be 16 years.

How do you write – lap top, pen, paper, in bed, at a desk? 

Firstly, pen and paper roughly, then sit nicely down on my laptop to rule it out.

SO WHAT IF YOU HAVE FAILED!: Be Inspired

How much sleep do you need to be your best? 

Hmmm🤭🤔 let’s see. I most times go to bed almost day break on a daily basis. I also say you must know your body and how it functions in order to execute your style of writing and to bring out the best ideas. Regardless, am someone who performs and works very hard in spite of any present issue or circumstance.

Is there anyone you’d like to acknowledge and thank for their support? 

I would like to shout out my beloved husband and my boys who Always encourage me to believe that I will soon see the fruit of my labour. Love you guys 💖💕and thanks a million!

Also, to my siblings and few good friends who has stuck with me through it all and Always cherish my friendship. Thanks for your love and support.

One Love! 💖🌄

Every writer has their own idea of what a successful career in writing is, what does success in writing look like to you? 

My success in writing will be to inspire many people by writing a good few books and a basic to standard ‘Writing course’ online!  That’s just one of them though!

It is vital to get exposure and target the right readers for your writing, tell us about your marketing campaign? 

Well, my campaign is mostly focused on sending my message to the crowd generally who craves motivation, hope, reassurance and Confidence. For children who are targeted and who are usually faced with either race issues, Belonging, love and care, sharing and nurturing.

Tell us about your new book? Why did you write it? 

I have 2 books including a children’s book 📚. So, what if you have failed’! Be Inspired – this book was solely written as a result of covid and its Negative impact on our families and friends. Many passed away, committed suicide, left with no hope, lack confidence, fear of Failure etc. ‘My Wonderful Mama’– this book was written to inculcate and make Every little child feel loved and a sense of belonging, no matter their culture or background. It teaches about sharing, playing, eating together and getting strength to carry on 

If you could have a dinner party and invite anyone dead or alive, who would you ask? 

Definitely my beloved late daddy! Oh how I miss him ever so often. This would have been my ideal dream come true. Sigh.

 When you are not writing, how do you like to relax? 

Am actually Always writing as am at school during the day and I come home to do more writing. 

However, I can see myself relaxing many times in a hotel or laying by the beach. Also, when husband rubs part of my body with Soothing ‘Lavender’ oil, my Favourite ointment by far 🔥😉

What do you hope people will take away from your writing?  I do hope and want very badly for everyone who gets a copy of my book or whoever comes across it, will

Remember and ponder on my quotes of; Never give up, smile, Forgive, be a leader, Never say Never, you are Not the only one and more!     (Please ponder on these few quotes)

How will your words make them feel?

Definitely more confident, zeal to move on, proud of themselves, life is worth living and feeling hopeful!

Author Interview with James G. Robertson (book sale starts from 9/8/21)

James G. Robertson

James G. Robertson is an award-winning Dark Fantasy, Dystopian, and Supernatural Horror author. He was born in a small town in Kansas, and also lived in Texas, Missouri, and New York, where he graduated college from SUNY Oswego in 2019, obtaining a bachelor’s in political science with a theatre minor. He has also received an associate’s degree in information network technology, which he received in 2012 from Pratt Community College. His first book, Afterworld, was published on May 1st, 2020. If you wish to know anything else, connect with him on twitter or using the contact page on the official website.

Where are you from?

I’m from the US. The two places I consider my home state are Kansas, or New York. Kansas was where I was raised for the most part, but New York is where I went to school and where I enjoy being.

Why do you write?

I write because I enjoy it. That’s as simple as it gets. I want to tell a story and have people think about the world around them. To question the unquestionable, and find the answers for themselves.

What do you write about?

I write dark fantasy! Dark, horror, splash of dystopian and Sci-Fi you’ve got it. I like to tell my potential readers think Stephen King meets the DC Universe, and you’ve got yourself the Next Life (the name for my series). Now on a more detailed level my stories are stem from the question “What if the gods are lying to us?” I can’t be the only one who has ever thought this, and I doubt I’ll be the last, but I base my fantasy world on this idea and it takes a life of its own from there.

book sale starts from 9/8/21

Do you have a specific writing style?

My writing style is think big picture. I have those big plot points in my mind, and my characters do their own thing as I write until they get to those points. It comes to me as I read. I’m a pansters/discovery writer.

What are obstacles that come in the way of writing?

Time! I’ve got an enormous story to write. I’m thinking, hmmm 20 books? Hopefully that’s enough to finish the basic series. After that I want to do a few related stories, but nothing big. When you’re an indie author, doing his own audio books, and working on the series. It takes a lot of time, but that doesn’t stop me from writing. Luckily, I’ve got the motivation and drive to power through.

How long have you been writing?

Since 6th grade, really. Not consistently, mind you, but that was the first time I began a story. This series here? Since about 2012 is when I started it, went on a college hiatus and then finished this book during the pandemic in 2020. I’ve since finished the second book, and am working on the audio books for the first two and the third novel.

When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer?

Good question. I guess it was when I finished the first book. I told myself, I can do this. You have the talent (or so I’ve been told); you enjoy it. So, keep it up until you’re finished!

What is your work schedule like when you are writing?

When I’m writing I do at least 1,000 words 5 days a week, but it can range from there up to 3500 I believe is the most I’ve written in a single day for my fantasy world.

How long does it take to write a book?

My average length of writing is about 1 year. 1 year of really focusing on a book, writing it, and then it’s out the year after.

Do you have suggestions on how to become a better writer?

How to become a better writer? Well, that’s a good question, isn’t it. I would say read, read more, and edit, edit, edit. Other than that, it just takes patience and learning what works for you and what doesn’t.

What challenges do you come across when writing/creating your story?

The most troublesome part I’ve encountered was when I wrote my second book (The Ripper). I had to contain the story within a boundary. As a discovery writer, this was difficult for me to do. I would want my character to go do something else, but the time wouldn’t work so I would have to really think how to make it work, or have something similar happen to progress the story in the way I wanted.

What do you think makes a good story?

A good story is one someone enjoys. That’s it. You can’t ask for anything more from a story than to provide an escape and have it pull emotion from the reader (positive or negative).

What does your family think of your writing?

They see me doing something I believe in. Most are positive or neutral about it, but I don’t think they see how much work I’ve really had to put into this. The time sink in the audiobook alone has been about 6 months since I’m adding SFX & Background noises. It’s a lot of work. I’m hopeful it pays off.

Do you see writing as a career?

I’m very hopeful. As I’ve said, I have the drive. I’ve taken the steps to succeed it’s just getting over the initial hurdle of finding readers. I have a grand story to tell, and I think many can relate to it while having fun if they give it a chance! So yes, yes I do.

Do you have anything specific you’d like to tell the readers?

To the reader of this interview. Don’t give up on yourself or your dreams. Maybe you haven’t discovered what your dreams or ambitions are yet, but they will come. Have patience and you will find yourself doing what you love. Once you find it, don’t give it up for anything, even if it requires more work than the average person. Pursue it. To my readers, thanks for sticking with me. Hopefully, you’re enjoying the story. Please leave an honest review on amazon, good reads, and bookbub! They help so much! A review and word of mouth is the best gift you can give your author who you enjoy reading.

My award-winning book Afterworld (Next Life, #1) will be on sale from 9/8/21 to 9/15/21 on amazon.com and amazon.uk

Next Life Universe – Next Life Universe | The Official Website

Next Life Universe | Facebook

James G. Robertson (Author of Afterworld) | Goodreads

Amazon.com: James G. Robertson: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks, Kindle