Author Interview

Screen-shot of the author and his book from AllAuthor website interview.

What childhood memory has had the best impact on you?
Traveling with my parents to visit grandparents, and the New England seashore.

What is the earliest experience you had with writing that you remember?
Having to write a story in typing class. Yes, I come from the Dark Ages and actually learned to type on a manual typewriter during high school summer school, which is another relic of a bygone era.

What inspired you to write your first book?
A cross country trip that unfolded in many unexpected ways, and forced me to face fears still lurking within me.  My wife told me there was a book in that story.  Always listen to your spouse!

What are you tired of in the history genre?
Self-serving stories masquerading as true history.

What were some ways you tried to improve your writing throughout your high school years?
I did not fancy myself as a writer in high school, for I saw others who were much better at it than me.

How did you come up with the idea of "Hitting the Road Without A Map: ...and other miscalculations"?
It is a true story!  I did not have to create a story or a narrative - all I had to do was pay attention 
to what was going on around me, with conscious intent.  Then I had to set it to paper.  This is the way I try to live my life, but most of the time I do not write about it.

With little to no preparation, an acquaintance and me embarked upon a cross-county mission to deliver a mutual friend's giant RV from Ohio to Oregon. Thinking technology would suffice, we literally hit the road without a map, and that was our first miscalculation. There would be more! So as it was happening, I knew there was a story to be told.

What is one of your first stories you ever made up/wrote? Did you ever complete it?
My first story was about being incarcerated, and titled "First Time in Jail."  Yes, I completed it. I also was released!

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When I was asked to edit a history publication, which really meant I had to write a small magazine which came out three times a year. I did that for over ten years, so I was forced to create a lot of content.  People who had read my pieces told me I had a knack for writing, and I have always had a strong appreciation for well turned phases and clarity in writing.  It was great practice for my writing efforts later on.

Do you hear from your readers much? What do they say?
I rarely hear from my readers, but the few comments I have received have always been encouraging.  Apparently, I have a style that people find appealing, otherwise I would not be invited to write more. If I was terrible at it, those requests would not occur. It is either that, or folks are blowing a lot of smoke!

What does success mean to you? What is the definition of success?
Success is being comfortable in one's skin, being able to look at the man in the mirror and not recoil in horror! Success in writing entails similar things, but with the addition of selling a lot of books and having them well received by the readers.

Who is your target audience? What are some things you wish your readers would take away from your books?
My target audience is people who enjoy reading true stories and historical narratives, and are not put-off by my occasional frank discussions of wrestling with personal issues and spirituality.

What is the most surprising thing you discovered while writing your first book?
That I actually had enough to share that would fill a book, and I could find a story arc to pull the reader along to a conclusion. Prior to writing the book I had not written any pieces much longer than fifty pages, and most much shorter than that.

Do you write listening to music?
No. I enjoy music too much, so listening to it distracts me when I am writing.  I get focused on tasty grooves and not what I am supposed to be creating. If I want to listen to music, I listen to music. If I want to write, I write!

What is the next book you are working on? Is it a series or a stand-alone book?
My next book will be a memoir of growing up in a small town in the late 1950's and 1960's. Yes, that field has been plowed by others, but we all go through life with unique perspectives - or at least we should! Therefore, I hope my experiences and perspectives would be of interest to some.  Work on it commenced a while ago.

How long have you been associated with AllAuthor? How has your experience been?

I joined AllAuthor about two years ago, after my first book came out, and I struggled to navigate the waters of book promotion and bookselling during the COVID pandemic. The group/organization has been most helpful, and I believe I have sold a few books as the result of my association with it.


This interview was originally published on the AllAuthor website on July 28, 2022 and has been edited slightly for clarity. 




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