1. What type of books do you write? The Legend of Stergis Berraha is my first and only published book. It is a western/action/adventure book. I have always enjoyed the western genre and feel that the world is ready for this genre to have a bigger place in their imagination. I don't consider myself a one genre writer though. This book will ultimately have three sequels, but once I finish those, there are other genres I want to write about. Some include: "overcoming huge odds," sports genre, Drug addiction, and even fantasy. I really enjoy writing about overcoming adversity and seeing past the horrible to see the good.
2. What is your newest book about? The Legend of Stergis Berraha is the first in a series. The entire series is focused on it's main character. The first one covers his life from birth to 21. Its a coming of age story about a boy who is trying to find out where he belongs when his family is permanently taken from him. Its his story but as he is growing up, around him in the New Mexico Territory, a group of psychotic outlaws led by a man who cares nothing for the men who serve him are quietly taking over the territory. Stergis gets adopted by a Native American named Longfeather and is taught how to protect himself. The main struggle for Stergis is that he finds himself in a position to stop the outlaws or at least hinder their plans, but he hates violence and doesn't want to justify going against his beliefs.
3. What inspired you to write it? My inspiration to write this book began 14 years ago. I grew up watching and loving movies. I would rather watch a film than spend time with a friend. Star Wars were movies that impressed me as something that was incredibly imaginative. I wowed at how creative it was and how much it made me feel for the characters and it's setting. I thought to myself about how fantastic it would be to create a story just as interesting. Even though, I do not feel if my book is on the level of wide-spread interest that Star Wars carries, it was the beginning of my inspiration. I wanted to create something that was not already created. I wanted to be original. I spent so much of the creative process for my book on trying to make it unique. It took me 11 years to actually write the book mainly because I was busy with other events in my life and I was trying to figure out the main details of my story. The biggest inspirations for this book was Native American culture and the movie Wyatt Earp. Wyatt Earp was the first western I really enjoyed watching.
4. What is the writing process like for you? My process is different than most I would assume. I drive 30 minutes to work and 30 minutes back. During that time, I create the world in which my characters will live, then I create the characters-one at a time. I think of the main events that they will be dealing with and then at home, I write from the beginning of the story to the end. I keep in mind the main things that will happen, but I create the details on the spot.I always have the TV off and my headphones on. I create playlists on my phone and fill them with songs that I feel fit the mood of my book. I listen to those songs as I write and as I drive each day. I listen to the same songs over and over until they are associated with images from what I wrote or want to yet write about. I go back and insert parts of the story that I feel need help from time to time, but I mostly write until the first draft is done. Then I go through several rounds of revising to make sure all that I wanted to have was not forgotten, to make sure there are no plot holes and to see what seeds need to be planted for future chapters or sequels.Then, I go through exhaustive rounds of editing for mistakes and grammar.
5. What did you do before you became an author? I am a teacher. I have taught 5th grade for one year and 4th for the last 3 years. Before that, I was a server at a Mexican restaurant for 6 years as I went to college.
6. How does it feel to be a published author? It feels great! I was so proud to be an official author, but I am not yet satisfied. I will not be satisfied until I can make a living from it. I have three kids that I wish to see much more of and I would love to be able to devote four to six hours a day to just writing. Now, with my work and dad schedule, I only get about 45 minutes, 3 days a week. It's not enough. I am proud that I have succeeded at something that is not an easy thing to succeed in. I am very pleased that others are reading my story and enjoying it. This is just the beginning step for me. I have more goals to achieve. I think so many people assume that being published is the finish line to instant success. That's not the truth. It truly is the invitation to a party where there are tons of others invited as well. The hard thing is to market and push the book and get it to the readers.
7. Any advice for struggling writers? Stay true to what you write. All writers know who they are as a writer, but rejection is a guaranteed part of the whole thing. With rejection, we feel that our stuff is not good enough and that we should be like other successful writers, but that's not how it should be. We can always become better, but if you're struggling now, don't give up on your story, especially if you know people will enjoy it. Doors will open. I couldn't get an agent, I still don't have one, but I was still able to find a publisher that saw something in my story. Now I just got back from the biggest book expo in the world, giving my book to dozens of people and meeting so many talented authors. Keep at it!
8. Where do you see book publishing heading? I think it will continue to adapt to the modern times, but I think printed books will never go away fully. I myself prefer reading from printed books than ebooks. I think that I am not alone in this. I do think that digital publishing is a great thing though. It saves from having to replace ruined books and gives all writers at least a chance to get their book out there for people to enjoy once they discover it.
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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, Media Connect, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at email@example.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2014
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