Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Interview with author Arnold E. Palmer

1. What inspired you to write your book?
Of course, every family historian wants to see his or her vast compilation of material published. In that regard, I am no different. But as I dug deeper into my ancestral history, I found many individuals I can relate to, not only for their accomplishments, but also their hardships, lost loves, and an expanded appreciation of history itself. Having been a historical re-enactor for more than 40 years, I can now honestly say, “My God! If I am having this much difficulty in weathering a storm using modern knowledge and tools, it must have been vastly more difficult for my forebears to endure such hardships!” It is this awareness of their perseverance in the face of overwhelming hardships that has inspired me to tell their stories.

2. What is it about?
This book has a threefold purpose.

    The first is, to act as a genealogical reference for descendants of my family and others who are connected to this group of 900 individuals.
    Secondly, this book is unique in its organization, in that, unlike most genealogical family trees with a straight “register report” listing, it is designed to present the information within a highly ordered methodology. Listed in the table of contents are: conventions used in this document, variant spellings, the geography, the major family surnames, and the department of obscure information, as well as the usual genealogical references and indexes. In short, this book is meant to be a reference source that is both useful and quickly accessible to all its readers.
    And finally, it tells the story of a prominent New Jersey dutchman who became a Tory, a member of the Conservative Party in Britain, during the American Revolution and his exile to the wilderness of Canada after the war. It is an account of a 45-year-old man, once one of the richest men in New Jersey, falling victim to the siren song of conservatism, and being forced to exile himself hundreds of miles into the wilderness of New Brunswick, in 1783.

3. What do you hope will be the everlasting thoughts for readers who finish your book?
For those who use this material as a genealogical reference, it is my hope is that they find what they are looking for and to be grateful for its unusual organization of the material presented.

For those who read the story of Samuel Benson Lydecker, Sr., it is my intention for them to understand his motives in becoming a Tory, his life in wartime New Jersey, and the agonizing decision to give up that life of money and power in a community for exile in an area of eastern Canada where your nearest neighbor may be more than a mile away from you over a rough dirt road.

4. What advice do you have for writers?
    Believe in yourself.
    Believe in your skills as a writer.
    Every good story needs to be told.
    Start writing! Start anywhere –– the pieces will come together!
    Read, and re-read the story, and then write more material.
    Work at connecting those disjointed pieces of the story and mold those pieces into a narrative that flows smoothly.
    And lastly, the joy of being a published author is awesome.

5. Where do you think the book publishing industry is heading?
In an age where everything is digital, including books, the publishing industry is not going out of business anytime soon. Quite to the contrary, this industry has embraced the digital world and is making it its own. The process of having a book published has never been easier! And paper copies will never go out of style. There will always be libraries, bookstores, bibliophiles and family historians.

6. What challenges did you have in writing your book?
Since this book is nonfiction, the challenge has always been: I need facts, nothing but the facts, ma’am! Do not get me wrong, the skills I learned in english class were slow to come, but years of practice in being a wordsmith have paid many dividends, including this book.

7. If people can only buy one book this month, why should it be yours?
As this volume falls into the niche market of genealogical reference material, I believe they should buy my book for both its material and its unique configuration. Yes, it is meant to be a standard reference, but its distinctive structure gives the reader many avenues to find information relevant to their own quest for knowledge. And who those who do not find the needed material, it will inspire them to think outside the box when it comes to organizing their own magnum opus.

To learn more on how to promote books, read my greatest blog posts from the past five years and 2,000 posts:

2016 Book Marketing & Book Publicity Toolkit

2015 Book Marketing & PR Toolkit

2014 Book Marketing & PR Toolkit

Book Marketing & Book PR Toolkit: 2013

Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2016.

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