Sunday, April 17, 2022

Interview With Author Craig Shirley


1.      What motivated you to write your book, to force you from taking an idea or experience and turning it into this book?  As I was researching my book, December 1941, I began to realize what a big and important month April of 1945 was. FDR dies at the age of 64---who at the time was not just president of the Unite States----but president of the world as the US was arming and feeding not just US troops, but also British troops and Soviet troops.

Hitler commits suicide, Mussolini and his mistress are killed in terrible fashion, the battle for

Okinawa is raging—the final island before the planned invasion of the mainland of Japan by Douglas MacArthur’s forces, Auschwitz is discovered as is Buchenwald, the development of the A bomb is going forward at Oak ridge, Tennessee and so many other


2.      What is it about and who is it for?   It is about the critical months of 1945 leading up to April 1945. All books cover the aspect of the war but my book covers the domestic side of the war---the many sacrifices by the civilian population from rubber and scrap drives to rationing

to blackouts and brownouts to having their mail read to a national speed limit of 35 miles per hour to limits on their phone usages to paper drives and scrap metal drives to the rationing of gas and food. Never before or since had America been so united.


3.      What takeaways might the reader will be left with after reading it?  The unity of America. The steel will of America. How much Americans let themselves be told what they could do and not do. Immediately after December 7, the government sent out a memo to radio stations telling them what they could and could not broadcast such as troop and ship movements. Local governments ordered Air Raid drills and blackouts. Rumors swept the country. Boston was going to be bombed.


4.      How did you decide on your book’s title and cover design?  The title was obvious and the cover design was created by my publisher at Nelson/Harper Collins.


5.      What advice or words of wisdom do you have for fellow writers?  There is no such thing as writer’s block. It is a fib told by wanna-be novelists who used to hang around Elaine’s in NYC. You write and you might hate it, but you will go back and edit it to make it more palatable. And become the book. You must think about the book all the time. When you are in the shower, driving a car, going to be. Think about the book all the time.


6.      What trends in the book world do you see -- and where do you think the book publishing industry is heading?  I think the future is bright for the publishing industry. We who write nonfiction are replacing public school teachers because they are no longer teaching real American. I am certainly happy as many seem to be enjoying my books.


7.      What challenges did you overcome to write this book? None that I can think of. I was certainly enthusiastic. I had good research material. My routine remains the same. I do research in the morning and write in the afternoon. In the evening, my wife edits my material and her edits are added the next morning while I write. I’ve always loved writing and in fact put everything aside while I write. I used to have a glass of wine at the end of the day but I don’t do that anymore.


8.      How would you describe your writing style?  Very up tempo, very fast. I don’t dawdle. Also, most historians write from 30.000 feet but I like to write from ground level, so the reader can enjoy it. I also don’t lecture people and I certainly don’t write like a college professor; “Let us now examine the conditions and circumstances which propelled Ronald Reagan into the presidential campaign of 1980.” Stuffy and pompous.


9.      If people can buy or read one book this week or month, why should it be yours?  I hope they find my reading enjoyable. I hope they learn something.


About The Author: Craig Shirley is the author of Reagan Rising, Rendezvous with Destiny, Reagan’s Revolution, Last Act and the New York Times bestseller December 1941. He is a regular commentator throughout the media and a contributor to national publications, and was hailed by the London Telegraph as “the best of the Reagan biographers.” He is the Visiting Reagan Scholar at Eureka College, Reagan’s alma mater, and lectures often at the Reagan Library and the Reagan Ranch. He and his wife, Zorine, divide their time between Ben Lomond, a three-hundred-year-old Georgian manor house in Essex County, Virginia, and Trickle Down Point on the Rappahannock River in Lancaster, Virginia. They are the parents of four children, Matthew, Andrew, Taylor, and Mitchell. For more information, please see:


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Brian Feinblum should be followed on Twitter @theprexpert. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2022. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester with his wife, two kids, and Ferris, a black lab rescue dog. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s The Independent.  This blog, with over 4,000 posts over the past decade, was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby and recognized by Feedspot in 2021 and 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by as a "best resource.” For the past three decades, including 21 as the head of marketing for the nation’s largest book publicity firm, and two jobs at two independent presses, Brian has worked with many first-time, self-published, authors of all genres, right along with best-selling authors and celebrities such as: Dr. Ruth, Mark Victor Hansen, Joseph Finder, Katherine Spurway, Neil Rackham, Harvey Mackay, Ken Blanchard, Stephen Covey, Warren Adler, Cindy Adams, Susan RoAne, Jeff Foxworthy, Seth Godin, and Henry Winkler. He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America, and has spoken at ASJA, IBPA, Sarah Lawrence College, Nonfiction Writers Association, Cape Cod Writers Association, Willamette (Portland) Writers Association, and Connecticut Authors and Publishers Association. His letters-to-the-editor have been published in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, New York Post, NY Daily News, Newsday, The Journal News (Westchester) and The Washington Post. He has been featured in The Sun Sentinel and Miami Herald. For more information, please consult:

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