Friday, November 24, 2023

Interview With Author John Fontana



1. What inspired you to write this book? Keep my mind occupied while my 18-year-old daughter was studying in Italy her freshman year in college. Also, I started writing to answer the questions my 10th graders religion students were asking me. Somewhere along the way, the format changed to what the book is today.


2. What exactly is it about and who is it written for? Probably anyone over 21 years old searching for answers about life and God. For those individuals struggling with faith and life. It is an inspiration book. Shows the impact what can happen when the focus is taken off from God and what can happen when the focus is put back to God.


3. What do you hope readers will get out of reading your book? God Calls everyone to his kingdom. We all are children of God and He wants to redeem all of us-even those individuals we think are unredeemable. Life is hard. It will beat you down. Life is not about the punches you can take but it is about getting up after the punches.


4. How did you decide on your book’s title and cover design? God does not want to be a tyrant or dictator so He gave us Free Will. While He wants us all to live in eternity with Him, He allows us to choose our own destiny. He will respect our decisions even if it goes against His love. The cover of the book is from a famous painting by William Holman Hunt. Jesus is knocking on the door but there is no doorknob on the outside of the door. The door must be open from the inside. Free Will- One can choose to open the door and let Jesus in or not open the door and keep Him out of your life.


5. What advice or words of wisdom do you have for fellow writers – other than run!? Just start writing. No matter how long it takes.  One never knows who will be touched and inspired by your story. It took me ten years to complete this book.


6. What trends in the book world do you see -- and where do you think the book publishing industry is heading? I find that since the Covid lockdown of 2023, people have been exploring their faith and searching for answers.  I see more and more people doing self-publishing.


7. Were there experiences in your personal life or career that came in handy when writing this book? Yes, all the chapters have multiple true stories in every chapter that most people probably never heard of.  Then I add my own story into each chapter.


8. How would you describe your writing style? Which writers or books is your writing similar to? I cannot say I have a writing style. I used movie and music titles to form the chapters. For example, Chapter four is titled “The Dark Side”. This is taken from the movie Star Wars. The Dark side is the evil empire. So, in this chapter, I write how the Dark side of life affected me. Another example is chapter ten- “Failure is not an Option”. When Apollo 13 exploded in space, the flight engineer said “we will get them home! Failure is not an option”. In this chapter there are times in life that failure was not an option such as winning World War II; the Cuban missile crisis; Even Jesus could not fail. He had to die on the cross; not before.  Then I turn the title around a write failure is an option. If we do not fail, then how can we learn?  This chapter is filled with celebrities talking about their many failures before becoming famous.


9. What challenges did you overcome in the writing of this book? I never learned vowels and phonics. I was also dyslexic. Reading and writing is very difficult for me. Sometimes an entire paragraph can take me a week to jot down. I know what I want to say but sometimes my brain gets confused, and it is a struggle to write it down. That’s why it took me ten years to complete. 


10. If people could buy or read one book this week or month, why should it be yours?

God and Free Will is a spiritual and inspirational book. It has stories that most people never heard. It’s about drinking with the devil, contemplating suicide, surviving sexual abuse divorce, shady business practices and Hurricane Katrina. There are many lessons learned while fishing in the Atchafalaya Basin of Louisiana, taking part in medical mission trips, eating a snowball, and watching the movies Star Wars, Princess Bride, Apollo 13, Jesus Christ Superstar and Rocky. There are amazing stories regarding Princess Diana, Mother Terese, President Regan, Pope John Paul II, a World War II bombardier Doolittle Raider, and the leading Japanese Pearl Harbor pilot. Thre is even an answer to why we suffer. But most of all, this book is about hearing God’s call to forgive, offer peace and love and to change the word-for better or worse. The reader will fully understand that this book is about choices and outcome that will bring death or everlasting life. In addition, there are 415 footnotes with quotes from some famous authors such as: Eric Metaxas, Bishop Fulton Sheen, Dr. Lorraine Day, Rev John Trigilio, father John Bartunek, Father James Martin, Coach Tony Dungy, Mel Brooks, George Lucas, Steve Job, Rob Reiner, Lee Strobel and many more.


About the Author: John Fontana lives in Covington Louisiana with his wife and their four dogs. They have five children and one grandson. John recently retired as a professional registered nurse after 40 years of service. He worked in the medical fields of diving medicine, wound care, emergency trauma and medical sales. He served in the Army Nurse Corp as a second lieutenant in the 1001st Field Hospital of the US Army Reserve. He then served in the Army Nurse Corp as a First Lieutenant in the 159th MASH Unit in the Louisiana National Guard. John participated for five years as a volunteer with “Helping Hands” providing medical care in the jungle of Guatemala. He also taught CCD (Confraternity of Christian Doctrine) to public school Catholic tenth graders at Our Lady of the Lake Church in Mandeville, Louisiana. Currently John is a volunteer for SkyHigh for Kids from Houston Texas. Their mission is to wipe out children cancer. Since 2007, Sky High has raised over $25 million dollars for Saint Jude Hospital. God and Free Will is his first book. John has recently finished his second book, yet unpublished.


For more information, please see: BLOG – God and Free Will (


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