Posted on April 3, 2013. Filed under: Author Interviews, L.Leander Reviews and Interviews | Tags: author, author interview, Brett Cornell, comedy, David D'Aguanno, eBook, humor, Kindle, L.Leander's Reviews and Interviews, mystery, novel, suspense, Writer |
If you love a comedic, witty mystery you’ll love this week’s author, David D’Aguanno. You may know him best for his Brett character in Don’t Mess With Brett but do you know he has also penned a book that is very different and serious titled Why She Left Us? I think you’ll enjoy learning about this writer and you’ll be glad you took the time to follow his interview. Be sure to leave a comment for a chance to win a free digital copy of Don’t Mess With Brett. If you’d like to see my review of Brett Aerobicizes, the second book in the series, click here.
Interview with Author David D’Aguanno
What is your favorite pastime (other than writing)? (you can only pick one) and why?
When I’m not writing (or reading), I’m usually listening to classical music. I have a huge CD collection, and because there are only so many hours in the day, there are many CDs I’ve heard only once and don’t even remember what they sound like!
Who are you as a writer?
As a writer – and particularly as a writer of the Brett Cornell series of comedy-mysteries – I view my role to be that of a person whose aim is merely to entertain. In other words, I sincerely doubt that anyone would want to read a “Brett book” in order to gain any kind of spiritual enlightenment. Escapism, a few laughs – That’s about it!
What are your thoughts on the Indie Publishing movement?
I think it’s wonderful, since it gives so many tremendously talented writers an opportunity to have their works read, instead of having to spend so much valuable time, simply trying to find an agent and/or a publisher in such a competitive area.
Have you ever ghostwritten? Would you? Why?
No, I haven’t, and I probably wouldn’t. As it is, I have so many various ideas floating around in my head that I need to get “on paper” that I probably wouldn’t have the time for it.
What is your favorite book of all time? Why?
Well, I probably have several favorites, but one that stands out in my mind is “Sir Harry Hotspur of Humblethwaite” by Anthony Trollope. I recall how, when reading it, I said to myself,” I know where this story is heading,” only to find myself completely surprised by a tragic ending that left me emotionally devastated. Often, in a single phrase or a single sentence, Trollope was able to pull me into the minds and emotional states of his main characters. Amazing!
Do you believe writers need a degree to be successful? Why or why not?
Having taught English in a public school for nearly 30 years, I find myself being somewhat finicky about spelling, punctuation, and the like. However, with a good editor and proper guidance, anyone should be able to produce a worthwhile piece of writing, even without having earned a degree.
You are camping in a tent in the woods. A loud roar happens outside the flap to the tent. What do you do?
Seeing as the mere suspicion that a spider or a snake may be nearby usually gets me nerved up, my imagination would go into over-drive at the sound of a loud roar, and I’d probably freak out completely!
What is your greatest asset? Why?
My greatest asset as a person? Well, I’ve been told that I’m extremely compassionate, or “an old softie” (if you will). As a writer, I think that I have a knack for coming up with a story that moves along fairly quickly, for the most part.
What do you treasure most on earth?
It may sound like a stock answer, but I’d have to say: “My friends and family.”
What did you like to do as a child? Favorite games, pastimes, friends, etc.
Being non-athletic as a child, I enjoyed mostly board games and word games, and my love of classical music, even at any early age, meant that listening to records or music on the radio took up a lot of my time. Oh, and writing little stories, too, of course.
What is the single-most important thing that has happened to you thus-far on your writing journey?
Finding out that there are so many ways of reaching potential readers with my writing has been an eye-opening experience for me.
How important is being successful as a writer to you?
Being successful as a writer is probably as important to me now as being successful as a teacher was, back in the days when I was doing that, assuming that “being successful” means being able to affect other people’s moods, attitudes, and lives in a positive way.
The genie is going to grant you three wishes. What are they?
O.K., if I were to say that I’d wish I could feed all the hungry people in the world – or anything else along that line – I’d be lying. So, at the risk of sounding self-centered, I’d wish (1) that my Brett books could be turned into a TV series, preferably on HBO, Showtime, or Starz (I’m not too fussy, am I?), (2) that my other novel “Why She Left Us” could be turned into a major motion picture, and (3) that I could live long enough to hear Brett’s quirky sayings become part of people’s everyday vocabulary. (You would have had to have read one of my Brett books in order to fully appreciate what I mean by that last “wish” of mine.)
You get one day to spend any way you want with whomever you want. Describe the day (money is no object)
Wow! I’m afraid I can’t really answer that, only because I’d want to be able to spend the day with people I miss the most, and sadly enough, it would be physically impossible to do that (you can guess the reason why).
Who or what were your main inspirations for choosing a writing career?
A lot of my writing was originally done several years back, and it wasn’t until my cousin Darlene urged me to do something with the novels I had written that I actually decided to take on this so-called second career of mine. Without her show of confidence in my writing ability, I probably would be doing something else right now. Sad but true, now that I think about it.
Here’s a little more about books currently available from David D’Aguanno in his own words.
A little bit about my books:
Brett Cornell is meant to be taken more as a cartoonish type of character rather than a real person. In fact, if such a person really did exist, most people wouldn’t have anything to do with him, and any self-respecting woman would surely stay clear of him, despite his good looks. The novels themselves are over-the-top and tongue-in-cheek, so that anyone expecting a serious and intricately plotted murder mystery (as in Hercule Poirot or Sherlock Holmes, for example) would be very disappointed. Provided you don’t take the character of Brett Cornell too seriously, though, you should probably find the novels engaging and amusing and totally unique.
My novel “Why She Left Us” is radically different, written in a somewhat experimental style, and involving characters who are meant to be viewed as real human beings who have sincere and deep emotions and several of whom suffer greatly through acts of betrayal, loss, and revenge. If I can move readers emotionally in this novel, then I will have succeeded in doing what I meant to do in writing this novel.
Here are some links to check out this author and his books. Be sure to leave a comment below to enter the drawing for a free digital copy of Don’t Mess With Brett by David D’Aguanno.
Follow David on Twitter: @DaveDAguanno
And, just in case you’re hungry for more Brett Cornell novels here they are!
Posted on January 14, 2013. Filed under: Author Interviews | Tags: author, Cherley Grogg, Facebook, Fiction, L.Leander Books, L.Leander's Reviews and Interviews, Literature, murder, mystery, publishing, Writer, Writing Wranglers and Warriors |
I really enjoyed interviewing author Cherley Grogg this week. I found out about a Facebook group Cherley runs called Writing Wrangler and Warriors. I joined and have had a grand time interacting with the talented authors there. Cherley heads up the group, and it’s a great place for blogging and sharing about our books (and our lives). I thoroughly enjoyed reading Cherley’s novel Stamp Out Murder. You can read my review here. Come along while I ask Cherley some off the wall questions so you can get to know what really makes her tick!
Interview with Cherley Grogg
1. Where do you write? What’s your creative space like?
I do a lot of writing on the move since I’m a trucker girl. At home I live to pull my rocking loveseat close to my roaring fire in the fireplace. And in the summer on my front porch in the swing
2. What is your favorite writing tool?
My little laptop, except for poetry and outlines I like to write long hand.
3. What movie star would you pick as one of the characters in your book and why?
The young man on suits. I think he had a charm about him.
4. What did you want to be when you grew up? Did you realize that dream?
I wanted to be a mother and later i wanted top be a school teacher. I an a mother and I taught Sunday School.
5. Explain your creative process. Pantser? Outliner?
Both, I like to do a loose outline and then write as I go.
6. If you could only have one mode of transportation what would it be, a horse or a bicycle? Why?
Bicycle, because it costs lessee to maintain.
7. Do you dream about your stories? Ever written about a dream?
My stories are with me day and mighty for about a year before I put them on paper. I don’t remember my dreams.
8. What were you like in high school? Class clown? Nerd? Cheerleader type?
I was a fighter, a defender of the weak and helpless. I’ve always loved top laugh and have fun. I made good grades, but I loved skipping school.
9. What’s your favorite theme park? Why? (If you’ve never been, which one would you like to visit and why?)
Dollywood, it’s geared more towards adults.
10. Are you a reader? What types of books do you like best? What author(s)?
I read a lot. I like all kinds of genres. Westerns, history, cozies, suspense, mystery, true crime, children’s books, spiritual books and most of all the Bible. Jeffry Deavers, Sue Grafton, and we have some great writers on Writing Wranglers and Warriors, including you.
Thank you for a very interesting interview Cherley. Readers, leave Cherley a comment to let her know you stopped by. And be sure to pick up one of her books. Here are other places you can find Cherley Grogg and her books.
And please join Cherley on her Facebook Fanpage, that’s managed by one of her most faithful fans: Cindy Ferrell
Posted on January 7, 2013. Filed under: Author Interviews | Tags: author, Black Rose, eBook, Indie Author, J.T. Schaad, Kindle, L.Leander, L.Leander's Reviews and Interviews, mystery, publishing, serial killer, Smashwords, suspense, thriller, writing |
This week I am pleased to introduce a chilling writer, J.T. Schaad. J.T.s books are not for the faint-hearted. He writes in the style of Thomas Harris (whose work I absolutely love) and the scenes are graphic and scary. I could not put down Black Rose from the moment I picked it up. You can read my review here. I warn you, if you choose to read the book, it’ll leave a mark on you. Evil can lurk anywhere – maybe even closer than you think? On a lighter note, J.T. and I have something in common – we are both musicians and songwriters. It’s always nice to connect with someone who is into the same things you are.
J.T. Schaad Interview
Where do you write? What’s your creative space like?
I write in my office at home most of the time. In the office I have my desktop pc (I don’t do laptops, keep feeling like It’s gonna break lol) and it is also my music room. I”ve got my guitars, my bass guitars, amps and so forth. It’s my own little world in there.
What is your favorite writing tool?
For drafts I strongly prefer my pc, because I type fast and can usually keep up with my brain when I’m in hyperdrive plowing through a story. For outlines I use spiral notebook paper. For song lyrics I use yellow legal pads.
What movie star would you pick as one of the characters in your book and why?
I think that Ed O’Neill from the early 90’s would be perfect as Frank Adams. He just has that sort of realism to him. Always been a big fan of his since I was a kid.
What did you want to be when you grew up? Did you realize that dream?
I’ve always wanted to be a writer and a musician. I realized my dream of writing when I was 9 years old. I had a story idea that came to mind out of the blue. I searched and searched to find this idea in a book so I could read it. Finally I just decided to do it on my own. I became hooked on it. I always say that beyond being an artist, I am a fan first. I write mostly so I can read the story. When I get an idea it’s like seeing a preview at the movies for something that looks awesome. I get an idea that grabs me and I realize I have to read this book. But I have to write it first lol
Explain your creative process. Pantser? Outliner?
For my novels I start with an outline. I find it way easier to use an outline when you are tackling something as big as a novel. I outline the entire story chapter by chapter. Then when I write the prose I just have to fill in the blanks basically. If I didn’t do this I would go nuts because I would do nothing but rewrites. Nothing more frustrating then getting a great idea of where the story should go, but realizing that for this to happen you have to rewrite the past 100 pages.
If you could only have one mode of transportation what would it be, a horse or a bicycle? Why?
I like bicycles. They are fun to ride and they almost become a part of your body. Plus you are in control. With a horse, you never have full control.
Do you dream about your stories? Ever written about a dream?
I don’t dream about them. At least I don’t think I do. I say that because my dreams never make any logical sense after I wake up.
What were you like in high school? Class clown? Nerd? Cheerleader type?
In high school I was kind of a loner. I always felt more comfortable with my fictional characters then the real world. I hid in the back of the room and read. Then I went home and played guitar and wrote. That was high school for me.
What’s your favorite theme park? Why? (If you’ve never been, which one would you like to visit and why?)
I’ve never had a chance to go to one. It would have to be one with a horror theme. That would be like a huge crazy haunted house type of thing. I think that would be wicked sweet.
Are you a reader? What types of books do you like best? What author(s)?
I love reading. Always have since I was 5. I read a variety, but horror/thrillers have always been my faves. I’ve always been a huge fan of Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Jack Ketchum, Richard Laymon, R L Stine, Poe, James Patterson, right now I love the Dexter novels by Jeff Lindsay. Those are awesome.
Thank you, J.T. for being my guest this week. Readers, you can connect with J.T. and his works at the links listed below. How about leaving him a comment here to let him know you read his interview and support him? Thanks for stopping by!
Here’s a little more information from J.T. regarding his current works in progress.
I am currently working on a vampire series. The first book is entitled Blood Born. It should be finished soon.
I currently am working on a werewolf series, and a few paranormal series. One will focus on a town and the strange inhabitants and history. One series will focus on a paranormal investigative team.
So I have many many ideas running around in my head.
I also have many short stories I am working on also. These are great to relax with between novels.
J.T. Schaad Author Bio
I’ve been writing since I was 9 years old and I still feel as passionate about it today as I did then. It is an amazing feeling when you find something like this that you truly love. I’ve been lucky to find several passions in the arts. In addition to writing, I am a musician, songwriter, and a budding film maker.
I’m the author of the Black Rose series and The Blood Born series (coming soon)
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