Current Release: Tangled Ties to a Manatee
Describe your current release in two sentences?
"Tangled Ties to a Manatee" is a humorous crime thriller with environmental themes. When Jerry, a developmentally disabled man, is held captive after he stumbles upon two con men's scam headquarters, the quirky characters who join in a search for Jerry find that all paths lead to his favorite animal, a local zoo's lone pregnant manatee.
Please describe your writing environment.
Though I write in a variety of settings, the area surrounding my primary desk and computer is cluttered. But, the rest of the house is orderly for the most part. I have some art pieces in my room, including one of a manatee, that add to the ambiance. But, to me, the most important part of the writing environment is the music that's playing. The music can be playing anywhere.
I've been known to write in the gym after completing a long run on the treadmill. So, my writing is much more about what's going on in my head than the external environment.
What are you working on?
I've started writing a novel with the working title, "The Peace Cipher." It is a type of crime thriller largely set in Ottawa County, Ohio. The main protagonists attend the fictional Sandusky Bay Community College there. For now, I'll just say artifacts are stolen from a museum exhibit.
What do you feel blessed with?
I'm blessed with amazingly supportive friends. Writing the acknowledgments page for the novel was one of the highlights of the publishing process for me.
What was your childhood ambition?
At one point, I remember wanting to be a game show host. I think it was because people would be so happy when they won something. Thankfully, I grew out of that.
What is your favorite TV show?
I'd say it is the annual TeenNick HALO Awards where young people are recognized for their extraordinary efforts toward helping others. I find it motivating to me to try and help make a difference when I find certain volunteer tasks rather daunting.
What career fields have you worked in?
I've worked in restaurants, nonprofits, fitness, and retail. I have an affinity for the nonprofit sector and don't see a lot of novels written within such settings. Whether as employment or volunteering, nonprofits offer their own unique attributes compared to corporate or small business settings. So, I would say my background there helps me offer something unique in my novel.
What are your plans for the summer? Any books you are looking forward to?
My summer plans are primarily to maintain as much balance as I can while, working my hourly job, continuing to get the world out about my debut novel, writing the first draft of chapters for my new work in progress, and volunteering for the environmental organizations I have commitments with.
I look forward to upcoming releases of my friends in the wriitng community this summer. I also am looking forward to the book - "Learning Native Wisdom: What Traditional Cultures Teach Us about Subsistence, Sustainability, and Spirituality" by Gary H. Holthaus. But, that isn't due out before December.
How was your road to publication?
I wrote the novel on a part-time basis for some time. I'd written plays and short stories, but this was the first novel, so there was a bit of a learning curve. As I learned more about where the publishing industry is now, and where my novel's likely fit in it would be, I decided to self-publish via Createspace and also focus on ebook versions.
That took a little learning curve, too. But, it was reasonably smooth as I followed resources currently available.
If you could time travel, where would you travel to and why?
I wouldn't mind a temporary view of Gobekli Tepe around 11,000 years ago or so. It is such a unique site, filled with mystery. I'd like to get a better idea about what was really going on there.
If you could live in a world created by an author, which book / world would you jump into?
"Hope for Animals and Their World: How Endangered Species Are Being Rescued from the Brink" by Jane Goodall. What's good is that it is this world we live in now and things can be done to rescue species. What's troublesome is that there is so much going on that is further endangering more species, too.
I'd like to thank the readers. I hope you enjoy "Tangled Ties to a Manatee" and all of the books you get this summer.