Interview with Alina Oswald

Published 2021-03-07.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
iPad; I received it as a gift, several years ago, and I can't live without it; it goes everywhere I go now.
When did you first start writing?
Almost twenty years ago. I took a few courses and workshops in writing fiction and nonfiction but soon realized that I couldn't really write fiction. After writing how-to articles and the like, one day many years ago, I discovered A&U Magazine--America's AIDS Magazine and decided I was going to become a contributing writer. For several years I've been the Arts Editor at A&U, too. Also, that's how I started covering HIV/AIDS, and then the LGBTQ+ community.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Journeys Through Darkness is a Biography that tells the story of award-winning, legally blind photographer Kurt Weston. I discovered Weston's work, by pure chance, over fifteen years ago. I was drawn in particular to his black-and-white portrait photography, and have interviewed him over the years. Then we decided to collaborate on a book about his life and art. Hence, the beginning of Journeys.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I've met and known many inspiring and amazing indie authors over the years.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
Smashwords has helped share award-winning photographer Kurt Weston's story, with the world. I find that wonderful because Journeys does tell a story about HIV/AIDS, and the dark, first years of that pandemic, something many people still avoid, even today. Hence, I appreciate Smashwords for allowing me to share the Journeys story with the world.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
There's a certain level of art therapy associated with the process of writing. I think that writing offers a reason to search within to rekindle a memory, a purpose, perhaps one's self.
What do your fans mean to you?
Oh, I love my fans and appreciate them, too. Never take them for granted. I hope that, through my books and photography work, I can offer them an escape from the ordinary, perhaps a conversation starter about things they might be less familiar with but would like to learn more or have an opinion on.
What are you working on next?
I'm working on two book projects at this time.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Photographing; I'm a writer and photographer.
How do you discover the ebooks you read?
Smashwords; also, indie authors I know.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
Yes, it was an essay, and I wrote it under a pen name.
What is your writing process?
I spend a long time trying to figure out how to start an article, a chapter, etc. It takes me forever. Brainstorming helps; outlining also helps. For book-length projects, writing a proposal and a chapter-by-chapter outline really offers a starting point. My first drafts are a complete mess, but it's easier to rewrite/edit a mess than it is a blank page or screen. Right?
How do you approach cover design?
I've designed my own covers, as well as covers for other indie authors.
Describe your desk
It's usually an...organized mess: laptop, pieces of paper and a pen, my coffee mug (with coffee in it), etc.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author or publisher.

Books by This Author

Journeys Through Darkness: A Biography
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 47,540. Language: English. Published: January 10, 2012. Categories: Nonfiction » Biography » Gay & lesbian, Nonfiction » Gay & Lesbian » Biographies
Journeys Through Darkness tells the story of AIDS through the story of a long term AIDS survivor--award winning, legally blind photographer, Kurt Weston. Weston’s is a powerful personal story of survival during the AIDS crisis of the '90s and beyond.