The Great Gatsby- Because I think it has the best opening line ever. It's so important to me, that I like to live by what Nick says in those opening sentences.
"In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I’ve been turning over in my mind ever since.
'Whenever you feel like criticizing any one,' he told me, 'just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.'"
The rest of the story is something that I think most people can relate to on a universal basis: unrequited love, and transforming yourself into something for someone. We've all been there, and F. Scott Fitzgerald does a great job of crafting that story, while making you want to live in the 1920s.
Describe your desk
At work, my desk is littered with paperwork. Piles of it. Whenever I try to clean my desk, it takes about a week for it to get piled up with more paperwork. At home, I have a desk from the 1920s that used to belong to an Admiral in the Navy. It's made from the same wood as violins which is a very soft wood and hard to keep up. I don't do much writing at my desk, but prefer to use my laptop in my bed in the dark. So technically, my "desk" are my thighs, and I'm not going to get into detail with them.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Miami, Florida. I can safely say that growing up in Miami does not influence my writing. My influence stems more from my time living in New York City, where I began writing The Automat. I really enjoyed living there, and I find that NYC is like a love that I lost. It's hard to think about going back there, without wanting to stay. Sometimes I feel that NYC is the one that got away, regrets and all.
When did you first start writing?
I remember being about 14 years old and sitting on the floor of my bedroom with a pencil and a notebook. I started writing my first novel back then. I remember how excited I was to start writing, and if I recall what I had written, it wasn't that bad. I never finished that book. In high school, I swayed more towards poetry in hopes that I could turn them into lyrics for a band I never put together. It was only until my mid-twenties that I decided to actually write a book (The Automat). I felt that it was a life goal that I had, that I needed to fulfill.
What's the story behind your latest book?
I'm currently writing a book entitled "A Face For Reuben Hill," which is a story about a boy born without a face. His doctor finds a way to make a mechanical prosthetic that would make him an aesthetically handsome man. He goes on a journey to experience life out of the sheltered world he lived in, and he tries to win over the girl he grew up with.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I enjoy being able to see how many people download my book, and the feedback that I receive from ratings and reviews. It's an amazing feeling when I read reviews describing my work against well known authors like Kafka.
How do you approach cover design?
I'm a painter, so I like covers that pique my interest. "The Automat" went through many cover transformations until I got to the last/final version of the cover. The cover was my commission to a fellow artist named William Schaff. He did an album cover for my favorite band, Magnolia Electric Co. I remember reaching out to him through Facebook, and I thought he would not get back to me, but he did, and he followed through with working on my cover. I am really looking forward to sending him my concept for "A Face for Reuben Hill."
What do your fans mean to you?
I get really excited whenever I see new fans on Goodreads. It's nice to know that people really enjoy what you have produced. I remember getting an email from a fan a few months ago, and it really meant the world to me.
What are you working on next?
I am concentrating on "A Face for Reuben Hill" as my main work, but I also started "My Life with Alvy: Memoirs of a Real Life Annie Hall." That book is based on my time living in New York City and navigating the dating world, which is a departure from my fiction. It's actually my first foray into comedic writing.
Who are your favorite authors?
F. Scott Fitzgerald Goethe Franz Kafka Jane Austen Truman Capote Hunter S. Thompson
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
My son. Before I had him, there were days that I wouldn't have cared to get out of bed. Now that he's in my life, 8 hours of sleep is what I feel to be an eternity to be away from him.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Running, blogging on my Tumblr, photography, drinking wine, and spending time with the kiddo.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.
I Still Love You, NY is a comedic story of a woman lost in a mid-life crisis full of regret over a past romance. She goes to New York City to rediscover the person she was before marriage and motherhood.
The Automat is a story of a mild-mannered introvert named Horace Gray, who slowly descends into madness after he becomes obsessively enamored with a woman who stares at him from behind an automat wall.