Interview with Jacqueline and Sean Cullen

Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
It was actually all the stories my Dad would read to us before bed time as kids and the way he would do voices and change the pitch of his voice. I can't read Berenstain Bears books without hearing my Dad as Papa Bear. Or hear the roar of the Giant from Jack and the Beanstalk without thinking of the way he bellowed! *smile*
How do you approach cover design?
According the the book. We wanted the Singles Handbook to look like a text book so we did simple black and white.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
Some authors I would read ANYTHING they wrote, and I do own most of them! So my fav 5 authors are:
-Mary Kay Ash
-Stephen Covey
-John Maxwell
-Napoleon Hill
What do you read for pleasure?
Lately it was any and all dating and break up books I could get my hands on!
I wanted to see if they all said the same things I was hearing from my own research.
I also wanted to see what was missing in literature and titles, thus the SINGLES Handbook idea took form.

I also love reading ANYTHING motivational and self-help. I want to be a better person, more motivated, and know myself better after reading. Never stop learning.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
PDF. I'm a simple gal. I like to use my tablet and I like my font big.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
The search engines and really just the title of the book.
Describe your desk
The Brick. *smile*
Dark brown. Solid.
To do list for my assistant.
Pile of stuff to do.
Pink high heel tape dispenser, black stapler.
Fully stocked with envelopes, stamps, paper of all sort, and training CDs.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a small northern Hydro town in Manitoba.

Being from a small town and then moving to a larger city sure show you how different dating was in high school to now. In my high school you only had a few people to pick from to date, and you knew everything about them and their family and vice versa. You didn't take a walk with someone without the whole TOWN knowing about it and asking questions. You learned to accept people and not be so picky with perfection.

In a bigger city, you have more people to choose from and meet new people every day if you choose to go out. You (hopefully) don't have to ask your parents for permission or to drive you. "I do what I want!"
When did you first start writing?
We started this particular book back in 2010. We wrote down the list of topics, talked about how we wanted to write the He Said, She Said parts, and then agreed not to talk about what we were writing till it was all done. That way I wouldn't know what he was saying and vice versa.

After writing, we came together at Christmas to talk about how some of the topics were overlapping and how we wanted it broken down into 3 stages: Breaking up, single, and dating. We moved all the topics into those categories, added a few, then went back to writing.

When we finally had both side, we went back and added a few more stories we were hearing that fit the sections. If we had similar sides, we just put it all together instead of He and She,

It took a long time because just when you thought it was great, you would hear another idea or another way to look at something and have to add it.

I'm sure there's a LOT more stories out there and it would be fun to put up a Second Edition with more stories and perhaps add a few more topics or opinions!
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
The Style Guide itself was AMAZING! I understand word SO much better now. But it really showed me that my editing of the book, which I bought a book to understand that, wasn't done yet.

You think you just have to write the book, but that's just the start. I had so many references for editing and getting the book ready to publish! That took almost as long as the writing!
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Putting out a book that will help people. Motivate them. Make them feel better, hopeful.
It's knowing that there's a need for the topic we wrote on and the peace of mind that it's out there now for anyone who's searching for a reference.
Published 2013-09-30.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

The Singles Handbook
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 53,490. Language: Canadian English. Published: September 29, 2013. Categories: Nonfiction » Sex & Relationships  » Sex guides & how tos
The Singles Handbook is for anyone considering a break up, thinking they may be headed for a break up, single, dating, and everywhere in between.