Interview with Bear Kosik

When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I have gotten into pencil coloring as a way to be creative but give my mind a rest. I always have enjoyed cooking, gardening, and exercising. Each one of those activities allows me to pause later on and savor what I have accomplished. And since I write full time at home, I can always find something to clean or a cat who needs attention.
When did you first start writing?
I started writing in seventh grade for English class. In eighth grade I was identified as verbally gifted and started taking college-level writing classes at Johns Hopkins.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
I remember the first poem I ever wrote, which kind of tells a story. The reason I remember it is that it was published when I was 17 years old. My writing class had to write a poem about a work of art. I chose a painting my mother loved in the National Gallery of a woman sitting by an open window. The poem describes why she is there and what she is doing.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in Arlington VA and Lutherville MD in the 1960s and 70s. I was fortunate that education was considered seriously important, everyone was treated equally regardless of sex, race, religion, et cetera, and the worst slurs heard among kids involved joking about "dumb pollacks." My maternal grandmother's family is Polish and we knew there wasn't anything "dumb" about them, so I figured the jokes were silly and ignorant. My characters run the gamut and never call attention to their skin color, ancestry, or whatever unless it's relevant.
What is your writing process?
I keep notes on dozens of projects. When space opens up, I choose the project I want to tackle. It's sort of like choosing the next book to read. I sit with what I have and tease out strands of character, plot, setting, et cetera. If I find myself struggling too much, I put the project back and find another. Otherwise, I just spend time every day playing with and building out a layered story with bundles of themes running throughout.
What's the story behind your latest book?
The book I am writing now deals with a woman who discovers she has an eternal soul, meaning one that is reborn. She has never recognized this in previous lives. Now she faces assuming a position in which she can carry out the purpose for the soul being eternal. Her other lives demonstrate she is capable of providing the leadership needed, but then she begins to wonder what happens when her soul accomplishes its task.
How do you approach cover design?
I have been photographing the world as long as I have been writing. With digital cameras now, I have thousands of images and Photoshop Pro to create something unique. I first have to decide if the most important aspect of the cover will be color, title, or image. Then i look through my collections from my travels and find something to play with. Usually, the first one or two photos don't quite work. At least it's fun using the different editing features in Photoshop and gives e practice.
What do you read for pleasure?
I really get into good history in which there is a enough detail to feel like I'm learning something and enough style to be enjoyable. I usually stay away from American history from the Civil War on because so much of it is biased. Give me some books on some obscure countries with interesting cultures and I am all set.
Describe your desk
My desk has many organizer containers that contain things I somehow decided belong together. However, about the only things I ever use on my desk are my computer, checkbook, credit card, and folders for documents relating to upcoming trips. Everything else is more of an archive of junk I think I will need sometime in the future.
What book marketing techniques have been most effective for you?
None. I have tried everything (including this interview). There is something about my approach or the people I am in contact with that my efforts do not move people to purchase my work. I am now focusing on creating more work just to give people a range of options to find me.
Published 2016-09-09.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Crossing Xavier
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 107,010. Language: English. Published: September 2, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Adventure, Fiction » Science fiction » Utopias & dystopias
After humankind found a way to the stars, a planet named Xavier was colonized. Two centuries later, things don't add up. Why are children the only new immigrants? Who are the Conspirators? Most importantly, is there another colony on Xavier? Journey as six companions cross Xavier to discover the answers to these mysteries only to become entangled in their colony’s struggle to survive.
Restoring the Republic: A New Social Contract for We the People
Price: $5.99 USD. Words: 97,470. Language: English. Published: August 17, 2016. Categories: Nonfiction » Politics and Current Affairs » Democracy, Nonfiction » Politics and Current Affairs » Current affairs
Restoring the Republic provides a thorough enough understanding of politics for anyone to grasp the importance for all citizens to participate now and in the future in the political sphere. It recommends a new social contract that strengthens the ability of the citizens to conduct their own affairs while guaranteeing all residents equality under the law and in accessing opportunities.
The Secret History of Another Rome: Millenium 3 CE Book One
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 86,480. Language: American English. Published: July 26, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Utopias & dystopias, Fiction » Alternative history
In the 2600s, Ranulf's memories flood back to him, from when he moved to Alexandria with his mother, to forty-two when he must finally decide whether to leave the city and the empire he has led for twenty-two years. Ranulf remembers his education and training, relationships he developed and lost, and the machinations of the Librarians, the bureaucrats who run the Empire of Rome at Alexandria.