John W. Loeff is a former Associate Dean of General Education at Baker College in Michigan. My experience includes teaching, working in the library and a private practice in marriage and family counseling.
How did your previous work and life experiences influence your writing?
Frankly speaking, I had no clue that my experiences prepared me to become an author until I started to write. When you are raised in a working-class environment during and after WW II in the Netherlands, you do not think about becoming an author. Your main goal is to get food on the table and a job. One indication I had was in 1958, but let me explain. In 1958 in high school, I wrote a daily log about politics, sports and local news for one year. At that time, I had no clue that this might have been a first step in becoming an author. Add a variety of experiences in education, work and it dawned on me that perhaps a career in writing might be next. My work experience includes working in three countries and yes, you notice the different culture in each country. My experience also includes 18 months in the military in the Netherlands.
When did you first start writing?
Two reasons for becoming a writer. When I worked at Baker College of Port Huron in Michigan, there was an interest by some people in my previous work, like my thesis and my dissertation. The second reason is that in my private practice as a psychotherapist, I noticed that some male clients had absolutely no direction in life. I have the same experience with a few male students at Baker College. How do we curb their urge for alcohol, drugs, and sex? How can we provide these individuals with some direction and objectives in life? I put one and one together and came up with the idea to publish books with some ideas and suggestions. That was more than ten years ago.
How do we adapt to the constant changes that occur every day? It could be related to economic, political and social matters. I almost forgot the digital age. Yes, Apple computer comes out with a new gadget every six months; if not, market share will drop for Apple. Are you willing to accept this turmoil or are you from the old school and you prefer no changes what-so-ever?
Gender issues are almost in the news every day. Hollywood producers and powerful males in many organizations are finding out about their bad behavior that has been going on for years. The MeToo movement is responsible for that and frankly speaking, they do an excellent job. What can be done about it? My book "A Successful Journey in Life" provides a few answers.