This update includes a new feature that I hope to do more with in the feature. Guest-blogging or blog tours is something that is becoming popular and so, this guest blog is by Clinton Foster, the author of Willing to Believe and By the Wayside . More can be found about Clinton, his books, etc on his own blog which can be found on my blogroll on the right side of this page. So, here is his interview/guest blog:
An Interview with Clinton Foster, author of Willing To Believe and By The Wayside.
Tell me a little bit about yourself.
I am 40 years old. A father of five children, two of whom are adopted.
Willing To Believe is a romance, is it not? Why would a man write a romance, it is not usually a male-dominated genre.
Willing is not a romance, but it is a love story. It is the tale of a man yet uncertain about whether or not he even loves his girlfriend, whether they are just friends "with benefits" as most relationships today could be termed, or if there is something more. Through a chance work opportunity, by meeting an elderly gentleman on the exit threshold of his life, he begins to learn the value of what love really means, what it ought mean, and of what we are willing to do to maintain that love at all costs. It is specifically told as a first person narrative through the eyes of a young man, because unfortunately, it seems my experience that most men just go through the motions in relationships. In doing so, men miss out on the greater, profound fruits of a lasting love.
You think you are an authority on love?
Hah! Not hardly! When my wife and I married, she had several children with one on the way. This child I adopted. In better times, we had children together. As such, we always barely made ends meet, but we struggled and survived, and the children thrived. However, last year, my wife's older daughter was sexually assaulted by a member of her extended family. As my wife is now disabled and this person is yet on the loose, it was left to me to tend all the children at all times or the state would take her daughter for her safety. I agreed, as the state was to arrange sitters to help with child-care while I worked. Due to budget cuts, the childcare fell through. Well, the landlord still expects to be paid, as is his right, that we were soon evicted. All the state could say was "sorry." At the moment, we are living in a friend's basement as we struggle again to our feet.
In all this, I have reminded myself many times before how easy it could be to just walk away from the whole situation. But honestly, could I? Even today, my wife and I talk of splitting up, with me taking my children and cutting her loose. Sure, it would be very easy. It would be convenient. But then, what do the vows "For better and for worse" mean? Basically, I don't think we as a society should be so quick to cut our losses, as "time served."
Tell me about your next book, By The Wayside.
By The Wayside is the story of a young woman who has been sexually-assaulted as a child. Her mother doesn't want to believe her. As such, she grows up believing that her thinking is wrong, that maybe what she experienced was her own fault, and the cause for her family's difficulties. As the years, pass she continues making poor choices and her struggles get more complicated. It is her fight to find herself, to believe in the six-year-old that no one else had, so many years before.
Publishing through Amazon, Createspace and Lulu, have you had much success with these markets?
Well, I guess any success is better than none. The hardest thing I find is getting the word out. Willing has been highly-acclaimed by its readers. One local library, receiving a sample copy, enjoyed it so much that the staff purchased twenty copies as A Christmas present for their adult reading group. Otherwise, it has been very touch and go, with very limited success. Still, if no one knows about it, almost any success, any recommendations, means nothing. Marketing costs money, money that as a homeless author, I have very little of.
Much of the web can be used for free. How have you utilized its services?
Again, I have published through three websites, and am in the process of pitching the books to the big chain stores via the web. Otherwise, I have added pages to social websites such as Facebook and Myspace, I run ads via Craigslist and other "classifieds." I have set up my own blog about my books and my writings, at http://www.clintonfoster.blogspot.com/. I am always prospecting new ideas, but in truth, I'd rather spend my time more fruitfully, just writing. I'm always willing to trade links with others, anything to get the word out.