Today I have something a little different than per my usual. Throughout Summer 2013, I’m going to have several authors stop by my blog to do guest posts, interviews, giveaways, etc. So keep your eye out for it.
Today, to kick things off, I interviewed Jackson Baer author of The Earth Bleeds Red.
I’m 29 and was born and raised in Woodstock, Ga; north of Atlanta. I’m a huge Braves and Georgia Tech fan. I’ve lived in Oregon for the past 5+ years now and love the Trailblazers as well as Oregon State, where I will graduate with a B.A. in English & Education in June 2014. I’ve been married for 10 years and we have 4 beautiful children together, aged 3-9.
I graduated from a Bible college in 2003 and that is where I met my wife. I spent 7 years as a youth & teaching pastor but have not been a pastor for the past 2 years now. I’m not very religious though you will find spiritual themes within my writing due to it being such a large part of the majority of my life. My characters, much like myself, struggle with faith, doubt, and love as a part of their everyday lives. The novel is by no means a Christian novel, however, with language you’d find in real life as well as situations not suited for a church service.
My favorite author is Joyce Carol Oates and I also love Junot Diaz and Sherman Alexie, among many others. Their novels have influenced me the most and I’d like to think my writing style resembles their amazing books. Them by Joyce Carol Oates is the best book I’ve ever read and if you’ve never read it, stop what you’re doing right now and read it. Seriously, do it now.
WAYS to STALK HIM:
1) Tell us about how you got started with writing? Have you always known you wanted to be a writer?
I’ve been writing ever since I was a child. I can remember sitting down at only eight or nine years old, writing out titles for books that I wanted to write. When I was younger, I wrote songs mainly along with a bit of poetry. As a young adult, I started writing more novels than I can remember, only to quit because they were so poorly written. It wasn’t until I started taking fiction writing classes at Oregon State University that I realized I loved writing and received positive feedback from a few of my professors. That’s when I decided I would sit down and write a novel.
2) What genre do you like to read and/or write in and why?
I love to read literary fiction (Joyce Carol Oates, Sherman Alexie, Junot Diaz, Zora Neale Hurston). I like to write in the same genre with blends of suspense, mystery, and even mild thrills. I want to read something that makes me think about the deeper things in life while at the same time, forcing me to skip class or work because the story is simply that good.
3) Do you have any habits or routines you do before, during, or after writing? When’s your best time to write?
Well, after writing, I’m usually thinking about the story throughout my day. I stop and write down ideas all the time so I don’t forget them. The best time for me to write is undoubtedly the night. I enjoy the peace and quiet; that time after everyone else is asleep. If I could, I’d stay up until 4am writing every single night.
4) A genie appears before you, while you’re writing (of course), and tells you she will grant you 2 wishes. Why two wishes? Cuz she’s special like that. So, coming back to my question. What would your 2 wishes be? The only stipulation, you can’t wish for more wishes or chocolate. *shrugs* She’s got something against chocolate, something about an ex always complaining about having to buy her chocolate. lol. *clears throat*. So what would your 2 wishes be.
My first wish would be for my kids to always live close to me. My second wish would be the ability to write for the rest of my life without having to worry about landing a publishing deal or promotion.
VERY Valid wishes!
5) NOW for the fun fun fun stuff. Are you working on anything? Tell us about it!
Yes! My first book, THE EARTH BLEEDS RED, is due out at the end of August (2013, Pandamoon Publishing). It’s a literary suspense and I’m beyond excited for its release. Right now, I’m about halfway through a literary psychological thriller called, THE LIGHTS WILL NEVER FADE. It’s kind of creeping me out.
Definitely the snake though both would freak me out. With the snake, at least I’d have a chance at running away. My biggest fear, however, is mice. Irony?
Um… Yes, Jackson. Yes it is! Lol
7) First off congratulations on getting your book published through Pandamoon Publishing. Tell me about your experience!
Thank you! They are a newer company but the owner has extensive experience running her own businesses as well as marketing. She’s been successful is all her endeavors and I’m confident that the same will be true for the publishing company. I couldn’t be happier with the way they’ve treated me, the services they’ve offered, and the professionalism shown up to this point. The biggest reason I chose to sign with Pandamoon dealt with their marketing plan and the ability to work with someone who knows advertising.
8) Finally, ANY advice for new writers or writers that are looking to get published?
Yes, don’t get discouraged. I received a TON of rejection letters. Many were generic though a few were personal and encouraging. Finally, after working with a lit agency intern, I improved my query to the point that it started to gain attention from my queries and the #pitmad contest on Twitter. I ended up receiving interest from a couple literary agents and two small publishing companies. The only person who can stop you is you. Keep writing, working, studying, and reading. If it’s your goal in life to be a writer, don’t stop until you reach that goal.
Jackson, thank you so much for kicking off this special for the Summer and taking the time to answer the interview questions. I wish you the best of luck in your writing career! Please do stop by in the future, I’d love you have you on my blog again :).
All right boys and girls! I hope you all enjoyed reading through this interview as much as I had fun interviewing Jackson! Please take a minute and take some time to say hello to Jackson!
More interviews, more giveaways, more guest posts to come!