Mediocrity in America: A Point of View by Andrew J. Rodriguez

With the abundance of self-published authors, you have to come up with creative ways to market a self-published book. While book tours are a great way to connect with your readers, they aren’t the most affordable method of promotion. However, technology has made it possible for an alternative.

Take note from self-publishing Outskirts Press author, Andrew Rodriguez, who is taking his latest book, Mediocrity in AMERICA: A Point of View, on tour — a virtual book tour, that is. He will be featured on several blogs over the weeks and months ahead so keep your eyes peeled to learn more about him and his book.

Luckily for us, Andrew was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of Mediocrity in America: A Point of View.

OP: Tell us a little bit about Mediocrity in America: A Point of View. What is it about?
Andrew: In my book, I examine the cause-and-effect relationship between generalized mediocrity and American democracy. I also look at democracy’s core values and traditions, as well as the factors upon which, ultimately, its very survival depends.

OP: Why did you decide to write this story?
Andrew: I wrote Mediocrity in America: A Point of View in order to leave a legacy for future generations. My book is intended to remind readers of the fragility of freedom and to describe the possible disintegration of a prosperous, civilized society. I also wanted to offer counsel in an interesting, perhaps sardonic way on how to prevent social apathy from destroying our country and Western Civilization as a whole.

There is a truism which I have often heard expressed, which says: “Democracy’s worst enemy lies within itself and not beyond its borders.” I wrote my book in order to open the eyes of the ignorant and ill-informed to the heart of this matter.

OP: How did you get your book published?
Andrew: Mediocrity in America: A Point of View is a timely book. Hence, instead of wasting precious time and resources seeking conventional publishers, I decided to speed up the process by self-publishing it through Outskirts Press, which is based out of Parker, Colorado.

OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?
Andrew: I firmly believe that my book will appeal to those who love America and the moral pillars upon which it stands.

OP: What is special about your book?
Andrew: The “point of view” referenced in my book’s title refers to Titan, a St. Bernard. Readers are led to see the world through his eyes, as he is presented with a wealth of information regarding the effects of widespread mediocrity—information which offers much to consider if America is to remain one of the greatest nations on Earth. Titan weighs in on the effects of envy—as well as the other six deadly sins—and on vulgarity.

Titan reflects upon the Humanities and offers his canine point of view on what he considers the scourge of our nation: Indifferent human beings sleepwalking through the various phases of life without teaching and without learning. Titan comes to understand that the greatest catastrophe occurs when bored and boring citizens such as these grow to immeasurable numbers and become the majority—providing the perfect environment for a dogmatic, narrow-minded, and inflexible group to fill the vacuum and establish a paralyzed society prone to disintegrate as mediocrity becomes its foundation.

This unique and thoughtful narrative is as spot-on as it is entertaining, and Titan as a benevolent narrator makes a compelling case against the dangers of mediocrity in America.

OP: What differentiates it from other books in the same category?
Andrew: My book is slimmer than most, and makes for a quick and easy read. Its message is user-friendly, simple, and straightforward.

OP: Have you published any other books?
Andrew: Yes, I have! My first book was The Teleportation of an American Teenager (2005). Later that year I also published the memoir Adios, Havana, winner of the 2006 Colorado Publishers Association’s Evvy Award for its genre. I also published The Incredible Adventures of Enrique Diaz (2006), a work of historical fiction and finalist for both the USA Book News’ Best Book Award and Foreword Magazine’s Book of the Year Award.

In 2009 I published the mystery romance Helen’s Treasure: Odyssey of a Ladies’ Man, and in 2014 I published a collection of short works, Santa Rita Stories: Coming of Age in a Cuban Fishing Town. Mediocrity in America: A Point of View is my latest book, published in 2016.

OP: Do you plan to publish more?
Andrew: As an obsessive writer and student of the human condition, I will continue to publish many more!

OP: Thanks for your time, Andrew! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Andrew J. Rodriguez is also the author of Santa Rita Stories, Coming of Age in a Cuban Fishing Town; Helen’s Treasure, Odyssey of a Ladies’ Man; and The Incredible Adventures of Enrique Diaz, a finalist for both the Book of the Year Award sponsored by Foreword Magazine and the Best Books Award sponsored by USA Book News. His second book, Adios, Havana: A Memoir, won the prestigious Colorado Independent Publishers Association EVVY Award in 2006 as well as the Allbooks Reviews Editor’s Choice Award. Rodriguez and his wife live in Colorado and Florida.

For more information or to contact the author, visit https://www.outskirtspress.com/mediocrityinamerica

This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road.” Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.

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He Strived to Aspire by Okechukwu Ogori

With the abundance of self-published authors, you have to come up with creative ways to market a self-published book.  While book tours are a great way to connect with your readers, they aren’t the most affordable method of promotion.  However, technology has made it possible for an alternative.

Take note from self-publishing Outskirts Press author, Okechukwu Ogori, who is taking his latest book, He Strived to Aspire, on tour – a virtual book tour, that is. He will be featured on several blogs over the weeks and months ahead so keep your eyes peeled to learn more about him and his book.

Luckily for us, Okechukwu was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of He Strived to Aspire.

OP: Tell us a little bit about He Strived to Aspire. What is it about?
Okechukwu:  My book is mainly about a boy who grew up as part of a poor family, and who worked incredibly hard to achieve success despite enormous obstacles. His story demonstrates the fact that success can be achieved by hard work and determination, and shows how one can always triumph over poverty by being optimistic and removing from oneself the spirit of despair.

OP: Why did you decide to write this story?
Okechukwu: It is written to encourage everybody, and to show that hard work, patience, and optimism are key to success. That fear of the unknown and self-defeat are what bring failure. That if I can move from grass to grace, despite my socio-economic background and mountainous obstacles, then everyone can succeed as well. It is only a matter of time.

OP: How did you get your book published?
Okechukwu: I wrote the book myself and prepared the manuscript before I discovered Outskirts Press, where I was given a lot of encouragement.  After the manuscript passed through the design and proofing phases, my book was then published. I performed a vigorous self-edit beforehand as well.

OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?
Okechukwu: My book is meant for everybody, but especially those who have met with a lot of obstacles in life either as a result of natural causes, personal mistakes, and unknown forces, as well as young people who may be dwelling in the world of illusion and fantasy.

OP: What is special about your book?
Okechukwu: I hope it inspires anyone who reads it; it will surely change one’s perception of life. Moreover, it’s filled with authentic life experience which I hope will captivate and move readers to greater aspirations for industriousness, not laziness.

OP: What differentiates it from other books in the same category?
Okechukwu: Inasmuch as it is a true-life story, my book was written with a touching and stimulating style of writing so that readers immediately grasp the heart of the matter. I wrote it to encourage those who may think that they cannot succeed again in life because of so many drawbacks, not merely for commercial purpose or to amass wealth.

OP: Have you published any other books? Do you plan to publish more?
Okechukwu: Yes, I have published a science textbook which focuses on the fundamentals of integrating science and work.  It is comprised of multiple choice questions and answers. I intend to make some adjustments to that book soon, and I have three other works of fiction which are still at the manuscript stage.

OP: Thanks for your time, Okechukwu! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Okechukwu Emmanuel Ogori was born on 15th August 1963. He hails from Abia state of Nigeria. He has a wife, Anna and two children: Okechukwu (Jr) and Joanna. He had his elementary education at Otumoye primary school Fegge Onitsha Anambra state, Nigeria; High school at Bishop Shanahan College, Orlu, Imo state, Nigeria, and institute of continuing education Asaba Delta state, Nigeria. He later went to Lagos state College of Education (now Adeniran Ogunsanya College of Education) Lagos, Nigeria, where he acquired Nigeria certificate in Education majoring in Physical and Health Education. He went further to acquire Bsc. in Accounting from Olabisi Onabanjo university Ago-Iwoye, Ogun state, Nigeria. He is a certified internal control Auditor (CICA) from Institute of internal control, Chartered Accountant and Chartered Administrator (ACAA) from Institute of Chartered Accountant and Administrators, Delaware, USA; Texas, licensed insurance Agent. More so he has worked with Lagos state Ministry of Education as a Tutor in High and middle schools respectively for twenty-three years, worked with Decan Concepts ltd, Nigeria, as an internal Auditor (Part time) for twelve years. Currently a Teacher in Alief independent school district, Houston, Texas, USA. He is also a writer of fiction and non-fiction books.

For more information or to contact the author, visit https://www.outskirtspress.com/hestrivedtoaspire

This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road.”  Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.

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A Dog for Michael by Janie Nugent

With the abundance of self-published authors, you have to come up with creative ways to market a self-published book.  While traditional book tours are a great way to connect with your readers, they aren’t the most affordable method of promotion.  However, technology has made it possible for an alternative.

Take note from self-publishing Outskirts Press author, Janie Nugent, who is taking her latest book, A Dog For Michael, on tour – a virtual book tour, that is. She will be featured on several blogs over the weeks and months ahead so keep your eyes peeled to learn more about Janie and her book.

Luckily for us, Janie was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of A Dog For Michael.

OP: Tell us a little bit about A Dog For Michael: Doug To The Rescue. What is it about?

Janie: Adopting an adult dog and the joy it brings to everyone in the family.

OP: Why did you decide to write this story?

Janie: It is based on my son Michael and his dog, Doug. We adopted Doug when he was eight years old and our lives were forever changed.

OP: How did you get your book published?

Janie: I self-published with Outskirts Press.

OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?

Janie: Parents, young readers, grandparents, schools, childcare workers, adoptive parents and all animal lovers.

OP: What is special about your book?

Janie: It is beautifully illustrated and the story about the love between a child and their pet is honest and heartfelt. It was very important for me to encourage reading with and to your child. I believe the book will grow with them as they understand the story in different ways. Initially, it is a pretty book with a cute dog. It is also about pet adoption, friendships and families. Recently, I was invited to speak at a local Women’s club to discuss the book. A member approached me and stated she adopted a child and felt the book would be special to her child. I gave her a book and she contacted me to tell me how much her child loved the book. I am now partnering with her to get the book to adoptive agencies to share with the new parents.

OP: What differentiates it from other books in the same category?

Janie: The story is through the eyes of Doug, the adopted adult dog. The proceeds of the book go to support pet adoption programs. I have given books to schools to add to their libraries and read to children at the schools. I also have been giving books to animal shelters to sell and keep the proceeds.

OP: Do you plan to publish more?

Janie: I would love to do a sequel since Doug is on the way to New York with Michael at the end of this book. My goal is to raise money for pet adoption, so continuing with Doug’s story would keep the process going.

OP: Thanks for your time, Janie! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Janie Nugent always dreamed of becoming a writer. As a lifelong supporter of animals both personally and financially, sharing Doug’s story was the perfect reason to write her first book. The opportunity to raise awareness and provide financial support with proceeds from this book is a dream come true.

For more information or to contact the author, visit https://www.outskirtspress.com/adogformichael

This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road.”  Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.

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The Rape That Lasted A Lifetime, by Jodi Morley

With the abundance of self-published authors, you have to come up with creative ways to market a self-published book.  While book tours are a great way to connect with your readers, they aren’t the most affordable method of promotion.  However, technology has made it possible for an alternative.

coverTake note from self-publishing Outskirts Press author, Jodi Morley, who is taking her latest book, The Rape That Lasted A Lifetime, on tour – a virtual book tour, that is. She will be featured on several blogs over the weeks and months ahead so keep your eyes peeled to learn more about her and her book.

Luckily for us, Jodi was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of The Rape That Lasted A Lifetime.

OP: Tell us a little bit about The Rape That Lasted A Lifetime.  What is it about?

Jodi:  My book is a memoir of sorts. It describes my rape when I was in college and follows my life through the difficulty of dealing with the rape, both, physically and mentally throughout the next 20 years. It chronicles the difficulties of accessing both medical and psychiatric care in the United States. But more importantly, it is a story that others can connect with (I hope), and use to either understand what they are going through themselves or what their family or friends are experiencing after a rape.

OP: Why did you decide to write this story?

Jodi:  I started writing it more as a technique for me to process my own thoughts on the rape and find some way to relieve the tension and fear brought on as I delved into the memories of the rape with my therapist. After I finished writing, some family members read it and said I should publish it as a book. I considered this for some time because I knew that once it was published, it would be out there for all to read. I was nervous and embarrassed by this thought. However, I began to consider the impact it may have on someone that has been raped and how they may find some of it therapeutic. I knew at that point that I had to publish it. If even one person can benefit from the reading of my story, then it will have been worth it.

OP: How did you get your book published?

Jodi: I contacted Outskirts Publishing to see if it would be the kind of book they might publish. It was an easy process with their guidance.

OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?

Jodi: I believe that many different types of readers could possibly benefit from the reading of my book. The most obvious group of people that could benefit would be survivors of rape and their family/friends. Rape Crisis Centers may find it of value for their clients, as well as, therapists, and Behavioral Healthcare Centers. However, I also feel that it could benefit police officers, medical students, and university students that are majoring in the mental health field as they often do not understand how to interact with a survivor in an appropriate manner.

OP: What is special about your book? What differentiates it from other books in the same category?

Jodi: The Rape That Lasted A Lifetime is more raw, meaning, I share all the horrible details about the rape itself and about the years following it. However, I also decided to throw in some humor, not because it’s a funny story, but because there needed to be some breaks from the awful truth that was my life. I needed to laugh because I couldn’t process what was happening with my current life situation, much less, with what happened in the past.

OP: Have you published any other books? Do you plan to publish more?

Jodi: I have not published anything before but would definitely be open to writing more. 

OP: Thanks for your time, Jodi! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Jodi Morley is a Licensed Professional Counselor in South Texas. She has been counseling mostly children and teenagers for the past nine years. She has recently taken a break from her career to raise her beautiful 3-year-old daughter and recover from her own mental health concerns. For more information or to contact the author, visit www.outskirtspress.com/therapethatlastedalifetime

This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road”.  Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.

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The Best Investment Is Within One’s Self, by Dr. Carrie Register-Haley

With the abundance of self-published authors, you have to come up with creative ways to market a self-published book.  While book tours are a great way to connect with your readers, they aren’t the most affordable method of promotion.  However, technology has made it possible for an alternative.

362401a-coverTake note from self-publishing Outskirts Press author, Dr. Carrie A. Register-Haley, who is taking her latest book, The Best Investment Is Within One’s Self, on tour – a virtual book tour, that is. She will be featured on several blogs over the weeks and months ahead so keep your eyes peeled to learn more about her and her book.

Luckily for us, Dr. Carrie was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of The Best Investment Is Within One’s Self.

OP: Tell us a little bit about The Best Investment Is Within One’s Self.  What is it about?

Dr. Carrie:  This book is about self-empowerment and self-investment.  It is a straightforward and powerful philosophy that builds on the deeply truthful idea that you are the expert resource for yourself and your life…all you have to do is learn to tap in to the wisdom and power that you already have. Everyone who is willing to put energy into self-discovery already has all the tools they need to succeed—and you get to define what success, happiness, and fulfillment look like in your life.

OP: Why did you decide to write this story?

Dr. Carrie:  This book was birthed originally out of a workshop I did in Columbus, Ohio for Federally Employed Women (FEW), using the same name as the title of my book. I complied information I was using to coach individual clients. After the FEW workshop, many of my clients heard about the impact of the workshop and wanted to know when I would do it for them. I began doing weekly brown bag lunch coaching session and pulled together enough content for this book.

OP: How did you get your book published?

Dr. Carrie: I researched online the best self-publishing companies and found Outskirts. It was a very easy process.

OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?

Dr. Carrie: The idea reader is anyone looking to show up better than they did yesterday! The person who knows the value of self-care and self-investment, and that it is important to have a checklist or reminders of how to ensure that process is continuous.

OP: What is special about your book?  

Dr. Carrie:  It is an easy read that hits all the major areas every people deal with! Basic things that anyone can do daily to show as the best version of their self and enhance their daily lives.

OP: What differentiates it from other books in the same category?

Dr. Carrie: It’s not over complicated and gives the essentials for help with self-investment, self-care, relationships, career and self-discovery.

OP: Have you published any other books? Do you plan to publish more?

Dr. Carrie: I plan to publish my next book within a year on a totally different topic. It has everything to do with growing up in a large family with limited resources, but a lot of love.  My childhood!

OP: Thanks for your time, Dr. Carrie! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

362401a-author-photoMy professional career includes a retirement from the Army after almost 21 years of service and nine years with the Department of Defense.  This career path has led to a life of living and learning in other countries, and a love of travel. Academically, I have obtained five degrees, culminating with a PhD in General Psychology from Capella University, Minneapolis, Minnesota.  I earned my Certified Professional Coach (CPC) certification and Energy Leadership Index-Master Practitioner (ELI-MP) at the Institute for Profession Excellence in Coaching (IPEC) and an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) certification with the International Coach Federation.  Additionally, I have certifications in Lean Six Sigma (Black Belt) and Human Resources Management from Villanova University, and a graduate of the Federal Executive Institute, Charlottesville, Virginia.

In my community, I’ve served in various roles, such as Victim Advocate, Back to School Event Coordinator, Human Resources Trainer, and Facilitator for the young women groups Girl Power and Daughters of Destiny.  Each experience has afforded me a plethora of experiences in mentoring and coaching.  However, my greatest passion is being a Christian, mother, grandmother, and friend.

For more information or to contact the author, visit www.outskirtspress.com/drcarrieregister­_haley

This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road”.  Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.

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Virtual Book Tour: Verse for the Day, by Lincoln S. Kokaram

With the abundance of self-published authors, you have to come up with creative ways to market a self-published book.  While book tours are a great way to connect with your readers, they aren’t the most affordable method of promotion.  However, technology has made it possible for an alternative.

large

Take note from self-publishing Outskirts Press author, Lincoln S. Kokaram, who is taking his latest book, Verse for the Day, on tour – a virtual book tour, that is. He will be featured on several blogs over the weeks and months ahead so keep your eyes peeled to learn more about him and his book.

Luckily for us, Lincoln was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of Verse for the Day.


OP: Tell us a little bit about Verse for the Day.  What is it about?

Lincoln: This book is a Spiritual adjustment tool to help readers become more aware of the Divine intervention of the Holy Spirit in their daily lives. It will create tangible evidence of the presence of Jesus and how He impacts life – how He blesses; provides; protects; loves and forgives every day!

If this book is used as it is intended, relationships with Jesus will grow closer. People will have personal evidence of His presence. When trials and temptations to doubt, come (and they will), the physical evidence of the power of the Holy Spirit will equip people to be strong in faith and resist the temptations of the evil one.

This book could help people take their walk with the Holy Spirit to a higher level. Awareness empowers people to perform with confidence.

OP: Why did you decide to write this story?

Lincoln: To inspire people to walk closer to the Lord and become more aware of His Divine presence in their lives.

OP: How did you get your book published?

Lincoln: Self-Published through OutskirtsPress.com

OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?

Lincoln: Anyone who is looking for a guide to help them develop and live a closer relationship with Jesus.

OP: What is special about your book?  

Lincoln: It is simple, easy to read and understand.

OP: What differentiates it from other books in the same category?

Lincoln:  It is engaging as readers are encouraged to journal how God is blessing them; how they are serving Him and what they need to ask forgiveness for every day.

OP: Have you published any other books?

Lincoln: No

OP: Do you plan to publish more?

Lincoln: Already working on my second book; With P.A.S.S.I.O.N.©

OP: Thanks for your time, Lincoln! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

smallLincoln S. Kokaram was born in the twin islands country – Trinidad and Tobago. He is the founder of His Business Partners LLC; a training and consulting company with a mission of: ‘Helping as many people as possible to be the best they were designed to be.’ He has been teaching, training, coaching and sharing the Gospel, most of his adult life. Some of his writings and workshops are: ‘Designed for Success, God does not make junk! ….with P.A.S.S.I.O.N.©; Vanguard Leaders;  Capitalizing on Change; Memorable Presentations. He is certified in: The Birkman Personality Assessment; Social & Emotional Intelligence; DISC; InsideOut Coaching and several Franklin Covey workshops. He has conducted training seminars and workshops in 37 countries. He is a ‘Learnovator’.

He lives in Grayson, GA with his wife Vilma. He has 5 children and 6 grandchildren.  He enjoys a round of golf when he is able to fit it in to his schedule. Lincoln is an active Christian with a passion for serving the Lord. For more information or to contact the author, visit www.Hisbusinesspratners.com

This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road”.  Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.

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Virtual Book Tour: Bowfin , by Lee Hill

With the abundance of self-published authors, you have to come up with creative ways to market a self-published book.  While book tours are a great way to connect with your readers, they aren’t the most affordable method of promotion.  However, technology has made it possible for an alternative.


bowfin

Take note from self-publishing Outskirts Press author, Lee Hill, who is taking his latest book, Bowfin, on tour – a virtual book tour, that is. He will be featured on several blogs over the weeks and months ahead so keep your eyes peeled to learn more about him and his book.

Luckily for us, Lee was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of Bowfin.

OP: Tell us a little bit about Bowfin.  What is it about?

Lee: A large fish called a “Bowfin” is trapped in a water hole beside the river running through a country farm; the fish is doomed.  The boy who lives on the farm, Lee, 18, befriends a second boy, Christopher, 14; the book is about their struggle to free the Bowfin from its trap.

OP: Why did you decide to write this story?

Lee: Because of the multitude of inescapable traps I see people falling into.  The central trap in this book is a physical circle of water of course, and other physical traps echo this central image; for example, a carousel spinning too fast to let children jump free, and a woman (Lee’s grandmother) who is so shamed by her son’s (Lee’s father) killing of a little girl that she has imprisoned herself in her farmhouse.  But the book makes it plain that not all traps require a physical enclosure.  Some half-dozen self-defeating cycles are woven into the text.  For example, Lee refuses to retaliate against the bullies who beat up Christopher because, in his words, that would “just give the wheel another spin”; he refuses to join the local gangs (the Dukes and Princes) because his grandmother warns him he would be recycled into a Slave.  A Robin is unable to stop attacking her own reflected image in the barn window, because the harder she fights the harder the “other” bird fights back; her inability to learn and therefore her enslavement to preconception locks her into the cycle, unable to win and unable to quit.  Another lose-lose situation concerns an elderly dog who lives across the road from the farmhouse and an elderly bus driver who drives the route every day; the old beagle and the driver have hated each other for years.  The dog attacks the bus and the driver screams at the dog, and both will remain slaves to hatred.  The traps—the water hole and its analogs, physical and nonphysical—provide a pathway into the book’s heart:  identifying the commonality underlying so many of the harmful cycles we see in action on our planet.  These traps can thus function as a collective lens focusing on that which constricts life, limits potential, stops learning, and harms.  The book closes with new beginnings, literally; fresh lumber is stacked at the grandmother’s door; she has chosen to end her self-imposed exile. And Lee has chosen to end his lifelong feud with Mr. Higgins across the road (the owner of the beagle).  To save the Bowfin, the two boys have fashioned a simple net from tree branches and scraps of clothing; out of compassion for a fellow creature, they have done what they could with what they had, and that is why I wrote the book.

OP: How did you get your book published?

Lee: By working with Outskirts Press.

OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?

Lee: Most likely the twelve-to-twenty age group.  This book after all is for the young-adult genre, so it is essential that it be a good action-read for younger readers; and it must also have another level beneath the action-surface for those readers interested in symbolic content.  I think anyone any age who likes fully developed characters and a storyline that can be both enjoyed as itself and at deeper levels will find the book readable.  When Jesse straddles the bus’s ruts in the dust, looks down the creek toward the Bowfin and at his grandmother’s new lumber, he tells Christopher “we’ll get her out of there,” it is plain he means freeing much more than a fish in a water hole.

OP: What is special about your book?  

Lee: The bonding between the boys, their compassion for an ugly, ancient fish, the clear-eyed pragmatism, and the seamless, easy fusion of action-storyline and subsurface symbolism.

OP: What differentiates it from other books in the same category?

Lee:  I have taken pains to create a living, breathing story that speaks in its own voice.  The book’s ideas and motifs are always embodied in character, dialogue, and action rather than authorial declarations.  I have done my best to avoid the pulpit, the soapbox, and the drum.  The setting by the river, the grace and power of the creature in the water, the excitement of the struggle, and the warmth between the boys should be enough to carry the day even for those with little interest in “subsurface symbolism.”

OP: Have you published any other books?

Lee: No

OP: Do you plan to publish more?

Lee: Yes, I plan to publish others.

OP: Thanks for your time, Lee! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Lee Hill studied fish biology at Southern Illinois University, where he edited and published books for the Center for Archaeological Investigations. He then worked in the university’s Information Technology department, learning some half-dozen programming languages, editing and publishing a newsletter, and training staff and students at the university’s campuses. Today, he lives by a lake in Southern Illinois.For more information or to contact the author, visit www.outskirtspress.com/Bowfin_LeeHill

This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road”.  Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.

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