Thursday, July 25, 2013

Author Interview – JDR Hawkins

at 1:30 AM

Can you tell us about your main character? He is a sixteen-year-old boy who is trying to become a man, but his father still considers him to be too young to go off to fight. He is conflicted between his obligation to his family and his desire for adventure.

How did you develop your plot and characters? Because I wanted to focus on a young Confederate soldier, I started with the main character, built his family around him, and added his home and friends. The first book I wrote in the series, which I am calling the “Renegade Series,” is A Beckoning Hellfire. That story expanded into two sequels. I then went back and wrote a prequel, which is A Beautiful Glittering Lie.

Who designed the cover? The cover art is entitled “Up Alabamians!” by Don Troiani.

Who is your publisher? iUniverse, which is an assisted self-publishing company.

Why did you choose to write this particular book? I wanted to tell the story of a typical Confederate soldier, and how the war impacted him and his family. Many Southern states did not want to secede from the Union, and this story explains how a typical farm family got drawn into the conflict.

What was the hardest part about writing this book? The battle scenes were the most difficult to write. I wanted to make them as realistic as possible, which meant I had to go into detail about graphic gore and emotional trauma.

How do you promote this book? Besides writing my own blog,, I participate on other blogs, and post frequently on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and some other social media outlets. I attend conferences, do speaking engagements, participate in reenactments, and hold book signings. Because my advertising budget is limited, I have done a little bit of display advertising, but mostly, I have promoted it through local media. I have also entered the book in several contests.

Will you write others in this same genre? I have written two sequels to this series, which I am calling the “Renegade Series.” I will probably write more books about this time period since, to me, it is one of the most fascinating in American History.

Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? The main message is that, even though terrible things happen, the power of the human spirit will always prevail.

How much of the book is realistic? A Beautiful Glittering Lie is based on the journal of adjutant R. T. Cole, who was a soldier with the 4th Alabama Infantry Regiment. Most of the situations and characters described are based on real people and events. The main characters are fictitious, but their experiences are also based on fact.


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Genre – Historical Fiction

Rating – PG13

More details about the author

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