Saturday, September 13, 2014

James Rada Jr. on Developing His Writing & Making Money @JimRada #AmReading #Historical

at 9:00 AM
How did you develop your writing?
My first short stories were primarily horror. I had about three dozen stories published before my tastes started shifting to YA and thriller. Then I moved to historical novels and eventually added non-fiction history. Now I’m starting to go back and dabble with thrillers and YA.
What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing?
For me, the hardest part is the marketing. That’s not to say that getting published and writing the book is easy. It’s just that I’m naturally an introvert so going out and pushing my works just feels wrong to me. It feels like I’m bragging and I was raised not to do that. It’s a necessary evil, though. So I continue to move outside of my comfort zone and learn how to market myself. I feel like I’m getting better at it, but it’s a slow process.
Do you find it hard to share your work?
I like to talk about my stories and history because I find the stories interesting. However, if I am sharing my work in the hopes that someone will buy it, I start to get uncomfortable. Same book. Same topic. In my mind, though, when the goal is a sale something changes. I try and keep myself focused on talking about the story without worrying about whether it ends in a sale or not.
Do you plan to publish more books?
I’ve already published seven non-fiction books, five historical novels, one thriller and one YA books. Most of these have been self-published and I plan on doing more. In fact, I plan on exploring some other genres. I will probably write them under pen names, though.
What else do you do to make money, other than write? It is rare today for writers to be full time.
I am a full-time freelance writer. Besides books, I write articles, newspaper columns, press releases and advertising copy. I will also do editing and talks. Finally, I teach writing courses at a couple community colleges. It keeps me very busy and at times, my life is quite crazy.
What other jobs have you had in your life?
When I was in high school I worked as a cashier at a pharmacy and a kennel worker at a veterinarian. In college, I worked as a personal trainer at a fitness center. After college, I was the manager of a K-Mart shoe department. Then I worked as a marketing writing for a biotech company and moved on to be a reporter and editor for various newspapers.
If you could study any subject at university what would you pick?
I would probably study history with a minor in creative writing. I sometimes consider going back and getting my master’s degree, but after having been a professional writer for 26 years, I’m not sure if it would be worth. I would probably do it, though, if it wasn’t so expensive.
If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
I don’t know if I could name one specific area. I like a lot of places that I have visited for different reasons so it’s hard to say this is the perfect place for me. I know that I wouldn’t want to live in a big city, but I would still like to be within an hour’s commute of one to take advantage of some of the opportunities there. I live in a very historic area now, which I enjoy. I would probably want to continue that. I would also probably like a place without harsh or very cold winters.
Tell us about your family?
I have a wife and two sons. I’ve been married for 24 years. My wife works as a medical technologist. One of my sons just graduated and wants to join the military. My other son is in middle school and says he wants to be an engineer. I am the only one who has the writing bug, though my youngest son likes to read.
The Civil War split the United States and now it has split the Fitzgerald Family. Although George Fitzgerald has returned from the war, his sister Elizabeth Fitzgerald has chosen to remain in Washington to volunteer as a nurse. The ex-Confederate spy, David Windover, has given up on his dream of being with Alice Fitzgerald and is trying to move on with his life in Cumberland, Md. Alice and her sons continue to haul coal along the 184.5-mile-long C&O Canal. It is dangerous work, though, during war time because the canal runs along the Potomac River and between the North and South. 

Having had to endured death and loss already, Alice wonders whether remaining on the canal is worth the cost. She wants her family reunited and safe, but she can’t reconcile her feelings between David and her dead husband. Her adopted son, Tony, has his own questions that he is trying to answer. He wants to know who he is and if his birth mother ever loved him. As he tries to find out more about his birth mother and father, he stumbles onto a plan by Confederate sympathizers to sabotage the canal and burn dozens of canal boats. 

He enlists David’s help to try and disrupt the plot before it endangers his new family, but first they will have find out who is behind the plot.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Historical Fiction
Rating – PG-13
More details about the author
Connect with James Rada Jr. on Facebook & Twitter
Website jamesrada.com

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