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Sunday, January 10, 2016

Interview: Author's Admiration of McCarthy and Honoring Mother Inspire Writing Career

Hi! I am Carolyn Howard Johnson, your trusty New Book Review blogger and author of the multi award-winning HowTo Do It Frugally Series of books for writers. This blog has heretofore been exclusive for reviews but I thought I’d do a special series of interviews after I chatted with Jeanie Loiacono, President of Loiacono Literary Agency – Where ‘can’t’ is not in our vocabulary! I thought sharing the interviews would help the many subscribers and visitors to this New Book Review blog, including authors, reviewers, and, of course, readers who just might find a new favorite author among the featured books and authors.

So, today welcome Chuck Walsh.

Chuck Walsh, author of Shadows On Iron MountainBackwoods JusticeA Month of TomorrowsA Passage Back and A Splintered Dream is a graduate of the University of South Carolina, and discovered a passion for writing in 2004. Since then, he has written human-interest articles for a dozen publications. He also co-authored Faces of Freedom (featured on Sean Hannity’s book list), a book that recognizes the noble lives of U.S. soldiers who died while fighting in Iraq or Afghanistan.


“Chuck Walsh is one of the most committed, passionate, and talented writers I’ve had the pleasure of working with and reading in a long time. [He] constantly seeks new ways to refine his already solid work. Chuck Walsh is one of the best. He writes, not for himself, but for his readers.”
—Thomas Smith, Jr. author, Encyclopedia of the Central Intelligence Agency                     

“Chuck Walsh is a master storyteller, a writer of extraordinary sensitivity and craftsmanship. Walsh’s fiction shows an uncommon understanding of his characters and their relationships. His writing is both dynamic and economical, with a special energy in dialogue that keeps the reader turning pages.”
— Charles Israel, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of English

What is your genre? Is it fiction or nonfiction? Fiction – historical, murder/suspense, literary fiction

      What made you want to be a writer? My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer ten years ago, and I wanted to write something to show how much she meant to me. And I decided to write A Passage Back, which is about a man who has an accident after the death of his mother and goes back in time to his childhood. As I began writing the book, something sparked to life within me, making me feel as though my life’s calling had been unveiled.

Of all the authors out there, who inspired you most? Cormac McCarthy--no one else comes close. McCarthy is the best fiction writer, in my opinion, of all time. His ability to create stories that pit battles between good and evil, God and Satan, heaven and hell, is beyond anything I’ve ever read. Before I work on my novels, I will pick up one of his books, read about fifteen pages or so, and it inspires me to be the absolute best writer I can be.

What is your writing style? Do you outline? Linearly? By scene? Why? I would describe myself as a storyteller. I truly try to create characters that readers will feel they know intimately, and I want those characters immersed in compelling situations. Most of these characters are based on people I have a strong connection to which fuels a great passion to fully reveal the desires of their hearts, their joy, their pain, and their fear. The settings of my books are integral and I love to paint the picture, whether it’s the deep backdrop of the Appalachian Mountains, or the simplicity of a baseball field on a summer afternoon. I do not outline. Each book begins as an idea and it develops on its own. It becomes an entity, growing slowly, and I just try to find the words to put it in print.

Do you write every day? How much? How long? Working full time, it’s impossible for me to write every day. By the time I get home, my mind is so frazzled, there is no creativity left. Therefore I write on weekends and holidays, beginning early where I spend hour after hour getting into the character’s minds, and into the setting. I can go 10 to 12 hours once I begin.

Do you think reading is as important to writing for an author? Why? I think reading is vital for an author. It opens him to worlds he might not have ever known, and it inspires, and often teaches, the writer how to develop a story. Not in the sense he can copy or mimic, because I think every writer’s mind works differently, and that they can only write what they know; what their mind creates.

What are some of the things you would like to share with budding authors? Write about people and places that will fuel a passion within you. If you have a connection to the characters and the setting, it will make you want to expend full effort to make the readers develop a passion for them too.

      Do you have any marketing and promotional advice, referrals, tips you would like to share? Work as hard as you can to make the book the best it can possibly be. Believe in yourself. To me, the most successful venues are book signings that I set up. I solicit help from people in that area who I know that will help spread the word. Have signings at places that are fun for the readers. I’ve had signings at restaurants, at sports bars, minor league ballparks (for my baseball-themed novel, A Splintered Dream). If you go in blindly to a location and have to count on strangers to “stumble” upon you, the odds of them buying your book(s) are slim. Be choosy in the literary festivals you attend. It’s tough to sell books, at least that’s my experience, at places where they have no idea who you are. I will sell 5 times more books at a two-hour signing that I have organized and orchestrated, than I can attending a day long festival.

Do you think conferences are beneficial? If so, what have you learned? Which ones do you frequent? I think for those starting out conferences are beneficial in networking and getting yourself in front of agents and publishers and other writers. Once you have established yourself with an agent, and your books are being published, then you can use online tools to learn ways to help promote your books.

Where can we find you, your books and when is your next event? You can find me at www.chuckwalshwriter.com Chuck Walsh Events Facebook Twitter Goodreads Amazon Author Page  My books are available on Amazon B&N Fish Pond Book Depository BAM Waterstones IndieBound Google Play Kobo Powell's Books Wheeler's Books Book World Angus & Robertson Copia Scribd Shelfari                            The Book Depository Waterstones WH Smith  Wheelers GoodReads My first book, A Month of Tomorrows, is available also on audible.com.

My next event will be at Columbia College in late January and I will be appearing at two book club gatherings in February. Visit my website for exact dates.
Represented by Loiacono Literary Agency, Jeanie Loiacono http://www.loiaconoliteraryagency.com/authors/chuck-walsh/

Jeanie Loiacono, President, Loiacono Literary Agency
A facilitator of dreams, Jeanie Loiacono represents over eighty authors. Her forte is mystery, romance, thrillers, historical/military/southern fiction, and all quality fiction/nonfiction. Her passion is to see her authors succeed.
“There is nothing more rewarding than to hold one of my author’s books and know I helped bring it to fruition. I am so blessed and privileged to be able to work with some of the most talented writers in the world.” Jeanie.L@llallc.net www.loiaconoliteraryagency.com


The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor.

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