THE REVIEW: “An utterly imaginative and arresting tale for those of us who have ever contemplated where we go when we die.” —A.K. Kuykendall
AUTHOR BIO – GLENN MAYNARD
I am an author of Irish/French heritage, finding my niche in writing books in the paranormal/horror genre. After writing my first book, a memoir entitled, “Strapped into an American Dream”, I moved on to tackle fiction. The paranormal romance, "Desert Son" resulted from this experiment. I enjoyed the finished project. So did my readers and reviewers. In fact, I enjoyed the project so much that I found it deserving of a sequel, and I have just completed it. Now in the editing phase, I have an eye down the road to write more books in the paranormal, horror genre.
1. Tell us a bit about yourself.
My writing career took off when I took off, which was after I got married. My wife and I quit our jobs, sold our cars, bought a used RV and traveled through the 48 continental states for an entire year. I needed something to write about, and made myself a travel correspondent for two local newspapers and published twenty articles along the way. I published my first book, which detailed the people and places along the way, entitled “Strapped Into An American Dream.”
2. At what point in your life, did you decide you wanted to be a writer?
I have enjoyed writing and storytelling ever since I was in the First grade and received high praise for a story I did. It was a simple story, but it was First grade, and I liked the feeling it brought in return. I liked the way it made people feel when they read it, and that made me feel good. It had a trickle down affect. Moving ahead in years as an English Major in college, I studied great writers like Henry David Thoreau and his Walden Pond, in which he described his life in the woods with precision-detail. We picked apart Shakespeare, which was a very difficult task, but all the world’s a stage, and my stage was set.
3. What are your most memorable or proudest moments in your writing career?
There are a lot of proud moments for an author. Holding that first book in my hands was up there high on my list. Everything could be seen online up to that point, but holding the physical book was huge. Book two was really nice too. The local author stories, book signing blurbs in the newspaper, and having a book signing at Barnes & Noble in my home town were very exciting moments. Getting all this accomplished with my parents still around to experience it takes the cake.
4. Where would you like to see yourself in five years’ time?
I would like to be a best-selling author within five years. I’m knocking off goals in my life, and “published author” I’ve hit up twice. Now I want more. Always want more! I will keep writing books and see where it takes me.
5. What advice do you wish you’d been given before starting your career in writing?
I wish that I were told the real story behind marketing books. I wish I were a social media expert. I was completely mistaken to think that all I had to do was write a book and the publisher would take care of the rest.
6. Tell us about the books you’ve written so far, and your plans for any future books?
My first book was a non-fiction book entitled, “Strapped Into An American Dream” which details my one-year journey through America. I then wrote a fiction book. A man has a car accident that kills his parents. He has an out-of body experience and meets a woman who claims to be his mother. She encourages him to search for his true identity, so he follows signs that lead him from Boston to Colorado. He is captivated by an old house, but it’s the diaries, hypnosis, and past-life regression within the house that uncover his truth. I have written a sequel to “Desert Son” that I am currently editing. This time around, I plan to search for a Literary Agent to assist with publication.
7. Is there any part of your career, you find particularly challenging?
Marketing/Social Media are the most challenging. If money weren’t an issue, I would definitely hire someone to take care of this aspect of being an author. It would be great to be able to concentrate on only writing.
8. Who do you feel, has supported you most, in your writing?
My immediate family! I am the youngest of six kids. They are very supportive and excited to own copies of my books, and even purchase books to send to friends and relatives. I dedicated my latest novel to my parents. They are now battling that cruel disease called Alzheimer’s. One day I walked in and the caretaker said my mother had been reading the dedication page over and over again. It’s moments like these…
9. Is there anything you’d like to say to your readers?
I hope you enjoy my interpretation of the out-of-body experience, dying, and the process of coming back to life. Everybody wonders if there is an afterlife, and I take you there. Some of my readers, who have lost close relatives, really enjoy the thought of what it would be like to reconnect with them one more time. One reviewer stated, “Well written, with a tight plot and characters you can really relate to. This book will have you questioning your beliefs. Reincarnation and a near death experience are just part of this gripping story. It’s a romance that reaches out from the grave and grabs your heart. Love, devotion and friendship will make people do many things. I recommend this book to everyone.”
10. Where can we find out more about you and your books?
11. Tell us a little about your book.
A man has a car accident that kills his parents. He has an out-of body experience and meets a woman who claims to be his mother. She encourages him to search for his true identity, so he follows signs that lead him from Boston to Colorado. He is captivated by an old house, but it’s the diaries, hypnosis, and past-life regression within that uncover his truth.
12. What were you attempting to convey in the artistry of your book cover?
I initially was thinking Paranormal for the book cover. Maybe a desert or an old white house, but my publisher’s cover designer convinced me that paranormal romance was the way to go because of the bigger audience. That’s the way we have marketed the book.
13. What inspired you to write your book?
The idea for this book came after reading the book, “Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation”, by Ian Stevenson. This book was about the spontaneous recall of previous lives by children. I was so fascinated by these children in third world countries recalling lives of people who had died, and who had lived an unreachable distance from these kids. Researchers would then follow the kid’s claims and travel to talk to the surviving members of the deceased’s family. The claims of the children exactly portrayed the deceased, sometimes including the language the y spoke, and with information that nobody other than the deceased would know. “Desert Son” evolved from this book.
14. Are the character profiles based on people you know or are they completely drawn from your imagination?
The characters in “Desert Son” are bits and pieces of people I know. How gruesome does that sound?
15. Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
I had actually been in a near-fatal car accident when I was 16 years old, and I broke my neck, pelvis, shoulder, ribs, and hand, and suffered third degree burns. I was in and out of a coma for three days, and hospitalized for two months. I had a pretty good base for the intensity of the scenes I described. Did I have an out-of-body experience? No. Was I qualified for writing such a scene? I believe so. I spent the majority of my time in the hospital receiving treatment for my burns. They would lower my body into a boiling hot whirlpool, while I clenched the bars above me and screamed to high heaven…three times a day for several weeks. Maybe I didn’t go to heaven, but every time they dunked my body, I felt like I was very close. Believe me, I was ready to create these scenes.
16. Which part of the book, in your opinion, was the most difficult to write?
Third Person: Staying in the perspective of only the main character throughout the whole book.
17. What parts of the book do you love, in particular?
The out-of-body experience, Carter and Brenda’s deep conversation at the bar, and the past-life-regression hypnosis (favorite scene).
18. Tell us about the cover design of your book.
The cover is bright orange and shows a young couple holding each other in the desert. This is a paranormal romance with a sharp cover that pulls the eye in.
19. Which ways have you chosen to market your book?
Blog posts, and linking to Facebook and LinkedIn. Newpaper articles about the release and book signings. I try to get as many reviews as possible to increase exposure to blogger audiences.
20. If you had to do it all over again, is there anything you’d change?
I would have started the marketing efforts sooner through social media. I’m not an expert, by any means, but always learning as I go along.
21. Where can we find out more or buy the book?
22. Who are you?
Glenn Maynard is the author of the travel memoir, “Strapped into an American Dream” and the paranormal romance novel, “Desert Son.” He has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of Connecticut, and an Associate’s degree in Communications. He lives in Wethersfield, Connecticut and has a 14 year-old son named Andrew. As a travel correspondent for three newspapers while exploring the United States, Canada and Mexico during his one-year, 48-state journey through America, Glenn published a total of twenty newspaper articles.
23. What are the titles of your books?
“Strapped Into An American Dream” and “Desert Son”
24. Who is your favourite author?
25. Worst book you have ever read?
The Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy
26. What book are you reading now?
Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King.
27. Your favourite quote about writing/authors:
“People want to know why I do this, why I write such gross stuff. I like to tell them I have the heart of a small boy... and I keep it in a jar on my desk.” ~Stephen King~
28. Your biggest inspiration:
The thought of holding future books in my hands and reliving that excitement.
29. Something you can’t live without:
30. Your pet-hate:
Air quotes, and expressions that have no purpose, like “per se”, and “If you will.”
31. Your favourite place to be:
Dunes Beach in Westerly, RI.
32. Something you like/love about yourself?
My dry, quirky sense of humor.
33. Something you’d change about yourself?
My impatience, especially in traffic.
34. Your ideal life would be:
Writing books for a living.
Pragmatic author A.K. Kuykendall has a passion for writing conspiracy, espionage, horror, and suspense literature that blend the concepts of fact and fiction. For more information on his projects, visit http://www.thewriterofbooks.com/list-of-works/ or, to email the author directly for Q&A on this post, write to firstname.lastname@example.org.