Where are you from?
I live in Ontario, Canada, and Florida in the USA, depending on the season.
A little about yourself?
I am a retired high school teacher who has turned his talents to writing. My first novel, a spiritual mystery titled Soul Awakening, was published in the United States in October of 2011, by Book Locker. Interested readers can check it out at http://booklocker.com/books/5754.html . It is available in print and eBook format through most book stores around the world. My magazine and website articles have been published in 2010 to 2012 in Australia, Canada, France, India, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United States. My articles can be accessed through my website is at http://dousimp.mnsi.net.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
The latest big news is the publication of my first novel, Soul Awakening, in October of 2011.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
For some reason, my heart and soul always wanted to write. I have started novels a number of times over forty-plus years and either abandoned them or decided they were defective and beyond resuscitation.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Good question! After I retired I had time on my hands, and I started seriously researching the archived readings of the legendary American mystic, Edgar Cayce. Over 300 books, including over 30 biographies, have been written about Edgar Cayce or using his detailed psychic readings. Definitely not the pedigree of a quack! Over 10,000 of his readings were medical readings, where he diagnosed, at times, medical problems that the doctors could not identify, and at times prescribed treatments and medications which were not yet invented. The second largest group of Edgar’s psychic readings was life or reincarnation readings, some 2500 sessions for 2000 different individuals. It was the reincarnation readings that mesmerized my soul. With my new-found understanding of the survival of the soul after death of the body and its reincarnation possibly hundreds of years later, I commenced writing articles using the information contained in Edgar’s readings. Even I was surprised at the interest they garnered. Once on a roll, my self confidence grew like a snowball rolling down a hill.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
After the success of my articles and the thorough knowledge I acquired from my study of the Edgar Cayce readings, one day the light just popped on: Why don’t you try writing another novel!
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
I guess I do, but it is totally self-developed. I have a general idea of what the book is to be about and then let the ideas flow as I write. Soul Awakening did not start out as Soul Awakening, but in a somewhat different direction, then at an intersection along the journey it turned a corner and went off on its own. In short, I write more by inspiration than planning.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
After the manuscript turned that just-mentioned corner, the title simply popped up too.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Definitely! I am convinced that our souls are real and do not die with our bodies, but survive on-the-other-side, or in Heaven if you prefer the term. Then, in most cases, years later each soul will inhabit another body. Curious researchers asked numerous questions of the unconscious Edgar Cayce, about life, death and souls, and received some miraculous responses. In brief, all souls were created by God and from God in one planned explosion of God’s energy field. Souls are on an educational journey to become God-like again, as they started out. Unfortunately, our souls are blessed with the karma acquired through each lifetime, and if the individual is a nasty so-in-so, regression takes place instead of progress.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic?
Pretty much all of it, I believe. The unenlightened will think it is pure fiction, but that is their problem, not mine.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Actually, both. All of the major events described in Soul Awakening have been experienced by me, someone I know personally, or by individuals who confided in someone I know.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life?
No contest there. They are the numerous books about Edgar Cayce, along with the archived readings he gave over almost fifty years.
Fiona: If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
I guess that would be Dan Brown. He taught me that if the reader guesses what while happen next in the story, expect to guess wrong.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
It is called Trapped, written by Fran Macilvey about her personal experiences with cerebral palsy. It as yet is unpublished, but available for reading at www.authonomy.com. If you want to read about courage under exceptional circumstances, do not miss reading this one.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
I seldom take much time to read, so that is a tough question to answer.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I have written Book 2, in what I call the Dacque (my protagonist) Chronicles. It is currently titled Soul Rescue, and I am doing some final editing on it. I have a rough manuscript for Book 3, currently titled Soul Justice, and have started into Book 4, Soul Karma.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
Her name is Claire Gardner, and she is the archivist at the Edgar Cayce Foundation, which owns the copyrights to the Edgar Cayce readings. The ECF must approve the use of these readings for publication purposes, like my over twenty Edgar Cayce articles. Her advice and encouragement has been priceless.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
At my age, it better be my last career.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Not much. I like the story line, but sometimes pick out grammatical improvements that could be made.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
In an earlier incarnation I was an English teacher, so writing may be part of my soul’s makeup.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Soul Awakening is a work of fiction, inspired by a series of actual events. It is a spiritual mystery involving the apparently accidental, though actually orchestrated by Divine Intervention, meeting of three total strangers and their ultimate discovery that they shared previous lifetimes together. It delves into reincarnation, past lifetimes, spirit communication, messages from God, past-life regression sessions, Guardian Angels, past-life recall in the awake state, and soul attraction, the reincarnation of groups of souls together in more than one lifetime.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
In this lifetime I was not an English teacher, so I regret that my spelling and grammatical skills are not better.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about this individual’s work?
I love the way Dan Brown creates suspense.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
My publisher, Book Locker, has an excellent cover designer. He did a wonderful job, in my opinion.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Making sure the genealogy worked when the characters shared some lifetimes together, but not all lifetimes together.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Confidence! After my numerous ill-fated attempts to write novels in the past, it took a while to realize that I actually produced a marketable manuscript.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
I hesitate to say this, as it may only be unique to me, but my advice would be to not over-plan your story. Have a general idea of where you want the story to go and then allow your soul or inspiration to take over along the journey whenever it chooses to do so.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I am quite happy being a teacher turned writer.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?