Today we thank author, Leo Jacobson, for taking the time to answer the interview questions we are highlighting today!
What inspired you to write this book? Answer: Life experiences. When I would tell people about my experiences at work, many of them said, ”You should write a book.”
Can you tell me about the book? Answer: It’s somewhat autobiographical but it profiles the decline and fall of the American work ethic.
What is your writing process like? Answer: I have to admit by trade, I am not a writer. I am an auto mechanic and vehicle builder with 25+ years in industry. So I would have to say my writing process is writing what I know.
What did you learn when writing the book? Answer: Putting words to paper is not always easy.
What surprised you the most? Answer: That my subject matter was so vast that it comprised a book.
What does the title mean? Answer: That many of my co-workers didn’t concentrate on their job(s), going through their shift(s) in a daze; hence the title “All in a Daze Work.”
Was the character inspired by a real person? If so, who? Answer: All of the characters in my book are real people; however, names were changed.
What do you think happened to the characters after the book ended? Answer: I would presume many of them went on to other jobs.
What advice do you have for writers? Answer: Write what you know.
Does writing energize or exhaust you? Answer: Both.
What are common traps for aspiring writers? Answer: Publishing houses that charge you to publish a book.
What is your writing Kryptonite? Answer: Lack of sleep and working a regular job.
Did you ever consider writing under a pseudonym? Answer: Yes. Leo Jacobson is my pseudonym.
Do you try more to be original or to deliver to readers what they want? Answer: Definitely trying to be original.
Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book? Answer: Each book would stand on its own.
How many unpublished and half-finished books do you have? Answer: One unpublished. I haven’t started the second one yet.
What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book? Answer: I never expected to write a book such as this, or any book for that matter; so my research is my life experience.
How long were you a part-time writer before you became a full-time one? Answer: I’ll let you know when it happens.
How many hours a day do you write? Answer: Two hours or as time permits.
What period of your life do you find you write about most often? (child, teenager, young adult) Answer: All of the above.
What did you edit out of this book? Answer: Don’t get me started!
How do you select the names of your characters? Answer: As I said earlier, I had to change or shorten many of their names (first names only) or use nicknames.
If you didn’t write, what would you do for work? Answer: As I said earlier, I’m trained as an auto mechanic/vehicle builder and now I do airport transportation.
What was your hardest scene to write? Answer: The death of my father.
What is your favorite childhood book? Answer: “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”
How long on average does it take you to write a book? Answer: This one took me ten years because work got in the way.
Do you believe in writer’s block? Answer: Yes.
What works best for you: Typewriters, fountain pen, dictate, computer or longhand? Answer: Dictate.
When did it dawn upon you that you wanted to be a writer? Answer: When many of my friends and family said, “You should write a book.”
How hard was it to sit down and actually start writing something? Answer: On a scale of 1 to 10 --- 11!
Do you set a plot or prefer going wherever an idea takes you? Answer: The plot was already laid out for me (my experiences).
Any tips you would like to share to overcome it? Answer: Think it through before you write.
Do you read much and, if so, who are your favorite authors? Answer: Tom Clancy, Robert Ludlum, John Grisham, George Orwell, H. G. Wells, Mary Shelley.
What is the most important thing about a book in your opinion? Answer: Depending on the genre, that it gets its message across.
How would you feel if no one showed up at your book signing? Answer: At least I got the book written and out there. Many authors don’t gain fame until after their death. (I sincerely hope that doesn’t happen to me.)
Do you recall the first ever book/novel you read? Answer: “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” I’m kind of a car guy and this was a story about a magical car.
How much of yourself do you put into your books? Answer: All of me.
Who are your books mostly dedicated to? Answer: My father, my mother, and my brother who taught me to do the right thing (by doing the wrong things) and my auto mechanics teachers who taught me to never compromise on quality.
Who is the most supportive of your writing in your family? Answer: My wife.
Writers are often believed to have a Muse, your thoughts on that? Answer: I believe an outside unseen force can be inspiring.
Another misconception is that all writers are independently wealthy, how true is that? Answer: About as true as that all auto mechanics are crooks. I am one and I’m not!
What is your view on co-authoring books; have you done any? Answer: I plan to bring one or more co-authors in for my next book.
Is writing book series more challenging? Answer: I wouldn’t know. I plan on my books being stand alone.
Does it get frustrating if you are unable to recall an idea you had in your mind some time earlier? Answer: You have no idea! When I started writing my book, I took a pad and pencil or recorder with me everywhere.
Had any of your literary teachers ever tell you growing up that you were going to become a published writer one day? Answer: Never had any literary teachers, so no.
Were your parents reading enthusiasts who gave you a push to be a reader as a kid? Answer: Oh my gosh, no!
Do you enjoy discussing upcoming ideas with your partner? If yes, how much do you value their inputs? Answer: Yes, I talk with her often about my book ideas.
Have you ever turned a dream or a nightmare into a written piece? Answer: Repairing cars and building fire trucks was my dream that sometimes turned into a nightmare!