This morning, I pick up my first of two featured authors and we’re off to breakfast in a Greenwich Village coffee house. Omelettes, bacon, coffee (well, for him, tomato juice for me) and enjoying the cold New York morning. Let’s chat while we eat.\
1. Who are you and what makes you the most fascinating
person in your city?
I’m a writer with a couple of novels under my belt.
I’ve lived my life with a firm on eye on the world
around me, and played it on the edge never taking
anything for granted. I’ve learned a great deal about
humanity, and my work reflects a particular take that
is compelling, amusing, and insightful. I’m brutally
honest and don’t pull any punches, yet I’m a lover and
an artist behind a cynical and jaded temperment.
2. Without revealing a deep dark secret (unless you want
to), what one thing would people be surprised to learn
I’m also an actor!
3. What interested you to become a writer rather than
something else such as an oil baron?
It’s beyond my humble disposition in life to be an oil
baron. Besides, who would I disparage in my novels
but for the rich and powerful in this world.
4. Writers are readers. With which author(s) would you
enjoy sharing dinner? Why?
– Ernest Hemingway, just as long as he doesn’t
challenge me to a duel. I’d like to ask him a few
questions about his writing style.
– Anthony Burgess, w ho inspired me to write in ways I
hadn’t considered before. I’d love to hear him speak
with that crazy gibberish he created in Clockwork
– Norman Mailer, just to shoot the shit with. He’d have
some great stories to tell as long as he doesn’t bring
his knife along.
5. If I were stranded on a deserted island or suffering
from a four hour layover at the airport, why would
your book be great company?
It’s better than looking at all the other miserable
passengers wasting away the minutes, or just looking
out on a few palm trees.
6. Share your process of writing in regards to: plot and
character development, story outline, research (do you
Google or visit places/people, or make it up on the
spot), writing schedule, editing and number of
Plot and character development – they go hand in
hand and it varies as to what kind of story I’m writing
and the venue it’s placed in. For me its an organic
development and I don’t try to configure the story too
broadly before I set on writing it.
Story outline – I mostly write on the cuff; when I hit a
brick wall I put down an outline to help get me back in
the direction I want. I don’t like too much form and
structure when I create; I like it loose and freewheeling
till I get down enough ideas and story line before
putting the necessary form and structure into it.
Research – I write mostly about characters i’m in
some way familiar with; I put my stories in venues that
I’ve been to for the most part. but if a subject is vague
or unknown to me I’ll google as much info on it as
possible. character and plot formation originates in
your imagination, too. it’s fiction after all.
Writing schedule – anytime, almost always in the
privacy of my own room. never at a starbucks or at a
public venue, unless I’m doing a little editing.
Editing – I’ll edit my own work till I feel ready to hire
a professional to do it.
Rewrites – I’m revising all the time; there’s never
7. “I think I have a good idea for a story, but I don’t know
where or how to begin. Your process may not work for
me. Any advice?”
Start with something, anything. It will propel you into
8. I saw an amusing T-shirt the other day which read,
“Every great idea I have gets me in trouble.” What is
your philosophy of life?
Playing it safe are for those who lie six feet under.
Life is a gamble and one can only truly experience it if
you take chances; getting into a little trouble but not
enough to kill you.
9. Please tell me you’re not going to stop writing? What’s
next for you?
I have another novel coming out very soon, with two
more on the assembly line. No, I am not going to stop
writing, not till they pull that keyboard out from under
my cold, dead hands.
10. Where can people find more information on you and
You can find my novel and audiobook by googling
[‘The Lesson Plan’ by G.J. Prager] I just began building a
website with a new domain name – gjpragerauthor
but it will take some time for Google to acknowledge
my existence, so its offline right now. The website will
have a slew of information about me and my novels,
and i hope it will bring more interest to my work.