Author Interview with Jim Kokoris, Author of "The Pursuit of Other Interests"
Created By: BookBundlz
1. If you could have coffee with any 3 authors, living or dead, who would they be?
John Irving, Anne Tyler, Cormac McCartney
2. If you could only take one book, food item and drink with you to a deserted island what would they be?
Definitely Lonesome Dove. Also, I would bring Crispy Crème Doughnuts and a sufficient quantity of milk. (I assume the island would be attached to the mainland by a sturdy footbridge and that a JW Marriott was nearby so I could have a proper dinner every night and freshen up with a shower before returning to the island and my precious, precious doughnuts.)
3. What are your secret indulgences?
I have no secret indulgences. I am terrible with secrets. Upon meeting me, I will immediately divulge a list of my indulgences to you, a list that runs the gamut, from Hostess Cherry Pies, to Jennifer Aniston movies to finally, Jennifer Aniston herself.
4. What about you would surprise your readers?
That despite my hard drinking, womanizing, bull fighting, Hemmingway-esque reputation, I wept uncontrollably at the end of “Terms of Endearment.” (both movie and book.)
5. What is your perfect day as an author?
Get up early. Drink strong coffee, Read something funny and well written for quick inspiration. Write three hours,. Go for a run. Come back and write/edit for another two hours. Take a nap. Go out and do a reading at an independent book store. Be mobbed by fans. Escape shrieking throng “Beatles-style” through a backdoor that leads to an alley. Rebuff Jennifer Aniston’s advances (she’s hiding in the alley) Return to lovely, lovely wife of many, many years exhausted, but fulfilled.
6. If you could be any fictional character who would it be?
It’s a tie: Atticus Finch in “To Kill a Mockingbird”, and Sarah Palin in “Going Rogue.” (I’m pretty sure she’s a made up person. Right?)
7. What are the book(s) you are reading now?
I just finished reading T. Greenwood’s The Hungry Season. She is a talented writer and I enjoy all her books.
8. What was your favorite book as a teenager, and why?
Chilly Scenes of Winter, by Anne Beattie because it is almost all dialogue (which I love to read as well as write) and because it’s so funny. It was the book that made me want to be a writer. Also, the Tolkien books, because I identified with the hobbit Frodo. (I was very short in high school) And “Ball Four,” a baseball memoir, because I loved baseball as a kid and it was an hilarious and irreverent look at the sport.
9. (Aside from your own) What book(s) have you read that you think are perfect for book clubs?
Cider House Rules, The Glass Castle
About Your Book:
10. Where did the inspiration for your book come from?
A New York Times Magazine story about seven years back about dot.com executives who had lost their big jobs and were working at the Gap. That’s what started things rolling.
11. They say every book written is the author telling a personal philosophy. What personal philosophy are you trying to get across?
Unless you’re a teacher, social worker, or doctor working in the Third World, your job isn’t all that important and chances are no one will remember that you made Senior Vice President in 30 years. So go home and be a dad or mom or husband or wife, and friend. And put away the Blackberry – don’t flatter yourself, you’r e not that important.
12. Writers are often surprised by something that happens in their book. Perhaps a character says or does something you did not think they would, or something you thought would only be a couple of paragraphs turns into 10 pages. What surprised you about your book?
That Donna stayed away as long as she did. I thought she might be gone a day at the most.
About Your Writing Process:
13. What is your writing process like?
I start out with an idea and just move forward. My first draft is really pretty ugly and it usually takes about a year. Then I revise and rewrite several more drafts before showing it to my editor. When I am writing, I will write about 4 or five times a week from 1 hour to 3 at the most. I work full time and have three children, one with special needs, so my time is very tight. I don’t have a cabin in the woods and never have been to a writer’s retreat. I write on my bed on a laptop in my boxer shorts like Hemmingway would.
14. What gets you in the mood to write?
Reading something well written.
Truthfully, many times, I am not in the mood to write at all. I have to force myself to start. But once I do, I get into it.
15. What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
You can do it. It’s hard . But one page leads to another. Also, be disciplined. Write on a regular schedule and it will get done. Also, don’t’ show your work in process to friends and family. Find an editor or teacher and work with them. They’ll be objective.
One other thing: marry someone who’s rich.