Meet The Author Monday – K.C. Dreisbach

Welcome to another edition of Meet The Author Monday. This week we are going to talk a little bit with K.C. Dreisbach, author of Trials of The Working Parent. This Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist tackles the tough topic of balancing parenthood with a career. Per usual, my comments/questions will be in BLUE and K.C. will be in GREEN.

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Thanks for stopping by K.C. The issues you tackle in your book are near and dear to my heart, being a working parent myself. Before we get into that, let’s talk about some of your earliest experiences with reading.
Although reading is one of my absolute favorite hobbies now, it wasn’t always. As a child, I struggled to read. I’m not sure if it was because I was learning to speak two different languages at once, or if it was due to an undiagnosed learning disability, but my kindergarten teacher at that time didn’t make things any easier. It’s a long story, but I experienced significant amounts of emotional and psychological abuse from that teacher…. And I never said anything about it. I grew to hate school, lying desperately to avoid having to go. Eventually, my parents switched me to a new school, and there, my 1st Grade teacher was able to detect that I had been abused.

Sounds like someone who shouldn’t be teaching. But I am glad that things got better for you. With the abuse uncovered, where did things go from there?
Reading was an uphill battle, and even though my reading skills improved, my hate for it didn’t change. It didn’t matter what my parents did, I hated reading and writing with a deep, loathing passion. Things didn’t change until my father gave me a gift that would be a game-changer for me. That gift was a copy of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.” I didn’t even look at it until a year later when the series became hugely popular. All my friends were reading it, so I decided to give it a try. I was hooked! And after that, I became an avid reader.

Rowling definitely knows how to put together a story. She is one of my favorite current authors. Have you stuck with fantasy or do you have other favorites now?
Definitely fantasy, especially epic fantasy. But I’m open to pretty much all fiction. I struggle a little more with non-fiction, but I’ve read some stuff I enjoy in that category too.

With the earlier struggles you faced with reading and writing, what made you decide to cross the line from reader to writer?
Truthfully, I wrote my first short story when I was in 3rd Grade as part of a class assignment. My teacher was so impressed by it, she passed it on to my principal to read. This was the first time, but it wasn’t the last. In each grade, there was always an assignment that revolved around writing a story. I think the next one that I received attention for my writing was in 7th Grade, where I had to write an alternate ending to a short story.

Eventually, I started writing regularly in my spare time, and I completed my first novel when I was about 20 years old, after working on it for 5 years. I never attempted publishing it, but it was truly a wonderful feeling to complete it, and it inspired me to work on my next project.

So, to answer your question, I don’t think there was a “moment” really. I think it was more of a gradual transition, slowly evolving from non-reader to writer.

An incredible journey given your literary beginnings. I’m glad you saw your way through the initial difficulties. What is your preferred genre when you put fingers to keys, or pen to paper?
I definitely dabble in many. My current published work is a non-fiction book on parenting while maintaining a career. I am a licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, so I’m currently writing about parenting and family relationships. But, I also write fiction, though I haven’t attempted to publish any of it. I hope to break into publishing my works of fiction within the next few years, however.

I hope you will as well. There is always room for a fresh voice, especially in fantasy, at least in my humble opinion. Tell us about your journey from writer to “published writer”.
I think the biggest journey for me has been the writing. Trying to find an opportunity to write with two young kids and a full-time job has proven to be quite challenging. I’ve written a few fiction novels, but none that I have felt ready to share with the larger world yet. The first book I truly felt ready to publish was “Trials of the Working Parent.” It was scary though because it was a very personal book in many ways. I pulled back the curtain on so many topics surrounding parenting, and I disclosed so much about my own journey as a parent, that publishing “Trials…” left me feeling a little naked. So, you can imagine my relief when it was pretty well received by readers.

It looks like a book I need to pick up myself. I’m guessing based on your topic for your book that you have more experience than just as a therapist. How do you spend your non-writing time?
I’m a pretty busy person. By day, I am a Clinical Supervisor for a group home for boys. I also provide training opportunities in my community to universities and local school districts on different topics in mental health. Most importantly, I’m a mom of two kids, my five-year-old daughter and 18-month-old son. They keep me pretty busy when I’m not working.

You truly are ‘working parent’ just like you wrote about. Do you have anything else you would like to share before we direct readers to your website?
When “Trials…” was first released, I was asked by a blogger why I wrote “Trials…” in the first place. It didn’t take me long to respond. I wrote “Trials of the Working Parent,” so that other moms and dads could see they were not in this struggle alone. Being a working parent is very difficult, the amount of guilt you feel all the time is very real and overbearing. “Trials…” was meant to help parents realize that it’s “ok” to not be perfect, it’s “ok” to have a job you love, and it’s “ok” to feel overwhelmed by parenthood.

Thank you for sharing your story with us K.C. and I hope you will come visit us again when you have those fantasy works ready for other eyes. I’d love to share them with my readers.

If you would like to keep tabs on K.C. you can find her at the following links. Give her a follow and encourage her to share her fiction works with us as well.

Website(NonFacebook if applicable): http://www.kcdreisbach.com

Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/kcdreisbach

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/kcdreisbach

 

If you are thinking you would like to be featured on Meet the Author Monday, please check out the page and fill out the form to get started.

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Book Review – The Dandelion Farmer by Mathew McCall

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The Dandelion Farmer
Mathew McCall
4 Stars

Well, my Gentle Readers, Mathew McCall delivers an interesting view on Mars Colonization through his novel, “The Dandelion Farmer“.

The story centers on one, L. Edwin Ransom, the self professed Dandelion Farmer, and an incident with evil millionaire mogul, Du Maurier. Du Maurier has a strange interest in Ransom’s little farming operation, but is it greed? Or something deeper? The planet Mars has seen its share of bloodshed when the peoples of Earth came calling upon its longtime denizens. An uneasy peace has held for a couple of decades since the Tellurians (Earth people on Mars), broke free of their Earthbound governments to establish their own rule. This peace is tenuous at best and the ever present threat of more war keeps everyone on edge. When Du Maurier’s threats escalate into more violent attempts upon the life of Ransom and his people, he heads to his father-in-law’s home where he is caught up in the man’s quest to find out what happened to the Aresians (original settlers of Mars who disappeared after years of war witht he Tellurians).

McCall fashions this world and the storytelling as a collection of letters, journal entries, telegraphs, and excerpts from historical texts. This means sometimes telling the same scene from different perspectives. Some readers may find this tedious, but it does provide insights into the personalities of the various characters. Some of the more historical records included could probably have been trimmed or cut out for sake of keeping the action going, but they allow the reader to see the depth to which McCall has developed the setting he created his story within. Of particular interest to me was the character of Adam Franklin and later, Aelita: an Aresian who grew up in Tellurian society after she was orphaned during the war.

I won’t hold back here. This is a long read with some dry parts (the aforementioned historical texts for one). The overall story though is intriguing. McCall leaves you wanting to finish the chase to discover the Aresians, and see Du Maurier get his just rewards along the way.

Grab your copy on Amazon now if you’re ready to join the Dandelion Farmer on his quest.

Meet The Author Monday – Reid Templer

This week’s Meet The Author Monday is Reid Templer, who has his debut novel available on Amazon now. Per usual, my questions/comments will be in BLUE and Reid will be in GREEN.

Thank you for stopping by, Reid. It’s always a pleasure to get to meet a new author and find out about the origins of their forays into the literary world. What was your introduction?
At the age of thirteen, my father gave me two books which were dear to him: The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane and the Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis. Both bored me. The symbolism, theology, and meaning of each went over my head, naturally, and, for a time, I was convinced that books simply didn’t suit me. This changed about two years later, when I happened on a copy of Inkheart by Cornelia Funke. I became enthralled in her trilogy, and haven’t stopped reading since.

I agree that Crane might be a bit of heavy reading for the average 13-year-old. From Inkheart, you began delving into what genre(s)?
I predominantly read fantasy, although Horror and Science Fiction do interest me a great deal.

Sounds like we have similar tastes. We might have to compare reading lists sometime. What made you decide to cross over from reading stories to writing your own?
When I was fourteen, I experienced a dream which would inspire my first (and thankfully unpublished) novel. A year later, when I had finished Christopher Paolini’s Eragon, I learned that the author had published the book at eighteen years old. I don’t know exactly what drove me to it, but from that day onward, I strove to publish a story before I turned eighteen. In this regard, I failed, but it did motivate me to write every day.

Paolini did have an advantage in that his parents were involved in the publishing industry. Can’t be too hard on yourself over that. What is your chosen genre to write?
Right now I would consider myself a fantasy writer, although, within time, I hope to develop a story in every major genre.

Ambitious goals. I wish you the best of luck with your goal. How has your publishing journey gone for you so far?
For the past three years, I’ve been writing, editing, and rewriting my newest novel, Storytellers. It was a hard journey, fraught with doubt, but I’m proud of the completed work.

Congratulations. It’s an incredible feeling to hold that published work in your hands. Outside of writing, what are you currently working on?
I’m currently pursuing a Sign Language Interpreting degree.

Interesting career path. Tell us a little bit about your book.
Thank you for taking interest in my interview. The book I’m promoting is Storytellers, which is available in paperback at any major book distributor and on Kindle for ebook. Here’s a short blurb:
After the gods and goddesses known as Storytellers conceive children who threaten their immortality, Pokeetle and his allies must fight to keep their offspring from being sacrificed for power.
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Thank you for coming by and talking with me today. Your book looks interesting and I wish you the best with it and your future works.

If anyone would like to keep up on Reid’s work, you can follow him on Twitter @ReidTempler

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