Thursday, September 17, 2015

Blog Tour: More More Time by @dseaburn #interview #giveaway

General / Literary Fiction
Date Published: July 18, 2015

Maxwell Ruth, a cantankerous, old high school history teacher falls down his basement stairs and soon thereafter starts hearing “The Words” over and over again---endingtimeendingtimeendingtime. His life is changed forever.
In this story we learn about the lives, loves, and losses of Max, Hargrove and Gwen Stinson, Beth and Bob Hazelwood, and Constance Young. They are lively, funny, at times; a little bit lost or wounded, yet resilient and hopeful.  They are wrestling with life’s most challenging issues, including, abuse, loss, infidelity, aging, secrecy and what gives life meaning. And, like all of us, they would like more, more time to find the answers to life’s most important questions. The clock, though, is always ticking and time is always short. 

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What is the hardest part of writing your books?
        Getting started actually comes easy. I work on character profiles and think about how they will interact behave when brought together. I always have a good idea what the theme or focus of the book will be, but I never know how it will end. Sometimes it gets difficult in the middle of the narrative when I have to start making decisions about what characters can and cannot do as well as where the plot is ultimately heading. It’s a narrowing process that helps me think through how the book will eventually end.

What songs are most played on your Ipod?
        I am a Pandora kind of guy—Bob Dylan, Crosby Stills Nash and Young, Led Zeppelin, Smokey Robinson, James Taylor, The Doors, Carol King, Linda Ronstadt, John Lennon, Dave Matthews, Marvin Gaye, The Impressions, Springsteen, The Stones, Beatles, Paul Simon, James Brown, Cat Stevens, Mamas and Papas. Yes, old school.

Do you have critique partners or beta readers?
        I am not in a writing group. Have tried that but it wasn’t a good fit for me. I have used outside readers before, and freelance editors before submit a manuscript to my publisher. I depend a lot on my editor. She understands what I am trying to do and makes editorial recommendations that always improve the story (even though they may be difficult changes to make!).

What book are you reading now?
        I am reading “Case Histories” by Kate Atkinson. She is a Scottish novelist who writes mysteries. What I like about the book is that it is not only an interesting mystery about three different, though ultimately, linked cases, but that she bring a real literary sensibility to her characters. They have great depth and the story is nicely nuanced.

How did you start your writing career?
I started writing seriously when I entered seminary at Boston University in 1972. There I was published for the first time---a series of poems in an alumni journal, work lost long ago. As a parish minister in a small rural church, though, I became a disciplined writer, having to produce a sermon each week, a literary and theological task. The challenge was to write at the intersection of human experience and divine response. During this period I wrote many short stories, song lyrics, poems and two nonfiction manuscripts. One manuscript (Dancing on the Edge) was accepted for publication only to have the offer withdrawn. On the strength of this success, I stopped writing for several years!
I left parish ministry and entered the field of psychotherapy, working in community mental health where I published a few papers on my experience as a clinician, including one on a patient suicide.
In 1986 I started working at the University of Rochester Medical Center where a focus on academics accelerated my development as a writer. In the next 20 years, I co-authored two professional books and wrote over 60 papers and book chapters. The rigor of mentored writing and excellent editing taught me a great deal about the craft.
During my academic career I remained interested in fiction, but did little more than collect ideas and make notes. In 1990, I did extensive work on a story idea and then stored it all away in a folder. I returned to my notes years later. They became the basis for my first novel, Darkness is as Light  (2005), which was based on a personal vignette told by a former patient. I couldn't get the story out of my mind and reworked it in several creative nonfiction workshops and finally transformed it into the backbone of a novel about a middle aged man sorting out the truth about his mother's death. I wrote Darkness in exactly one year.  
This was followed by Chimney Bluffs (2007), Charlie No Face (2011), which was a Finalist for the Indie Excellence Award in Fiction, Chimney Bluffs (2013), and, most recently, More More Time (2015).
Common to all of my work is an abiding interest in the common struggles that make us human---loss, fear, hope, uncertainty, connection, separation, meaning, seeking, questioning, love, guilt, wonder, joy and storytelling. I think we are all storytellers. That is how we make sense of our lives and the world around us. When I write, I feel that more than anything else, I am trying to make sense of life, trying to explore its meaning. And, of course, I am trying to tell a good story in the process.

        I always start a new novel when I am going through the publications process for a current novel, so a year ago I started writing “Parrot Talk” about two brothers who were estranged from their mother for over forty years. When they are notified of her death they also discover that she had a pet parrot who, it turns out, has a lot to say. I have a long way to go with this one!

David B. Seaburn served a rural country parish, worked in community mental health, was an assistant professor of psychiatry and family medicine at the University of Rochester Medical Center for twenty years, and also directed a free public school-based family counseling center before his retirement in 2010. He has written five novels: More More Time (2015), Chimney Bluffs (2012), Charlie No Face (2011—Finalist in General Fiction, National Indie Excellence Awards), Pumpkin Hill (2007), and Darkness is as Light (2005). He and his wife live near Rochester, NY. They have two adult daughters and two wonderful granddaughters.

Contact Information
Twitter: @dseaburn

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