MP-How has your previous work experience helped you avoid the pitfalls many writers fall into?
JC–Writing is a learning experience and it's ongoing. I've been fortunate to have good friends in the industry and I ask them a lot of questions about what to avoid, what to look for. I took some writing and lit courses in high school and college, to learn the elements of good story telling. I read a lot of books to see how other authors crafted their stories. And I've been really lucky to have submitted to a handful of agents that gave me good feedback and helped me grow even more. After that, I just keep writing.
MP-Tell us about Edin Road Radio?
JC–Edin Road Radio is my way of meeting new authors and finding new books, and letting listeners come along for the ride. With an eye for storytelling, authors are invited on the show to read an excerpt from their latest and then, I get to chat with them afterwards to find out a bit of the backstory of the book and the author. If I'm having fun, I know the listeners will, so I tried to keep it very informal and just chat with the authors.
The show broadcast live on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:30 PM Eastern. But listeners can also catch a podcast anytime they want. The podcasts are available 24/7 on iTunes, Stitcher Radio, the Edin Road Radio website, and through hour host, BlogTalkRadio.
MP-Do you enjoy writing your short stories or novels better?
JC–In a way, that's like asking me if I love one of my kids more than the other. I have no easy answer for that question because writing anything fulfills a need in me.
Short stories are instant gratification to me because I have a finite amount of space to fill up with a story. They're condensed into one moment in time and then that moment is done. Sometimes I need that quickie.
Novels have a longer payout and afford me time to get more in-depth with the story, I can take my time do develop the story, the characters. I can have more details and make it a bit more layered. Sometimes, I like to take my time.
The answer is, I enjoy them both. Which is why I do both.
MP-Which book has the most of your personality in it?
JC–The Savior, hands down. Of all of the books I've written – even though I've had a tendency to make myself a character and I'm not telling which characters; read the books and see if you can figure it out – The Savior was the most personal. I wrote it at a time when I was going through some serious searching as to who I was, what did I want. I was exploring religions to see what bound them all together, what was the essence that reached out to my soul and answered those fundamental questions we all have. And then I told a story about what I was going through at the time but used Toby Riordan to go through it for me. The people I knew and loved were all characters in the story, from my Mother, Aunt, and Grandmother, to my brothers and my friends. In an essence, I told my story and I literally lived in the pages of that book as I wrote it.
MP-How does your religious background tie into your books?
JC–Other than The Savior and one or two shorts that I wrote, my religious background hasn't appeared in the other books. My spirituality tends to be very eclectic. I consider myself to be Pagan but I think that I could really be considered a Deist. I don't think that any one religion has it all correctly but I don't think any one religion is totally wrong about it either. They're all basically saying the same thing; some are just more self-centered about it.
The Savior explored the aspects of Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Paganism, and Toby is shaped by them all – as I was and am. I've written a few short stories in Illusions & Reality that played with religious movies more than explored religion and I think that somewhere in my career, I'll have other characters that have an alternative religious aspect of their characters but I don't know if they'll be my religious perspectives. I usually tend to keep those private. But since I'm out of the broom closet, who knows.
Follow Jesse at www.jessevcoffey.com
Stephan Cameron is impetuous and lusty; William Cameron is measured and romantic. Only one thing can divide the brothers--an attraction to the Lady Jessica Chynoweth, a flirty redhead who seems to have eyes for both--and Baron Joseph Turnbull as well. Only one thing can bring them together again--bringing the murderer of their father to justice. If it doesn't kill them first, they will!