Today I have pleasure in welcoming Larry Rodness to Jera’s Jamboree:
Larry Rodness began his entertainment career as a professional singer at the age of 19 and has been performing in and around Toronto Canada for over 35 years with his wife and singing partner, Jodi. They have three children, Adam, Jonathan, and Erin.
In the 80’s Larry studied musical theatre writing with P.R.O. under Broadway conductor Layman Engel, which led him to write for dinner theater. He then moved into the screenplay arena where he has written over a dozen screenplays and has had 3 scripts optioned to date. “Perverse” is his second novel. His first is entitled, “Today I Am A Man”, published by Savant Books and Publishers. Larry has also been published in “Canadian Voices” – anthologies 1 and 2.
Please summarize your latest book in 20 words or less.
When a teenage Goth named Emylene Stipe purchases an antique picture a young girl materializes out if it and turns her world upside down.
What was the idea/inspiration for your novel?
The kernel of the story came to me one day when I was browsing in an antique shop. I saw a sketch of a rural scene in winter. I asked myself, what would happen if I looked at the scene again and noticed footprints in the snow that weren’t there before. Then I asked myself, who would have made those footprints and what would she be doing there?
Did you do any research for your book? What resources did you use?
The initial portion of the book came about through inspiration as I’ve described above. Then as I delved deeper into the story I was compelled to research quite a lot about the Goth culture through various internet sites and do interviews with locals I met. As it happened I traveled to Europe one autumn and visited a number of countries around the Mediterranean. Their rich history and superstitions subsequently infused my story.
Do you have a most creative time of day?
I have a day job that pays the bills, but I’m always thinking about the story. Quite often an idea will come to me and I’ll jot it down. Part of my job involves travelling which gives me the opportunity to expand on those notes and write in my hotel room at night.
Do you have a theme for your book covers? Who designs them?
I know that many writers develop a ‘look’ to help them market their books so that readers can more easily identify their work in a retail environment. It also helps to have a publishing house that employs an art director. I consult with a local graphic artist and discuss the individual story. He develops a layout we’re both happy with and I purchase the graphics and/or pictures he needs to put it all together.
Have you joined any writing groups?
I believe writing groups are one of the best tools an author can use because it allows him or her to test the work on their peers before they present it to a publisher. The writer’s life is very insular and quite often we can come up with pages that seem brilliant to us. But when they are spoken out loud to a group of people we trust, who are there to offer constructive criticism, grammatical and dramatic issues are quite often brought up that were overlooked. I have depended on such a group for over 15 years.
Do you make use of local resources for promoting your book? ie local book groups/bookshops/libraries How does that work?
Much of the promotion of my latest book has been up to me because my publisher, Itoh Press, is in the U.S. and I live in Canada. I have to commend Carol Itoh who has made the book available in both print and electronic form to all the major outlets worldwide. My job is to contact the local retail stores to do book signings and readings. I have also contacted regional libraries and have had success in getting my novels into their system. Whenever I travel I take a few books and offer them to local independent stores who are often quite interested. The other aspect of promotion I actively pursue is to contact book bloggers and ask them to read and review my novel. Fortunately, most have enjoyed “Perverse” and posted their enthusiastic reviews on both Amazon and Goodreads.
What is your WIP?
I am working on two novels, both of which are screenplays I wrote years ago. The first one, “October 32” is a ghost story centered in a small town named Elora (about 100 miles from where I live) in which 32 children suddenly disappear on Halloween eve while trick or treating. The second story entitled “The Greatest Generation” is about 4 couples in their fifties who are close to losing everything over the current economy. As a last ditch effort they get involved in a pyramid scheme but the consequences end up testing their friendships, their moral fiber, and threaten much more than their bank books.
Thank you for sharing with us today Larry.
Wishing you success with Perverse and the writing projects you are working on.
A supernatural fiction about a 2nd generation teenage Goth teen named Emylene Stipe who finds a charcoal sketch in an antique shop. When she brings it home an image of a young girl appears in the sketch and then materializes in her apartment. Emylene introduces this girl whom she nick-names ‘Poinsettia’, to the local Goth crowd and the two become fast friends. But Poinsettia has an ulterior motive for her sudden and strange intrusion into Emylene’s life which causes Emylene to question her whole belief system.
Novels can be found in print and electronic form on amazon.com and all their affiliates, Barnes and Noble, Chapters/Indigo in Canada.