Comment below to enter our Giveaway. Gary is offering one lucky winner an autographed First Edition of his book, “The Magic Phone”.
This book is a great gift idea for your child reader, age 8-12.
Q: When did you realize you were a novelist?
I began to realize that I may have the potential to be a novelist when I began to read my manuscript, to edit the story. I would read what I wrote and smile, because I thought that the story was coming together well, and I couldn’t believe that it was coming from me. But, maybe it was when I wrote “The End”; that felt pretty good, and the thought entered my head. However, it was when the book was printed and delivered to my house. I remember opening the box and pulling out the first book. My daughter Abigail was with me and when we saw the book, both of our jaws dropped and we got so excited. This is when I knew that I made it as a novelist.
Annie: I can see your excitement, and I am excited to post my review HERE tomorrow.
Q: Did you ever write fiction prior to this story, or did this story ignite your interest in writing?
Great question Annie! I did not write fiction before this book. The only thing that I wrote prior was articles and a manual that was all related to physical therapy. The manual was used in my class for the doctorate students who were learning advanced techniques in manual and manipulative therapy. The story of The Magic Phone started with my daughter, Abigail, telling me about her a dream that she had. I asked her what the dream was about? She told me that in her dream, she got a phone. Well, I rolled my eyes because she was always asking about when I would buy her a cell phone. She told me “No dad, the phone I had in the dream was magic”. She went on about her dream and I was in awe about her story. In the end, I thought that it was such a great idea, because it incorporated technology that kids love and it added a big splash of magic. So, I took notes later that day, and about a month later, I began writing the first words in the book. I had so many ideas in my head when I started, that I wrote almost five full chapters!
Annie: Abigail needs to share more stories with you, as you are a great writer!
Q: As you geared up for your Book Release of “The Magic Phone” on July 25th, 2015, what was the most exciting part(s) for you?
The thought that I had finally finished this project!! That was pretty exciting. Although, I would say that the most exciting moment during this time was when someone wanted to buy a pre-first edition, and wanted me to sign it!! What? You want me to autograph the book? That was really cool. Nobody had ever asked for my signature before.
Annie: Here is Gary at his release party, signing a book for his fan, Rachel!
Q: Do you think you will always write for the 8-12 age group?
No, I don’t thinks so. As this story progresses, the main character will get older, along with her target audience.
Q: When do you typically write? Where do you write? Set this up for us…
I would write at night when the household would settle down, but I needed at least two hours of uninterrupted time or I wouldn’t even try to begin writing again. When you have a full time job, a part time job, a wife and kids it may be a few weeks before you have a chance to write something down, and when this happens, you have to remember where you left off or have to re-read some of the chapter to get back up to speed. Then, I would begin to write more of the story. Let me tell you where I wrote the most, which was surprising to me. It was when we would go on a trip or when I would travel. I could zone out the world around me and get entrenched into the story. I remember when we would drive up to Maine; my wife would do the driving so that I could write. Seriously, I would look up, amazed that eight hours went by so fast, and we were there already!! I wrote most of this story on my Ipad and transferred it over to a Mac book pro towards the end of my writing.
Q: What is your favorite part of being an author?
Being immersed in the story while all of this creativity comes out of nowhere. Words filling the pages, forming a story that you hope people will enjoy. While writing this book, I felt like I was on this amazing journey with Abigail, wishing at times that I owned the magic phone, and what I would do with it, if it were mine! So, writing the story, the creative part coming together, and accomplishing your goal when the book is done.
Q: I see you have many jobs, so how did you find the time to write “The Magic Phone”? How long did it take to write?
Ok, let summarize all the things I have been doing lately. I own Spectrum Physical Therapy with my wife. I’m the manager at another PT facility at Brookhaven National Laboratory, and I’m an adjunct professor at Stony Brook school of Physical Therapy, and Touro College’s residency program in physical therapy. I was actually asked this question quite a few times by my patients, and I remember telling them “I don’t know where I had the time” It was difficult at times. When you own a business, it is pretty much a 24/7 job, but I was motivated by the potential this story had and to continue on to see what would happen next. All in all, it took me 2 ½ years to finish writing and editing it to the best of my abilities.
Annie: You are rather inspiring!!
Q: When can we expect your next book? Do you want to tell us a little bit about it?
I’ve started the next book, but I haven’t had a lot of time to dedicate to it yet; because, as an independent writer who self-published, I have spent a lot of time marketing this book. There’s a lot to do after you publish. My son Gary, helped me with creating the website, http://abbysmagicphone.com/ , I needed to start the facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/themagicphone, which helps me reach out to fans. I also started reaching out to libraries to schedule book readings and signings, and send the book out for reviews, etc… I really hope to continue the second story real soon. Time permitting, the entire story will require three books. I know how the second and third books end too!!! And the end of the third books ties into the first chapter of this book. I can’t wait to accomplish this and I know everyone will like how the story progresses from a ten-year-old girl to a teenager and then to a young adult. Each story gets more intense, when Abigail learns how to become one with the phone.
Q: Any advice for someone that wants to write a book?
Yes, it takes a lot of work to get the book written, edited, illustrated, interior set, cover designed, formatted for eBook, uploaded, and then published! But the sense of accomplishment is awesome! Keep your chin up and persevere; there is light at the end of the tunnel. Also, I encourage a new writer to forward their manuscript to literary agents and publishers. I didn’t have any luck with that route, and 99% of them didn’t even respond to my story. This was discouraging, and I didn’t want to self publish; but, in the end, self-publishing isn’t such a bad trade off. Self publishing is flourishing these days with all of the new opportunities out there. You can set up an account at Amazon and the Itunes store for free. If self-publishing, I would recommend uploading your finished manuscript and cover to Ingram Sparks. Their printing services are second to none and they get your book out to well over 3,000 libraries and bookstores worldwide. In fact, two days later, the book was on the Barnes and Noble website. When I uploaded the eBook to Amazon, it only took five hours for the book to be available, and the hard cover and paperback from Ingram was carried over, and right next to the eBook at Amazon.
Q: Lastly, Book or eBook??
Personally, I like the physical book, but you have to satisfy the market. Therefore, I would recommend both the book and eBook. Oh, and you can upload your manuscript in PDF and Ingram Sparks will convert it to an eBook format for a nominal fee. The cost to convert this book was around $120, where other companies were going to charge me four to five times that amount.
Annie: Thank you for all of this “inside” knowledge…You are definitely a force to be reckoned with.