Jen: This weekend we welcome Gil Trudell to Book Talk. Gil, will you please share a short bio with us?
Gil: I grew up in southern NJ. I went to Saint Joseph’s University and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics. I am currently working on my Master’s Degree in Elementary Education at Wilmington University. I have been working at The Ski Bum in Chadds Ford, PA since 2004. I try to snowboard at least 10-20 days during the winter season. I am currently student teaching in South Jersey and I am learning a lot from those little 5th graders
Jen: Tell us about JC and Mr. T and where it’s available.
Gil: JC and Mr. T is a about a boy named JC who gets adopted into a new foster family. None of JC’s other brothers liked him. Mr. T, JC’s new dad, had to try to find a way to connect with him. Mr. T. decides to take JC snowboarding. This opens a door for their relationship to grow. It is currently available online at my publisher’s website. www.5ivestarpublications.com. I also have a few copies and I am currently trying to get it into some bookstores in DE and PA.
Jen: At what age did you discover writing and when were you first published? Tell us your call story.
Gil: The only writing I ever did was for papers in college. But I found out that I am pretty good at making things up. I am being published for the first time this year at the age of 24. I stumbled across writing this book because I had to do it for a grad school class that I was taking. My professor really liked the book and referred me to her friend who was a publisher.
Jen: How does your family feel about your career?
Gil: Writing is not a career for me. It is more of a hobby. It is something that I do for fun. I wouldn’t mind if my writing became popular and it became my career.
Jen: How do you approach your writing? Do you plot or go with the flow?
Gil: Something will usually pop into my head. It could be something I read or something I saw on TV. When I get a topic I just start writing. It just comes to me.
Jen: How many hours a day do you write?
Gil: I don’t have a set schedule for writing. I could write once a week or once every few months. It just depends on what else is going on in my life at the time.
Jen: What kind of research did you do for this book?
Gil: No real research was done at all. I just write about things that I know.
Jen: What’s the most challenging aspect of writing? Easiest?
Gil: The most challenging aspect of writing is probably coming up with what to write. I try to write about things that haven’t already been written about. The easiest part is coming up with the rest of the book. I just start writing and it doesn’t stop.
Jen: What’s the most rewarding aspect?
Gil: That would have to be seeing the kids smile and like the book. Some of the questions that I get are hilarious. I just love seeing the kids happy.
Jen: Where do you draw your inspiration?
Gil: I draw them from life experiences. I used to work at a facility for troubled youth. A lot of the kids were once apart of foster families. They would tell me stories about what happened and I would feel sorry for them. I knew there had to be stories of foster situations going right. So I decided to write about it. Snowboarding is one of my few passions that I have. So I figured why not combine the two.
Jen: Do you have a favorite character or one that you identify most with?
Gil: Im a bit partial to Mr. T. I try to share snowboarding with anyone and everyone. Im always trying to get friends and family to go with me.
Jen: What’s next for you?
Gil: I actually have another book in the works. It is about my father. He is legally blind. He has a degenerative disease in his eyes that get worse with age. So by the time I was born he could not drive. And without him driving it was hard for him to work. So my mom would go to work and my father would stay home and take care of my brother and I. The book is just a little story about the fun we had and the lessons he taught us.
Jen: Where can you be found on the web?
Gil: You can find me on www.5ivestarpublications.com or you can go to my blog http://giltrudell.blogspot.com. I will have any updates, news, or other stuff that is going on will be posted there.
Jen: Is there anything you’d like to ask our readers?
Gil: Keep a look out for me and the other authors at 5ive Star Publications. I know there are a lot of good reads coming out for people of all ages.
Jen: Thank you Gil for stopping by Book Talk this weekend. Readers, Gil is giving away a copy of JC and Mr. T to a random commenter. So, leave a comment and you’ll be entered in the drawing. I’ll pick a winner on Sunday, April 5 around 5 pm PST.