Sunday, June 9, 2013

Author Interview: Vicki Julian

Vicki Julian is a fellow member of the Kansas Authors Club. I have enjoyed getting to know her through our work together on the state board and recently had the pleasure of reading Vicki's newest book, Simple Things to Make This World a Better Place.

Simple Things to Make this World a Better Place is just that. There’s nothing particularly hard about spreading positive energy. Yet, we could all use a few reminders, now and then, that a simple change in the way we think, behave or respond to a person or situation can go a long way toward making a difference, even if just for one person at a time. Why were you the person to write such a book? What inspired you to collect these tidbits and put them in book form?

You are correct when you say it isn’t difficult to spread positive energy. In fact, one point of the book is that it doesn’t take a large sum of money, countless hours of volunteering or great effort to make a positive difference in this world. I was inspired to write this book while sitting in church and listening to the pastor read Hebrews 10:24, “Let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds.” It immediately evoked action from me so I feel both blessed and chosen to have written this book. I truly loved writing it although it took me two years to do so. It was written, so not just I could make a difference, but so that everyone could.

I’ve had the pleasure of working with you as a board member of the Kansas Authors Club. Knowing you in person, I can attest to the fact that maintaining a sunny disposition seems to come naturally to you. Do you ever feel the need to hide from the world and just be a grouch? What are some reminders you employ for yourself to keep a smile on your face when things are less than ideal.

Thank you for the compliment, Tracy, but believe me, I’m very human! We can’t change some circumstances, but we can change our responses to them. I choose to be optimistic and occasionally I do have to remind myself of that fact. It’s also a time when I fall back on the words in my book about judging others if I feel hurt, anger or disappointment. We can be so wrong about other people, and it’s best to remember that. Filling life with the more positive things and avoiding pointless negativity makes it much easier to remain happy.

As an independent author and publisher, I am curious about the lessons learned by others pursuing similar publishing routes. What are some ways your approach to printing and marketing have changed from the publication of your short story collections and Simple Things, your first non-fiction book? What are some lessons you wish you could go back and teach yourself before you got started on this journey?

My first book, Christmas: A Season for Angels was published by a traditional publisher and that was definitely a learning experience, not to mention expensive. I learned that the author still has to promote her books, and a great deal of marketing is necessary. My second book, which was a sequel to the first, was published independently through my sister who is a professional writer, and I chose the printer. I utilized CreateSpace this time because I wanted to offer the book inexpensively so that its message might reach more people. I actually am glad to have had the experience of different publishing options. Each time I learn something new, but I can tell you that social media, like Facebook, is very effective in broadening your audience.

You write a recurring column at Where do you get your ideas for ongoing articles?

I’ve been writing for the Humanitarian Examiner for more than two years now. Because I write on the make-a-difference theme, I sometimes have to wait until the inspiration hits me.  Initially, I wrote at least one column a week, and now I write only two to three per month. I’ve started a blog which enables me to write on a more personal basis, and that gives greater freedom as to content.

Tell me a bit about your writing routine. Do you work on one project at a time, or many? What tricks do you employ to keep the words flowing?

I’ve always been the creative type who does a better job when waiting for inspiration, whether that is artwork or writing. Usually, with my writing, an idea will form and I will sit and write for three or more hours without stopping. I can’t leave something unfinished which is why I will probably never write a novel!

More about Vicki:

I spent most of my career in the business world and did not begin writing inspirational works until after early retirement. Now, I am the author of three books (two fiction and one non-fiction), with inclusions in three anthologies and articles in various newspapers and magazines. As mentioned, I am a Topeka Humanitarian Examiner and Financial Secretary for the Kansas Authors Club. My first and third books are available in print on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. The third book is also available as an eBook on Kindle; and the second book, Always a Season for Angels, is available directly through me or contact via my website: Look for me on Facebook and Linkedin.

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