Title: Uncontrolled Spin (Unmissable Series Book One)
Synopsis: Sean Green, the spin doctor for many multimillion-dollar companies, becomes infatuated with the idea of helping a beautiful woman take her apparel business to the next level. During the process, his best friend, biggest client, and mentor is murdered at one of Sean’s homes.
Jerry Summers, Author
CH: Today’s Guest Author is Jerry Summers. He has a unique and unusual background and has recently become an author. Welcome to my blog Jerry.
CH: Can you tell us in one sentence, why we should read your book?
JS: Uncontrolled Spin is the first book in a series of suspense thrillers that blend many different genres; incorporating elements of romance, mystery, and murder into a thrilling page turner, it will keep you guessing until the end of the book and beyond.
CH: Can you explain what is a spin doctor?
JS: The term ‘spin doctor’ is a generic term that describes an individual who, by way of profession (usually with a public relations or marketing background), controls the way an event is described to the public in order to influence what people think about it. This person is responsible for ensuring others interpret an event from a particular perspective or point of view.
CH: Does your extensive background in law enforcement have great influence on this book?
JS: Yes, in several different ways, not only in this book, but also all the books in the series. I have loosely attempted to demonstrate proper police protocol during crime scene reconstruction, interviews, press conferences and follow-up investigations. For instance, when interviews occur and are then followed-up by a press conference, some of the same information will be repeated and to the reader may appear redundant, but as the reader you get an inside glimpse into the investigation process one normally would not be privy to. Additionally, in every crime scene, I have purposely left out at least one major component of the reconstruction in order to keep the readers guessing; thereby, allowing me to connect loose ends later in the series.
CH: Is this your debut novel? How long have you been writing?
JS: Uncontrolled Spin is my debut novel. Writing has always been a passion of mine, but one I never felt comfortable enough pursuing professionally until recently. Ever since I can remember, others have discouraged my writing; my parents felt it wasn’t a wise idea economically because very few make a living at full-time writing. There are also time constraints with raising a family and pursuing career advancement opportunities, and I put my writing on the back burner. I am now in a position to pursue my passion full-time, which excites me beyond belief.
CH: How did you begin your writing career?
JS: In January 1997, I published my first article, Miscarriage – From a Male Perspective, in the Pentecostal Evangel, and in April of 1997, I published my second article, “I have Friends to Cry With Me” in Decision Magazine.
In 2006, I wrote a non-fiction book entitled, Divorce – The Modern Churches’ Leprosy, only to find publishers weren’t interested in publishing work dealing with Christian divorce. When I was told by a literary agent that there wasn’t a market for this type of work, even if I were a nationally known writer, so I abandoned my editing along with the entire book project.
I didn’t start writing again until 2015, when I decided to write this current series.
CH: Did you find anything challenging while writing this book?
JS: There were and continue to be multiple challenges. The first challenge was recognizing if this book were published in a single work it would consist of approximately 300,000 words and some 800 pages or more. As a new author, that task seemed extremely daunting, so I decided to break it into a four part series. Time will tell if this was an appropriate decision from a sales and marketing opportunity or if it would have been better to combine the first two books and combine the last two, making this a two part series rather than a four part series.
The second major challenge was getting my head around the publishing process as it pertains to print advertisement, social media, and online sales versus traditional book store distribution channels. Quite honestly, I’m still not sure I understand most of the dynamics involved, even now. What I do know is there are a lot of people and organizations claiming to offer beneficial services, when in reality they actually offer little benefit for the author.
Finally, it is essential as an author to appropriately manage your time. As writers, we all want to write when the creative juices are flowing, but the reality remains that writing is hard work and must be worked at on a daily basis. I try to write between 1,500 and 2,500 well-crafted words a day. On good days, I succeed and on fantastic days, I write somewhere between 2,500 and 3,300 words. But I have found I have to actually set time aside to write because the longer I go without writing the harder it becomes to begin again.
CH: Your book has a lot of ups and downs and potholes and high rises, so do you prefer writing a book with a lot of twists and turns?
JS: Actually, I concentrate on telling a good story rather than worrying about ups and downs or twists and turns. I have discovered if I concentrate on telling the story, plot twists take care of themselves. However, this approach isn’t without its flaws and problems. The major issue I have found with this approach is the series doesn’t fit neatly into one specific genre and this can be frustrating to some readers. It’s not uncommon for their reviews to reflect this frustration.
CH: Reviews have said that you have great character development. How do you develop the characters – beforehand or as you write the story?
JS: I am not one for writing outlines or following them, so for the most part, I prefer to develop the character as I write the story. I may have a general idea of the type of person this character will be, but the true personality doesn’t emerge until I begin creating interactions with other characters within the story. For example, in the first paragraph of Uncontrolled Spin, the reader sees Sean’s general character, but it isn’t until the second paragraph on page two that his personality begins to develop. Once the persona emerges, I continue it throughout the rest of the story, with a little growth as well.
CH: Your readers are asking for a sequel to this book. Do you have plans for a new book?
JS: Yes. The second book in this series, Unmerited Favor, is completed and undergoing final edits and cover design with the publisher. I anticipate a release date that could be as early as this month. I am currently about one-quarter of the way through book three entitled Unrestrained Behavior. I hope to have it released in the summer with the final book, Unanticipated Circumstances scheduled for a 2016 winter release. For the next project, I plan on writing a fiction book involving political and police corruption to be released in the fall 2017.
CH: Is there a message in your novel that you want the readers to grasp?
JS: I am passionate about the absolute destructive components of domestic violence and sexual assault in the lives of victim’s at all socio-economic levels and genders. Abuse can be found everywhere in all its hideous forms, physical, emotional, even financial. We are all susceptible to becoming entangled in unhealthy and even destructive relationships. In highlighting some of these elements, like physical control and emotional manipulation, isolation, and even financial dependency within intimate relationships, I hope to raise social consciousness and support for those caught in this vicious cycle by demonstrating how far the human psyche can stretch to justify actions and even criminal behavior.
CH: Are any of your personal experiences reflected in your writing?
JS: No, I have not based any of the characters or incidences in this book on any specific individual or investigation. I was a part of conducting, although certain elements of individual human personalities are reflected based upon life experiences and observations. This is truly a work of fiction and imagination.
CH: What is different and exciting that you bring to your readers through your unique, suspenseful writing?
JS: I believe, I bring a unique perspective to criminal investigations with realistic crime scenes given my extensive law enforcement experience as an investigator and crime scene reconstructionist. The view I portray is from an experienced set of eyes when it comes to domestic violence, sexual assault, suicide and even murder. This perspective is something lacking in others who haven’t conducted these types of in-depth investigations or who don’t fully understand the protocols involved.
CH: What is the hardest part of writing for you?
JS: Without a doubt, it is the importance of critical self-editing and then final editing. I have a tendency to read what I wanted to write and not what I actually wrote. Every book goes through my edits and at least three other major edits. There are times, I simply have to rely on my editors because they all know better than I, when it comes to spelling, grammar and punctuation.
CH: Have you taken any writing classes to hone your craft?
JS: Not particularly, other than a few college courses and a few writers’ conferences. At least, not yet.
CH: Where did you get the premise for this story?
JS: Personal observations on human behavior and my imagination is the foundation.
CH: What kind of feedback are you getting from readers of the book?
JS: The majority, approximately 77% of the feedback is positive, which is encouraging; approximately 18% are neutral (3 Stars); and approximately 5% were negative.
Some of the reviews have been helpful, while others didn’t give much insight as to what made the book truly enjoyable or what really wasn’t appreciated. When I distill everything down, I find 95% of the reviews were either neutral or positive and 5% percent were actually negative. Some of the criticism has been taken to heart and changes have been implemented in Unmerited Favor while other input has been ignored because of the voice I wished to portray in the writing.
CH: Can you give my audience your website address?
JS: It is www.jerrysummersauthor.com. Please feel free to visit and like my webpage and author page at Amazon.com.
CH: Can you tell my audience where your book is sold?
JS: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books a Million and Xlibris. Amazon Link: http://amzn.to/1TsWQlT
CH: Any closing remarks?
JS: Cheryl, thank you so much for taking the time to interview me and for this opportunity to address your readers. The questions posed were thought provoking and forced me to ponder many things about my writing and future endeavors. I hope all of your readers take the time to read my books and enjoy them, as much as I enjoy writing them.
CH: Thank you Jerry Summers, it has been a real pleasure discussing your book and your writing journey with my audience.
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