Saturday, 22 April 2017

Author Spotlight on Rich Israel


It was indeed a pleasure to interview Rich Israel of Colorado.
I must mention that the name Rich Israel is not a name you can easily forget.
Rich is one of the newest members of the Real Lives team, a sub-group of Books Go Social.
I visited Colorado some years ago and have very fond memories of that place.


Tell us a little about yourself

I grew up in Sacramento and attended the University of California, Davis, where I initially studied engineering, then transferred to biological sciences because of my love for nature.
After graduating, I worked for the entomology department at the university for a year, then dropped out and embarked on many of the adventures described in my writings.
In the early 1970s, I coauthored the first back-to-the-land book for my generation—Homesteaders Handbook—and went on to study natural medicine. In 1991, I released The Natural Pharmacy Product Guide, which remained on the Nutri-Books Top 10 List of Health Books for four months.
I’m currently working on Trippin’, the second book in my Hippie Adventurer series. I live with my wife, Doris, in Boulder, Colorado.


What inspired you to write your first book?

In the early 1970s, my girlfriend and I were living in the country.
We searched high and low for information on how to plant a garden, raise livestock, cure olives, make wine, and do a host of other tasks.
When we couldn’t find anything, I realized a guide was needed for the back-to-the-land movement, sparking my first book, Homesteaders Handbook.

I wrote my recently released book, Groovin because the ’60s were a free, exciting time for me.
I collected a number of unique, humorous stories and found that people enjoyed them.
You can find plenty of books on the history of that period, but I wanted to offer a sense of what it was like to live during those transformative years.
I also wanted my daughter to understand some of the events that had shaped me.


Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Follow your heart and do all you can to live your life to the fullest.
Honesty and integrity are your greatest assets.


Are your writings based on someone you know or events in your own life?

All my stories are based on my true experiences, though a few may be hard to believe.
I am fortunate to possess a remarkable memory of the late sixties.

What are your current projects?

I’m working on a sequel to Groovin’ called Trippin’: Road, Rails, and Mountain Trails, scheduled for release in the fall of 2017.
Here’s a synopsis:
In book 2 of his Hippie Adventurer Series, Rich takes us on another wild ride during the 1960s as he and Charlie, his faithful canine companion, hitchhike, hop freights, work in an Alaskan gold mining camp, and manage a Sacramento Valley cattle ranch.
Together with his off-the-wall friends, he explores altered states, sentiments, and perspectives while freestyling through life with passion and enthusiasm.
And, just like in his first book, Groovin’, Rich’s powerful, heart-on-his-sleeve thirst for love, propels him into one unexpected situation after another.

Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.

My publisher and editor, Sandra Jonas, of SandraJonasPublishing.com.

Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?

I love any author who has the ability to paint vivid pictures with their words, allowing their readers to immerse themselves in every scene and know fascinating characters on an emotional level.
There are countless great authors, but Raymond Chandler, Harper Lee, Mario Puzo, Nelson DeMille, and David Balducci come to mind.

Do you have any advice for other writers?

If you have an idea for a story, write it down.
If you think of details for that story, write them down.
You can always piece things together and refine your writing later.
Persistence and attention to detail can create works you can be proud to release.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?

My readers are the reason I write.
If I can’t entertain them and hopefully give them more than a few belly laughs, then what’s the point?
Nothing is more fulfilling than having people tell me they’ve enjoyed my stories.
Also, if you appreciate an author’s work, put a review on Amazon and Goodreads because it helps get the word out.

What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

I’ve always loved Westerns, having been raised on Roy Rogers, Bonanza, and Rawhide.
Their influence led to my pipe-dream-induced, month-long, hippie horse trip through the Rocky Mountain wilderness, documented in Groovin’.
I recently viewed the movie Unbranded, which reignited fond memories of my incredible adventure.

Do you have a specific writing style?

In the ’60s, I was a free-wheeling spirit with a firm moral compass.
When writing Groovin’, I found I needed to be in touch with my heart to accurately communicate my emotions and humor from that time of my life.


Contact Rich Israel at the following:

Website

Blog

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

Amazon Author Page