Kev’s Author Interviews Presents:
Hi I am Sally Cronin and am a writer. Over my career in various industries I have written everything from advertising copy to million pound budgets (sometimes there is a hint of fiction in everything!) I made a radical career change in my early forties and retrained as a nutritional therapist. I began writing about health and my first book was published in 2001. I had written a few short stories and poetry from childhood but it was not until 2003 that I wrote my first fiction book. Since 2013 I have been blogging alongside writing my books and I feel a great deal of personal and work satisfaction in writing in any format.
Kev: What’s your latest book called and how did you come up with the title?
My latest book is called The R’s of Life – A guide to survival in a modern world, and was a working title. I remarked one day to my husband that there was an extraordinary number of words beginning with the letter R, that described the modern human condition. The title has stuck.
Kev: Which Genre do you have it listed under and does it cross any other genres? It is non-fiction and in some parts of the book it might also be considered a memoir. Hopefully most will consider it to fall into the humour category as well.
Kev: Tell us a little bit more about it.
There are a number of life’s experiences that have a profound effect on who we are as a person and the direction our lives will follow. For example our relations with our parents and family, our relationships including romance. We are perceived by different people that we meet and we all hope that they will respect us. The R’s of Life sets out to identify the key elements necessary to get through modern life successfully.
Kev: Provide a teaser/short passage from your book.
This an excerpt from Chapter Five – Relationships – A Tangled Web
A relationship is a two way interaction between individuals and also groups of people. It requires time, patience and tolerance. Great beginnings, particularly in romantic relationships, need to be built on so that the initial chemistry is combined with trust, respect and loyalty. It needs to become a partnership in every sense of the word; there is no room for inflated egos or dominance if it is to succeed.
This applies in friendships as well as within teams or groups of people that we work with. As in the playground, those who do not know how to communicate, share and support are soon excluded, and I have seen many such individuals, drift from job to job over many years.
Developing healthy relationships is not based on a computer algorithm, but a deep-rooted need to belong that has evolved over hundreds of thousands of years. A clan provided safety from other humans and also animals, provided more effective food gathering and hunting and made better use of individuals specific skills. The individual hearths did not only provide heat, light and the ability to cook food, but also the basis of the first families, where men and women shared the care of children by forming strong and stable relationships.
Over the years of working with men and women who have come to me looking to improve their health, it is clear that relationship issues play a huge role in a number of key areas in our lives. This included weight loss and gain, depression and other stress related physical and mental illnesses. Most women that I have counselled with difficulty losing weight have very low esteem and many have projected the cause of that onto their partners.
In fact low self-esteem in this particular instance is a combination of long-term relationship issues with both the people in our lives going back to childhood, and also the attachments we have formed to food as a source of comfort.
A massive influence on the strength of a relationship is acceptance. One of the major stumbling blocks in any connection we make romantically, within a friendship or a group is the need to change the other person or people to a version that we feel more comfortable with.
Kev: When you wrote this work, did you write off-the-cuff or use some kind of formula like an outline?
I am writing this book entirely on my blog; chapter by chapter. I am doing this for a number of reasons. The main one being the value of feedback at every stage of the book. Unlike a novel there is not a problem with continuity and time lines or character development. Each chapter is effectively stand-alone and being non-fiction much easier to serialise. Now I am well into the book, it has highlighted a couple of chapters where I need to go back and clarify and expand on areas. That is down to the valuable feedback from multi-beta readers. I pick one of the R’s at random but usually it is linked to or naturally leads on from the previous chapter or chapters. This gives me an opportunity to pick a subject without having to stay within rigid guidelines.
Kev: Did you research for the backdrop of your story or any other part of it?
My life and work has certainly provide plenty of material to provide a book’s worth..
Kev: What challenges did this particular work pose for you?
When writing non-fiction that covers people’s perceptions, particularly about emotions, it can be a fine line between opening it up to new interpretations or offending. Also because there are parts of the book where I refer to my own experience it can be emotionally draining.
Kev: What methods are using to promote this work?
This is another advantage of writing the book directly onto the blog. If you Google R’s of Life by Sally Cronin, it already has a moderate presence on the web. Also I have found with the serialisations of my previous books that there have been sales associated with them. Once it is published, the book will disappear from my blog and I will market in the same way as I do with my others which is press releases to the media and using social media to spread the word.
Kev: Do you have any advice for new authors?
The writing part is often the easiest as your pour out the words onto the screen. The tough part is then revisiting the work and preparing for publication. Most of us are impatient to see the finished book on Amazon but you also want to sell the book. For it to establish itself in the market place it needs to be polished. If you cannot do this job yourself then invest in someone who can. Oh and number one… use your spillchocker!!
Thank you Kevin for the opportunity to talk about my new book.
It will be released in mid-November but in the meantime it can be read at; https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/the-rs-of-life-new-book-by-sally-cronin/
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