What is your book about?
Ultimately, I suppose this book is about transformation, struggle, and redemption. I tell my story of how I used to suffer from PTSD, depression, weight, and anger issues; and the journey I went on and the road map I created and implemented to find a successful transformation. I am now on no medications, and I no longer show signs of PTSD or depression.
I use my story as a platform to reveal a variety of stories and philosophies with a lot of humor and wit. I give many details on the mind and how it relates to us physiologically, as well as emotionally, quantum mechanics, dating, sex, religion, and anything that affected my development from broken to whole was tackled.
Was there a major turning point in your life?
Too many to name them all, but meeting my stepson Christian eight or so years ago has to be the most significant turning point. I’m proud to say I still see him post divorce, and he was also the ultimate reason I wanted to truly change. The second most significant turning point in my life would have to be when I decided to write about this journey that I took.
How long did it take you to write your book?
It took roughly 2-3 months for me to write the first draft. The revision and editing process was a few months more, so all in all about a six month process from beginning to release.
What’s your writing schedule like? Do you strive for a certain amount of words each day?
When I wrote the story, I did so every day until it was done, minimal twelve hour days. I never made myself have a goal for X amount of words; you can’t if you write the way I do. At one point, I wrote almost three days in a row with no sleep. I rarely took breaks. When I had the epiphany one day that this is what I’m supposed to do, I just couldn’t put my laptop down.
What challenges did you face as you wrote this book?
Balance within the book, considering this wasn’t the typical kind of story to write. On one hand, you are going into highly technical information, a variety of philosophies, but still trying to relay it as simply as possible. On the other hand, I am sharing very intimate stories and sometimes some can be perceived as rather shocking, so I had to find the balance between just enough and too much information. I definitely push the envelope even with my humor, but the feedback has been positive overall; so I’m happy that I relayed the story the way I wanted to when I originally envisioned it.
It was also hard to relive some of the negative things I have done to people. Reliving the negative things that happened to me wasn’t that hard at all, but reliving what I have done to others that were negative was very difficult for me.
Are you writing to reach a particular kind of reader?
I truly think there is something in these pages for everyone. Even those who sometimes get offended still say they ultimately thought it was a great book, and they learned something. So truly I think anyone who wants to look at life through a different set of lens will enjoy the read.
Do you think writing this book changed your life? How so?
It absolutely did on so many levels. I’m honestly contemplating writing a book on the process of writing this book. The people I have met, the lives I have affected, the relationships that have impacted me. I have experienced more in the last six months that many don’t get to experience in a lifetime. I’m very grateful for what I have experienced and don’t take it for granted.
What is your goal for the book, ie: what do you want people to take with them after they finish reading the story?
I want readers to feel good about themselves- who they are, have hope for their future, and learn about a different perspective on life in an entertaining way. I hope they laugh, cry, and are challenged; I want to move the reader emotionally in many directions, but ultimately down one of hope and joy.
What’s been the most surprising part of being a writer?
The impact I’ve been able to have on people and the support from so many. Not just my readers of the book, but my readers who follow my column In That Moment of Space for the Washington Times Communities. Also, the support from so many people I have had the pleasure of getting to know over the last several months.
I have spoken to those that have felt they were broken, and they told me that my book helped lead them to the answers they needed to change their life. I’ve heard from other readers that said they felt complete in life, so they didn’t know if they would get anything out of it; but it turns out they loved it! They still learned something about who they are or about life because of it.
I’ve also received letters from people through the Communities column who have been inspired by my articles or challenged by them. I wasn’t expecting such a quick readership from people or a large fan base, but I’m very grateful to all of them and everyone who has supported me.
Do you have mental list or a computer file or a spiral notebook with the ideas for or outlines of stories that you have not written but intend to one day?
I have a mental list and look forward to writing my next book, whichever one that is that I choose to work on first. But that will be quite a few months down the road. Not too long though.
How many stories do you currently have swirling around in your head?
I have 3-4 non-fiction books I want to write and 2-3 fiction stories as well.
What are you working on right now?
I am preparing to focus on the speaking side of my business, Innovative Social Dynamics, LLC. The company was started a year ago, but I put all speaking plans on hold to write this book. I’m now focusing back on professional speaking to reach people down a different avenue other than a book in order to help others achieve a true inner-change. So I currently work on the business and focus on articles for the Communities column.
Where can we find out more about your book?
To read reviews, the synopsis, watch the video commercial, or to purchase When Jonathan Cried For Me visit http://www.whenjonathancriedforme.com
To learn more about Carter’s column, business, or where to access his Twitter and Facebook please visit http://www.innovativesocialdynamics.com
Click here to read an: Excerpt From “When Jonathan Cried For Me” by Carter Lee