Chris Hedges, Author of Average Joe’s Story: Quest for Confidence

Average Joe's StoryWhat inspired you to write this particular story?

I chose to write Average Joe’s Story: Quest for Confidence because it was the book I never saw on the bookstore shelves. Every book based on a person’s life experiences I have ever seen has always been written looking back on the past. I found it difficult to relate to the author’s journey because I couldn’t overlook how he or she was labeled…billionaire, legendary coach, or world-renowned expert. I think the Average Joe will be able to relate to the story better if the story is not written in hindsight, but rather in real time.

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 to inspire the reader to confront the adversity in his or her life that is keeping him or her from reach his or her dreams. I want the reader to pursue those aspirations that for whatever reason he or she thought were out of reach.

What challenges did you face as you wrote this book?

Being a cancer patient on disability the two major hurdles I faced were physical and financial issues that impeded my progress as I wrote Average Joe’s Story: Quest for Confidence. Fifty percent of this book was based on conversations I had with other people. All of those conversations were done face to face, and the cost of going to places like Nashville, San Antonio, and Atlanta on my budget was taxing. Then once the trips were arranged the physical toll on my body from actually taking them left me all, but bed ridden for days when I made it back home.

Do you think writing this book changed your life? How so?

No. I don’t think writing the book has changed me at all at this point in time. However, since I’m writing in as close to real time as I can I think the changes I’ll experience will come with book number two and all of my subsequent books. The potential success, or the possible lack there of, that I experience with this first book is where I think my life will be changed. I don’t think writing the first Harry Potter book changed JK Rowling’s life, but the success that came after it was finally published surely did.

Have you always wanted to be a writer?

Not really. I stumbled into writing by accident after I let my mentor look at the first 8,000 words of my first book hoping he would say it was terrible and I should give up. He did just the opposite though. He not only told me he liked what he had read, but I needed to push forward to get the book finished.

When were you first published? How were you discovered?

I was/will be first published on August 1st 2014. I sent a book proposal and a partial manuscript to Morgan James Publishing in August of 2013. I had a conversation with David Hancock, the founder of Morgan James publishing, and one of his acquisition editors. Two or three weeks later there was a contract for my book sitting in my inbox. One book submitted and one contract offered. I’m batting 1.000 so I guess there is nowhere to go, but down from here.

What is the most difficult part of the writing process?

Based on the way I write I am subjected to prolonged periods of dead time as I wait on people for interviews. These periods of inactivity are the worst part of the writing process for me. I really don’t like being alone with my thoughts.

What author influenced you most?

Malcolm Gladwell. I love the way he tries to find a new and creative way of looking at the same old questions and subject matter. I don’t think you can or even should try to mimic another person’s style, but I would like to think that the direction of my writing is comparable to Malcolm.

What advice would you give an aspiring author?

I think that depends on where the author currently finds himself in his career. What I would say regardless of where the author finds himself is that you need to treat writing as a business. Think about where your final destination is, and ensure that any energy you expend always moves you closer to that goal.

Who designed your cover?

Morgan James Publishing put together five different cover proofs for me to look at. The one I chose to use was based on the feedback I got from a dozen people as to which one they thought was best. However, the cover art came courtesy of my good friend Chris Hirata of Chris Hirata Photography in Hawaii. I called Chris and told him the name of the book, what I thought I wanted, and asked him to come up with a good photo. Two months later he delivered two shots. One of which is the cover art for my book.

Books will be on sale at Barnes & Noble August 1st. They can be pre-ordered or digital versions can be purchased via Amazon.com now.
http://www.amazon.com/Average-Joes-Story-Quest-Confidence/dp/1630470422/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1395083225&sr=8-1&keywords=average+joes+story+quest+for+confidence

These are the various ways I can be reached:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/chris.hedges.3726
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/chris-hedges/25/a36/614/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/thechrishedges
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/116825480490539031226/posts
Website: averagejoesstory.com (work in progress).

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