The winner from last week’s Author Spotlight with Anita Higman is Carol Ellmore! Please email my assistant Christen with your mailing address. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
This week Jim Rubart is in the spotlight! To win a copy of his Soul’s Gate, leave a comment on this post!
Share a little bit about yourself. Married with kids? Empty nester? Do you work full-time and write when you can squeeze it in?
Married for 26 years to the world’s most amazing woman.
Two sons, Taylor (19) and Micah (17) so we’re looking down the barrel of the empty nester gun. Very tough because they’re both outstanding young men. Easy because Darci and I are still in love and looking forward to the next chapter of our lives.
Writing: I still run my marketing company with two corporate clients and helping other authors with their marketing, but most of my time these days is spent writing—dream come true.
And share something about your writing. What’s your genre(s), your areas of interest…
One of more interesting facets of my publishing journey is I’ve somewhat created my own genre. No one knows how to categorize what I write, which was tough in the beginning because although publishers liked my writing, they didn’t know what to do with my first novel (ROOMS.) All the major publishers rejected it, even B&H who eventually bought it. But now it sets my apart because no one is else is really doing what I am.
Yes, I know you want me to try to describe my genre so here’s a description from my friend, Jeff Gerke: Psychological speculative thrillers that explore the theological intricacies of the nature of man’s soul.
Or put another way: Contemporary stories with a liberal sprinkling of the supernatural.
Does that work?
How did you get started writing? Did you have a dream of being a published author?
I’ve dreamed about being an author since 7th grade. I dabbled with short stories through my 20s and 30s, but didn’t get serious about fiction till 2002. I was scared to pursue my dream because what happens if you go for it and your dream crashes?
Finally, through the amazing support and encouragement of my wife I dove in full force when I turned 40.
After you started writing seriously–how long was it before you were published?
As I mentioned above, I got serious around 2002. I finished my first novel (ROOMS) in late ’05 and it was published in the spring of 2010.
Aside from a cup of good, strong coffee, what helps you get all of your “brain cylinders” firing so you can write well? Do you have any favorite places and routines when you write? How many hours a day do you spend writing?
STRONG coffee is usually all it takes.
My favorite writing space is a hidden room in our home. It’s accessed through a tiny door in the back of my youngest son’s closet, which leads into our attic, then the room.
Our home was built in the late eighties when the style was to have a tall elevator-like shaft in the entry way with a chandelier hanging down. For years I looked at the space and said, “What a waste. All you’d have to do to create a cool secret room would be put in a floor.” So seven years ago I did.
What has been the biggest help to you in the journey to publication? Writers’ conferences? Writing groups? Your mom as your first draft reader?
Ah, I see you know my mom. She says my novels are the best ones she’s ever read.
As you would expect, there were numerous factors, but two biggest were going to a writers conference in 2006 (Mt Hermon) and incredible belief and support of my wife. No question, without her you wouldn’t be reading these words right now.
Is the “writer’s life” what you thought it would be? (Explain your answer)
Yes and no. (You expected that, right?)
I hoped to make an impact on reader’s lives: Draw them to Jesus, encourage them, see them set free and that has happened. But to a greater degree than I imagined. The greatest thrill of being an author is getting those e-mails saying their life has been utterly changed.
Didn’t expect: A number of my heroes in the writing world have become friends. Very cool. The publishing world is small and getting to hang out with the people I used to know and admire only through their books is a thrill.
What was one of the best moments in your career and what was one of the worst?
One of the best was when I sat with my wife on our front porch and held the finished version of my first novel. As I sat with Darci holding it, tears welled up and the dream became real.
What do you least like about being a writer? Most like?
Like the least- The pressure of deadlines. When you’re racing to finish a book it diminishes the joy.
Like the best: Meeting readers. Hearing how their life has been changed because of reading one of my novels. Hearing their story and what Jesus is doing in their life.
What advice would you give to new writers?
To write well, you have to dedicate yourself to the craft like you’re learning brain surgery. It’s not easy. It’s hard work and takes a serious amount of time to reach proficiency, even more time to reach the level where people will shell out $$ for your book. That’s the bad news. The good news is most people give up so there is always room at the top for great writers.
Pretend I’m a customer at a bookstore looking for a good book. Give me a one or two sentence promo to convince me to buy your book.
What if you could send your spirit into other people’s souls to fight for their freedom?
That’s the premise of Soul’s Gate, I’m so pumped about this one.
Publisher’s Weekly says, “Readers with high blood pressure or heart conditions be warned: this is a seriously heart-thumping and satisfying read that goes to the edge, jumps off, and “builds wings on the way down.”
RT Book Reviews made Soul’s Gate a Top Pick and says: “Rubart’s novel is enthralling and superlative. Truly a story about freedom from things that we hold onto, this tale will captivate readers and encourage a more active, dynamic spiritual life. The original plot and well-drawn characters elevate this book to “must read” status.”
What’s on the book horizon for you?
I’m working on edits on the sequel to SOUL’S GATE called MEMORY’S DOOR which releases summer 2013. After that I’ll start writing the third book in the trilogy. And I’m working on a non-fiction book for authors called, Live Free, Write Free which is for writers who want to discover a way to access, and write, the deepest stories of their hearts.
Last question, how can readers find you and your books?
Thank you for sharing your writing life with my bleaders! (blog + readers = bleaders)
Ha! Great new word. Love it.
Thanks so much for having me, Suzanne!
Much freedom to you and your “bleaders”,