If you could invite any 5 people to dinner who would you choose?
photographer Sebastiao Salgado; musician Paul Winter; Bill Clinton; author John Barth; “newsman” Jon Stewart.
What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?
Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia.
If you could meet one person who has died who would you choose?
Civil rights activist Whitney Young.
Night owl, or early bird?
Please tell us in one sentence only, why we should read your book.
If you’re concerned about the future and the fate of our planet, then Arn? Narn.is a good cautionary tale about what happens when greed gets in the way of a greater good.
Any other books in the works? Goals for future projects?
Yes. I’ve started the preliminary work on the next book. It too is a photo-documentary, but about a significant cultural difference between the US and the rest of the world. I hope to bring it to market in 3-4 years.
Tell us your most rewarding experience since being published.
That’s an easy one – seeing the book in print and then learning that a reviewer had bought a copy as a gift for someone.
Is there a song you could list as the theme song for your book or any of your characters?
Actually, there are many. Certainly one could be Peter Gabriel’s song, Don’t Give Up.
What’s one piece of advice you would give aspiring authors?
Without sounding too flip – read the answer to the previous question. Don’t give up.
If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be?
While photographing Arn? Narn., I fell in love with Newfoundland. That would be it for me.
Who are your favorite authors of all time?
In no particular order: John Barth, David W. McFadden, Isaac Asimov, Nelson DeMille, David Lodge, William Kennedy, and Bill Bryson.
How do you react to a bad review?
I learned not to take it personally. It is one person’s point of view. After that, maybe a glass of wine to celebrate the good ones.
If you could have a signed copy of any novel what would it be and why?
I would love a signed, first edition of Robert Frank’s The Americans. It was/is one of the seminal books on contemporary photography.
Which authors have influence you most how?
Since I started out as a photo-journalist, the photographer who influenced me first was W. Eugene Smith. His towering humanity was portrayed in so many of his images. After that, Sebastaio Salgado. I didn’t shoot for a period of over 15 years. It was his work that inspired me to pick up the camera again. I’m very glad I did.
What’s your favorite season/weather?
Winter. I’m not a fan of shoveling or scraping ice off the car, but other than that, I love it.
How did you celebrate the sale of your first book?
We had it all planned – Champagne and then a really nice dinner with a good bottle of wine. Something came up, I forget what, and we had to postpone. We’ve had smaller celebrations along the way. So it’s lasted a bit longer which is very nice.
How much space do we have? I love many types of music. Depending on my mood, it could be Beethoven or the Black Keys; William Ackerman or Neil Young; Kathleen Battle or Loreena McKennitt. My CD collection is still growing.
Favorite quote from a movie?
That’s an easy one. It’s from Shakespeare’s Henry V. It’s from the St. Crispin’s Day speech. As acted by Kenneth Branagh, it is so incredibly stirring and inspirational.
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition:
And gentlemen in England now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin’s day.
1 copy of Arn? Narn.
Open to US only