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Saturday, November 17, 2012

Author Interview: Hamilton C. Burger

Today I am pleased to present to you all the thirty-fourth in a series of Author Interviews. Recently I sat down with the relaxed wannabe chef Hamilton C. Burger and our conversation went something like this:

Paul:  I like to start my interviews by asking if you have any writing rituals?
Hamilton:  No, I don’t have rituals, unless sleep deprivation is one.

Paul:  What types of books do you like to read? Who are your favorite authors? Why?
Hamilton:  I love legal thrillers. Rebecca Forster is very good and I have read several of her books. She has an incredible grasp on the legal system and that lends to the realism of her books. Also, her character development is amazing.

Paul:  If someone had the power to step into your creative mind what would they see?
Hamilton:  Hah! Do you mean besides Moe, Larry and Curly? They would see a lot of slapstick type things, I guess.

Paul:  What is a typical day for you? 
Hamilton:  I’m up at 5:30. I watch the news and check Twitter, make a few tweets, etc. I check e-mail, and see how many books I’ve sold. Then I have breakfast, and I’m out the door at 7:20. I drop my daughter at school and make it to my day job by 8:30. At noon, I take lunch at an internet cafe. I check Twitter, e-mail, trying to keep the ball rolling. I’m off at 5:00pm, get home at 5:30; I cook dinner for my wife and daughter. By 6:30, I’m writing. Some social media and correspondence is intermingled. Around 10:30pm I work on marketing and do other housekeeping relative to my books. I usually finish about 1:30am. Then off for a good night’s sleep.

Paul:  Do you have a favorite character in each of your series, aside from the lead? If so, which one and why?
Hamilton:  Well, not really. The characters are sort of like my kids. You never have a favorite.

Paul:  In all the years you’ve been publishing your work, what is the biggest mistake you made that you could share so others can avoid making it? 
Hamilton:  Get yourself a good editor, and take this business seriously.

Paul:  How do you find the time to write?
Hamilton:  There is a trade-off. If I can’t find time, I have to make time. When I do that, something gets put on the back burner.

Paul:  What is one thing you hope I do not tell the readers?
Hamilton:  How my book Gold Fever ends!

Paul:  If you are self-published, what led to you going your own way?
Hamilton:  I have a friend who is an author and I was advised that indie is the way to go.

Paul:  Do you plot your stories or do you just get an idea and run with it?
Hamilton:  Both, I throw out a handful of dots and then begin connecting them.

Paul:  Do you do a lot of editing or do you find that as time goes on your writing is more fully-formed?
Hamilton:  I do quite a lot of re-writing. Sometimes after a night’s sleep, things sound quite different.

Paul:  Do you have to do much research for your stories?
Hamilton:  Not really. I do try to be accurate with dates and places. With Middle Grade fiction as I write, it’s all about setting the reader’s imagination free.

Paul:  What is your most recent book? Tell us a little about it
Hamilton:  My most recent book is Gold Fever, book #2 in The Apple Grove Gang series. The gang tries to make their fortune mining for gold. They have an earth shaking experience and the fun and adventure begin.

Paul:  What inspired you to write this book?
Hamilton:  My characters told me at the end of the first book that they wanted to have more fun! I had to write the second book.

Paul:  Do you also write any poetry, non-fiction or short stories?
Hamilton:  I have written a little poetry, in the past. I also have written a couple of short stories as well.

Paul:  Do you have any pieces of work that will never see the light of day?
Hamilton:  I’m working on a couple of novels, thriller types. They may never see daylight.

Paul:  Do you enter competitions? Are there any you could recommend?
Hamilton:  I haven’t yet. I would like to in the future.

Paul:  How much marketing do you do for your published works or for your ‘brand’?
Hamilton:  I do quite a lot of marketing. I do social media, blog, interviews. It’s a full time job to get your work out there.

Paul:  What’s your favorite / least favorite aspect of your writing life? Has anything surprised you?
Hamilton:  I love interacting with readers and other authors. The blurry lines between genres, let’s just say that I’ve seen books for 9-12 yr. olds that would make me blush.

Paul:  What do you do when you’re not writing? Do you have any hobbies or party tricks?
Hamilton:  I love to cook. It is a source of relaxation.

Paul:  Well thanks, Hamilton. I wish you the best of luck for the future.

About Hamilton C. Burger: Always a reader, I inhaled books during my days of extensive world travel. Before the Nook and Kindle, even before laptops became the norm, I would pack six or eight paperbacks for an extended trip.

I had never, ever considered writing until I contacted an author about a fabulous book of theirs. It was suggested that I should try my hand writing. Here I am! I can never thank this person enough for the joy I recieve from writing.

I have been married 32 years. My wife and I have two beautiful daughters, Katie and Maddie.

Besides writing, I love to cook, travel and drive my Corvette. I have a dog and two cats.

Hamilton's Blog: Hamilton C. Burger
Hamilton on Twitter: @HamiltonCBurger
Hamilton on Facebook: Unknown!
Hamilton's latest book: Gold Fever (Amazon)

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