G'day folks,

This is my first interview with a Literary Strategist. Enjoy Tom's frank answers.

Welcome, Tom  ...

1.   Tell us about you and what you do.

I am an author and book marketing coach (Literary Strategist). I work  one-on-one with authors around the world. I am developing an online Authors Community that is a safe harbor for authors of family friendly literature including a circle of vendors who offer all services for publishing. My main purpose is to help authors brand their names and their work and to develop a reading audience. I understand that budgeting for me is usually not an option so I charge a nominal $35 USD per month for my coaching services. It’s a bargain.

2.   What was the happiest moment of your life?

The day that I realized I could have a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

3.   What was the saddest moment?

When I realized the long-term effects of a pedophile’s abuse of me at age 12 .

4.   What surprised you most?

I realized that I had not been cheated out of one penny while doing business on the Internet for over 20 years.

5.   What was your greatest disappointment?

I realized, after my parents had passed, the heartache I put them through as a juvenile delinquent.

6.   Who did you misjudge? Why?

Too many people until I began to understand everyone is a product of their upbringing and all of us don’t know what we don’t know about ourselves.

7.   What or who was your biggest challenge?

          Overcoming fear that began in my childhood.

8.   What has been your biggest regret?

          Not investing more in myself--education, health, self-respect.

9.   What would be your dying comment? Why?

          Love God and love your neighbor. It’s the secret of contentment.

10.               Who or what stunned you the most?

Finding leadership qualities that were in me when I joined the Navy at age 18.

11.               What would you like written on your tombstone?

          He helped many.

12.               Who would you rather have not met? Why?

Sorry--they’re still alive.

13.               Who were you most envious of? Why?

I can’t think of anyone.

14.               Who did you forgive – for doing something you never thought you’d forgive?

          The priest who molested me.

15.               What was your greatest moment in your life?

When I became a father.

16.               What is your greatest achievement?

Becoming an author and book marketing coach.

17.               What personal traits would you like to have in your next life?

I like what I have now.

18.               What advice would you give to world leaders?

Love God and love your neighbors.

19.               What advice would you give to parents today?

Lead by example.

20.               Who would you choose to be stuck on a desert island with?

Barbara, my wife.

21.               Have any heroes? Why? Who?

Vietnam veterans. They never received the love and respect they deserved for serving their country.

22.               What are the greatest legacies you will leave behind?

My children and grandchildren.

23.               What’s lacking in the world today?

Respect for each other as equal human beings and creations.

24.               Any pearls of wisdom for the rest of us?

If you weren’t afraid, what would you do--then do that.

25.               What would be the last sentence you ever write?

The end.

26.               What inspired you most?

I didn’t know it at the time--my high school bookkeeping teacher who wouldn’t let me graduate until I made up all my homework assignments and tests from cutting her classes. She made me go to school a week longer than any other students because she cared. I thought she was mean until I realized she placed me on a different path.

27.               Who or what made you laugh the most?

Barbara, my wife.

28.               What would be your top three chosen careers in your next life?

Author, coach, mentor.

29.               What is your prime focus in life today?

Enjoy the journey.

30.               Do you have any fear of doing something wrong?

Not any more.

31.               If or when you reflect on your past, can you identify any world events that you believe had a significant impact on you?

The assassination of John F. Kennedy.

32.               Do you think one can live a purposeful life without knowing the meaning of life?

Yes, but not the purpose of life.

33.                From your perspective - what is the way forward for the world?

Love God and love your neighbor. 

34.               Imagine that you were given a chance to live again, what will you do first and what will you do differently?

I’m not sure that I would change anything. Life is like making an apple pie. Some ingredients are good to eat on their own and some aren’t, but mixed together and baked in the oven produce something great.

35.                Do you have a bucket list? Tell us more.

I really don’t. I’ve done everything I’ve wanted to do and I enjoy where I am.

36.               Any great claims to fame?

Seeing the books I’ve written published and read.

37.               Anything you’d like to add?

Probably tomorrow, but not today.

Clancy's comment: Thanks for being so honest, Tom. Some of these are tough questions. Best wishes in all that you do.

I'm ...

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