JUDSON SOMERVILLE MD
- GUEST AUTHOR -
Today, I interview a passionate author.
Welcome, Judson ...
1. TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF AND YOUR WRITING JOURNEY.
It has not been a smooth one. During my senior year of high school my humanities teacher told me my grammar and spelling was so horrible I would never make it through college. I responded that I would hire a secretary. I always enjoyed reading great writing and I have read a great deal from science fiction to the classics.
So, I strived to write better it just took time I guess for that part of my brain to mature. Then in college where I earned a BS in chemical engineering, I found that I was good at technical writing. Then in medical school through residency and my medical practice in chronic pain I could scribble my way through. To start writing my first book it took me almost dying to realize I needed to spread the word about vitamin D3. How it saved my life. In 1990 I had a bicycle accident that left me paralysed. I then ten years later I was bitten by a brown recluse spider. Even before the spider byte I sensed something was wrong.
Since my accident poor sleep, weight gain and immune deficiency issues plagued me. This was new to me as I had always been so healthy before. Then in 2010 I realized if I did not do something, I had 3-5 years to live. I stumbled on vitamin D3. Eventually finding what I call optimal dosing and blood levels. It saved my life. I then turned my patients onto this. Soon all sorts of diseases they received no help from with pharmaceuticals were resolving. That is when I needed to get the word out. After 5 years of starts and stops I published my own book.
2. WHAT TYPE OF PREPARATION DO YOU DO FOR A MANUSCRIPT? DO YOU PLAN EVERYTHING FIRST OR JUST SHOOT FROM THE HIP?
I just start writing. I guess you can say the muses speak to me as it just flows. No outline, mind map or notes. Not typical I realize. Really cool feeling when it flows. Sort of like in the movie Mozart.
3. WHAT DO YOU ENJOY MOST ABOUT BEING A WRITER?
4. WHAT IS THE HARDEST THING ABOUT BEING A WRITER?
Editing what I wrote. As I usually start with three times the final edit.
5. WHAT WERE YOU IN A PAST LIFE, BEFORE YOU BECAME A WRITER?
A sea fairing explorer. Probably Captain Drake.
6. WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST WRITING ACHIEVEMENT?
So far, my first book, The Optimal Dose: Restore Your Health With the Power of Vitamin D3.
7. WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON AT THE MOMENT?
My second book concerning how our foods we eat are not what we think they are and how the insurance industry, medical industrial complex, insurance companies and health organizations profit from us being ill. How the mega agriculture companies get a free pass as they use more and more depleted soil producing lower quality foods that keeps us ill and makes mega agriculture companies more money.
8. WHAT INSPIRES YOU?
Knowing the truth.
9. WHAT GENRE DO YOU WRITE?
10. DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR NEW WRITERS?
Yes, just write! Edit later as if you try to do both all at once you block your muses. Also hire a good editor, proof-reader, book designer and book formatter. If you want the best quality book especially if self-published you must work with the best you can afford. It usually is not extremely expensive to find good ones. Finally spend money to educate yourself on improving your skills and understanding the business end.
11. DO YOU SUFFER FROM WRITER’S BLOCK?
12. DO YOU HAVE A PREFERRED WRITING SCHEDULE?
13. DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE WRITING PLACE?
I have a desk and all my tools in one area. Comfortable and when I write all else disappears.
14. WHAT IS YOUR GREATEST JOY IN WRITING?
Putting together facts in a unique way that exposes a new truth.
15. WHO IS YOUR FAVOURITE AUTHOR AND WHY?
Steinbeck. I love the way he tells a story.
16. WHAT’S THE GREATEST COMPLIMENT YOU EVER RECEIVED FROM A READER?
I saved their life with vitaminD3.
17. WHAT WAS THE WORST COMMENT FROM A READER?
That it was all about me, no evidence and basically your book is of no value.
18. WRITERS ARE SOMETIMES INFLUENCED BY THINGS THAT HAPPEN IN THEIR OWN LIVES.
Yes, I saw how the healthcare indu stry was so focused on money and not helping patients. As a medical doctor I saw how you could help people and make more money. That and both after a bicycle accident left me paraplegic and much later when I was bitten by a Brown recluse spider how little most doctors knew about diseases beyond the few they typically treat. How we each have to take charge of our health.
19. OTHER THAN WRITING, WHAT ELSE DO YOU LOVE?
Too many to list as super curious and love living. Probably if I had to pick one thing other then my family is animals.
20. DID YOU HAVE YOUR BOOK / BOOKS PROFESSIONALLY EDITED BEFORE PUBLICATION?
21. DESCRIBE YOUR PERFECT DAY.
Wake up early have eggs Benedict and grapefruit juice, spend the morning speaking with Albert Einstein, have Schottky’s sandwich and Coca Cola on ice, spend afternoon talking to Jesus, Dinner would be a grass fed steak, mashed potatoes and fried okra, then spend the evening writing. Then popcorn and a movie. Perhaps not what you would expect!
22. IF YOU WERE STUCK ON A DESERT ISLAND WITH ONE PERSON, WHO WOULD IT BE? WHY?
Tough one. Probably McIver. As he could figure out a way to get us off it.
23. WHAT WOULD YOU SAY IF YOU HAD THE CHANCE TO SPEAK TO WORLD LEADERS?
They need to work to align with what best meets peoples needs, as in the end what is best for people is also the most profitable economically, politically and spiritually. As great leaders need to plan 100 or more years in the future. Also, question the status quo as often way behind the times. That is true leadership.
24. WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE FUTURE?
Working on creating workshops to educate lay people and medical professionals about vitamin D3 and a few other key nutrients. Finish my current book and perhaps write one more about vitamin D3 and diseases as everyday more research comes out that better helps me understand this.
25. WHAT ARE YOUR VIEWS ON BOOK TRAILERS? DO THEY SELL BOOKS?
Yes, as I know I look at them.
26. DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN ANY OF YOUR CHARACTERS?
Not really fair as book includes few characters and main one is me.
27. DOES THE PUBLISHING INDUSTRY FRUSTRATE YOU?
Yes and no. It hurts to see a book with lots of poor ratings and yet be a New York type best seller. That clearly there are trolls giving competitors low ratings. On the other hand I see it as a puzzle and by figuring it out I win.
28. DID YOU EVER THINK OF QUITTING?
Never. Not in my DNA. After what I have experienced this is easy. Writing, publishing and marketing books.
29. WHAT WAS YOUR FAVOURITE MANUSCRIPT TO WRITE? WHY?
Not really applicable or perhaps I do not understand the question.
30. HOW WOULD YOU DEFINE ‘SUCCESS’ AS A WRITER?
Having my book become a classic. Having influenced current and future thinking. Often you are a bit ahead of your army. Such that they consider you the enemy. Before you know it they catch up with your ideas.
31. WHAT SHOULD READERS WALK AWAY FROM YOUR BOOKS KNOWING? HOW SHOULD THEY FEEL?
That they should not give up if their health is failing. That vitamin D3 which is really a hormone is an amazing substance. That most pharmaceuticals are either trying to mimic it or reverse damage caused by its deficiency. Diseases that if blood levels were optimal it would prevent. They should feel inspired that they can take control of their health.
32. WOULD YOU LIKE TO HAVE YOUR BOOKS MADE INTO MOVIES? EVER WRITTEN A SCREENPLAY?
I would love it! No, I would not be interested in writing a screen play. I am an excellent technical writer and poor creative one. Just ask the college professors who gave me C’s in creative writing and A’s in technical writing.
33. HOW MUCH THOUGHT GOES INTO DESIGNING A BOOK COVER?
Some, but I try to stick to my strengths, so I hire an expert to do that for me.
34. WHAT’S YOUR ULTIMATE DREAM?
To be recognized as a famous writer who changed the world for the better.
35. WRITING IS ONE THING. WHAT ABOUT MARKETING YOU, YOUR BOOKS AND YOUR BRAND? ANY THOUGHTS?
Yes. Of course, LOL. Two different animals. Again, work with experts, educate yourself regardless as even if you do it yourself, you want to be in control.
36. ARE YOUR BOOKS SELF-PUBLISHED?
37. DESCRIBE YOURSELF IN FIVE WORDS.
Driven, curious, determined, empathetic, passionate.
38. WHAT PISSES YOU OFF MOST?
39. WHAT IS THE TITLE OF THE LAST BOOK YOU READ? GOOD ONE?
Changes by Michael Diettrich-Chastin. It was great.
40. WHAT WOULD BE THE VERY LAST SENTENCE YOU’D WRITE?
That is the truth and whole truth as I know it.
41. WHAT WOULD MAKE YOU HAPPIER THAN YOU ARE NOW? CARE TO SHARE?
No, I am good. I have learned to be satisfied with a little as my Grandfather use to say If you are not satisfied with a little you will never be satisfied with a lot.
42. ANYTHING YOU’D LIKE TO ADD?
My blog www.vitamindblog.com and Facebook group Vitamin D Advocacy are worth looking into. Work with your health professions. If they do not get it find one who does. More and more are realizing the pharmaceutical addiction train has about run its course. They need to adapt or perist.
Clancy's comment: Go, Judson. Keep at it, and sell heaps of books.