Today I have the pleasure of interviewing another outstanding author. What makes this occasion extra special is that this author is MY WIFE, Becky Perrone! After years of her listening to me whine as I wrote and published my books, she announced that she was finally going to do what she had been promising to do for most of our marriage: she was going to write a book! I must say that what she wrote is nothing short of amazing. I am so proud of her, and I am thrilled that my company, Escarpment Press, will be publishing it. And now, for the interview.
Joe: What prompted you to write this book?
Becky: “Ever since I was a young child, I knew that some day I would write a book. I had no idea when I’d do it, or what it would be about, just that I would do it. Thanks to the movies and television shows I saw through the years, I became fascinated by the idea of the settlement of the Old West. When the time came to put up or shut up, that is what I chose to write about.”
Joe: And what is the name of your new book?
Becky: “It’s called Wolfie: A Cat Beyond Time. In a nutshell, it’s about a time-traveling cat that takes his masters, two young children named Minna and Clay, along with him on his adventures into the Old West.”
Joe: What was it that determined that the time had finally come?
Becky: “It was actually a trio of life-altering events that put me over the edge. In the span of a few years, my mother, Arminè Giragossian, died, our beloved cat, Wolfie, died and then, to top off the trilogy, I got cancer (just a few little bumps in the road.) I realized then that it was a now or never situation. To honor them both, I made them the main characters in my book. That my book would be a western was a foregone conclusion.”
Joe: Why did you choose to write a Young Adult book?
Becky: “With the exception of the first and second grades, I have taught every grade from daycare through eighth during my career in education. After teaching fifth and sixth grades for a few years, I was reassigned as my school’s eighth-grade English and American History teacher. I absolutely LOVED teaching middle school!”
Joe: What was so special about teaching eight grade?
Becky: “The kids were always in flux, and my sense of humor seemed to work well with them. I had also had a very traumatic time in middle school myself. My inclination was to make sure that they would not only have a good education, but would have a wonderful time learning, and come to love it as much as I did. I have a background in drama and amateur theater, and used it to bring history alive. (My thanks to the eighth-grade classes I had at Wandell School, in Saddle River, New Jersey. You were fantastic! PS: I follow you on Facebook.)”
Joe: Who or what served as the inspiration for your characters?
Becky: “My inspiration for my main characters, Minna and Clayton Moore, came from the days when my daughter, Lauren, and my son, Jared were young. My two stepsons, David and Matthew served as models for two other characters on the wagon train. My cat, Wolfie . . . well, there ya go . . .”
Joe: How long did it take you to write the book?
Becky: “The actual writing took place over about six months, give or take a bit. However, the idea began over twenty years ago. I attempted to write it a few times during that time period, but life was very hectic. The times I tried to sit down and write were totally non-productive and very frustrating.”
Becky: “Well, my life changed. I had retired from teaching, and was working from home when I got cancer. My schedule became much more flexible, because I made my own hours, and so then, in a mere blink of an eye, the book was written.
Joe: How did you choose the proofreaders for your book? Putting it “out there” is not an easy thing to do.
Becky: “Most of my friends love to read. Some have children, grandchildren, some don’t, some shared the book with their children and then communicated their reactions to me. All of them are (sigh) honest to a fault, and took on the job of critiquing my life’s dream with honesty and sharpened pencils. May God bless every single one of them! They are true friends.”
Joe: So, now, the obvious question: What’s next?
Becky: “Well, since you asked, I was thinking of writing a sequel—or another stand-alone. I’m not sure yet. I’ll have to ask my publisher . . . “
Joe:” Bartender! . . .” (See below)
Wolfie: A Cat Beyond Time
When the Moore family rescues a tiny kitten from certain death, they have no idea that he will grow up to become a very special cat. Wolfie, as they name him, has all of the quirks common to his species, except for just one little detail. Wolfie is a time traveler, and whenever and wherever he travels, he brings his humans with him. Join the Moore children, Minna and Clayton as they experience The Wild West as no two children have ever done before!
Grade Level: 3rd through 8th (However, adults seem to like it too!)
Wolfie: A Cat Beyond Time is available NOW for pre-order in Kindle at only 99 cents. However, once the pre-order phase is over on June 15th, the Kindle book will be listed at $2.99. The paperback edition will also be available on June 15th at only $10.95 Both editions will be sold exclusively through Amazon.com.