Ever wanted to pick an author’s brain? Ever been curious about an author’s life, creative path, or struggle to get published? Author Jerald LeVon Hoover has been published multiple times and is no stranger to the path of struggle that goes with the dream of being published. He is the author of A Hopeful Hero, My Friend, My Hero, and He Was My Hero, Too. If you missed out on the first set of questions and answers with Jerald LeVon Hoover, you can check them out here.
Today, Jerald LeVon Hoover answers five more questions for readers, fans, and aspiring authors.
You were raised in Mount Vernon, New York. At one point in He Was My Hero, Too, you make it clear that the book is set in Mount Vernon. Was it emotional for you to place the story in your childhood town, given everything that happens in the book?
Actually no it was a lot of fun do that because I was connecting the dots from book 1 to book 2 and the title He Was My Hero Too has a certain meaning to it which I don’t want to give away right now I want you to read the book to see why I named as such but the emotional part is more of a carryover from book one but it wasn’t emotional in a negative or sorrowful way it will sort of joyful because it was a continuation of what I want to think is a great story.
You’ve written several books. How was writing your second or third book different from writing your first book?
Well for this one it was more of an accomplishment because I did not want to be deemed a one hit wonder. I wanted to be viewed as a serious writer and so when I wrote the second book I felt good emotionally, mentally, and even spiritually because I was able to take something from scratch and stretch it out to where it was a series. I guess that is why I got greedy with it and wanted to add a fourth book, “Hoop Hero.”
You’ve mentioned that you were turned down many times [42 over an 8-year period] before finally getting published. During that time of rejection, what kept you going?
What kept me going was the belief that I had a particularly good story and a story that needed to be told. I felt back then when the first book was even in manuscript stage that it was very much in need. But currently, I feel that it is more a necessity.
Did you ever think about giving up?
Of course, I did but something within me wouldn’t let me. Not only that but there were external forces so to speak, that made it hard for me to quit. It seems like the times when I fe like throwing in the towel, someone that knew of me being in the writing phase would ask me how was coming along with it. It would come from people of my church, neighborhood, job, you name it, I was asked. Those were the signs I used that led me to believe, ‘Jerald, this is your calling.’
What types of books do you enjoy reading? Who are your favorite authors?
My favorite all-time book is the Bible. I’ve read it from cover to cover about three times. The first time it took me a little over a year to do it, but it was an amazing experience as well as accomplishment. I particularly love how-to books and non-fiction about leaders of our society. I draw inspiration on their triumphs on how they got to where they arrived.
Are you working on any projects that you’d like to tell us about?
I’m working to make the books that I have in the series into a curriculum series where each book will have its own workbook to go along with it. This way the readers, particularly teenagers, can draw upon the lessons and messages that permeate throughout the book. I want to really do that so that not only do I entertain them, but I educate and empower my readers. Literacy is especially important to me.