Jonathan L. Ferrara, the author of The Blackwell Family Secret: The Guardians of Sin, was born in San Pedro, California to an Italian fisherman and a mother from New York. Growing up with one older brother, Jonathan had several hobbies: finding the best hiding spots to jump out and scare his mother, discovering new fantasy book series, and imagining outrageous, whimsical worlds full of magic. He is now happily married, residing in California in the City of Angels. He has two wonderful children—his dog Koda and cat Merlin.
Thanks for letting us interrogate you! Can you give us a go-for-the-gut answer as to why you wanted to be an author?
It’s pretty simple. I had a story in my head, begging to be written. I love bringing characters to life. Being an author was my way to do this on a daily basis.
Tell us (we won’t tell promise!) is it all it’s cracked up to be? I mean what are the perks and what are the demands?
Being an author is great! The finished product gives you an extraordinary feeling of completion. I get great joy hearing readers talk about the characters in my book, and share in my same enthusiasm about the overall story. When you first set off to write a story you neglect to think about what happens now. Once you’ve completed your novel your writing journey is far from over. There is much that goes into the processes of publication that is far beyond the writing part.
Which route did you take – traditional or self-published – and can you give us the nitty gritty low down on what’s that like?
I went with a traditional publisher and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Self-publishing is great, but I had a vision of seeing my novel in a bookstore. Traditional publishing isn’t for everyone, but for me, I wanted to find someone who shared in my faith for The Blackwell Family Secret: The Guardians of Sin. There is a lot of hard work that goes into publication. You have a team working on the same book. There is something wonderful about that.
Tell us for real what your family feels about you spending so much time getting your book written, polished, edited, formatted, published, what have you?
A lot of years went into writing and I think sometimes my family didn’t quite understand the whole struggle, which was a little difficult. Now that the book is out and they can see the finished copy they can see what I’ve been working on all these years. They are really proud. The same goes for me.
This is for pet lovers. If you don’t own a pet, skip this question, but do your pets actually get their food on time or do they have to wait until you type just one more word?
I do have a dog and a cat and I absolutely love them. The cat loves to eat so he won’t let me forget his meals or I would soon regret it. Sometimes when I’m writing I can feel little bites on my legs. That’s my warning. My dog just loves when I’m home and sleeps at my feet while I write.
In writing your book, how did you deal with the phone ringing, your family needing dinner or your boss calling you saying you’re late?
Well… Sometimes I hid my phone in another room, or I turn it on silent so I don’t feel the temptation to answer it. My significant other is an artist so we’re usually writing and drawing at the same time.
What was the craziest or insane thing that happened to you in the book publishing process?
I would have to say that the craziest moment was when my publisher asked to represent me. That’s an extraordinary feeling that I’m still enjoying.
How about the social networks? Which ones do you believe help and which ones do you wish you could avoid?
Although I think goodreads.com is a great way to get your book out there, I do try to stay away from it. Reviews are meant for other readers, not for the author per say, and I stay away so that my writing isn’t effected by it. I have a vision of what I want the series to look like and getting advice from reviewers might sway the vision.
Book sales. Don’t you just love them (or lack of?)? How are you making the sales happen for you?
Marketing is the key for book sales. Readers need to know that your book exists. Although it would be nice, they aren’t going to just stumble upon it. I’m constantly looking for more reviewers no matter how many sales the book might achieve.
What is one thing you’d like to jump on the rooftop and scream about?
When a plot I’ve been thinking about for a long time turns out not to work. It’s a horrible feeling, but I like to think that if it doesn’t work out it’s only because it’s not meant to in that specific way.
Okay, too much sugar for you today! Here’s a nice cup of Chamomile tea and come on over and sit under the cabana and watch the waves roll in. Now…can you tell us what you love about being a published author and how all those things above doesn’t matter because it’s all part of the whole scheme of things and you wouldn’t have it any other way?
I love that the story that I feel so passionate about is out there. No matter what happens in the future there has already been readers who have fell in love with the story like I have. That’s the greatest thing about being a published author; having people share in your passion for your characters.