#AuthorInterview: Gerald Freeman

Jeri Walker
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Jeri Walker
Jeri Walker
Jeri Walker
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As someone who will always carry a fondness for memoirs, especially ones that focus on getting through difficult childhoods, I was definitely pleased to learn about Gerald Freeman’s book. I’m also intrigued by his work with sculpting. More often than not, it seems like us creative types pursue multiple outlets. Shall we begin? One Jeri to another Gerry…

Picture of Gerald Freeman

1. Please provide a brief synopsis of your book. 

Kill Daddy is the story of one man’s desperate attempt to move on from a traumatic childhood. The past has haunted him his whole life and he realizes that he cannot even begin to live until he has left the memories behind and can focus on the present and the future, instead. His journey takes him on a roller-coaster ride through remote villages in Kenya and Uganda, where he spends two years living with the local people. Will the journey help him to find inner peace, or will his abusers win in the end?

2. Tell us a little bit about what motivates or inspires your writing.

I write for the same reason I do sculpture: I am in awe of the world. I want to react and give back, and with my work I would like to inspire conversations about this thing we call LIFE. I would like to identify with people all over the planet and have the discussions that people usually keep inside their heads, out loud. Let’s share stories and experiences and support each other. Let’s inspire one another and make this world a better place.

Cover image of Kill Daddy by Gerald Freeman

3. It’s hard to pick just one, but what do you consider your favorite novel and why?

My favorite novel will always be Johnathon Livingstone Seagull, although it is not very long. The Reluctant Messiah was longer and just as good. This book is important because it reaches people at just the age they need to hear alternative points of view. At least, in the eighties it was all the YA that were reading it and digging the idea of spirituality as opposed to religion. It is the simplest, most beautiful and single most important piece of advice any human could hear: Strive to be your best! Follow your dreams! That book helped make my journey through life so much easier.

I think my writing has parallels with Richard Bach’s because our philosophy is a way of life and we are both really interested in, who we are and why?. I also want to inspire people, as he inspired me, to follow their hearts.

4. What is the name of your blog and what can readers expect to find there?

My Kill Daddy blogspot blog is totally new, and the reason I have created it is because of the release of my book.  I am an artist, I spend my days writing and doing sculpture and I work very hard. I am not used to having to spend so much time marketing, I have so many projects that every minute I am marketing it is taking me away from creating. However, marketing this book the last month has not been so bad. I have actually met a lot of interesting and supportive people and learnt a great deal, too. I now think of marketing more as building relationships and connecting with like-minded people. I think it has earned its place, for a couple of hours, in each of my days.

Picture of Gerald Freeman Blog Banner

5. Are you traditionally published or self-published?

This is my first book and I spent a couple of years writing to lit agents in London and America. I received some very encouraging negative replies, which helped me keep faith in my ability. I have always had faith in my stories because I have met very few people who have led lives like mine, but for some time I had doubts in my ability to write my stories down.

I painstakingly formatted the book myself and the punctuation was quite well done because I am an English teacher, also. I then asked a professional to check it over. My cover came from a photo I had but when the book goes into print, I think it will not be good enough quality and so I will have to hire the services of an on-line company.

6. Can you offer one or two helpful tips for fellow writers when it comes to marketing and publicity?

Always address bloggers personally and read the ABOUT page. I made two faux pas by not making the effort to read exactly what it was they were interested in. I also addressed them as Dear Admin, which didn’t go down too well. I apologized and learnt from the mistake.

7. Describe your writing background.

I have been a part-time English teacher for twelve years and have had regular seminars and workshops as part of my teacher development. Writing is a huge part of it.

I would always win prizes and awards as a child for my writing and I have been writing poems and thoughts down on bits of paper for literally my whole life. It is part of who I am. The blackboard in our kitchen is filled with ideas and my wife is always asking me to clean it off so she can use it.

Photo of Gerald Freeman

8. What does your drafting and/or editing process entail?

I have written three books and published one, so far.

I write down thoughts and ideas about a book for a couple of months, and look for old notes I have written in the past that would be relevant, too. Then, I sit from 10 am until 7 pm and write. I take breaks to drink but hardly ever to eat. The next day I look back and edit everything from the beginning: as I get towards the end of the book I spend most of the day reading and editing and less time writing, which is a welcome change to the routine. I will leave the book for a couple of weeks and edit it again. I will do this a few times over a period of six months and then ask a professional to look it over, and then publish it.

9. What future projects can we look forward to?

A few years ago, I was diagnosed with Hepititis C and had to spend one year heavily medicating and staying at home for most of the day. This provided me with the opportunity to write the books I had always wanted to. I wrote three during that period: I Don’t Believe God Wrote The Bible is the prequel to Kill Daddy and is another roller-coaster ride but this time through Europe as a hitch-hiker. Not For Love of Money is the sequel to Kill Daddy and is a love story. I am now married to Eva. Our story was a roller-coaster ride, too. I have more books not yet written.

10. Is there anything else you want your potential readers to know?

What Is Life?

Are we all completely separate beings instinctively driven by an innate need to survive, randomly colliding with each other as we fervently make our way through life? Or is it wrong to think of ourselves as separate entities, if in fact, we are not individual wholes but unique pieces, which make up the whole? I believe it is this insistence on being separate, which is impeding the evolution of the world on all levels and making our journey much longer and more difficult than it need be. Until we realise the incredible oneness of the world, and come together and start working towards a common goal of love and respect for all that exists on our planet Earth, conflict and abuse will thrive. Compassion, love and respect will make us all richer than we can imagine in our wildest dreams.

You can connect with Gerald via his blog. His book can be purchased via Amazon, Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble.

Would you like to be featured? Please submit an interview request.

The images in this post appear courtesy of the author.

Article by Jeri Walker-Bickett aka JeriWB

Author: Jeri Walker

Need help writing that book blurb, bio, or newsletter? Give your book the attention it deserves. Book your copy edit, manuscript critique, or proofread today. Make every word count.

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39 Comments

  1. As usual, great interview. Sounds like Gerry has lived a life most of us couldn’t understand. I wish him the best with his book, life and future endeavors.

    And he’s right about, compassion, love and respect. I think it would make a better world.

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    • Thank you for the good luck. Young people are becoming more aware and I think we are on the up.

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  2. What a beautiful post and what a beautiful man 🙂 Gerry, your view on life is inspirational as was your journey to publishing. I think traditional publishers have their heads so far up their assess they don’t know good books, and more particularly commercial books, when they hit them in the eye. The best of luck with the book and thanks Jeri for a great interview

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    • You just made someone feel good. Thank you for the support, I have a lot more to come, and more positive, too.

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  3. Beautiful interview. Tremendous insight into the oneness of the world…I too think that we all share the same DNA. I’m sure this world view gives great depth to his writing!

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    • I hope as I write more, I live up to your words. I will probably only ever write about life, so the deeper the better.

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  4. Freeman reminds us the artist reacts to the world in unique ways, using gifts denied to most mortals. But gifts do not come unencumbered by responsibility to work — long hours of deep focus.

    Well done.

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    • Thank you. Are you an artist, yourself bearing the cross of creativity? Sometimes, I actually say, ‘No, I am not getting out of bed to go down stairs and find a pen, and…’ and I spend half an hour laying awake hoping I can remember the thought in the morning.

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  5. Oh, where do I start. First I love Jonathan Livingston Seagul. It’s been a long while since I heard that title. It was a book that gave me hope at a young age.

    Being an artist my self I can relate to your thoughts about inspiring conversations about this thing we call LIFE. I too like to identify with people in a way that gives them a sense they are not alone. 🙂

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    • Hello, we obviously found J.S. at a similar point in our lives, it really fashioned who I am as a person. Have you read The Reluctant Messiah? It is amazing… A guy with a bi-plane, who travels America doing airshows, and not a squashed fly or a mosquito on his windscreen-spotless! Almost a spoiler x

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  6. Gerry, it’s great to have you here today. I come across a lot of books via the nature of this blog, and I hope I can make a spot for your memoir on my never-ending TBR list. It might take me a year to get to it… 😉

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    • Thank you, this blog is obviously highly respected. I hope I write a book you will want to read as soon as you hear about it. Perhaps my next one…

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  7. Does your sculpture work share a theme with your writing work? It would be interesting to see how each of these play off of eqch other.

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  8. The title and synopsis reminds me a little of an episode of The Black List I watched on DVR last night. The killer had been abused all his childhood by his mother. In order to cope as an adult he found people that abused others and then hurt them the same way while making his mother watch the entire time.

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    • sounds like a brilliant movie x

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  9. The title makes it an interesting possibility for a good read. Thanks for the introduction. 🙂

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    • Hello, I hope I am not being too intrusive by thanking you for taking the time to read jeri’s interview. Thank you.

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  10. I enjoyed reading the interview – you sound like quite the free spirit! I’d like to think we could all work together on a common goal of love and respect, but I don’t think it could ever happen. We’re born flawed, we live flawed, and we’ll always be flawed!

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  11. This was another fantastic interview, Jeri. I like the part where he mentioned addressing bloggers personally which I have done since day 1. Just seemed like good manners to me w/o being told to do so. I’m so sorry for Gerald’s battle with Hep C but wow he’s a survivor in the mindset. Great post, our friend 🙂

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    • Hi,thank you so much for the support regarding the illness- I was lucky, clear for 5 years, liver fully regenerated. For 80% this isn’t the case. it’s something everyone should demand a check for(it isn’t being offered), if they were born before 1993, the year it was discovered.

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  12. Another intriguing and interesting writer and great interview. Jonathan Livingston Seagull affected me much the same way it did Gerry. My TBR list is way too long and you, Jeri, are partially to blame for this.;-)

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    • Hi, I hope Johnathon has made your life as wonderful as mine, or rather my inner self, I ended up doing exactly as Johnathon advised.

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  13. Thank you very much for all your comments, I am glad to see others appreciate Johnathon Seagull in the way I do. I have enjoyed myself very much here at Jeri’s blog, thanks Jeri. Yes,Jon my stories are reflected in my art, most definitely.

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  14. Gerry is an extremely interesting character and his book sounds intriguing.
    I’m inspired to read Jonathan Livingstone Seagull now.

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    • Read it Grace, you will not regret it.

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  15. I love Gerald’s attitude towards marketing. Although he would rather spend his time creating, he sees it as an opportunity to engage, not some tortuous requirement designed punish. That may be an over statement, but I sometimes think that writers see that side of the business as a fate worst than death. 🙂

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    • Marketing should be akin to making friends. I check my mail hungrily, respond directly – never a form letter – and try to keep in touch.

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      • Absolutely, I have met some great online buddies through this, not to mention the people who read my book and then write me, and tell me about their experiences, it is cathartic x

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    • Absolutely, I have met some great online buddies through this, not to mention the people who read my book and then write me, and tell me about their experiences, it is cathartic x

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  16. Kill daddy is a great title. Short to the point. How Gerald uses marketing to engage is an excellent idea.

    As to the question, what is life? It’s the eternal question, isn’t it? You can read 100 philosophers and they don’t come up with exactly the same answer.

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    • Hi Catarina,
      absolutely, that is why I believe people have to be careful when confusing faith with knowledge.

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  17. “Kill Daddy” sounds great… I really enjoyed to read this interview…
    Regarding Freeman’s desires and/or aspirations: “I would like to identify with people all over the planet and have the discussions that people usually keep inside their heads, out loud”…I found his words thought-provoking and full of enthusiasm.
    Thanks Jeri and Gerald. Best wishes, Aquileana 🙂

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    • Thank you so much Aquileana and best wishes to you, too.

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  18. The title “Kill Daddy” certainly made me read it twice – and that is what brings readers! I bet the book is one that does not disappoint. I enjoyed Gerald’s interview very much.

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    • Hi Christy,
      your comments are very much appreciated- I hope the story speaks to you. My next book, due out Feb 14th 2015 is called I Don’t Believe God Wrote The Bible and has had the full JeriWB experience. Happy 2015 to you X

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