My first and most recent book is a story called Charlestown. The story takes place in Boston in the early 1980’s. Frustrated cab drivers call on the Teamsters Union to assist them in forming a union. Strong opposition is provided by the cab owners along with the organized crime muscle of Raymond Patriarca, and unrevealed political muscle. Meanwhile the cab drivers find empathy from State Senate President William Bulger and his brother Whitey Bulger who is the notorious leader of the Winter Hill Gang. Twists and turns of crime and politics are a prominent part of this story. The story catches the reader’s attention right away and moves along with high emotions right to its nervous surprise ending.
Tell us something about yourself.
I was raised in Walpole, Massachusetts and I attended Xaverian Brothers High School in Westwood Massachusetts. Interests in politics and government became evident in high school. I earned a Bachelor of Arts degree at the Catholic University of America in Washington D.C. I also received a Master of Education in Management from Cambridge College, in Cambridge Massachusetts. My business career has been predominantly in the fields of Real Estate Sales, Appraisal and Tax Assessment.
What inspired you to write this book?
The “Charlestown” story came to me while I was on an appraisal assignment and standing in the living room of a triple decker in Charlestown. Topic research of periodicals supported the merit of the story and encouraged me to move forward.
How did you choose the title?
Charlestown is where the story begins. It is also an interesting, underexposed, and multifaceted neighborhood of Boston with many stories to be told.
What obstacles did you encounter in getting this book published? How did you overcome them?
Footing the bill for self publishing was my greatest obstacle to getting this book published. The historical romance of writing a book and having a publisher pay for the rights to publish it has gone the way of the ice box, the rotary dial phone and the transistor radio. It no longer exists. Today’s reality for first time authors is that after you pour your time effort and emotions into writing a book you have to believe that you have written a piece of work worthy of your financial backing. Personal confidence and determination saw me through this obstacle.
How did you know you wanted to be a writer? How did you get started?
Actually, I did not know that I wanted to be a writer. While the “Charlestown” story was so clear in my thought, its realism, complexity and multiple facets were so vivid that I had to put it in to written word. I held this thought and the related research file for twenty years. In December of 2009 the economy was in the tank and my business along with it. This was the perfect to write this story.
Do you have any writing rituals?
I have no rituals. I just sit down at my computer and put down the story as it flows from my mind. I write about 2-3 pages per session. Then I either have scrambled thoughts or a headache.
How do you come up with the names for your characters?
In “Charlestown” many of the characters are real people. The fictional characters have names that somehow reflect their persona.
Did you learn anything from writing and publishing this book? What?
I learned that I enjoy writing and there is a lot of pride and sense of accomplishment once the book is in its final published format.
If you were doing it all over again, what would you do differently?
While I have since found a couple of insignificant flaws in the finished book, I would not change a thing.
What types of books do you like to read? Who are your favorite authors? Why?
In my youth I enjoyed reading the biographies of early American Political leaders. Since my college years I have enjoyed reading the success strategies of business leaders. The former CEO of GE, Jack Welch is a favorite business author. Howie Carr, who is a Real life Talk Radio host in Boston and a character in “Charlestown” wrote “The Brothers Bulger.” In both cases the author’s present an interesting topic in an enjoyable writing style.
Are you working on your next book? What can you tell us about it?
Yes, I have started writing my second book. The story takes place in Florida, Texas and Mexico. Alan Jacoby, a former US Army Ranger suffers from mistaken identity which leads to a Mexican Drug Cartel wanting to kill him and the FBI wanting to try him for murder. Once again, there are several unexpected twists.
What is the best advice you could give other writers about writing or publishing?
Write because the story is burning inside of you to be told. Writing must be a passion and an avocation. If it works out to somehow be a bill payer then good for you! That’s a bonus!
Who is the perfect reader for your book?
“Charlestown” is certain to please those who are looking for a snapshot of Boston culture, or a fast moving story of organized crime and political hijinks. This is a great book for high school age students looking for a summer read or a good selection for a book report.
Where can readers learn more about you and your book?