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Monday, September 01, 2008
TAKE TEN: Autthor Peron Long, PUPIT CONFESSIONS
Peron, thank you for taking out the time to talk with Conversations. Before we get into your book PULPIT CONFESSIONS, I want to get your reaction to the success you have experienced since it was published. Have you been surprised at the response from readers?
I have been extremely surprised at the response received of Pulpit Confessions. My first thoughts were that those who are fans of Christian Fiction would want to hang me from a cross and those who were not fans of Christian Fiction would write PC off as just another “preacher done wrong” story.
You thank a lot of family in the acknowledgements for the book. Would you say they are surprised at how the book has been received and is a career as an author something they would have expected from you?
No one who actually knows me is surprised at my career. Most of my family members often remind me of how as a child I would lock myself in my room for hours never coming out with the exception to use the bathroom. When my parents would punish me they often did so by taking away all of my paper, pencils, pens and books and they would force me outside to play.
One of the things that intrigues me about your book is the fact that it takes the reader into the motivations of someone who is in a position of power. Tell us how the idea for the book developed and what your motivation was for writing it?
My inspiration for this novel was based on the current state of today’s Spiritual community. Over the past couple of years we have seen the fall of congregations due to the acts of Man. My goal while writing PC was to show a more humanistic side of those viewed as the epitome of Righteousness.
PULPIT CONFESSIONS is a layered story that evaluates what happens when individuals don't live out their truth. As the story developed, is there one character in particular that seemed to take on its own life and control the way they were portrayed?
There are a few characters that I believe really stood out and took control but I would have to say that the one that really stood out to me was the youngest Sabrina, the oldest daughter of Raymond Jr. and Katherine. She didn’t have much dialogue but when she spoke for me she spoke volumes. I am actually in the process of developing a storyline for her in the sequel SINFUL WAYS.
Your first book was IF IT AIN'T RIGHT IT'S WRONG. Tell us about it and how it is different from your current release.
IF IT AIN’T RIGHT IT’S WRONG was basically your typical boy meets girl, boy and girl fall in love, an ex from the boys past comes back into the picture with a child and boy and girl have problems. Although I enjoyed writing it and believe it is a great story, I can’t say that I wrote it where it actually stood out amongst books in its genre. Now with PULPIT that story actually stands out and yells; “Jesus, My Lord!” HaHaHa.
Peron, how did you believe yourself that there was a market for your book? How did you go about submitting it for publication and what led you to Xpress Yourself Publishing?
I believed there was a market for PULPIT mainly because it gives the reader a traditional Christian story tapped with unconventional Christian antics. Those of us who have chosen to walk a Christian path often times don’t get the opportunity to read books or even watch Christian based movies/TV shows that capture many of the trials and tribulations of that walk in a way that does not beat us up or condemn us to hell.
Because of some of the language and explicit scenes written in PULPIT, many Christian Houses would not accept it. After talking to a couple of Xpress Yourself Publishing authors, I decided to take a chance and submit.
A lot of people who write believe that once they are with a publisher they don't have to work as hard in promoting it as a self published author might, however, you are constantly on the grind with PULPIT CONFESSIONS. Why is that?
I made up in my mind 5 years ago that I am in this for the long haul. I can’t create a fan base without being on my grind getting my face and work in front of the eyes of readers. It’s very important not to get lazy and believe that people will support your work because it’s published by a major house. As an author it’s still our responsibility to make ourselves/our work visible.
Other than promoting your current release, what is next for you?
I am currently in the early stages of promoting my March 09 release LIVIN’ AIN’T EASY, published by Urban Books along with working on my current project THE FIRST PERSON
There will be aspiring authors that will read this interview, Peron, and wonder how they can take that next step to get published. What would you tell them?
The first thing I would say is do your research. Research your own work by reading works in the same genre. Be sure to create a style of writing that will be unique and stand out in your genre. Don’t be afraid to take risk. Also research publishing houses that you would like to submit to and also think of self-publishing avenues. The most important thing I could say is DO NOT GIVE UP! You may receive 100 rejections before 1 maybe. Do not allow rejections to dictate your path.
Thank you for your time. If our readers want to find out more about you online or purchase your books, how can they do so?
Cyrus, first I would like to say thank-you for allowing me this opportunity to reach more readers and tell a lil bit about me It’s extremely appreciated! I can be found at www.peronflong.com, www.myspace.com/lilsouthernboy, www.xpressyourselfpublishing.org PULPIT CONFESSIONS can be purchased from my personal website, the Xpress Yourself Publishing Site as well as all bookstores and all sites on the web that sell books!