Sunday, April 26, 2009


It is an honor to Interview Author John Wayne Cargile. Author of: "The Cry Of The Cuckoos" Genre: Mystery John is a writer, author, and publisher. He has won many writing awards, including Associated Press, Sigma Delta Chi, etc. He worked as a newspaper writer, and a magazine editor for nearly forty years. He spent a year with the FBI as a clerk in the late 1960's, regional sales manager for Bantam Books, and took his first job at the Birmingham News, after taking a Creative Writing Class from the city editor. He holds a Doctorates in philosophy and religion, and writes a weekly column titled Integral Life for two nespapers in his state. He is currently working on a sequel to The Cry Of The Cuckoos, and is also planning on writing a script. INTERVIEW Geri: When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer? John: When I was about ten years old, I wrote a story about Rinny, based on the Rin Tin Tin German Sheperd dog that was popular in the 1950's. Geri: What type of books do you enjoy writing? John: Fiction, and non-fiction! Geri: Did a special person in your life inspire you to write? John: Not really! No one in our family were writers. The city editor of The Birmingham News offered a Creative Writing Class, while I attended Samford University in Birmingham, Alabama. After I had written a couple of stories for him, he invited me to work for the newspaper. Geri: Have you written any books based on a true life story? John: The Cry Of The Cuckoos, my current novel, comes as close as it can to drawing out similarities between the main character, and myself. Geri: Who is your favorite author? John: Sydney Sheldon Geri: Are your characters created from people you've known in real life, or are they from the imagination? John: Both! I took some family characters, and exploded them into colorful composites with a lot of flawed characteristics that they didn't actually have. I had some family members in mind as I built the characters. When they read excerpts of the book, each of them said, "Is That Me?" I left them guessing! Geri: How many books have you written? John: One, and one eBook, From Mount Olive Road, a collection of my newspaper columns over the past three years. Geri: Where can your books be purchased? John: And Available soon on: Authors Edge Geri: Describe how you felt the first time you were published? John: My first newspaper story was published when I was eighteen years old. I was estatic when I saw my byline on the story. I still get a buzz when I write a good article for newspapers and magazines, and see my name as the author. Seeing my book for the first time in print will be the ultimate for me as this is what I set out to do when I retired, write novels. Geri: Do you have any current work in progress? John: The Cry Of The Cuckoos! Geri: Do you have goals set for the future? John: Lots of them! I plan on a sequel to The Cry Of The Cuckoos, and a script! Geri: At this point and time in your life, are you exactly where you want to be? John: I am exactly where I wanted to be at this juncture in my life. I am sixty-four years old. When I was young, I dreamed of writing for newspapers for ten years, magazine writing and editing for ten years, and publishing for ten years. I owned a printing company, and produced magazines in the 1980's, now comes the sunset years, novel writing! Geri: What can help authors to reach their dream? John: Never give up! Practice, practice, practice! Don't let critics get in in your way! Polish your writing, read other works that capture your imagination. Become your own authentic self as a writer. Geri: Have you ever experienced writer's block? John: Oh yes! When it comes, I sit in meditation! I ask the universe to be my guide. I hold two Doctorates in philosophy and religion, and I am ironically something between a practicing Christian, and Buddhist. Prayer and meditation offer me insight when I get writer's block. Geri: What advice can you give to prevent writer's block? John: De-clutter the brain! I just recently wrote an article about Taming The Monkey Mind to De-clutter the brain. We have to free our minds of all the clutter that goes on inside our brains when we are trying to be creative, at peace with ourselves. Geri: As a child, did you have favorite books? John: I can't remember reading that much as a child. Nothing sticks out in my mind. Geri: As a child, did you enjoy reading? John: No! Geri: If you had the opportunity to one day live the life of a famous author, who would it be? John: I like to think I am my own authentic self, so I don't want to be like any other writer. I just want to be me. I'm not tied up in knots about being famous. If someone likes what I write, and it becomes a best-seller, then that's great! But, I do not set my goals on being famous. Geri: Many authors feel a sense of self-satisfaction, a sense of achievement after publishing a book, can you relate? John: Yes! If it is not truly vanity! Self-satisfaction is seeing a project through until the end of the day when you can say to yourself, "Well done!" Geri: How do you balance occupation with writing? John: I am mostly retired now, but what keeps me in the community is driving special needs kids to school each day. Each kid is something special, even though they have various challenges. I get to spend about three hours a day with them, and I continously learn from them. In my sequel to The Cry Of The Cuckoos, there will be a special needs kid in the book. Geri: How did you feel at your first book-sgning? John: I am waiting on my first complementary copy, and copyright copy. Geri: If you won the lottery tomorrow, what would change? John: It would allow me to continue to write, without any outside financial pressures. Geri: As writers, we begin with a manuscript, and end with promotions. What was your most difficult task? John: For some authors, writing is the only thing they know, they leave marketing up to other people. But I like to market and sell as much as I like to write. I guess that's because I'm a salesman. I worked at Bantam Books as regional sales manager in the early 1980's. Geri: Some writer's need to listen to music, or look at flowers, or the ocean when writing. Do you have a particular scenery? John: I listen to new age music when I write. It's soft, and some of it includes sounds of the ocean, or waterfalls. It's soothing, and I can listen for hours. It provides tranquility of mind, and goes back to the question about writer's block, and meditation. My office looks out into the wooded area on my ten acres of land. We live in a log house. I can sit and watch the critters of the earth for hours as they scamper around the woods, Deer especially! I have a redbird and bluebird that perch on a limb nearby everyday. They fly to my windowsill as if they are wondering what the heck I am doing watching them. I recently wrote an article about The Redbird In My Window Sill-A Spirit Guide! Geri: If you were to publish a book in a different genre, what would it be? John: I'm unsure! I don't intend on The Cry Of The Cuckoos to become a mystery. It just evolved into it. It started out as a historical romance of a man and a woman during World War Two, and the romance between the two. But things changed as I continue to write it, and I wanted to be up tempo, and contemporary. So voila! That's what I got! Geri: Thank you kindly for your time. Your interview was quite interesting! John: Your welcome!


April Robins, Author said...

Thank you John for sharing this information about yourself. As a child, I did not read very much either. I remember having to give book reports and reading the first and last chapters in order to do so. Good luck on your second novel.

lionmother said...

I was just the opposite from you. As a child I read everything I could find.:)

Author Geri Ahearn said...

Hi April,
Thank you kindly for
Visiting & Commenting! It is very
much Appreciated!

Author Geri Ahearn said...

Hello LM,
Thank you for visiting
us here! I have had Many author's
tell me that as a child, reading
wasn't their Top Priority! However,
it does amaze me how many different
responses I may get to the same
Interview Question! Interesting to
say the least!

John Wayne said...

I was a sports jock in high school, but one day a teacher asked me if I wanted to be in a reading contest. I didn't know what she wanted me to do. She gave me a literary piece to read in class. I wish I could remember now what it was. Anyway, I won the school contest, then began practicing for state competition. Didn't know one existed. Kids from everywhere showed up to read in front of three judges. I was a nervous wreck. I practiced reading until I almost memorized it. Anyway, I placed third in state. I said, "oh, well, glad that's over," and forgot about it. It wasn't until I was a senior in high school that literature became an interest. My high school English teacher saw something good in my writing. I guess I credit her as much as anyone for pointing me in this direction. I spoke to her later after I became a journalist, and she was so proud of me. So, you never know where good comes from, even unexpected attention from someone you know who takes you under their wing.