A peek at what we make
So, let’s start with the obvious. J.E., Braun or J.E. Braun- which do you prefer to go by?
Admiral. Though, my second choice would be John. That being said, most people call me Braun. I would never be so pretentious as to ask somebody to call me J.E….unless I really didn’t like them. Because, seriously, how annoying would that be?
Yea, we can see how that might get annoying pretty fast. Glad we got that cleared up. What about your past experiences do you feel qualifies you to be a writer?
Wait, there were supposed to be qualifications? Somebody can run for the Presidency of the United States without any, but I need some to be a writer? (You KNEW I had to get that in there, didn’t you?). Well, I’ve been writing since I was in high school (stories, I mean. I could actually write letters and words before that – sometime around middle school I think). I started out my college career as a journalism major, but switched later in my freshman year to literature. Oh, and I write most of Stephen King’s stuff. We just use his name because it’s better known. Oh, and I lie a lot.
Ouch, political rant right off the bat? It’s OK- you will feel better once there is some change taking place. Now, you are the author of the book “Paranoia”, which focuses on a man whose life is destroyed by the events of 9/11. What was your inspiration?
It’s tough to call 9/11 or anything related to it an inspiration, but it was the reactions of people who were NOT at one of the attack sites that day that drove me to write the story. I was witnessing how people who didn’t experience the attacks first-hand were changing their lives – were living in some degree of fear – and I said to myself, “J.E., what would all of these emotions and life-changes look like in one man who lived through that day? And where would he be now, years later?”
Conscious of the sensitive subject I was dealing with, I wanted to make sure I gave back to the victims of 9/11. I have pledged that 10% of the profits from sales of my book, Paranoia, will go to the Twin Towers Orphan Fund (www. ttof.org). They are a very worthy organization that provides education, healthcare, and psychological care to children who lost a parent or parents at any of the attack sites that day or in the event of future attacks.
Then it is safe to assume you had no part in 9/11 in an attempt to create a plot for your book?
No. I mean yes. Yes, it is safe to assume that, no, I had no part. Right? Hold on, FBI is at my door. I’m sick, but not that sick. I also do not hold to those conspiracy theories that our government had anything to do with the attacks.
Whew, OK. There are rumors that you are already working on your next book. What can you tell us about it?
I’ve flip-flopped between which book I want to work on next. I have a completed sci-fi story about people who are forced to sacrifice their lives for another each night in their dreams in some brutal way, only to wake up with very real broken bones, scars, etc. They heal over the course of the day only to go through it again the next night. They need to discover what is going on before it’s too late. It is the first in a trilogy in which God is dying and has created the human race as an heir to his throne. As each person dies, they are assimilated into a higher consciousness, but it is not perfect until it experiences everything and the total annhilation of the human race is the final experience. The problem is, evil gets wind of this and stops their plans to destroy humans, knowing that if they just wait, God will die without a successor. This puts the side of good in a terrible position, where they need to destroy themselves.
However, I continue to get drawn into a very different story about a group of people two generations from now, in a world where freedom of speech is a shell of its former self, who have gotten together to form a secret club that meets with the sole purpose to offend each other. However, when people from their group start to disappear, they are forced to decide whether they should go away quietly or start their own revolution.
Um. So, I guess the answer to your question is, “Very little.”
Both sound very interesting! On your blog you’ve made mention of your poor Boggle skills. Why is that do you think?
My wife is a robot. Period. It’s not so much that I have poor Boggle skills as it is that she is superhuman. Oh, and she makes a mean chili. What chance do I have?
Peanut vs. Cashew. Favorite?
Some of the readers of Greco Woodcrafting may be wondering what all of this has to do with Greco, or with Woodcrafting for that matter. Can you take a moment to tell us about your love of wood?
Can we rephrase that question? No, really. I’m extremely uncomfortable right now.
Oh fine. In the interest of full disclosure, I guess this is a good time for people to know we were college roommates. By the way, sorry for all the heavy metal I made you wake up to on the CD-playing alarm clock.
Back to your writing. Do you just sit down and let the words flow, or is there some sort of planning you do beforehand?
I like to write only during natural disasters, so hurricane season is prime for me. I name my writing days the same way they name the storms, except my names are made-up names that should be names, like Alanutter. Bertildamew. I actually have tried to outline before, but within about, oh, three words, the outline is so much cage-liner. It sounds corny, but often the characters write themselves.
If you could ask Greco Woodcrafting 1 question, what would it be? Remember this is a family blog, so keep it clean, buster!
With the high costs of oil, not to mention other everyday products as an indirect result of oil prices, if the new GOP vice presidential candidate, Palin, has such oil ties as she does, and Europe has led the way in alternative energy sources, what was the name of the bus driver?
I think he prefers to go by Admiral.
I’d like to thank J.E. for taking the time from his busy schedule of being a father, a husband, a writer, and a faithful part of the work force to give us this candid interview. Paranoia can be purchased at Amazon.com and Barnes&Noble.com.