Jack Brody is a writer, ex-military, and an avid traveler. After his Army stint and then deciding to pass on law school, he went to film school, wrote screenplays, and held a number of jobs which ran from everything to working for a newspaper for one day, to film production, to then going into real estate (with at least five others along the way). He’s fascinated by history, politics, and architecture, all of which play a part in his novels (yes, he already has two more in the works). When not writing, he can often be found hiking with his two faithful dogs, occasionally breaking out the old BMW bike for a ride though the mountains, or playing volleyball or bar trivia with his friends. He divides his time between his home in the Southern Appalachians and wherever his passport will take him. After reading Jon Krakauer’s bestselling “Under the Banner of Heaven,” he was inspired to undertake a full year of research in preparation for the novel. Taking what he’d learned, along with a bit of imagination, the result was the conspiracy thriller, The Moroni Deception. Go to http://www.themoronideception.com/ for more information about the novel and to read the first chapters for free.
Q: Welcome to Beyond the Books, Jack. Can we start out by telling us whether you are published for the first time or are you multi-published?
The Moroni Deception is my first novel. Prior to that I had only written screenplays. I would just add for your readers who are probably not not familiar with my work that The Moroni Deception is a political conspiracy thriller with religious overtones, ala Da Vinci Code, only in this case the Mormon religion is the backdrop.
Q: When you were published for the first time, which route did you go – mainstream, small press, vanity published or self-published and why or how did you choose this route?
The path I took came about as a result of several things coming together. First, I’d heard an interview with writer Barry Eisler (the author of the successful “Rain” series) in which he announced he was going to walk away from the latest six-figure publishing contract that had been offered to publish exclusively for e-Readers. This was also right around the time that Amazon announced that they had sold more books for their Kindle than they had in hardcopy. I also came to the realization that after having spent over five years researching and writing The Moroni Deception, if I were to go the “traditional route”–find an agent, a traditional publisher, etc, –that it could potentially take another two to three years to see the novel released–and that’s best case scenario. So once Gov. Romney got the nomination– because of the rather eerie similarities to the story that takes place in my novel as well as all the recent interest there seems to be in the Mormon religion — that pretty much sealed my decision to directly publish The Moroni Deception and release it through Amazon, Barne’s & Noble, and several others through Visigoth Press, the publishing company I formed with the help of two friends.
Q: How did it make you feel to become published for the first time and how did you celebrate?
I was obviously quite happy, as well as relieved when I finally finished the novel, because there were times I sometimes wondered if I ever would finish it. Also,seeing it listed on Amazon.com for the first time when it came out was actually pretty cool in itself.
Q: What was the first thing you did as for as promotion when you were published for the first time?
Visigoth Press issued a nationwide press release that coincided with the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte announcing the release of the book . Since part of the plot deals with a Mormon politician running for President, I thought the timing worked quite well.
Q: Since you’ve been published, how have you grown as a writer and now a published author?
To tell you the truth, I don’t think you can really grow as a writer unless you’re writing, which I haven’t been do much of lately because I’ve been spending so much time on promoting The Moroni Deception. I do know know after looking back at my early drafts, and then later looking at the final product that has since been edited, revised, and rewritten countless times, that I’ve gotten quite a bit better. I also know, though, that I still have a ways to go before I can even think of approaching the writing ability of some of the genre writers I admire like Raymond Chandler, Elmore Leonard, and John Le Carre, but in the mean time I’ll just keep reading their work and writing away.
Q: What has surprised or amazed you about the publishing industry as a whole?
I can’t say I’m really surprised, since all businesses like to have a competitive advantage, and publishing is no different. Their competitive advantage of distribution and marketing is still imposing, but it appears to be eroding as digital publishing grows. In fact, I’m a little amazed that more of them don’t have divisions just focused on digital books.
Q: What is the most rewarding thing about being a published author?
The first thing is mainly just knowing that you’re an author with a completed novel, which is something relatively few others can lay claim to. But perhaps even more importantly, in the bigger picture, that you had an inspiration and followed it through to it’s conclusion.
Q: Any final words for writers who dream of being published one day?
I guess just write what inspires you and hopefully it will entertain, inform, and inspire others.