Tuesday, February 5, 2013

A Soul's Calling - Interview with Author, Scott Bishop

Synopsis:  A Soul's Calling is a memoir about a man who listened to his heart instead of reason. 

Scott, a forty-something attorney, is average in every way except one. He has a connection to the Other Side. He speaks to Spirit and Spirit speaks to him. He sees, hears, and interacts with an invisible realm that is beyond ordinary human perception. When Scott learns his soul has been spiritually compromised he travels to the ancient kingdom of Nepal to win it back. Once there, he hikes the Himalaya carrying a mysterious bundle and a stick laden with prayers from Luminous Beings hoping to come face to face with the greatest mountain on earth: Mount Everest. As his journey unfolds, Scott is called on to battle his fear of heights, the thin air, and his physical limitations.

A Soul's Calling transports readers to the rugged but enchanting Khumbu Valley where mountains speak and nature is imbued with a special kind of magic. The novel is an inspiring modern day adventure that weaves the timeless themes of living an authentic life, the consequences of power, and what a man would do for unrequited love. Powerful, sweeping, and deeply moving, readers will search their hearts as the book draws to a stunning conclusion. 

A Soul's Calling is a book for our time and for anyone who believes the world can be a better place.

Interview with Scott Bishop: Favorite color, food, drink and animal?
My favorite color is purple followed closely by yellow and electric blue.

Favorite food? Chocolate. Definitely chocolate. But I love all kinds of foods like Italian, sushi, the classic American cheeseburger. Bring that burger with a side of onion rings, please.

And, oh! I looove roast lamb! There is something about the smell of rosemary when it’s cooking in the oven, with potatoes of course, that I absolutely adore. Really though, there’s so much good food out there it’s hard to pick just one favorite.

What do you enjoy doing in your free time? 
Typical activities, reading, watching movies, photography, being in the outdoors.

When/Why did you start writing A Soul’s Calling?  
When I was on the trail—I distinctly remember this—it was somewhere between Debuche and Pangboche, I thought that once I got back home I was going to leave the Himalaya behind. I mean, hiking to Everest Base Camp is hard work. I could never have imagined how hard it’d be going into the trek. Had I, I may never have gone. 

So here I was on the trail, headed for Dingboche, climbing these huge stone stair cases, up and down, ad nauseam as I write in the book, and I just kept muttering to myself that once I got back home to New Jersey, I was going to put this expedition behind me. Far behind. I didn’t want anything to do with it. Though at the time, I had to admit to myself that after a couple of weeks, once I rested up, I’d probably want to take a look at my photos.

When I returned from Nepal, it took me a good two weeks before I unpacked anything—that includes my dirty clothes. My duffle and daypack sat in the middle of the living room floor. I just ignored them, walking over the bags as I needed to. After two weeks went by, I began slowly looking through the photos I had taken. But that wasn’t enough, so I began posting some of them up on a blog. But that wasn’t enough. So, along with my photos, I decided to post excerpts from the journal I had kept while on the trail. After three or four posts with the excerpts it felt like the blog posts needed more. So I began to write short narratives to go along with the photos and journal excerpts. At the time, I limited myself to about 1000 words so I could have a post finished in a week. But the narratives grew on their own accord anyway. And then, one day, I decided not to hold back, not to limit the word count of the narrative I was currently working on. That’s how the first chapter came to be. Before I knew it, the narrative I was working on had blossomed into 5000 words.

I was reluctant to say I was writing a book. But by the beginning of January, something had taken such hold of me that I just surrendered to the process. I mean, there was really nothing else I could do. It was a powerful feeling that took hold of me. It felt like I was being woken every morning and dragged to my word processor by an otherworldly force. It was like some spirit entity was leading me to my word processor every morning and insisting that I sit and write. It was only then that I allowed myself to acknowledge that I was writing, and commit to writing, a book. There seemed little choice in the matter for me. There was a story that needed to come out. So I wrote.

When/Where do you feel most comfortable writing?
First thing in the morning, after a cup of coffee, that’s when my muse and I get together best. That’s when hammering out words is easiest for me.  I sit at my desk in front of the computer and bang away at my keyboard, looking up from time to time to watch the cars drive by on the main street that runs past my home. I watch people walking past on the sidewalk, too. But when I’m editing, polishing my words up, I’ll print whole sections and chapters, curl up into an oversized comfy chair, and, with pen in hand, engage my muse until the words, their rhythm and tone, feel just right. I need perfect quiet for all this to come together, too.

Where does your inspiration for a story come from?
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to write a novel. The only problem was, I’ve never been drawn to any particular story strong enough to spend the time to set it down on paper. That is, until A Soul’s Calling came along. Actually, that’s not entirely true. In January 2010, I had begun writing the first pages to a book, but I didn’t get very far. My law practice steered me away from it and I just didn’t have the time to make any headway with it.

Writing a novel takes a huge commitment. I’m in awe of authors who can write at night, or find time to write even though they have a day job they go to. If I had to write A Soul’s Calling under those circumstances, it would never have gotten done. For me, the only way to write a book is by committing myself to the endeavor, immersing myself into it, one hundred percent. If I had to estimate, I’d say it probably took me 1800 hours to write A Soul’s Calling.  

Connect:  You can connect with Scott online at his website, Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads

Purchase:  You can purchase A Soul's Calling online at Amazon for $14.95 ($4.95 Kindle version).

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