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Interview with Elmore Hammes – The Twenty Dollar Bill

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The Twenty Dollar Bill

Q: When did you start writing, and what inspired you to write?

A: I wrote science fiction stories and read them out loud during “sharing time” in third grade. I grew up in a house full of books and writing seemed a natural outflow from reading.

Q: How long did the book take you from start to finish?

A: The first draft for The Twenty Dollar Bill was done in thirty days during National Novel Writing Month (www.nanowrimo.org). I finished the final version about a year later.

Q: Where do you write?

A: Generally on my lap top at home, occasionally at a coffee shop or the library – when I am engaged in the story, it doesn’t matter if there are other people around, the TV is on or the house is on fire, I can filter the distractions.

Q: What’s the best thing about being a published author?

A: Talking with people about writing and about my books.

Q: Who are some of your favorite authors?

A: Neil Gaiman, Orson Scott Card, Evelyn Waugh, W. Somerset Maugham, Charles De Lint, Andre Norton.

Q: Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?

A: I’ve gotten some very nice feedback through Amazon reviews and forums like Kindleboards. A lot of them want to know what happens next with various characters from The Twenty Dollar Bill.

Q: What are your current projects?

A: I have a couple novels in revision at the moment – I expect Through the Arch, a fantasy work, will be my next release, hopefully some time this year.

Q: What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

A: I enjoy Community Theatre, sand volleyball, good beer, and twice a year I go with a mission team to help build homes in Mexico.

Q: How did you come up with your title?

A: I needed a method to change viewpoints from scene to scene, and it became obvious shortly into the first draft that the twenty dollar bill would serve perfectly in that capacity. Naming the book after the bill seemed appropriate.

Q: Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

A: Definitely. The book is about how people see situations from different perspectives – and that the assumptions we make about other people and the reasons for their actions are often mistaken.

Q: What’s the hardest part of writing a book?

A: The middle. Starting a book is easy for me – everything is brand new and fresh. Ending the book – that is the payoff, the exciting rush to the conclusion. The middle can be a struggle.

Q: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

A: No – by the time I am done revising, anything that I feel needs changing has been.