"On The Road," "The Manchurian Candidate," and "Invisible Man" are three of my all-time favorite novels and works forever amazing given the timeless challenges they pose to society and convention. While those masterpieces stand light years apart from my scribbling, they do serve as stars to guide and strive for.
While those provided my creative aspiration, what kicked me in the butt to write this were my Dad's emails. Leading up to and throughout the 2008 election he would forward me (and everybody in his address book) "stories" about this candidate, that policy, or other sensational claim. While some were legit, many weren't, which got me thinking about not only how many other dads, sons, mothers, daughters, and address books around the world were being influenced by such bogus spam, but Who was coming up with this propaganda and Why. Add in my love of a good conspiracy theory, and you've got "For The People."
Q: Who is Voltaire?
Voltaire is no one and everyone. He is the "secret society" and the face of the people. He is what "We" believe, "They" believe, and all the silly crap we get barraged with tossed in a blender, mixed with some satire-berry hot sauce, and poured out chill to savor. Most of all, Voltaire is a lot of fun to write.
Q: What do you hope readers take away from this book?
Enough is enough with this theater of the absurd They are trying to sell us. Everything doesn't have to be "War On This" and "Terror Threat That." There can be power to the people so long as we ignore the distractions, take a collective deep breath, and support commonsense vs. sensationalism.
And I think people are hungry for it. I mean, while events like the Rally To Restore Sanity have entertainment value, the act of thousands & thousands of people coming together in a "rise of the rational" tells me that the 85% of us who occupy the common ground of this nation are tired of the extremes. Hopefully that awareness & collective force inspires all aspects of society to adopt a more reasonable and civil approach to life, work, and each other.
Q: How challenging was it for you to write something for which the ending is already known?
While I really enjoyed writing historical fiction, particularly with a satirical slant, it was tough keeping "the story within the story" fresh but not too far-out. Add to that writing in the first-person - which was also new for me - and the combination definitely made For The People the most challenging work I've attempted ... and hopefully delivered. I'm really interested to hear readers' reaction.