5 autographed copies will be given away on Friday, April 1, 2016!
Young sailor and aspiring Olympic competitor Kevin A. Hall’s biggest dream was to raise a family. But within the space of three years, he was diagnosed with both testicular cancer and bipolar disorder, putting his family and Olympic dreams on hold. He soon found that surviving cancer was the easy part. Now a renowned Olympic and America’s Cup sailor with a wonderful wife and family, Hall shares a behind-the-scenes look at his struggles with mental illness in his riveting memoir.
Little Known Fact: March 30 is World Bipolar Day. It was chosen because it marks Vincent Van Gogh’s birthday, who was diagnosed posthumously with the disorder.
Exclusive interview with the author:
1) Thinking back to the way beginning, what’s the most important thing you’ve learned as a writer from then to now?
One of the most important things I’ve learned as a writer is that less really can be more. Less forces you to figure out what you’re really trying to say. Less is better for Dear Reader, right up to the part where something is missing. Fortunately, it’s much easier to tell what’s missing than what is “too much” when you’re self-editing. So, striving for fewer words, less complicated sentence structures, fewer recursions, etc. etc., has made me not only a better writer, but also a more effective editor of my own writing.
2) Be honest, how many drafts did you have to write for this book?
I probably wrote eleven proper drafts from the time I thought I had written a candidate final chapter until I approved the last galley. Wait, is it supposed to be a big number or a small one? I think eleven might be conservative….
3) Considering a book from the first word you write to the moment you see it on a bookstore shelf, what’s your favorite part of the process? What’s your least favorite?
My favorite part of the process might be the flash when the spine of the book becomes clear – after that the writing is so fun, the fear of it not working recedes tremendously. My least favorite part, by a country mile, is copy editing. I love line-editing, trying to get rid of words and sentences and chapters that don’t belong. Copy editing nearly broke me.
4) Is there a soundtrack/playlist for your novel? If so, please share!
“Would Not Come” by Alanis Morissette, “Wonder” by Natalie Merchant, “7” by from the Love Symbol Album by The Artist…, “Skating Away” by Jethro Tull, “Lithium” by Nirvana, “World Leader (Pretend)” by R.E.M., “Front Row” by Alanis Morissette, “What I Got” by Sublime, “In the Flesh”, “Mother” and “The Trial” by Pink Floyd, “That I Would be Good” by Alanis, “Slim Shady” by Eminem, “Tangled Up in Blue” and “Visions of Johanna” by Bob Dylan, and “Time” by Tom Waits
5) What techniques or tools do you use to keep yourself (and your story) organized?
I write with Scrivener and try to use a document for every scene, no matter how short. I also title the scenes in a personal, playful way that makes it easy to jump around and find the ones I want. Those titles all change or disappear, but they can be so helpful in the early days. They can also be early warning signs for scenes which might be duds. If they’re hard to name, it might be because they suck.
About the author:
Kevin A. Hall is an Ivy League graduate of Brown University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and French literature. Despite being diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1989, he went on to become a world-champion Olympic sailor, as well as racing navigator for Emirates Team New Zealand in the 2007 America’s Cup match. A two-time testicular cancer survivor, Hall has spent a successful 25 years as a racing navigator, speed testing manager, and sailing performance and racing instruments expert. A brief version of his story was featured in Joel and Ian Gold’s book “Suspicious Minds: How Culture Shapes Madness”, as the only non-anonymous case study of a patient with “Truman Show” delusion. Hall currently lives in Auckland, New Zealand with his wife and their three children. “Black Sails White Rabbits; Cancer Was the Easy Part” is his first book. Visit Kevin online at kevinahall.com.
Title: Black Sails White Rabbits; Cancer Was the Easy Part
Author: Kevin A. Hall
Author website: kevinahall.com
5 autographed copies will be given away on Friday, April 1, 2016.
Can’t wait? Order a copy now!
PLEASE NOTE: If you already follow us (or the author) on Twitter, or Like us on Facebook, there is no need to unfollow/refollow or unlike/relike to get your entries. Just follow the directions in the widget to verify you already follow/like us and it will count your entry.