Author Spotlight: Ben Burgess Jr.
KG: What is one word to best describe your writing style?
KG: Who is the target audience for readers of your work?
BB: I feel my target audience is adults of all races.
KG: Describe your writing life.
BB: I try to write something every day. I have a notebook at work that I keep on me, a notepad on my phone, and if I'm driving, I used the voice memos app on my phone to take down any ideas for dialogue and story ideas that come to mind. After work, I often sit at the diner and write on my laptop while I eat, and sometimes I go to the library when I want to get a lot of writing done with no distractions. Sometimes I write at home, but when you have three kids, it's hard.
KG: What is your greatest literary accomplishment?
BB: Over my literary career, I have won 28 awards, but my greatest accomplishment is seeing my books on the shelves of Barnes and Nobles. Seeing that made me feel like all the hard work had paid off.
KG: What has been the greatest lesson you've learned since becoming a published author, and advice would you give an aspiring author?
BB: The greatest lesson I've learned is that marketing is challenging. If you don't have a plan and you're not aggressive with getting your book out there, it won't sell. I would give aspiring authors advice, be persistent, believe in yourself, set realistic goals, and have a plan and a backup plan.
KG: Tell me about your latest release and what made you write it.
BB: My latest release was "A father's sacrifice: Daddy's Girl" I wrote this book because I felt there weren't many positive books that represented Black men. Most books were negative, and I wanted to give a fresh and optimistic story about a Black Father. My book is about a single father raising a Biracial daughter on his own. With all of my projects, I like to create relatable, unique stories and make the reader think.
KG: How has Covid19 affected your literary career?
BB: Covid has affected my career. I had planned to do many in-person events to improve my brand, but that hasn't happened yet due to the pandemic.
KG: What are some other projects that you are working on besides being an author?
BB: My next goal is to adapt my novels to films. I've written a screenplay for "Defining Moments: Black and White," and I have won a film festival and placed in five others so far. My goal is to gain a major film studio's attention and see my book on the big screen!
KG: Lastly, what book did you read that made you fall in love with reading?
BB: My favorite book of all time is Richard Wright's "Native Son" That book made me fall in love with writing, but Eric Jerome Dickey's novel, "Milk in my Coffee" is a book that made me want to become an author. If it weren't for those two books, I wouldn't be who I am now.