About the Author
in North America, Europe, Oceania, Africa, the Middle East and Asia; and is a contributing writer, along with Maya Angelou, to You the Writer by Guth and Rico (Houghtin-Mifflin Co.), The Real Meaning of Life by David Seaman (New World Library) and From Eulogy to Joy (Cynthia Kuhn Beischel).
Gabriel’s books include over a dozen works of fiction and nonfiction (by a variety of publishers). The Last Conception (a novel); Buddha’s Wife (a novel); Don’t Just Sit There, Do Something! Grief’s Wake Up Call; Saint Catherine’s Baby (stories); The Skin of Lions: Rwandan Folk Tales; Paging Doctor Leff: Pride, Patriotism & Protest (biography); Luscious Chocolate Smoothies: An irresistible collection of healthy cocoa delights; and Good Grief: Love, Loss & Laughter, are a few of his most recent titles. Buddha’s Wifehas been adapted into a contemporary screenplay for film and presently seeking a producer.
He has edited and collaborated on numerous manuscripts and writing projects, including Village Wisdom by Ley Ly Hayslip, A Woman Of Heart by Marcy Alancraig (Mazo Publishers), Eye to Eye by Russel Downing ((DeVors), Thief of Hope by Cindy Young-Turner (Crescent Moon Press), Hairball Diaries by Katy Byrne (Langmarc Publishing), and web and add content for Cloudburst Games. His book reviews at The New York Journal of Books are thoughtful, entertaining and informative.
What inspires you to write romance books?
Personal experience, the stories of other’s relationships and what people find exciting, loving and true (for them), is what inspires my writing. Being able to convey these experiences so people may indulge in someone else’s life, and perhaps feel what it is like in another’s shoes, triggers my mind, fantasies and ideas.
Tell us about how you write:
My fiction stories are drawn partly from reality and fantasy.
LOVING ANNALISE is based on a true story, and was written after a number of interview’s with the real-life heroine, thus it was outlined already. Though I knew the end, it was only during the writing of the story that the heroine’s voice told me what to focus on and which way to go.
BUDDHA’S WIFE was the only novel I’ve outlined completely and prepared background stories for each of the characters.
THE LAST CONCEPTION began with an idea, which later included family experiences, and national issues. It was not outlined, nor were the characters.
ZEN MASTER TOVA TARANTINO TOSHIBA: THE ILLUSTRIOUS AND DELUSIONAL ABBESS OF SATIRE was based on an old book called “Zen Flesh, Zen Bones”. The layout was similar to that book, and it’s themes, but all of the stories, koans, and fables are fictional.
SAINT CATHERINE’S BABY is a collection of short stories. None of the stories were outlined, nor the characters developed previous to the writing. They each evolved organically, as they were written.
I always write my original manuscript, for fiction, in long hand and then begin editing and/or re-structuring the story, as I am typing the manuscript onto the computer.
Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
For THE LAST CONCEPTION, and especially BUDDHA’S WIFE, I didn’t so much “talk to” the characters, but rather felt as if they were speaking through me and I for them.
The primary way characters interact in my stories, and with myself, is based on whether their actions and words make sense and ring true for who they are.
What advice would you give other writers?
People say write what you know, and a little of each of us comes through everything we touch, but romance (and fiction in general) can be based on and created, without any personal experience.
If writing historical, contemporary or cross-cultural romantic fiction, make sure to do a lot of research, interviews, and background, so the place, time and character’s ring true.
Write what moves you, not what you think may or may not be the next big seller, what is presently popular, or what you think publisher’s are looking for.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
Four of my fiction books are published with traditional publishing houses and four are self-published.
Not really sure how I chose to do either (independent or publisher). Factors include publisher’s wanting to publish my work, easy access (and higher royalties) for self-publishing, and how long I wish to wait to get book into marketplace.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
The future of book publishing is bright and exciting. Traditional is morphing into independent and vice-a-versa. The possibilities and varieties of platforms and outlets is every-changing and reader’s are more open to acquiring literature from numerous places.
What genres do you write:: literature, romance, women’s, erotica, cross-cultural, contemporary, children’s,
What formats are your books in: Both eBook and Print