Monday, September 19, 2011

On Writing Author Interview - Boyd Lemon - Author

To avoid pre-conceived notions which can sometimes be connected with certain genres, the number of books published and/or an author's appearance, none of that information will be revealed until the bottom of the interview. So pour a cup of coffee, have a seat, and check out this interview - see how much, or how little, you have in common with this published author.

What is your favorite part of being a writer?  I love writing practice, when I just pick a topic and do a timed writing on it; and I also love writing the first draft of a story or memoir.

 What is your least favorite part?  Proofreading.

Name one obstacle you’ve had to overcome. Learning how not to write like a lawyer.

Is there a specific part of your writing you’re working on to improve?  I think I can improve all parts of my writing.  I hope so.

What part of your writing makes you particularly proud?  How deep and honest I was able to write (my memoir).

What does your favorite main character have in common with you?  My favorite main character was a father trying to relate to his adult children.

Do you do a lot of research for your projects or do you only write about what you already know?  I haven’t written anything yet that I have had to do a lot of research for (except my legal writing), but I would like to.  I enjoy research.

How do you use the internet for your writing?  For factual data and for promotion.

If you’ve won any awards for your writing, what impact do you think that has had?  I have not won any awards yet, but I haven’t applied for any either.

What one marketing tool have you had good success with?   Social networking has sold quite a few books.

What good writing habits have you developed that you think would be helpful to someone starting out?  Writing every day, even if it is only for a few minutes.  Meticulous proofreading myself, and then submitting my writing to a professional proofreader before submitting it for publication.  Also, using beta readers I trust and considering their critiques.

Do you have any bad writing habits that you’d advise writers to avoid?  Good question.  Hurrying my writing and setting deadlines for myself that are unnecessary.

Do you have any strange writing habits?   I like to change the locale of my writing a lot: cafes, home, the beach, on trains, on planes, in my garden, wherever I am.  I also carry a notebook around with me at all times and make notes when something occurs to me that I might want to put in a story or the book I am writing or might write in the future.

When you’re not writing, do you read, and if so, what?  I read a lot—literary fiction, memoir, mystery and once in a while, fantasy; and once in a while, history and historical novels.

What are you trying to accomplish with/through your writing?  Simply self expression and the hope that others will read it and gain something from it.

What words of wisdom do you have for young writers?  Keep writing, every day, if possible; and finish what your write.  Too many novice writers never finish what they write.  For that reason, I recommend starting out with writing short stories, if you want to write fiction, or essays if you want to write non-fiction.  Then after you have written a dozen or so short pieces, go for the longer piece.

What advice do you have for someone looking to get published?  Self publish or submit to small presses.  Don’t waste your time submitting to agents.  The chances of an unknown author being accepted by an agent are too small, and it takes too long.

Any thoughts on what this author writes? How many books published? Here's a little more information about the author...

How many published books are to your credit?  Three.

Do you have an agent?  No. 

Are you self-published?  Yes, for two of my three books

How many different companies have you published with?  Three.

How long have you been writing?   I’ve been writing  about legal topics for 45 years (I’m a retired lawyer), but I have been writing fiction and narrative non-fiction for about five years.

Do you write full-time?  Yes. 

So, any thoughts?  Here's the full scoop: 

Boyd Lemon is 70 years old.  He practiced law for 43 years in California, where he was born and raised.  After writing legal articles and a book, five years ago, he started writing fiction and narrative non-fiction.  He's studied extensively with author and teacher, Natalie Goldberg.  In 2007 he moved to Boston and lived there for three years, after which he moved to Paris for a year.  He returned to California in April 2011 and lives in Ventura in a cottage surrounded by a beautiful garden.  He has four adult children and four grandchildren.

Boyd's titles include “Digging Deep: A Writer Uncovers His Marriages,”  “Unexpected Love and Other Stories” and “Evaluating a Malpractice Case Against a Lawyer.”  They're available for purchase at;;; and

What are you working on now?  I’m working on promoting my memoir.  I’m writing a self-help book about retirement; and every once in a while I take a break and write a piece of short fiction.

Anything else about being a writer that you’d like to share?   It is my life’s passion, but I didn’t discover that until I was 65 years old.

More information on Boyd is available at

Is there anything else you'd like to know about this author, or any questions you'd like added to future interviews?  Let us know...drop us a comment below.


  1. Oh Boyd - you give me energy and hope that I'll be writing for many more years yet. I'll be 58 in another fortnight or so, and I was starting to get tired. But not when I read what you say! Well done.

  2. Great interview! Every time I see the cover of 'Digging Deep' I like it more. And it's a great book, too.

    Thanks guys!

  3. Nice interview. K.S., I like your strategy of putting the personal and publishing info last. I like Boyd's cover too.

  4. Betsy, JD & Rosanne: Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Betsy - I think it's fun reading about the author without knowing what they write. I'm glad you enjoy it!

  5. Nice to know you better, Boyd. And to see that age is no deterrent to success in writing.

  6. Hello all. Great interview, bravo Boyd / Kat. Lots of ooh and ahh moments. :)

  7. Thanks everybody. The support feels great. And, yes, age is no barrier (it's all in your mind), but exercise and eat healthfully so that you maintain good health. And Rosanne, 58--you're still a young chick. You have decades left to write. I can see another 20 or 30 mysteries from you.

  8. Nice interview by K.S.Brooks, covering perfect points relevant to an author.

    Boyd’s language throughout the interview gives the impression that Boyd is a nice man. His replies seems coming from deep within him without editing by intelligence, I appreciate that purity.

    Mr. Boyd is in my contact through Linkedin network and its few other groups. He writes facts from his experience and not by imagination. He has a quality to be helpful to juniors/younger and his intention of writing is very transparent for helping others. I wish Boyd a great success for his memoir “Digging Deep: a writer uncovers his marriages".

    Dr.Jayanti Rusat

  9. Ran across this interview as I was browsing. As a writer myself I appreciate your perspective on writing. I also like the title "Digging Deep." My book "Divorce Vows - A New Approach" is all about looking at relationships from a whole new perspective by digging deep, asking questions and learning how to let your spiritual side help you feel the peace your heart so desires. I can so relate to his answer about being a writer seeking self expression and hoping someone gains from their insights. That's why I wrote my book. To help those go from pain to peace.