Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Guest Author Joseph Sottile Visits with Donna McDine at Write What Inspires You

I am pleased to host Joseph "Silly" Sottile on the second day of his Working Writer's Club virtual book tour. Joe and I first met at the NY Eastern SCBWI Conference three years ago. Wow, how time flies. We were introduced by mutual friend and author, Lori Calabrese and we've stayed in contact ever since.

Please welcome Joe as his writing life...

A typical day for me writing is totally atypical. In my heart of hearts, I know that writers should write every day, regardless of the quality of first drafts. Nonetheless, I write when the Muse encourages me, no matter the time of day or circumstances. Most of the time "I have to write," which means that the thoughts that are cascading in my head need to pour out like a man in a barrel going over Niagara Falls. When the Muse strikes I splash those thoughts on a small yellow pad or a big yellow pad with pencil in hand. Or I flood my laptop with whatever is roaring through my mind, disregarding correct spelling or lifeboats. I just want to make it to the island of self-knowledge and awareness, hoping that others will enjoy my findings.

The act of writing defines who I am, and what I want to learn more about.  I can stay up hours and hours, and feel no pain from sitting at a desk hour after hour or from the comfort of my recliner, while my fingertips rain on the keyboard. It's all about getting my thoughts on paper or the screen. Unfortunately, I usually see my first drafts as splendid fish ready and willing to swim upstream.  I love the birth of a poem or essay. Part of me can't believe that I wrote "all of that"!  I don't know if that sounds silly to you, but Robert did say, "No surprises for the writer, no surprises for the reader." I am consistently surprised by what I write, and I find that extremely pleasurable. That's the good news.

The bad news is that I know that I have to revise and revise if I want to publish my thoughts. And as I've grown older, I have accepted revisions and feedback much more gracefully. That's why writer's groups and workshops are so important to the development of a writer. One must do whatever one can to master the tide of rejection.

One of my favorite places to write is on Oak Island in North Carolina. The Atlantic Ocean is only two blocks away from our rented beach house. And when I sit on the back deck or in the sunroom with my trusty laptop, I can see clearly the coastal inlet and watch the birds soar, especially the pelicans.

Sometimes I listen to classical music for the benefit of my Muse, and I marvel at the flight of a nearby pelican, and I have only one wish. I wish for the next segment of time that I can throw myself into writing with the same gusto that a pelican dives for food below the surface of the water. I hope you take a bite out of my books.

Thank you, Donna McDine, for hosting me today. I hope you visit the book tour tomorrow. The URL where Virtual Book Tour will be posted: www.karencioffiwritingandmarketing.com.

Joe, it's been a pleasure hosting you and wishing you all the very best! 

Best wishes,
Donna M. McDine
Award-winning Children's Author
The Golden Pathway ~ August 2010 ~ Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc.
~ Literary Classics Silver Award and Seal of Approval Recipient and Dan Poynter's Global e-Book Awards Finalist


  1. Yes, Donna McDine,thank you for posting this. You have been an inspiration to me since meeting you at a writing conference in Poughkeepsie, New York. I can't believe how much you do as a writer!

    1. Hi Joe,

      Thank you for your heartwarming words, much appreciated.

      All the best,

  2. Great interview. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Terri,

    Glad you enjoyed the interview and thanks for visiting with Joe.

    All the best,


Thank for you taking the time out to visit with me and to learn about my writing career.

Please be sure to leave your blog address so I can reciprocate.

I look forward to visiting you too.