On Being a Small Press Author – Annie O’Sullivan

Running a small press is just like running a business with a group of employees – well almost. I don’t actually get to see them every day and we can’t gather around the water cooler to chat. Since we all see each other only virtually, I thought it might be nice to ‘introduce’ our authors to both each other and their readers via a series of short interviews. These interviews will run every couple of days for the next month or so – it’s a neat way of finding out how similar authors can be, and yet so different.

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It gives me great pleasure to introduce you to Annie O’Sullivan. Annie is one of our very first writers and she submitted her book to an unknown press when we were only a month or two old. She is the author of Can You Hear Me Now?, which we originally published as only parts of her story, but recently released all three as a full book. Annie’s harrowing tale of her life as a severely abused child has haunted me for over three years. It has made me reflect on myself as a parent and given me nightmares of what happens every day to children who may live just down the street from me. Her strength and courage to present her story and to work directly with her readers has resulted in her saving lives, directly helping scores of people and has touched and inspired thousands of readers. Her book continues to be one of our bestsellers, over three years after it was first published. She is an inspiration for anyone – and I commend her for all that she has accomplished in her life. She remains one of my heroes.

1. The first book I can remember reading is:  “The Little Red Hen”

2. The first book I ever wrote was: In the first grade I wrote a little fold over book and even sewed the pages together !  “The sky falls down”

3. An average day in my life goes like this:  up at 530 AM, coffee, walk the dog, at work by 730, meetings, grant writing, more meetings, go home, walk the dog again, work on FB pages, blog, and web pages answering emails from readers.  In between all that, my grand-daughter who is 6 calls me on Skype and reads to me.

4. I found out about Central Avenue Publishing from: an ad that ran late at night on the side of FACEBOOK.  I decided to submit my book because: They were looking for new writers.

5. The last book I read was: Glass Castles, by  Jeanette Walls

6. In order for me to sit down and write, I need: coffee, cleaned house, good light

7. My ‘day job’ is: I write and manage lands actions for the Bureau of Land Management

8. I carve out time to write by:  It is the same time most days, like an appointment with myself

9. In order to find time to write, I feel as though I sacrifice: social time,

10. I am currently working on: blog radio show that is starting in the fall, and researching audio books and how to do them

11. The best piece of advice I ever got was from: When you work, work hard.  When you play, play hard.  And if you find something you are passionate about you will discover that all you do is play hard.  It was from: My First Sargent at my first assignment in the Marines.  I was 18 years old.

12. The best piece of advice I would give is: Dream big and pursue it,  Never let anyone ever tell you anything you dream of doing is impossible.

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