Author Jim Mosquera Interview Questions
Tell us a little bit about yourself?
My family emigrated to the United States from Panama when I was young. My first language was Spanish. I grew up in the Midwest and have a couple of degrees in Industrial Engineering. I held a variety of management positions in the telecom/tech field and in parallel developed expertise in the financial markets and the economy.
I am deeply passionate about sports and in another life, I might have worked for ESPN. I remain physically active and have participated in a wide range of team sports and other outdoor activities. It wasn’t too long ago that people would come up to me and ask if I was a professional athlete due to my height and build.
How long have you been writing?
I published my first book late 2010. Prior to that I was the author and editor of a self-published financial newsletter.
When did you know you wanted to be a writer? Was it a gradual decision or did you just suddenly know?
I’m not sure I had a singular moment when it hit me. I was always a pretty strong writer/communicator in the business world so I felt I could make the transition. I drew motivation from my father’s illness, knowing he would pass away, and worked hard to publish my first book prior to his passing — I made it by a couple of weeks.
What genres do you write?
For non-fiction, it is business/economics/finance. The non-fiction series is written under the banner of Escaping Oz. For fiction, it is thrillers that have a blend of politics/cyber/financial crisis. The thrillers are under the Chandler Scott Banner.
What is your favorite story or character that you have written?
I’ve based my thriller series around Chandler Scott. His is a story of a young man thrust into the middle of important crises facing the United States. Chandler learns to balance the responsibilities of being a journalist with his newfound love. He’s fortunate to have a brilliant mentor who helps him grow especially as country grows to rely on him. Along his journey, he meets another important mentor, a mysterious character who eventually reveals his true identity in the third book. The Chandler Scott series will jolt readers, many who have already expressed how the first two books hit very close to home.
What time of day to you prefer to write?
Any hour of the day is good though I do not consider myself a night owl.
Do you have a special writing space?
I have a home office where I do most of it. I’ve also done the “coffee shop” routine and have edited on airplanes.
Do you outline your books ahead of time or just go for it?
Yes, I create a general paragraph first. Then I create an outline that gets progressively more detailed. For some, it might extend well beyond a traditional outline. I also create a spreadsheet where I track chapter/scene/character/location/date/description. The spreadsheet is helpful to minimize plot holes.
Who are your favorite authors?
I can’t say that anyone stands out in particular. In high school, one of my favorite classes was Modern Novel, where we read American classics like the Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, and The Old Man and the Sea by Hemingway. I loved the symbolism of the Great Gatsby. For more contemporary authors, I’ve enjoyed Dan Brown and Tom Clancy. Brown and Clancy create realistic backdrops to their stories. I’ve tried to do the same thing.
Your latest book “Division” is a thriller. What was the inspiration behind it and is there anything you would like readers to know?
As I write these words, the title “Division” may change, but it’s the “leader in the clubhouse.” Division is the third novel in the Chandler Scott series.
I have purposefully created a different tone and pace with each book to reflect how crises evolve. Crises tend to evolve slowly at first and then suddenly, or what seems like all at once. It’s like a snowflake and an avalanche. Snow can pile up on the side of a mountain, flake by flake, with the uncertainty of when the pile erupts into an avalanche.
The first book in the series, 2020, is foundational. It’s a little heavier in character development and will have scenes the reader can reflect upon in the third book. This book will move more slowly at first and then accelerates to a cliff hanger ending.
The second book, Rebellium, is a reaction to what happens in 2020 and that book’s ending. The pace is quicker than the first. The snow has built up on the mountain’s side and some is cascading off the pile though it was not a full release.
The third book, Division, is also a reaction to the second book with an even faster pace. Readers will face the avalanche and wonder how Chandler can “save” the country.
Each book gets progressively shorter in length.
Is this a series and if so how many books are planned for the series?
Yes, this is the third book in the Chandler Scott series. There are many storylines that can follow after the third book. Like a chef, I don’t enjoy cooking/writing for myself. Sales of the series have to increase in order for this cook to create another dish.
When is the next book due out?
Spring of 2017.
Where can readers find out more about you?
I have an author web site (www.JimMosquera.com), my financial site (www.TheSentinel.biz), and now my book storefront (sentinelbooks.papertrell.com). My book storefront offers e-books and audio books like you might find on Amazon for the same price. I have an application (Apple, Android) that allows for listening and reading within the same platform. Book prices should be identical to Amazon.
Is there are question I haven’t asked that you would love to answer?
Yes, there is. There are sociological messages transmitted through some of the characters in the Chandler Scott series. The series is reflective of the fissures currently evident in the United States.
In my non-fiction series of books, I discuss the intersection of politics and economics. That intersection is very evident in the first book, 2020. The political and social consequences of what happens in 2020, come to life in the next two books. The series describes the chilling path that could emerge in this country. I’ve had some people tell me that when they read the first book, not only did they learn some things, but they also didn’t think it was that far-fetched.
A big thank you to Jim for answering all my questions. I hope you’ve enjoyed this interview and I look forward to seeing who will be featured next week.
Until next time,