Here you go. I hope this answers everyone’s questions about me. (ha, ha). I don’t have a photo of myself, but I thought this literary photo might do. Here I am, checking my ever expanding portfolio from my bestseller book sales. What do you think? I added a cover below from my unfinished novel.
If you have any more questions, please just ask. Please let me know if you need anything more. Oh and the bananas are in the mail.
Sincerely, D.M. Cherubim, Author
When I was four years old, I was playing on a playground swing one sunny day in Madison, Wisconsin, a suburb of Milwaukee. A neighborhood bully wanted to sit on the swing, and I wouldn’t get off. So he grabbed the chains, and began to pull. I struggled to stay on, and he pushed the swing back, and yanked me and the swing forward. Hard. With a “crack,” my wrist broke.
I was just a skinny little child. But I was furious. This boy had broken my wrist. My writing hand was useless. And I was just learning to write.
I didn’t see the bully for a few days. I waited until I saw him on the swing, then I left my house and walked up to him. I had an old fashioned cast on, the heavy plaster kind that has to be cut off by a doctor. I angrily told him he had broken my wrist. He yelled an insult at me and started to come at me. I stepped forward and swung at his head as hard as I could. With the plaster cast. I hit him. He ran screaming to his mother.
I didn’t even mind how much trouble I got in. I remember some stern comments about never taking a swing at any boy with a cast.
Since then, I’ve learned charm works better on boys.
I have wanted to be a book writer since I was a kid. But I had a long, slow path to walk before getting my debut novel published earlier this year.
In college, I was an English Literature Major who loved Shakespeare, Henry James, Jane Austen, Ernest Hemingway, and just about any writer who ever put a pen to paper. I even loved William Faulkner’s endless sentences and James Joyce’s tremendously long prose. I found existentialists and intellectuals interesting. There really was only one kind of writing I truly hated. Newspapers.
I thought the writing in newspapers was too jarring, too sensational, and too trite of a treatment of complex subjects. I hated the newspapers’ obviously biased slants on events. So when I was younger, and all my friends and family were talking about what I should do when I grew up, I refused to consider a journalism career.
After college, where I spent much of my time with my other love – riding and competing horses – the day came when I finally had studied the great writers long enough. I was ready. I sat down to write the great novel myself.
I stared at the page. I looked out the window. I wrote a few lines. I stared some more at the page. I looked out the window. Then I put away the notebook. This scene repeated itself for years. By the time I was out in the working world, I had one last great chance. I had quit working. I was traveling the world with a college friend. I was in the best place for this book writing, I thought. I was in London, the inspiration of some of my favorite authors, such as Charles Dickens and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. But I couldn’t even get the first page of a book done. Writer’s block and I had become like the worst kind of married couple; we hated each other, and we were together until death .
So you’ve already figured out what happened, right? I became a newspaper writer. To overcome writers’ block. My old spouse. It made sense to me at the time. Newspaper people write every day. Whether they like it or not. Otherwise they don’t eat.
To make a long story short, I won writing awards, and became the youngest female Washington, D.C. newspaper bureau chief. I’ve asked U.S. presidents obnoxious questions, bantered politics with a First Lady, and asked highly personal questions of scores of local, national and world leaders. I’ve also interviewed children, bums in the street, drug dealers and Mickey Mouse.
I wrote almost every day for the front pages of some of the U.S.’s best newspapers and my stories went out on national and world news wire services.
But still, no book.
Then one day, I got terribly sick. I ended up in a hospital, and redlined. I had a near death experience. I met God.
As you can guess, it changed my life.
I did quite a lot of things after that day. I quit newspapers for good. I moved close to the beach. I learned how to cook like a chef. I tackled tomato and rose gardening. I’ve traveled a bit. I started writing books. Mostly, I started living.
I finished “Mary Baker and The Eye of the Tiger” my debut novel, in February this year. I have found that living (not breathing, eating, sleeping the news and having ink for blood) means there’s always fun things to do, great places to visit, and new friends to meet. In November, I have a date with a cruise ship. I’m headed to Haiti, Jamaica and Mexico. Book research.
Recently, I began an experiment on Wattpad.com, the world’s largest community for story sharing. For a month, I uploaded chapters for a new book, “The Almost Rock Star (A Ghost Story)”, almost daily. Wattpad, for me, was a natural. Sort of like journalism for authors. My experiment: Would a daily deadline with reader feedback bring me to some sort of completed manuscript quicker?
The answer is yes, with unbelievable benefits.
The Hot, New, ChickLit Paranormal book is unfinished, but it’s already a success. Together with an excerpt of “Mary Baker”, the two had about 10,000 reads. In just a month. Without any advertising at all. I tweeted a little.
“The Almost Rock Star (A Ghost Story)” is meant for adults but has a worldly 16 year old lead female character, Allie Swift, a rich kid runaway from Palm Beach who has an impressive following on YouTube just before she is murdered and ends up living as a ghost. Can Allie find love or meaning in her life after death? This book is charged with a murder mystery, realistic paranormal and supernatural elements, and a romance between soul mates that crosses worlds. It’s an exploration about some questions you’ve been avoiding about death and the afterlife. Mostly, it’s entertainment about the mysterious “other” worlds.
I’ve already planned the sequel to “Mary Baker and The Eye of the Tiger”, a controversial young adult book that places God in the darkest worlds where sorcerers and magical wizards think they operate without scrutiny from Heaven. God and magic in the same book? And there’s a magic school? And this is for children! Good Lord!
But while writer’s block has long ago left me for other authors, I’m stuck with a different problem now: time. I have found that self-publishing, formatting, uploading, designing covers, posting to Wattpad, social media, and most of all, watching my emails, takes so much time that it keeps me from writing.
“No time to write” is Writer’s Block’s evil brother.
So, through the rest of this year, I’m going to hunt for an agent for “The Almost Rock Star”, which should be done before my trip. I’m going to gather some great color and characters for a new book on this cruise I’m taking in November. I might revive some of my other half-finished works.
Oh, and about that neighborhood kid I mentioned? He survived. I saw him on the playground not long after. He never stayed on the swing when I showed up or got near me again. Lately I’ve been thinking about writing a kids’ book about bullies.
Meanwhile, please come read two books by a former award-winning journalist who had a near-death experience. I promise you’ll at least have something interesting to talk about at your next dinner party.
“Mary Baker and The Eye of the Tiger” is on Amazon.com worldwide and coming soon to iBooks, Barnes & Noble, and more.
“The Almost Rock Star (A Ghost Story)”series is on Wattpad.com for now.