March 19, 2016
CTC – Welcome! Today I am pleased to present an interview with Vincent Robert Annunziato, author of 33 Degrees and Status The Game.
Thank you so much, Vincent, for taking time to answer some questions for my readers today. So, let’s get started.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
VRA – Definitely after I graduated college. The closest before that was in high school when I published a poem in the school magazine. To be honest it was kind of dark. I studied communications in college with a concentration on television sciences. I really fell in love with the dramatic arts at that time and wanted mainly to direct TV and film. When I stepped out of school (Hofstra U.) I moved to Los Angeles from New York to go for the big time. It was there that I cultivated a love for screenwriting with the impetus of wanting to be a Director. It has been a dream of mine to write a book since I was around 25.
CTC – How long does it take you to write a book?
VRA – On average about 7 months, but lately due to my normal profession it has been taking a little longer.
CTC – What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?
VRA – My normal workday is 0630 to 5pm and I have a commute surrounding that. I find time at least two times a week and whatever I have left I dedicate to weekends.
CTC – What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
VRA – I talk to my characters. Especially if I am stumped, frustrated or surprised. When I wrote my first book, “Status The Game” I walked out of my office shaking my head and mumbling. Of course my wife sees this and asks if everything is okay. I respond, “Dammit! El just made a decision I didn’t expect.” She of course thought I lost my mind. I had spent 4 weeks building to this one scene and the character totally did the opposite of what I expected. Of course it made for good reading. Figure if I am surprised, then the audience is too.
CTC – Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
VRA – I don’t know actually. Sometimes they just come to me spontaneously. I keep a list of my ideas and usually put in about 1500 words when I begin. I will keep it there until I decide on a story. I won’t stop until I finish.
CTC – When did you write your first book and how old were you?
VRA – Ugh! I was 48 when I published it and 47 when I started writing.
CTC – What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
VRA – I love Bassett Hounds (we have one called Annabelle), spending time with my family, fishing, boating and if I really have time… building terrariums.
CTC – What does your family think of your writing?
VRA – They love my stories. Even my wife who does not like the genre I normally write in has been very impressed. My youngest son is the one who is most intrigued. He’s eleven and is enamored with the writing. I write for my kids mainly.
CTC – What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
VRA – The fact that I enjoyed writing so much and how much I had matured since I wrote in my twenties. I gave up writing to start a family even though I wanted very much to make it in the film industry.
CTC – How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?
VRA – I have written two books and am close to finishing my third. I don’t have a favorite. I love “Status” because it is a very unique concept and I played with things you don’t normally see in books today. I love “33” because of the pace and it is written in first person. I love that you can get so intimate with a character. There are also concepts in there that have not been done before.
CTC – Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? If so, what are they?
VRA – I believe in developing the craft. Focus on the basics. Good solid characterization that includes arcs and recognizable dialogue. Too many writers don’t take the time to distinguish the voice of a character and it falls flat.
Make sure your plots and subplots are well mapped out. Your pacing will develop once you have the story nicely tied together. I highly recommend white boarding so you can see the whole picture.
And don’t be afraid to take risks. Find something that sets you apart. This one aspect will help you find the art form in writing. One of the problems we have in publishing is that the market is over saturated. The only thing that can possibly separate you from the pack is a well-crafted story with some artistic intent.
CTC – Do you hear from your readers much? What kinds of things do they say?
VRA – I am very new and am still learning the marketing aspects of this business. I would say that I do hear occasionally on Facebook from people who have read my stuff. I love it when somebody decides to reach out. A lot of times I am asked for advice on writing.
CTC – Do you like to create books for adults?
VRA – I will write just about anything and chose the YA books because of my kids. I have some standalone ideas that I want to write for adults in the Sci-Fi/Fantasy genre.
CTC – What do you think makes a good story?
VRA – Good stories are well crafted stories that have all of the basics accounted for. Stories that are visual, contain some form of conflict really appeal to me. Conflict doesn’t have to be overt, it can be subtle. Lastly, I like depth. Many layers of it. I want my subconscious to be fed as well as my conscious and I like to feel the emotion of my characters.
CTC – As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?
VRA – President, cowboy, policeman, fireman, doctor, veterinarian. Should I keep going? 🙂
CTC – Is there anything else that you would like for the audience to know?
VRA – I am just very thankful to have been able to be published at this point in my life. It has been a dream of mine for over 25 years. I think my books have a very visual appeal, especially since I spent so much time trying to make it as a screenwriter early in my life. I have tried to develop a hard-hitting style that will make you feel like you are there with the characters. Kind of like you are watching a movie.
Thank you so much! And hope to catch you all reading my books. LOL
CTC – You can find Vincent’s book here:
And, you can follow him here:
Bob Brooks is down on his luck. He ekes out a living as a substitute teacher and grabs odd jobs to make ends meet. Life goes from bad to worse until Bob reads about a new internet game called Status.