There are not too many books written by a male about male coming-of-age experiences. This is a unique book and will be loved by male and female readers. The themes are many: bullying, friendships, dealing with death, and falling in love.
We struggled with the editing of this book. Because it is written in the first person voice of a 17 year-old, we didn’t want to edit so heavily that we took away his authentic voice. In the end, we approached it as if it was a diary and left an awful lot of things we would have changed. Some people won’t agree with this decision, but I hope readers and reviewers will look at the story for what it is, a deeply emotive narrative by a teenage boy.
Its author, Adem Besim, is a driven writer and will go far in his chosen profession. His answers to the following question will give you some insight into his journey and some tips for writers who are still waiting for that magic acceptance letter.
Adem Besim was born, raised and still lives in Kyabram, Victoria. He is presently studying for a Diploma in Professional Writing and Editing at Bendigo TAFE. He started his writing journey at 14 years of age.
He says, 'I started writing because I'd always had a passion for it from when I was a small child. Visits to bookshops with my father and author visits at school inspired me. I always felt at my happiest listening to authors speaking about their books. Writing gives me that same feeling. That's how I knew that this was what I was born to do; there was nothing else I felt more certain about.”
Q. Who is your favourite author and why?
A. I think my favourite author is John Marsden, as he is a renowned and well-respected author of Australian Young Adult literature. His novels have a depth and realism about them that I’ve found inspiring. I also like to read Archimede Fusillo, Scot Gardner, Tom Perrotta and JK Rowling.
Q. What are the greatest obstacles you've experienced on your writing journey?
A. The greatest obstacles I’ve overcome have been the doubt in my own head. There have been times when it seemed there was no point and no way I could ever be published, or I didn’t feel smart enough. But knowing it was my true passion, I continued with it anyway.
Q. What do you love most about writing books?
A. I love the idea of accomplishment and having achieved a life-long dream. This experience is a dream-come-true. Having a published book means that I can leave my mark on the world and encourage others to follow their goals.
Q. What advice would you have for anyone wanting to write a book in your genre?
A. The advice I’d give YA writers is to look back and recall your own experiences. Your work will be better for it and your readers will be able to relate to your novel. The best writing comes from experience.
Q. Did you have your manuscript professionally edited before it was sent to publishers?
A. Yes, I had my manuscript professionally edited by a woman I met through my Professional Writing & Editing course. She has a certificate in structural editing and copy-editing. I knew from very early on that she was trustworthy and the right person for the job. She picked up certain things in the manuscript (in terms of novel development and skill) that really surprised me. The Morris Publishing team picked up much more.
Q. Did you submit your manuscript to many publishers before you had an offer to publish?
A. Before I submitted to Morris Publishing Australia, I’d submitted it seven times to other publishing houses. I was very surprised (and happy) by Morris Publishing Australia’s response.
SYNOPSIS: This is a coming-of-age story about triumph and tragedy, love and loss, acceptance and letting go.
Life's looking pretty awesome for 17-year-old, Nathan Thompson. He's the goal-kicking superstar from the small town of Kyabram. Nathan's in his final year of school and has big plans set for the future; like winning the Thirds’ premiership cup, acing his Year Twelve exams, and finally graduating. One problem – his tough and over-bearing father, Mark, has other plans for him. He desperately wants Nathan to be the next AFL player to come out of Kyabram.
He seems set to stop Nathan from following his dreams of studying architecture at university. But a thirty-year-old secret of Mark's that resurfaces on Nathan's 18th birthday changes everything. Will it force Nathan and his father further apart or help them reconcile their fragile relationship?
As well as dealing with that problem, Nathan’s year gets worse as he deals with death, bullying and first love.
Follow the blog tour and find out what the reviewers thought of this novel and learn more about Adem.
Blog Tour schedule:
Nov-19 http://www.kids-bookreview.com Interview
Nov-20 http://elaineoustonauthor.com Interview
Nov-23 http://authorjillsmith.wordpress.com review
Nov 27 http://christinemareebell.wordpress.com review
Dec-01 http://www.buzzwordsmagazine.com review by Di Bates
Dec-04 www.sherfordbear.co.uk Review
WHOLESALE AND RETAIL ORDERS:
Morris Publishing Australia - http://www.morrispublishingaustralia.com
Dennis Jones and Associates: www.dennisjones.com.au
James Bennett library suppliers: www.bennett.com.au
The Nile Bookshop: www.thenile.com.au
Paperback and eBook available on Amazon and many online stores.