Sunday, May 19, 2013

Interview with Julien Ayotte

Julien Ayotte

I met Julien through LinkedIn and I was really impressed with this (dare I say it **smile**) much older man who at his age published his first book and received an Award for it. Well done Julien! 

It just shows you, for those who think that they are done with life or can do nothing new, you are never to old to follow your dream and still have the energy to start with something new. 

It is a honor to have this remarkable man on my blog today. An inspiration to all us younger authors. 

This is what he answered.

1.  Are you famous is the general question I get when family and friends introduces me to their friends. It always left me with a pause as quick comebacks filters through my mind but ending up saying something like ….”Oh gee thanks” and give a shy smile, silly I know but the idea unsettles me. (a)Does this happen to you and (b) what do you say?

My goal is to have written a highly acclaimed novel and for people to thank me for writing it.  There is no greater reward than for readers to want to know when the sequel will be out!

2.  In general do you like to talk about you writing and published books or are you very close-lip about it? If no why?

In the eyes of my family and friends, I am famous in that I successfully wrote a novel, something that many talk about doing but relatively few actually do.  I love talking to anyone about Flower of Heaven because I truly believe it is a winner and I’m extremely proud of the book.

3. What book/s are you currently writing and what is it about?

I am currently writing the sequel to Flower of Heaven and I hope to have it completed and published later this year.

4.  Why this particular genre?

I love a good mystery intertwined with some romance and danger and that’s exactly what I’ve written.  Kirkus Indie Reviews calls it ‘an intriguing thriller that spans the globe’.
5.  What inspire or motivate you to write?

I find writing is therapy for sometimes boredom, sometimes stress release and sometimes the need to create a plot that others would like.
6.  What is the writing process like for you?

Writing is tedious for me at times and I must be in the mood to write or I just walk away.  It is a sporadic occurrence but when it’s there, I can do a full chapter in one sitting.  But then, I may not touch it again for weeks.
7. What is the best and/ or worst part of being a writer?

The best part of being a writer is to have readers tell you how wonderfully well-written your work was and that they wished it could have gone on much longer.  The worst part is the lack of recognition for your novel when you are an unknown and to read the crap out there written by near illiterates who happen to be the son or daughter of someone well-known.  It is harder to market a book than to write one!  By the way, I just received word that Flower of Heaven was the Indie Book of the Day for March 19, 2013, quite an honor given all the new books out there.

8.  Any advice for struggling writers?

Write another book as soon as possible, that’s what I hear.  Often the second book makes people look at your first one again.  John Grisham wrote his first novel, A Time To Kill, and originally it did not do well until he came out with The Firm which was hugely successful.  A Time To Kill then started selling very well and a movie came later.  If you ask Grisham what his best novel was, he will tell you it was his first, A Time To Kill.

Moral: Never give up, keep writing. 
(Heck, I’m 71 and this is my debut novel.)

9. What is your favorite genre to read or write?

Mysteries and suspense thrillers

10.  Favorite author? - My favorites as well **smile**

David Baldacci, John Grisham, Dan Brown, James Patterson, Robert Ludlum

11. Do you have a favorite spot to read and write?

I write everything longhand at first, for me it just feels right.  I do so in a recliner with total peace and quiet for a few hours at a time.

12.  What did you do before you became a writer?

I have a BS, MBA, and PhD, all in finance and business and I served as the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Director at two law firms for 14 years following an equal number of years in the corporate world.  I also was an Adjunct Professor in Investments and Finance on the graduate level at several colleges and universities for over 10 years.

13. Was it a life long dream or triggered recently? 

I guess a lifelong dream.  I started Flower of Heaven in 1987 and finished it in 2012, if that’s not a lifetime, it’s close. **smile**

14. What do you like to do when not writing?

I am an avid tennis player and golfer and run a successful investment club for professionals.  I am retire.

15.  Do you have a bucket/ to-do list and would you share at least two things on it?

       a) a successful novel that becomes a movie
       b) visit my mother’s birthplace in Soiron, Belgium

16.  What have you done so far on this list?

Most items I have achieved, so if I am gone tomorrow, I guess I wouldn’t be too disappointed, but I still have unfinished items yet to achieve.

17.  Most daring thing or experience you have done you would like to share?

Writing the novel and getting it published at age 71.

18.   This or that questions:
  • Coffee or tea - I like both, coffee in the morning, tea thereafter
  • Sweet or Savory - Sweet
  • Home made or Take aways - Homemade meals—my wife is a terrific cook
  • Summer or winter - Summer
  • Early Bird or Night Owl - Both, I am up until 11 pm and usually up by 6 am
  • Visits or telephone -Visits
  • Which social network do you prefer?  -Facebook and LinkedIn   (Twitter still confuses me)
  • Blogger or website? Website
  •  What does your family say about your career? Supportive or Clueless- Very supportive
And Finally
Moto/wisdom in life you live by. 

1. Never expect anything and you will never be disappointed
2. Whatever can go wrong, will!
3. God is good, he allows me to talk to him every day and night.

Best contact that has it all is

For Immediate Release

Contact: Julien Ayotte

Flower of Heaven, the new novel by Julien Ayotte, was honored as the recipient of the Indie Book of the Day Award for March 19, 2013. For more information, click here  

The Indie Book of the Day is a user-powered platform that recognizes the best among Indie Authors by “honoring one awesome book every day” with this award.  Indie’s philosophy is a simple one: authors dream of recognition, of being awarded and honored.  “Not because they are famous or rich authors, but because of their love for writing and the impact of their words in the lives of people.”
“Indie brings the most loved books (by popular vote) and features it to the rest of their visitors for an entire day.  But above all, they honor the person behind the written word and recognize their creativity, contribution, hard work and passion for writing.”
“I am so excited to be recognized by Indie Book of the Day Award for my first novel,” said Ayotte. “The positive response from readers and the book industry is very gratifying”
Flower of Heaven, published in early December, was recently hailed by Kirkus Indie Reviews, the independent book reviewer, as “an intriguing thriller that spans the globe.”

According to the book’s jacket : With evocative detail, high-flying action, and ingenious plot twists, Flower of Heaven is a searing, brilliantly crafted literary debut that will keep readers hungry for every enthralling page. It’s a heart-stopping work that spans continents, while mining the deep channels of the human heart.

For more information, visit

Flower of Heaven is available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble in print format and in e-book format for the Nook and Kindle.

Julien Ayotte lives with his wife, Pauline, in Cumberland, RI. They have three adult children.

About the Book
It’s a thriller that doesn’t quit. From his serene parish in Lincoln, Rhode Island, Father Richard Merrill had led a seemingly quiet life as a man of the cloth, shepherding his flock toward the solace of a higher power. Now, the core of his beliefs is propelled into the darkest chaos. What’s more, it’s all for the sake of his very own flesh and blood, two sons who were long ago given up for adoption. Their mother, Fran├žoise Dupont, a former gallery director at the Louvre, has since married an Arab prince. Herein lies the trouble. The bloodlines of the sons place them in line to succeed her gravely ill husband, now the king. More than a few of the king’s enemies are consumed with stopping them from ascending to the throne.
With help from the FBI, the CIA, and an aging mercenary, the race is on. From France to Haiti, the United States, and the Middle East, Merrill will take whatever measures necessary to save his sons and unmask the scent of the Flower of Heaven.
With evocative detail, high-flying action, and ingenious plot twists, Flower of Heaven is a searing, brilliantly crafted literary debut that will keep readers hungry for every enthralling page. It’s a heart-stopping work that spans continents, while mining the deep channels of the human heart.Indie Book of the Day Award
“Though Merrill serves as the link to all of the characters in the novel, Fran├žoise is its heart… Ayotte brings her character to life as Francoise learns Paris’ landmarks on walks with her father, Louis, suffers the German occupation that abruptly puts an end to their outings; and celebrates when the Allies liberate France. It’s an intimate perspective on a pivotal time in the city’s history… the romance and danger juxtaposed with unusual twists and confused identities create an interesting read.”

Thanks once again Julien for being part of my blog I wish you all the best with the book sales, I know I will support you. Can not wait to buy my own copy.

Next time on In the Limelight with

Liliana Soare
May 22, 2013

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