My guest today is the highly accomplished and talented, Chuck Sambuchino.
To most aspiring writers buzzing through cyber-space, Chuck Sambuchino is known for his incredibly informative blog, Guide to Literary Agents. Every day, five days a week, you can read tips from accomplished writers, successful queries from literary agents, highlights of how debut novelist landed their first deal and interviews of your favorite authors and agents.
Chuck is a producer playwright, a magazine writer, and freelance editor. He is the author of Formatting & Submitting Your Manuscript, 3rd Edition and his newest, How to Survive a Garden Gnome Attack. He is the editor of Guide to Literary Agents and the Screenwriter’s & Playwright’s Market and was recently named the editor of Children’s Writer’s & Illustrator’s Market.
He teaches, lectures, writes informative articles for magazines and other blogs and has enough time for his family and his music. Besides that, he is also a husband, owner of a flabby dog, cover band guitarist, and chocolate chip cookie fiend.
Chuck’s Garden Ghome book is written with wry humor and presented with great illustrations. This is a wonderful selection for a stocking stuffer to anyone on your Christmas or Hanukah list. Give it to your best friend or cousin, give it to someone for their birthday or wedding anniversary, and buy a copy for yourself.
Move over zombies and adolescent vampires. There’s a new threat in town–and it’s only twelve inches tall. How to Survive a Garden Gnome Attack is the only comprehensive survival guide that will help prevent, prepare for, and ward off an imminent home invasion by the common garden gnome.
Chuck, thank you for being with Ramblings today. How did you first become aware of the major threat posed by the innocent looking gnome?
I have always been very creeped out by the average garden gnome. It probably has something to do with the fact that I was attacked by a gnome as a youngster. Ever since then, I have been dedicated to spreading the truth about these dangerous lawn warriors.
You state in your book that urban dwellers have little to fear of a gnome attack. What of those in Manhattan with roof terraces and courtyard gardens? Drat. How can the most unsuspecting in the urban sprawl such as the Big Apple protect themselves from an invasion?
Granted, urban loft dwellers are low-risk targets, but they can still be killed by tiny, vicious garden gnomes. The fact is: Gnomes are everywhere, proliferating at an alarming rate. By 2020, they will outnumber humans and WWIII will begin. It will be just like the apocalyptic future in TERMINATOR 2, except instead of machines, it will be gnomes.
No matter what part of the country you reside, we suggest you make an effort to become familiar with how you can protect yourself and your family from an unwanted attack. Chuck what are some of the early warning signs?
Animals acting strange. Misplaced wheelbarrows. Missing tools from outside and silverware from inside. Small footprints in wet mud. Garden vegetables stunted or discolored (a sign they’ve been poisoned!). And then, of course, you may actually SEE an animate gnome or two. They are usually crafty enough not to be caught moving around, but you never know.
I am thinking you were the kid in school who was known for being a prankster. How have you taken that mischievous kid and turned him into a mega-success?
First of all, I am not a mega-success, though you are very kind. I am simply a writer trying to make his way in the world. But yes, I was a class clown. Not much has changed. I am still a fan of stirring the pot and riling people up. Once a prankster, always a prankster.
I know that the busiest among us are those who get the most done. You balance your personal life with the demands of being a lecturer, teacher, editor, writer and musician. Do you have any tips or advice for those who want to pursue a career in writing, but can’t afford to quit their day job?
Find some form of writing or project that you really love. The thing is: When I get home from working at the publishing house, all I want to do is write. It’s because writing does not seem like work to me. It’s fun. I could work five hours on something and keep going. If you can have fun doing it, you will yearn to spend your free time writing. Otherwise, people just tend to veg out in front of the TV too much. Also, if your day job has nothing to do with writing, it will take you a bit longer in your journey, because you have less free time. Just be patient. All success is passion with hard work and patience.
What one aspect of your work gives you the most satisfaction?
Two things. First is hearing people say “I got my agent because of you” or “I got published because of you.” That is so rewarding and gratifying. The second is simply walking into bookstores all over the country, from Miami to San Diego, and being able to find my books. That is a wonderful feeling.
When was the last time you made a routine inspection of your garden?
I don’t have a garden because I fear gnomes. However, I always send my dog out into the yard first to scare off any prowling lawn warriors who may be visiting from other yards. My dog is not a fighter, but he’s certainly fat enough to scare gnomes away.
It’s getting late, do you know where your gnomes are hiding tonight?
They are heavily sedated in my basement, locked in cages. I bring a few gnomes with me places to show as samples when speaking.
I hope all my readers enjoyed meeting and learning more about Chuck. Please leave comments and/or questions and thanks again for coming by.
Your Chance to Win
Chuck has generously offered to give away a copy of How to Survive a GARDEN GNOME ATTACK
To enter the drawing, just leave a comment for Chuck by midnight Thursday, December 9th (Eastern Standard Time).
On Friday, December 10th I will hold the drawing and post the winners’ name here. The winner can get in touch with me to provide mailing information. We do not share your information with anyone.
Note: Offer void where prohibited.
Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.