Today’s interview is with Will Pollock, author of Leaving Triscuit. This interview was set up by Elite Book Tours. Welcome to the blog, Will. Tell us something about yourself.
I’m a freelance multimedia journalist, artist and photographer based in Midtown Atlanta. I have a Masters in Journalism from Northwestern and I’m obsessed with good storytelling. A dog lover, art curator, humorist, blogger, activist and sports fan, I try to take on projects that make a difference in people’s lives.
At what point did you know you wanted to be a writer?
For as long as I can remember, but the first spark was in college when I took my first dedicated writing class. after I got my first job in journalism in 1994, I knew storytelling was my jam. 😉
Tell us about your writing process.
A good writer is a dedicated editor, and vice versa. I’ve been in both positions (freelance writer and magazine editor) and having both frames of mind has made me the storyteller I am today. I enjoy burning incense and listening to instrumental music while writing.
What are you passionate about?
In 2006, I lost an aunt I was very close to—from cancer and alcoholism. That year was my “Oprah moment” when I decided to take on projects that make a difference in people’s lives. I’d take on stuff in my wheelhouse, sure, but I wanted to think big and do things that helped folks live more authentically and with dignity. That year I launched ARTvision Atlanta, an arts collaborative.
I give you that background because it has shaped everything I’ve done since. I’ve got non-fiction blood running through my veins; and I love reading and writing first-person accounts of things that make me and hopefully my readers better people.
What is something you cannot live without?
Man after my own heart! When you are not writing, what do you do?
I’m a year-round tennis player, which in Atlanta is a totally do-able exercise. Tennis allows me to relieve stress; ironically, I’m a much better player in my adult years than when I was playing for my high school team back in New York City. I also love watching and playing all sports, travel, photography and (of course) spending time with my beloved Triscuit.
Have you written any books that made a transformative effect on you? If so, in what way?
Absolutely. Leaving Triscuit was initially intended to help transform the way people see and implement their travel away from their pets. And the whole project originated from a deep desire to change my own behavior in the hopes I could help others.
When I was embarking on a 2.5 week trip to Ireland and, when faced with the stress of leaving my dog, Triscuit, I was deeply affected by it. Affected to the point where she was physically ill and I felt incredible dread and worry. I promised myself I’d take on a project that helps people who face the same dilemma. I’ve found it’s a very common experience for parents of fur babies.
The resulting book, Leaving Triscuit: Conscious Departures, Happy Homecomings, is an expansive look at the process of leaving and returning—with tips, comments and deeply resonant thoughts from four different animal-communication and human psychology experts. The core concept is picture imaging: where you lean in to metaphysical and real-world tools to calm yourself and your pet so that you can enjoy time away and not worry. Leaving Triscuit tracks all parts of the trip and how to put these solutions into action.
Where do you get the inspiration for your novels?
I’m a big fan of well-reported news everywhere, and I’m a voracious reader and viewer of things that keep me informed and allow me to form coherent, reasoned opinions. I call myself a “seeker and maker of non-consensus news” for a reason—and I write my own weekly humor and pop-culture blog called CrankyYank.com (in support of my book projects). I’m inspired by writers like Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi and humorists like Stephanie Miller and Bill Maher. Humor is a great way to convey and absorb information, so I always try to weave that in whenever I can.
Do you write from an outline or are you a discovery writer? Why?
This is a great question. I actually do my writing in reverse: I find it nearly impossible to write without a headline or a title and tagline guiding my process. For me it’s the very first step in the process; I use the rest of the writing as a defense of that initial title. Leaving Triscuit was a bit different because I was answering a need and doing interviews long before I found the title. In general, though, I’d say I shade more to the path of discovery. If I’m writing any kind of outline, it might predetermine an outcome different than what my sources tell me.
I’m going to drop you in a remote Alaska cabin for a month. It’s summer so you don’t have worry about freezing to death. I’ll supply the food and the mosquito spray. What do you do while you’re there and what do you bring with you? If you’re bringing books, what are they?
First and foremost on my list: a really good camera. I’d want to capture some of the natural beauty so I can remember it for later and perhaps have some fine-art photography to sell or donate to a good cause. Of course my writing apparatus; some nag champa incense to keep me grounded; and a cookbook so I can have ideas about making local dishes.
Thanks for providing the bug spray!
You’ve apparently been to Alaska before. (Lela smiles) Talk about your books individually.
I’ll start this section with a violation: both of my two books published so far are mission-based topics designed to help people reach for just that little bit more in their lives. Pizza for Good, my first book published by Agate Digital in 2014, is a blueprint on how to use America’s favorite food to fund-raise for worthy causes. It’s actually a hybrid: a cookbook, a storybook, a jokebook and a reporter’s notebook. I’m really proud of that project because it brings pizza back to a local level, and encourages dirt-to-table practices. PFG also has won two awards in recent publishing competitions, which is great.
Leaving Triscuit is my second book and stays with the same theme of helping/inspiring people to see their animals as the exceptionally gifted creatures they are. Every dog and cat is different; but just because they don’t have the gift of speech like we do doesn’t mean they don’t comprehend what’s going on around them. I want to bust that consensus idea that they are subservient, silent participants in our lives. I hope the book does just that.
What do you want readers to think or feel after reading one of your books?
I sort of covered this in earlier responses, but most of all: inspired. Called to be a better person, a more informed consumer, and a more discerning human.
Where do readers find you and your books?
Welcome to my tour stop of “Leaving Triscuit” by Will Pollock, presented by Elite Book Tours. To follow the full tour, please visit here.
“LEAVING TRISCUIT” IS FREE ON AUGUST 9, 10 AND 11!
Say “hello” to better good-byes! “Leaving Triscuit” is a blueprint on how you can heal the stress of leaving pets while you’re away for work or leisure. This poignant and personal story is woven with advice from animal- and human-behavior experts who contribute affirming, indispensible strategies to strengthen and even improve the unique bond between pet and parent. Using picture imaging and harnessing the innate, unspoken connection between pet and parent, your separation anxiety will fade away and a greater understanding will be formed.
Buy @ Amazon
Triscuit gazed at me with forlorn eyes and a worried mug. Agitated and distressed, she was in effect saying, ‘Good grief, not again.’ Triscuit hopped on the bed and straight into the suitcase, as if to plant her flag and insist I pack her, too. As a canine parent, you know this doggie agenda: eyes as big as saucers, ears pinned back, shoulders slumped, spirit hanging low. Like Triscuit and so many other dogs and cats of her intuitive ilk, she knew.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Will Pollock is a freelance multimedia journalist, content wrangler, artist and author based in Atlanta. His love of dogs and animals began early on when his family owned a Great Pyrenees in New York City named Yeti. He decided to write “Leaving Triscuit” after the stress of leaving his beloved Rat Terrier, Triscuit, while on a three-week trip to Ireland. Separation anxiety is a problem for most pet owners, and the tips and strategies Will learned from experts will help ease that pain.
Will is giving away 3 ecopies of his book to the winners of the below Rafflecopter!
The giveaway ends August 24th and is open INTERNATIONALLY!
Direct Giveaway Link: https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d4201899128/
Embed Giveaway Code:
<a class=”rcptr” href=”http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d4201899128/” rel=”nofollow” data-raflid=”d4201899128″ data-theme=”classic” data-template=”” id=”rcwidget_hqtyliam”>a Rafflecopter giveaway</a>