Tuesday 11 June 2013

Claiming Jeremiah by Missy Salick, Interview & Spotlight


On the same night that twenty four-year-old Jordyn Sims has a miscarriage, her sister-in-law Tori Sims conceives a child. Nine months later, Tori, a long term heroin addict, abandons her two-hour-old drug addicted newborn Jeremiah, in a hospital stairwell. Jordyn receives the news and pursues foster adoption. However, Oscar, Tori's possessive drug-addicted boyfriend, is not about to give Jeremiah up so easily. While in confrontation with Tori and Oscar, Jordyn seeks help from the Administration of Children Services (ACS), only to discover she is faced with a maze of departments, regulations, legalities and overworked social workers. Jordyn, however, remains strong and continues to push through the uphill battle, even after she discovers she's pregnant.

With all odds against her adoption of Jeremiah, and her pregnancy at high risk from increasing stress, will Jordyn win this tough battle, or will her world crumble before her?

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Author Info

Missy B. Salick is a new author who has written her first novel, Claiming Jeremiah. Her fictional memoir on foster adoption is drawing a hefty buzz, with an online release date not until April 7, 2013 ( May 4 in paperback). The novel is small in size, but contains a powerful message. "Children in foster care need a place to call home."  Salick, a foster care advocate, wrote this book based on her personal journey of foster adopting her four-year-old son.

Before self-publishing, Claiming Jeremiah, Salick spent several years as a freelance business writer for Fortune 500 companies such as: Shearman & Sterling, KPMG, Deloitte and many more. She also had a stint with song ghost writing. Salick's experience in the entertainment industry stems from working with entertainment companies and media including Violator, MBK, Village Voice and more. As the founder of J.J. Autumn Publishing, her publishing company is geared towards highlighting urban fiction dedicated to special causes and community awareness projects.


What was your inspiration for this story?

My personal experience of fostering my son was the inspiration to write Claiming Jeremiah. Through the foster adopting process I realized how many children are in similar situations and need a place to call home. It is such an untouched topic that I decided to raise awareness about the Foster Care system, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Giving every child a home has become my passion and mission.
Do you see a little bit of yourself in any of your characters?

I see a little of myself in both of the main characters, Jordyn & Tori. With Jordyn I understand the frustration of dealing with the foster care system and not getting a solid answer, but rather mountains of paperwork and the runaround. When it comes to Tori, I understand what it is like to be judged and to be misunderstood. No one has the right to judge another person based on his/her decisions or choices. It is not up to us. Each person has to live life their own way and deal with their own consequences and outcomes.
About how long did it take you to write the story?
From beginning to end it took me around two years. I walked away from the first draft for about a year before I returned to revise and publish the final piece.
Did you have any trouble writing it at all?

I had no trouble writing; however, when I completed the first draft I thought I was finished. Once I reread it I knew the story was an incomplete puzzle that was missing some pieces. I had to walk away, take a break, and focus on other areas in my life. Once I came back to the computer the missing pieces flowed naturally, making the story whole.
Tell us a little bit about you as a writer
Do you have any kind of writing schedule?

I do "try" to carve about a certain amount of time per week dedicated to only writing. However, with a full-time job, children, and other family obligations it rarely works out. So, in short, no I don’t. {chuckles}
What is your writing environment like?

Each time I write it’s different. I can write on my phone while walking in the street, write on the train, or in the midst of my kids playing at the park. Although, if I do schedule a time to write and follow through I like my environment to have candles lit, soft music in the background, and a glass of wine nearby.
And what would your ideal writing environment be like?
My ideal environment would be on a beach with my laptop, staring at a sunset, and watching the tide come to shore. The air would be warm but cool enough for pleasant winds. And, of course, wine would be nearby.
If you’re ever stuck for an idea, how do you go about finding inspiration?

I would walk away and take a few days or few weeks to let it go. When I’m not looking that’s when it comes to me.
Did you always want to be a writer?

I always knew I would write but not professionally, a hobby maybe. I was into my early twenties before I realized this was what I wanted my career to be.
What’s the first thing you can remember writing? (it doesn’t have to be published)

Poetry. My first poem I wrote was a Mother’s Day present for my mom. Poetry was my salvation throughout my adolescent years. Instead of speaking about my feelings and emotions I would write them. Writing has saved my sanity on many occasions. There is no better therapy for me.
Do you have any advice for new writers?

Patience is a virtue. As much as we want to speed write to see the final product, it takes time. Relax, gather your thoughts think about the characters and the chapter developments. Think about how much of yourself you want to put on paper and share with the world. Evaluate your material over time. I put down Claiming Jeremiah for a year. When I picked it back up I had fresh ideas to add. Once your story is complete, review, review REVIEW! Find a great team to assist you in promoting and putting the final details on your projects- because there are a lot! When you’re ready publish it on your terms- don’t let anyone tell you how or what you should change. This is your book- and will forever have your name as the author. Continue writing and striving and looking forward. Don’t let anyone discourage your dreams.
Tell us a little bit about you as a person
How do you spend your time when you’re not writing?
My time is divided between working my day job, being with family, or running a business. In my downtime I love to read, bowl, explore the city, or try new activities.
What’s the best way for you to unwind if you’ve had a hard day?

To take a stroll outside for ice cream or a dessert or spend a fun evening with family, shared with laughs and stories.
What are you currently reading?

A Deeper Love Inside by Sister Souljah
What was the last thing you watched?

Fast & Furious 6 with my Hollywood crush Vin Diesel
If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go, and why?

I would go to Africa to see the animal safari and to find out more about the African heritage.
And finally where can my readers find you
My website: www.meetmissy.com
FB page- (Missy B. Salick) www.facebook.com/meetmissy24
Twitter - (@MeetMissy24) www.twitter.com/meetmissy24
Instagram- (@MeetMissy24) http://instagram.com/meetmissy24
Blog- http://jjautumnpublishing.wordpress.com/

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