Burton H. Wolfe [burtonhwolfe]
What did you first read? How did you begin to write? Who were the first to read what you wrote?
I first read the Hardy Boys adventure and Tarzan books.
My first published writing was for the junior high school newspaper; I was 12 years old.
The first to read what I wrote were the junior high school students.
What is your favorite genre? Can you provide a link to a site where we can read some of your work or learn something about it?
Controversy is my favorite genre.You will find plenty of it by getting my controversial, pioneering, unique e-books: Mind Opening Books. They are the literary equivalent of nuclear bombs. The link to the web site of Mind Opening Books is as follows:
What is your creative process like? What happens before sitting down to write?
I get ideas from every conceivable source - newspaper and magazine articles, books, tv programs, conversation with individuals, and on and on. An idea has popped into my head while looking at something in a telephone book. Ideas pop into my head at all times of the day and night, via connections to past experiences.
Other than forming ideas, nothing happens before sitting down to write.
What type of reading inspires you to write?
Any kind of reading.
What do you think are the basic ingredients of a story?
For fiction, the writer's own neuroses.
For non-fiction, the evidence available.
What voice do you find most to your liking: first person or third person?
Makes no difference to me.
What well known writers do you admire most?
Edward Bellamy, Thomas Wolfe (of Look Homeward Angel), Alan Harrington (of The Immortalist), Ernest Becker, Charles Dickens
What is required for a character to be believable? How do you create yours?
I write non-fiction. So, obviously my characters are taken from real life.
Are you equally good at telling stories orally?
The stories I have told - on tv and radio shows, on speaking engagements at universities and other places - are true stories. Since I never give a prepared speech, and what comes out orally is rather disorganized, I have to say I am nowhere as good orally as I am in writing.
Deep down inside, who do you write for?
People who can think beyond the all-prevailing bullshit.
Is writing a form of personal therapy? Are internal conflicts a creative force?
Nah, that has nothing to do with it. I write to educate and to a lesser extent to entertain.
Does reader feed-back help you?
Once in awhile. It is rare that someone can convince me I am wrong.
Do you participate in competitions? Have you received any awards?
I am only in competition with myself.
For a partial list of my awards over the years, see any standard bibliographical source - such as Who' Who in America. My complete CV is available on request to my email address, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you share rough drafts of your writings with someone whose opinion you trust?
No. And I do not do rough drafts. I have what I want to say organized in my mind. The first explosion of it in Word is the basic work which I edit and revise.
Do you believe you have already found "your voice" or is that something one is always searching for?
I found my voice in the 1960's and 1970's when my writing and talks were all over the place. My voice since then has been lost because the newspaper, magazine, and book publishers of today do not have guts enough to publish the extremely controversial stuff I produce. What I am searching for is not my voice, which has been there a long time and is more accurate and devastating than ever; rather, what I am searching for is a publisher to let my voice be heard.
What discipline do you impose on yourself regarding schedules, goals, etc.?
I am undisciplined. I have no schedule. I write when I feel like it.
What do you surround yourself with in your work area in order to help your concentrate?
Do you write on a computer? Do you print frequently? Do you correct on paper? What is your process?
I compose within Word. My corrections are made there. I save my work to My Documents. I convert my e-books to pdf. I print out certain types of information, but not my own work. Everything I produce goes out via email, either in the body of it or via a Word document attached to an email.
What sites do you frequent on-line to share experiences or information?
I do not frequent any sites to share experiences or information. I get online newsletters and journals, and view certain web sites, to obtain information and the experiences of others.
What has been your experience with publishers?
The experiences in the 1960's and 1970's were mostly positive. Since then they have ranged downward from negative to horrible. They are so gutless that I cannot deal with them. I have given up soliciting periodical assignments - after a long career in which hundreds of my articles and essays were published in a wide variety of periodicals not only in the U.S. but also in other countries. And I no longer ask print publishers to take my work. I find it futile. I publish my controversial stuff in e-books that I promote by email and sell from my web site, Mind Opening Books.com.
What are you working on now?
Right now I am working on pleading papers because I am pursuing public interest litigation in the Broward County/Florida courts. I did a lot of that in California, thought I was through with it when I moved to Florida, but became angry enough by certain developments that I am at it again. So, for the time being, everything but writing legal papers is on hold.
What do you recommend I do with all those things I wrote years ago but have never been able to bring myself to show anyone?
If you cannot bring yourself to show your writing to anyone, you are lost. It means that either you are afraid to find out that your material is unpublishable or you yourself already do not really believe that your stuff is any good. So, you might as well throw it away. You have to believe that what you have done is good, and you have to want to show it to people, editors, and publishers. If you believe that your manuscripts are worth reading, offer them when you come across a periodical or book publisher that seems to be interested in the kind of thing you have written.
Burton H. Wolfe
Coconut Creek, Florida - USA