Today I share the next author interview and giveaway in the current Backdoor Survival Book Festival. Paul Anthony, the author of After the Blackout, is joining us for an interview and is also providing one lucky reader with a free copy of his book.
Paul first contacted me in August. He told me that he had been giving a lot of thought to the issue of survival in a suburban area outside a large city. He then indicated that although he did not have a lot to contribute to Backdoor Survival, he had written a novel about the suburban survival dilemma and asked for my opinion.
Personally, by writing this book, Paul has contributed a lot more than he can imagine. As you know, survival fiction empowers us to think about situations that are perhaps uncomfortable, if not unthinkable. The genre also gives us an opportunity to learn from the decisions – right or wrong – of the fictional characters.
Enjoy the interview with Paul and be sure to check out the details of this week’s giveaway below.
An Interview with Paul Anthony
Tell me about your book, “After the Blackout”. What is it about?
Many books have been written about surviving after a major disaster, but most take place in rural areas. The main characters usually have a lot in common, and they survived because they were prepared. I’ve read and enjoyed quite a few of those books, but most Americans live in suburbia. I wondered how those folks – people like me – might react if they were cut off from the rest of the world.
After the Blackout is a story about a diverse group of people in a suburban area who manage to survive, and how they overcome their differences to form a new community. Circumstances can change overnight, but people take time to change their behavior. And there are some things about ourselves that we can never change.
This story is about survival, but it’s also about human nature.
What type of research did you have to do while writing “After the Blackout”?
I subscribed to several survival newsletters like Backdoor Survival to get a better idea of what obstacles people would face in this sort of situation. I’m a Libertarian but I wasn’t really a prepper. I’m becoming one now!
How long did it take to write?
The first draft took less than a month, followed by 8 months of editing and re-writing! Actually, I spent about 2 months first, imagining the characters and developing their personalities. Then, when I sat down to write the story, the characters sort of wrote it themselves. It’s their story. I just wrote down what they did. Or, what I imagine they would do. And sometimes they surprised me!
Every book, fiction and non-fiction, includes a message. What message do you hope my readers will take with them after reading “After the Blackout”?
When the unimaginable happens, we are going to have to learn to get along with people who won’t always agree with us. There won’t be many survivors, so the new society will resemble the small town atmosphere that was common 100 years ago. Everyone will know everyone else, and we will all be dependent on each other to some degree.
“Mike”, the main character, starts out stubbornly independent but comes to realize that being a loner isn’t a very good lifestyle. That’s something I’m still working on, personally. I’m not a very social person.
See, you can learn a lot from books – even if you have to write it yourself!
Do you have plans for another book?
Not plans, exactly, but the ending does seem to be begging for a sequel. If I write one, it will probably be about the next generation of survivors in the same town.
Is there anything else you would like to share with my readers?
Readers might wonder why the characters don’t have last names, or why I didn’t go into much detail about their physical features. It wasn’t an oversight. I didn’t want to give away anything that would indicate their race or nationality, so the reader will have to judge the characters by their actions, not by what they look like or where their ancestors came from.
They are all members of the same race – the Human Race. I think that attitude is going to be very important if we are going to survive. Maybe we shouldn’t wait until then to start thinking that way.
The Book Giveaway
A copy of After the Blackout has been reserved for one lucky reader. This week’s question is extra easy:
What prepping item would you like to receive this holiday season?
To enter the giveaway, you need to answer this question by responding in the comments area at the end of this article. The deadline is 6:00 AM Pacific next Thursday and the winner will be selected at random using tools on the random.org website. Also note that the winner will be announced in the Sunday Survival Buzz and he or she will have 72 hours to claim the winning book.
Note: If you are reading this article in your email client, you must go to the Backdoor Survival website to enter this giveaway in the comments area at the bottom of the article.
The Final Word
It is always exciting to receive an email from a novel book. Let us show Paul our support be entering the giveaway to win a copy of his book!
Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
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Spotlight Item: After the Blackout
After a world-wide EMP blast destroyed the technology we all depended upon, most of the world’s population perished. Not right away, of course, but fast-foods were no longer available, and that meant starvation for people who never learned how to cook. Supermarkets were ransacked and burned, leaving even those who knew how to cook with nothing to eat. The final straw for city-dwellers was when the water stopped flowing from their faucets.
This is the story of the scattered survivors in and around a sleepy little suburban town who must find a way to overcome their differences and work together to create a new society – one that treats everyone equally and fairly.
Bargain Bin: Today is all about books. Listed below are all of the books in the current Backdoor Survival Book Festival. There are both fiction and non-fiction titles and a bit of something for everyone.
If you covet an e-Book reader, consider the Kindle. Prices start at $69 for a basic Kindle. At the very least pick up the free Kindle app so that you can read Kindle books on your PC or favorite electronic device.
THE BACKDOOR SURVIVAL BOOK FESTIVAL 4.0 – NON-FICTION
Backyard Cuisine: Bringing Foraged Food to Your Table
Living on the Edge: A Family’s Journey to Self-Sufficiency
Make It Last: Prolonging + Preserving the Things We Love
Make Your Place: Affordable, Sustainable Nesting Skills
The Pocket Guide to Wild Mushrooms: Helpful Tips for Mushrooming in the Field
Good Clean Food
The Amazing 2000-Hour Flashlight
Recipes and Tips for Sustainable Living
The People’s Apocalypse
Go Green, Spend Less, Live Better
THE BACKDOOR SURVIVAL BOOK FESTIVAL 4.0 – FICTION
Going Home: A Novel of Survival (The Survivalist Series)
Surviving Home: A Novel (The Survivalist Series)
Expatriates: A Novel of the Coming Global Collapse
The Border Marches
Rivers: A Novel
After the Blackout
The End: A Postapocalyptic Novel (The New World Series)
The Long Road: A Postapocalyptic Novel (The New World Series)
3 Prepper Romances: Escape To My Arms, plus 2 other e-books (your choice)
Prepper Pete Prepares: An Introduction to Prepping for Kids
THE BACKDOOR SURVIVAL BOOK FESTIVAL 4.0 – LAST MINUTE ADDITIONS
The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking
Escaping Home: A Novel (The Survivalist Series)
Living Ready Pocket Manual – First Aid: Fundamentals for Survival
The monthly specials at Emergency Essentials feature discounts of up to 35% off sometimes a bit more. I have a monthly budget and each month I add a bit more FD products to my long term storage – always making my selection from sale items.
There are a lot new items that are put on sale each month – be sure to take a look.
Note: I earn a small commission on your purchase making this a great way to support Backdoor Survival which will always be free to everyone.
Need something from Amazon (and who doesn’t)? I earn a small commission from purchases made when you begin your Amazon shopping experience here. You still get great Amazon service and the price is the same, no matter what.
Help support Backdoor Survival. Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!
11 Steps to Living a Strategic Life: This little book will provide you with the motivation to get started or stay on track with a self-reliant life. 11 Steps to Living a Strategic Life, co-authored with my long time pal, George Ure (www.urbansurvival.com), and can purchased from Amazon.