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Today I share the first author interview and book giveaway in the latest Backdoor Survival Book Festival. James Wesley Rawles, the author of Expatriates: A Novel of the Coming Global Collapse, is joining us today for an interview and is also providing one reader with a free copy of his latest book.
As most of you know, James (or Jim as he likes to be called) is a prolific writer in addition to blogging at his website, SurvivalBlog.com. Enjoy the interview and be sure to check out the details of this week’s giveaway below.
AN INTERVIEW WITH James Wesley Rawles
Tell me about your novel, Expatriates. What is it about?
To start, I should mention that Expatriates is the fourth book in the Patriots novel series, which is about a near-future socioeconomic collapse. I use an unusual contemporaneous approach to writing sequels. Rather than the traditional formula of following the same group of characters in sequential installments, I show different characters in different geographic regions, but in the same near-future timeframe as in Patriots. So it isn’t necessary to have read the other novels before you read Expatriates.
Expatriates is set primarily in the Philippines, northern Australia, and Florida. The main characters are American ex-pats—a missionary family on Samar Island in the Philippines and a young Texan petroleum engineer living in Darwin, Australia. (Darwin is up on the tropical northern coast of Australia.) Another storyline follows a family in central Florida that is related to the family in the Philippines.
My goal with this book was to illustrate the international repercussions of an economic collapse. In Expatriates I show one likely outcome of a power vacuum in Australasia, when American military influence quickly disappears. Sensing that there will be no American response, a newly-radicalized Indonesia begins a jihad, and in rapid succession invades the Philippines, East Timor, Papua New Guinea, and finally northern Australia.
Most of the second half of the novel describes those calamitous events from the perspective of American expatriates in Australia.
What type of research did you have to do while writing Expatriates?
I did a lot of correspondence and conducted phone interviews with Australians and American ex-pats in Australia and the Philippines. I also corresponded with a number of subject matter experts in America and overseas.
How long did it take to write?
Roughly one year–although I had outlined all of the key storyline elements a year earlier.
Every book, fiction and non-fiction, includes a message. What message do you hope my readers will take with them after reading Expatriates?
Like all of my other novels, Expatriates is a tool to encourage family preparedness. If families prepare for the dreaded “worst case scenario,” then they can handle lesser disasters in stride. My novels are essentially survival manuals dressed as fiction. Most folks read them twice—the first time through for the fun of it, and the second time with a notepad and highlighting pen close at hand, taking notes.
Can you tell us a little bit more about yourself?
I served as a U.S. Army Intelligence officer in the late 1980s and early 1990s. I resigned shortly after being promoted to Captain. I live on a remote ranch in the Inland Northwest, where my family strives to be as self-sufficient as possible. I write a daily blog at SurvivalBlog.com. Between writing the blog, writing my books, and work on the ranch, I keep very busy.
Do you have plans for another book?
Yes, I’ve just written a non-fiction book, tentatively titled Tools For Survival, that will be released by Penguin in May of 2014. I’m also drafting another novel, titled Liberators. That one will be set mainly in the Bella Coola region of western Canada, and in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.
Is there anything else you would like to share with my readers?
I encourage everyone to think seriously about preparedness, and to set your family budget accordingly. You need to ask yourself: What is more important —a new jet ski and a big screen HDTV, or being prepared for the worst?
THE BOOK GIVEAWAY
A copy of Expatriates has been reserved for one lucky reader. Here is this week’s question:
What is the biggest mistake you have made in your “Prepping” career?
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 not 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
I am thrilled that Jim was willing to take the time to share his thoughts with Backdoor Survival. His book, as with all books in the survival fiction genre, teaches us that even through we do our best to prepare, circumstances do not cooperate and we must rely on our survival skills and the unwavering faith in our ability to prevail, no matter how bad things get.
I hope you will enter the giveaway to win your own copy of this fabulous new book!
Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
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Spotlight Item: Expatriates: A Novel of the Coming Global Collapse
This a story about two expat families who struggle for survival in the midst of a global economic collapse. When the United States suffers a major socioeconomic collapse, a power vacuum sweeps the globe. A newly radicalized Islamic government rises to power in Indonesia, invades the Philippines, East Timor, Papua New Guinea, and finally northern Australia.
No longer protected by American military interests, Australia must repel an invasion alone. In the thick of these political maneuvers, an American family of missionaries living in the Philippines and a Texan petroleum engineer in Australia must face the fear of being strangers in a world in flux. Are their relatives back home healthy and safe? Will they ever see them again?
Bargain Bin: Today is all about books. Listed below are all of the books in the current Backdoor Survival Summer Reading List. There are both fiction and non-fiction titles and a bit of something for everyone.
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 Post Apocalyptic Novel (The New World Vol 1)
The Long Road (The New World Vol 2)
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)
Shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Specials: The monthly specials at Emergency Essentials feature discounts of up to 35% off sometimes a bit more.
Recent purchases from Emergency Essentials
A couple of the top sale items this month are the Freeze-Dried Diced Roast Beef Steak at 32% off and as well as the Hot Cocoa Combo which is 16% off.
You know how I like to have comfort foods and hot chocolate is right up there on the list. This particular combo includes 4 cans: French Vanilla, Mint Truffle, Raspberry, and your basic Gourmet Creamy Hot Chocolate.
For a head start on your holiday gift giving, a dozen red emergency candles – including gift bags and bows – are on sale at $49.99 or 41% off. These are great candles, even for non-emergency purposes.
Shop the Emergency Essentials Monthly Specials
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59 Responses to “BDS Book Festival: Expatriates + Interview With James Wesley Rawles”
Biggest mistake was waiting too long before certain food items in the proper containers before bugs got to them. Don’t put off storage for to long.
The biggest mistake I have made is thinking I could do everything by myself. I have found that I need a small group of like minded people. They have made all the difference in both my prepping and in my whole life. Thinking I could do it alone was so overwhelming that I almost gave up.
The biggest mistake I made was thinking I could do it all alone. Without others, both those doing it longer and those I am learning with, I have found that I need help. A small trusted group that have the same goals and mindset have been the most valuable thing in my life, rather prepping or just in life.
My biggest mistake has probably been not keeping an inventory of everything I have. Like someone else said, I just dump it in the “first aid bin” or the “batteries” bin in the basement. I have no idea what I really have or how much, & I sometimes buy duplicates I didn’t mean to. Whoops. I just chalk it up to the “2 is 1, 1 is none” theory, or maybe the charity pile.
Second biggest is probably worrying that my spouse thinks I’m nuts, going overboard, etc., so tempering how much I really want to do. My prepper gal friends always tell me “someday he’ll be thankful you prepared!” LOL.
Honestly, my biggest mistake has been not prepping earlier, although I saw the signs of a coming economic collapse many years ago. I know I should have been preparing back when I started feeling edgy about things, not wait til recently, then prep like crazy.
It’s like studying for the test just before you sit down to take it. It’s neither intelligent nor advisable.
I have only been prepping for a few months so have probably made lots of mistakes that I haven’t discovered yet. The biggest mistake I have made so far was deciding I didn’t need a bug out bag because a) I couldn’t carry 25-50lbs and b) I would survive about 5 minutes in the bush if I managed to hike out of the suburbs. No thanks – I would rather stay put. Then I started thinking about why I prepped. I read a pamphlet for foreigners in Japan on evacuating due to typhoon, earthquake or tsunami. The focus was on what to bring with you to a shelter. That made a lot of sense to me. So now my bob is a coming along nicely, packed in a rollerboard suitcase and containing food, water, first aid and hygiene supplies and extra clothing. I have a flashlight and extra batteries but no survival gear to speak of. If I have to evacuate due to a natural disaster I can.
My biggest mistake, is: not getting started sooner, and as a single woman, living in the city, in the desert; I find it hard to find info that relates to my situation. It’s generally geared towards GUYS, livng Out There- on land in the middle of nowhere, and having big tools, equipment and apparently LOTS of cash. It’s just me, and several animals. However, I have started putting things together, need way more pertinent info. Thnaks!!
Underestimating the effort it takes to ignite, build and sustain a fire that will keep you warm, boil your water, and last long enough to actually let you sleep for a few hours without dying out
I have felt the need to be aware and prepare for more years then I’d like to admit. But actually putting things aside and doing it was my downfall. Trying to make up for lost time sometimes is overwhelming. But I can things and mylar and do lots of research and print things off making books of how to’s etc. Money is always the issue so doing things that aren’t as costly but just as effective is the key for me. Sometimes takes extra research using what I have to prepare for when we won’t have at all.
Not starting sooner, that is my biggest mistake.