Book Festival and Giveaway: An Interview with John Rourke

Avatar Gaye Levy  |  Updated: February 16, 2021
Book Festival and Giveaway: An Interview with John Rourke

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books library (Custom)Today I share the next author interview in the Backdoor Survival Book Festival.  Rourke – as he likes to be called – is the author of A Survival Story: Part I.  He is also responsible for the very popular prepping website, Modern Survival Online.

Today he shares his answers to my questions and is also providing one of my readers with a free copy of his book.

Before we begin, I would like to announce the winner of last week’s giveaway.  “Deb” has won a copy of Deep Web Secrecy and Security – Guide to the Deep Web and Beyond.  Congratulations!  A will be contacting you by email with some additional information.

Here is what Deb shared as her number one security concern:

My greatest fear is loosing my food supply that grows in my yard. We grow a large part of our fruits and vegetables around the outside of our house. I want to come up with some type of security that would keep people out of our yard without putting up a mile high fence.

Be sure to check out the details of this week’s giveaway below.

Rourke Survival Story (Custom)A Chat with John Rourke

Tell me about your book, A Survival Story.  What is it about?

A Survival Story is a fictional journal written by Jed – a 39 year old man who lives in South Carolina. Jed begins keeping a daily journal to put things in perspective and see if he can figure out where his life is heading. At 39 – Jed has never been married and has no kids. Jed starts the journal two weeks prior to his 20 year high school reunion and at the same time some disturbing world events are happening.

Jed has been a prepper/survivalist for years and begins to intensify his preps as he the news continues to get more and more concerning. Unexpectedly – The Event happens and Jed and the rest of the world will never be the same. Jed continues to write in his journal documenting the struggles he and those around him go through.

Jed works to educate and organize his neighborhood quickly as food stores run out and violence begins to erupt.

A Survival Story: Part I documents the failures and struggles in a typical American neighborhood after a catastrophic events changes everything…..forever.

What type of research did you have to do while writing A Survival Story?

No specific research. I think and plan for this stuff all the time.

How long did it take to write?

I wrote A Survival Story in real time – every night. I started writing June 18th and the final journal entry was on September 12th. What started off as just an idea turned into something I really, really enjoyed. I am not a professionally trained writer and know I make my fair share of grammatical errors – but I am learning. It was fun.

Every book, fiction and non-fiction, includes a message.  What message to you hope my readers will take with them after reading A Survival Story?

Don’t just prepare but THINK. Think about situations and circumstances that you WILL be faced with and then PLAN to accommodate them the best you know how. It is not good enough to have a bunch of beans, bullets and band-aids.

Can you tell us a little bit more about yourself?

I am 42 years old with a wife and two boys – 9 and 13 years old. I live in South Carolina in – you guessed it – a small neighborhood just like that portrayed in A Survival Story.

I have been involved in martial arts in one form or another since my teenage years and for the past 8 years I have been practicing Filipino stick-fighting. Some of my favorite things to do are watching movies, throwing football with my kids, and shooting. I love to garden too.

Do you have plans for another book?

I will be starting Part II on within a couple weeks. Once Part II is done – I will likely publish it. We’ll see how it goes.

Is there anything else you would like to share with my readers?

Well, first off I want to thank you for this opportunity. Beyond that, just keep prepping. No one knows what the future holds.

That’s why we prep, right?

The Book Giveaway

owl reading bookA copy of A Survival Story: Part I has been reserved for one lucky reader.  You know how I like to make things easy so all you need to do to win is to write up a prepping or survival tip in the comment area below.

A winner will be selected next Thursday at random using tools on the website.

The Final Word

It goes without saying that Rourke has been a friend of Backdoor Survival from the very beginning.  I am thrilled that he was willing to participate in the Fall Book Festival and invite you to visit his website at for a lot of great information on a variety of topics.  You will find that Rourke is especially good at the tactical stuff – an area where I tend to be weak.

In closing this week, I echo Rourke’s words:

Keep on prepping. No one knows what the future holds. That’s why we prep, right?

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!


Spotlight Item:  A Survival Story: Part I is written by John Rourke at Modern Online Survival.  This is the first installment of a fictional daily journal written of  “Jed”, a 39 year old man who lives in a small city in South Carolina.  Like many, Jed recently started thinking about his life and the mistakes he has made and wants to come up with a plan to determine where his life his headed. He is an active survivalist and has stocked up on a lot of supplies with an emphasis on the basics of “beans, bullets and band-aids”. Follow along as he chronicles his story of survival and more.

Bargain Bin: Listed below are all of the books in the Backdoor Survival Fall Reading List. There are both fiction and non-fiction titles and a bit of something for everyone. Also, some of these books are Kindle e-books but you do not need a Kindle to read Kindle e-books. Simply download the free Kindle app from the Amazon site and you are good to go.

The Backdoor Survival Fall Reading List – Non-Fiction

Contact!: A Tactical Manual for Post Collapse Survival
Disaster Preparedness: Urban Preppers with Kids, Pets & Parents; Disaster Survival for the Family
Survive Any Food Crisis
The Prepper Next Door: A Practical Guide For Disaster And Emergency Planning
Deep Web Secrecy and Security – Guide to the Deep Web and Beyond
Broken Web The Coming Collapse of the Internet
The Weekend Homesteader: A Twelve-Month Guide to Self-Sufficiency
The Home Schooled Shootist: Training to Fight with a Carbine

The Backdoor Survival Fall Reading List – Fiction

BOCA CHITA: Prepare. Escape. Survive.
299 Days: The Preparation
299 Days: The Collapse
A Survival Story: Part I
11 Steps to Living a Strategic Life

Want to support Backdoor Survival? Purchases earn a small commission and for that I thank you!

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10 Responses to “Book Festival and Giveaway: An Interview with John Rourke”

  1. In addition to your supply inventory sheets, keep copies of them offsite, as well as pictures of your stockpiled items and supporting receipts. If your home were to be destroyed (fire, flood, tornado) before SHTF, you’d have proof of the unusual amount of food and emergency supplies when you’re dealing with the insurance company. Also check to see if your insurance is sufficient to replace those supplies.

  2. Organize those preps! With limited space,time and house host to many coming and going this is one area that I am working hard to resolve. It makes it so much easier to find something you need and to also know what you actually have.

    • Marilyn…you sure hit the nail on the head for me….I have two bob and one large plastic sealable container and I haven’t gotten around to making an inventory sheet for each. So, every time I look for something…I have to search each container. Well, if you have a list of every item in the bag or container..guess what…you can find things quick and easy. Its really a no brainer. Its all part of your suggestion to GET Organized. Thanks for the tip…Rusty

  3. a tip for your bug out bags…vacumm everything you can..when I was putting mine together I was having a hard time stuffing my bag…ohhhh light went off..vacumm the
    tissue paper !! after that everything that I could vacumm I did.light blanket.even the ground sheet..even down to three sets of clothing, (rolled up tightly wth unders inside and using my foodsaver I sealed them. stay dry and fresh. they take up so little room now and it seems to actually make my bag lighter……most important thing is to remember to take something to open the bags…scissors or a knife..
    another thing.if you have pets….make sure you have a picture of them wtih you so
    you can prove (if necessary) they belong to you.keep along with the papers you should
    have in your bug out bag…….

  4. Design procedure lists for each emergency you think you might encounter in your household. Then discuss them with your family.

    Power Outage Short Term/Long Term, etc

    Creating these lists will not only mentally prepare you (so first reaction is “action” instead of “panick”), but they will also help you realize gaps in your plan – whether it’s an item (like a fire extinguisher) or a procedure. Practicing these drills would be the next step.

  5. Folks like me are perfectionists, who tend to overthink things, and don’t start DOING until their plan is PERFECT. My tip: even if you haven’t got everything thought out to perfection yet, still DO SOMETHING, even if it’s just a little bit-by-bit.

  6. I have a couple tips for prepping/survival.

    1. Although we don’t drink soda pop, we collect the 2-liter bottles of soda at parties (or when we entertain, we offer soda as a beverage choice for our guests). Wash the bottles out and fill them with water, but don’t go all the way to the top. Put them in your freezer to freeze solid. If a power outage occurs, then you can put a few of the bottles in your fridge, to keep things cool (the refrigerator acts as an ice cooler), and leave the rest in the freezer. This will allow you an extra week or two to eat up the rest of your frozen foods and perishables so they won’t go to waste. Then, my plan is to use the melted water as water for my pets. Or, as a last resort, for us.

    2. Another tip is to buy those inexpensive solar powered pathway lights for landscaping. I have seen them on clearance for as low as $1 but also as high as about $10 each. We have purchased a dozen of them (for about $3 each at Target). If your power goes out, long term, you can use these by leaving them outdoors during the day and bringing them in at night. They won’t provide bright light, but they will provide enough illumination for you to walk around your home without needing a flashlight or lantern or candle… and when your kids get tucked in at night, if they have one of these in their room “as a night light” you won’t worry about them sleeping with a burning candle near them.

    Those are my tips 🙂 They are simple, cheap and can be pretty useful in a situation where you will be without power for a few weeks or so. Good luck!

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