Monday, April 9, 2012

World of Writing, interview

 -- World of Writing --

It is time for another world of writing interview here on the Brummet's Conscious Blog. Our guest today is J.Dietrich Stroeh.  Mr. Stroeh is an engineer by trade, and his experience in managing the Marin Municipal Water District in the midst of one of the worst drought’s on record. That experience was the basis for his first book, The Man Who Made it Rain, co-written with Michael McCarthy. Three Months: A Caretakers Journey From Heartbreak to Healing, is his second book. He is active in the community and has sat on many state wide national boards. In his spare time he can be found working in his shop on wood projects, restoring cars, and tending to the garden as well as spending time with friends and family. 

 Q: Where are you from?

I live in Marin County, Novato in California (USA) and have for most of my life.  I was born in Pasadena, California and my family moved to Novato when I was 4 years old in 1940.  Marin County is north of San Francisco.

 Q: When did you consider yourself a writer?

I really never did. I’ve just always made notes on different experiences that happened to me. These notes formed the basis of the two books I have written. My first book The Man Who Made it Rain tells of my experiences during the 1976-1977 California drought (especially in Marin County).  It was a challenge to manage the county’s precious water supply.

My second book, just published by FolkHeart Press, is about my wife’s bout with pancreatic cancer. Three Months: A Caregiving Journey from Heartbreak to Healing explores what she and I shared during the final months of her life. Those three months were the amount of time we unexpectedly learned we had between her diagnosis (Dec. 22, 2008) with Stage Four cancer and her death (March 20, 2009).

For each book I worked with professional writers and editors who helped me complete the manuscripts.

 Q: What is your professional and educational background?

I hold a BS degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Nevada and I am licensed in the State of California.  I own a civil engineering firm in Northern California (Marin County) and I practice engineering. 

 Q: What is your mission?

My mission with both books is to inform readers about some pretty important resources: water and loved ones. My hope was to share what I had learned so that maybe life would be a bit easier for someone else.

 Q: What is the best advice you were given about writing?

Know your subject and know what audiences you want to reach with your message. 

 Q: Why did you choose to write non-fiction rather than fiction?

The non-fiction, which is based on my real life experiences, makes it easier for readers to relate to. I feel that these real life scenarios could happen to anyone.

 Q: What was your path to publication?

I worked with a local small publisher and a select group of readers and writing professionals to bring life to each book.  The books were read by many professional proof readers which helped to mold them. I decided to work with small publishers because there was more immediacy for me between concept and the final book. Plus I was able to develop and maintain personal relations with all of those involved and this has benefited all of us.

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