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AUTHOR MARK KOOPMANS ON WHY HE WRITES

Good morning everyone! Today is an exciting day in my life and the life of my blog. I am hosting my first guest. What makes it special is that my guest is author Mark Koopmans, who’s been close to my heart since lilicasplace was still a ‘baby blog’.

I didn’t know how the blogging community worked at the time, so I’d visit various blogs and leave comments on posts I liked. One of Mark’s impressed me, so I left a comment. He shocked me when he made his way back here and commented. When I told him I was ‘honored’ by his reply, it affected him in some kinda way, because he wrote a post about it! Read it here. I think I was enamored with the fact that he was a journalist and the winner of a memoir award (which I come to find, happens to be for REVIVAL!) 

I’m proudly taking part in Mark’s current book tour for the release of Revival, the book I reviewed a couple of weeks ago. You can find it here. You’ll also find author information there too!

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Just about everyone who follows me knows my background. Writing is one of my biggest outlets. It’s one of the few creative strategies I use to help myself and my brain heal. I love reading about Mark’s stories and what inspires him, so busy-body that I am,  I just ask. As long as there’s some wine layin’ around, he doesn’t mind answering. 😀

Take it away, Mark …

Aloha,

As I continue the REVIVAL – The Donald Braswell Story Tour, I’ve been looking forward to today. Eva and I know each other a couple of years, and as her regular readers are aware, she’s a fighter, and a true friend with the hugest heart.

Eva asked me to describe why I write.

I had to stop, take a sip of cheap boxed red wine before I answered with a deep, quiet conviction.

“Oh, anyone can write, love. I’m just in it for the money. Thanks for hosting and tomorr— ”

What? You want the real reason?

Easy. I love using the power of words in a positive way. (My superhero name would be WordWarriorManDude-Guy. A handful, perhaps, but we’d fix it in CP edits.)

I was a beat reporter my first few writing gigs, but there was (is) enough bad news reported, so I thought, why not focus on the “silent majority.”

Every day, I drove around spacious neighborhoods, (and we all have a story to tell, right?) I decided to get to know some of our readers.

Armed with my trusty photo ID, reporter’s notepad, recorder (and extra batteries after the first time the darn thing died) I soon wrote features on:

  • A Holocaust survivor
  • A 99-year-old former jazz player who worked in Chicago during the Roaring ‘20s
  • Several veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan
  • A Rwandan Army officer in Cocoa Beach—who’d never touched the ocean
  • Several pastors who were planting new churches
  • A Mom who lost her son in a motorbike crash
  • A Dad who lost his son in Afghanistan

For those last two features, my goal was never, (and never will be), to “ambulance chase” the parents, instead I just let them talk about—and share—the goodness of their child—and what we, the local community had lost.

###

In the past, I’ve worked as a cowboy server in France, a drunken clown in Spain, a busboy in Holland, a restaurant manager in England and a bank teller in Florida.

All those jobs had positive moments, but earning the trust of an interviewee—and honoring that trust—via the final, published piece… well, to me there was (is) no better feeling.

That’s why I write.

Why do you write?

Tomorrow, I’ll be visiting Lisa Buie-Collard who wants to know a little of my history and what life was like growing up in literary Ireland.

♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦

WAIT EVERYBODY!! Don’t leave yet!! There’s a giveaway for some really cool prizes! Click the Rafflecopter link below the prize list to enter!

GRAND PRIZE (2 winners): Donald Braswell to sing (Happy Birthday/Anniversary) via
Skype or phone call. (A unique gift idea!)
1st PLACE PRIZE: Signed Donald Braswell CD/REVIVAL book combo
● 2nd, 3rd and 4th PLACE PRIZES: Signed copies of REVIVAL (by Donald and Mark)
5th, 6th and 7th PLACE PRIZES: Signed copies of Donald Braswell CDs
8th, 9th, and 10th PLACE PRIZES: Signed Donald Braswell 8×10 picture

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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If any of you missed it, here is the Season 3 audition video for America’s Got Talent. Talk about turning the crowd around!

DBraswellGo to donaldbraswell.com to find out more about this amazing man.

 

 

 

KoopYou can find my beloved boxed-wine drinking buddy at markkoopmans.blogspot.com.

 

 

 

If anyone has questions, leave them in my comments! I’m sure Mark will be stalking checking back periodically during the day, and will answer any questions or respond to any comments you have!

 

 

14 thoughts on “AUTHOR MARK KOOPMANS ON WHY HE WRITES

  1. Hi Eva and good to see Mark here – wonderful he helped you in your early days of blogging. Mark – also writing positive thoughts and ideas, and articles about the positivity in people’s lives … so much more interesting than the negative we see around.

    Good luck with Donald – he definitely has a great voice and with a wonderful story, c/o of you, I’m so pleased the book is out .. cheers Hilary

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  2. This is from “Elephant’s Child” (She emailed her comment to me.)

    “I loved Revival. As I knew I would when Mark teased us with snippets during the A to Z.
    Why does he write? Because he has to. It is part of who he is. With boundless curiosity (in the best way) and a huge heart.”

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    • It’s “weird” but it was the only writing that made me happy… I knew these folks wanted an outlet and it was so much fun learning the stories that may never have been told 🙂

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  3. @Jo: Oh, one of these days our little group will meet and then I can’t wait to share some wine tips 🙂 The cowboys I worked for… we were servers at EuroDisney and part of “Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show!”

    @TBM: Our costumes were very dorky, but at least we got to wear blue jeans at work 🙂

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  4. Oh Eva:)

    Thank you so much. I’m really touched and so happy you originally commented on my long-ago post!! Look what can happen in the world, if all make an effort to be honest and friendly 🙂
    I’m looking forward to years more fellowship, fun and friendship with you!

    PS: I had to chuckle with your “beloved boxed-wine drinking buddy” description 🙂 I think I’m going to call Black Box Wines and see if I can be their official spokesman:)

    Love ya!!

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    • So am I, you have no idea! 🙂 You’re the main reason I ‘met’ so many wonderful people. You don’t need to worry, you’re stuck with me now, dude. Love you too!

      Like

  5. Dear Mork, come visit, I have got to turn you on to some good wine. I didn’t know they had cowboys in France either. But then I didn’t know they had opera singers in Texas either. Nice post Eva. Love you both.

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