Interview with Cary Smith, author of 'Four Corners, Or A Book That Will Tickle Your Intellectual Nipple

Cary Smith, the nom de plume of Greg Hawkins, lives in San Jose, CA. He became interested in books and writing because of a teacher. His favorite book is "Hocus Pocus," by Kurt Vonnegut or “100 Years of Solitude” by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. He is currently either going to finish his collection of short stories next or turn one of his short stories into a novel, which would be a new take on the ghost genre.

His latest book is Four Corners, Or a Book That Will Tickle Your Intellectual Nipple.

Visit him on Facebook at

Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life, Cary.  Can you tell us how long you’ve been writing and how your journey led to
writing your latest book, Four Corners or A Book That Will Tickle Your Intellectual Nipple?

I started writing just after high school, so almost ten years. This was my first project, work, so I’ve been working on it on and off again for a while.

Q: How did you choose your title and was it your first choice?

I chose the title after finally being myself, writing in a voice that was truly mine. It was not my first choice. The original title was just “Four Corners.” I was trying to be this ultra serious, literary person, but that is not who I am at all. I’m more of a blend of the two, and I’m not smart enough to remember the terminology for those two terms combined, but am not dumb enough to not know there is terminology which would have made all of this a lot shorter and more concise.

Q: We all know that publishers can’t do all of the publicity and that some lies on the author.  What has your publisher done so far to publicize the book and what have you done?

Well, I hired a publicist, Charlie Barrett, and he’s been nothing but help. I’m not the publicity, marketing type and I wanted to give the book a chance to succeed, so I felt some one like Charlie would help with those chances greatly, especially since I don’t know very many people, and didn’t go to a very good school. I’m a big believer in letting people do their jobs, and that philosophy also stems from me being a bit lazy. I turned to Facebook, which in turn got me a lot of thumbs up and likes, but that was all, so I stopped with that.

Q: Open to a random page in your book.  Can you tell us what is happening?

Probably not.

Q: Do you plan subsequent books?

Maybe. The process is really exhausting, and I’m not one of those people who say they write for themselves, so they don’t care if they have no fans, etc. I’m the exact opposite. If I have no fans, what is the point, really? So, given the current state of my writing career, it might not be worth it to pour all that effort on the page. Although, I do have various works that have been started or have an outline for a bigger work, but I don’t want them to be just for me and my mom, and fiancée, especially since my mom and fiancée don’t even read.

Q: What is the one thing you learned about your book AFTER it was published?

It’s probably not that good.

Q: What is your most favorite time of the day or night to write?

Night. The day makes me more sleepy, which is odd.

Q: What is usually better – the book or the movie?

50/50, sometimes the book, sometimes the movie, but these days…almost always the book, but movies always make way more money…so…

Q:  You’re about to write your next book.  What did you learn from your previous book to help you write your next book?

Wait to see if it’s worth it, because what’s the point if it’s all in vain.

Q: Finally, what’s your best tip you can give to writers who want to be published?

Who cares what agents and publishers say. Most of the time their wrong, and nowadays they only want you if you’ve already been successful or went to some boring MFA school, so don’t give up.
Q: Do you have any final words?

Thank you.
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