GUEST POST: LARRY PETERSON, AUTHOR OF, "THE PRIEST AND THE PEACHES" (TRIBUTE BOOKS)
You asked me to tell you a bit about the "writing process." Just remember that this is MY way and, since I am (like my books) a work in progress, this process may metamorphosize into something else as time goes by. Having laid out the disclaimer which comes from my insecurities, let me begin.
For me, the initial process begins with pen and paper. This might be the easiest. It is like my brain is a dump truck loaded with all of the necessary materials to build a house. The paper is the property where the house will be built. So I dump it all in a big pile on the paper as it pours out of my pen or pencil. Now all I have to do is figure out where everything goes. Onward to the keyboard to sort this mess. That's the hard part. I know where the foundation will go and I can see the finished product with its roof, doors, windows, shutters and even the landscaping. That is the "big picture". But I have not been inside that house nor have I painted the outside. I still have to install plumbing, heating, electrical, cabinets, sinks, decide on colors etc. Okay, I have seen the "big picture" and now I have to figure out how all of those NECESSARY parts will fit together. As I write there are many changes that continually take place. By the time I have finished I have re-constructed that house many times.
As far as the characters are concerned (those folks living inside the house) I want the reader to get to know them in a way that they want to know more about them. As I write, these folks develop and sometimes I am even surprised when I find out who they really are and what makes them "tick" or what they are capable of. It is like meeting real people. Sometimes you might meet someone and become life-long friends. Then there are those who initially impress you but you find out soon enough that you just do not "connect". That is the end of that. So, that is the way with me and my characters.
As far as The Priest and The Peaches is concerned the idea came to me at my brother's funeral several years ago. There were five of us and we did lose our folks at an early age. But I had never considered writing about it. Then, after Bobby's funeral, my sister, brothers and I, were reminiscing about our early years. One thing led to another and we were laughing like crazy. All of us had different memories of a shared time in our lives and it was a beautiful afternoon for all of us even though we had just buried our brother. That is when the idea for the book began to germinate. However, it is a work of fiction. I just seized that moment in time and ran with it.
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The Priest and the Peaches Book Summary
Historical fiction novel set in the Bronx in the mid-1960s
Take a seven day journey with the five, newly orphaned Peach kids, as they begin their struggle to remain a family while planning their dad's funeral.
They find an ally in the local parish priest, Father Tim Sullivan, who tries his best to guide them through the strange, unchartered and turbulent waters of "grown-up world." A story that is sad, funny, and inspiring as it shows how the power of family love and faith can overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles.
Larry Peterson's Bio:
Larry Peterson was born and raised in the Bronx, New York. A former Metal Lather/Reinforcing Iron-worker, he left that business after coming down with MS. He, his wife and three kids moved to Florida 30 years ago. Larry began doing freelance newspaper commentary after graduating from Tampa College in 1984.
His first children's picture book, Slippery Willie's Stupid, Ugly Shoes was published in 2011. In 2012, his full length novel, The Priest and the Peaches was released and he is presently working on the sequel.
He also has a blog (http://www.ThePriestandthePeaches.com) where he posts weekly commentary. He lives in Pinellas Park, Florida and his kids and six grandchildren all live within three miles of each other.
Release: January 1, 2012
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REVIEWS BY GMTA FOR "THE PRIEST AND THE PEACHES"
"The Priest and the Peaches" by Larry Peterson is an amazing heart wrenching story about a family and their bond with each other, the unseen forces and the people in their lives. The family consists of a father and five children living together under one roof. They lost their mother to illness and their dad became lose in the world of alcohol and grief. He loves his family and does the best he can consider the circumstances.
When a tragedy hits the Peaches Family they have to fend for themselves and became a close knit family. More calamities occur and they are lost in a personal tumult storm and experience events that were detrimental yet they are courageous, miraculous and the trails transform them all. Their father was as I was seeing my own father when alive; a man who would give his own shirt off his back to help his neighbor and kept his deeds quiet. His mantra of L.Y.N. is such a powerful tonic of unconditional love and teaches others to share. The theme of paying forward had this reader reaching for the tissue box.
The hidden poetry of the story was so familiar to this reader's life I felt as I was reliving some of my childhood experiences and was being pulled into a whirling pool of emotions, from love, anger, hatred and finally forgiveness. The writer has the gift of a master in explaining the secret of how pride, anger and hatred blocks the wondrous gifts that were meant to be cherish, and are lost in the rush of daily life of all business and some strangers and loved ones unleashing their selfish ego attitudes it is not to be spiteful but to hide behind the defenses so they do not have to unveil their broken hearts and shame secrets. I think this author is trying to tell the readers to keep their priorities in order and live life as it was meant to be and let the petty things go.
Everyone in this story is like a family member and it is easy to connect with each one. It was like my uncle and aunt was whispering to me and sharing wisdom with this reader. It is filled with knowledge, love, hope and faith and mysteries we all ponder about.
This author broke down all those barriers by writing a touching soul wrenching story about trials in life and shows with faith anything is possible. The twists and life rituals of this wonderful family and their personal journey through heart ache to victory is very inspiration and has this reader thinking about returning back to her former faith and strive harder to release the human qualities of pride and ego; to connect more with a higher force which may be the answer to live on this planet and we should live as in Let It Be as in the Beatles song.
This book is a winner and has a message for all ages. I was joyfully taken hostage by the story and sad to be release. This reader definitely looks forward to read more enlightening stories from this writer. This choice will probably stay as my number one choice for 2012.
(REVIEW BY SUSANNA MAHONEY)
This was truly an amazing story of The Yimey Peach Family from the Bronx, New York. "The Priest and the Peaches" story started with five children being newly orphaned and their struggle to survive together as a family. With the help of Father Tim Sullivan steering them to make good and wise decisions the children were able to overcome many obstacles that were presented to them. And in the end this Peach Family got a surprise from a person who had once been their enemy, they were now there for them showing much love.
I really did enjoy reading this novel. It did cause me to cry a little but I also laughed at so much of it too. The story really makes one think of just what really could happen when you are an orphan. The book is really a page turner. I believe Mr. Larry Peterson did a excellent job with the telling of this story "The Priest and the Peaches" and I definitely would recommend this novel to all. The Priest and the Peaches" was a excellent read!
(REVIEW BY ARLENA DEAN)
Yimey knew the secret to life. He made sure his family and friends did, too. Even when the love of his life died, he kept the faith. But then, Yimey died and his five children were left to fend for themselves – orphans in a grown up world.
Teddy and his sister, Joanie were now the adults of the house, taking care of the everyday happenings of a family. Their three younger siblings were more than handful. With work to attend, and high school exams to complete, Teddy and Joanie tried hard to fill the enormous shoes their parents left behind.
There were those, however, who did not agree with five children living in an apartment without any adult supervision. Orphans could not raise orphans. Just days after they buried their father, the “adults” went back to work, leaving the younger ones at home. Catastrophic events led the three young children to be taken into custody by the police, and a call made to Child Protection Services. They had lost their mother and father, and now they were about to lose each other. The only way out was through a dead man’s secret to life.
Author, Larry Peterson, uses loving humour to guide his readers through a novel of heartache. He writes with a message to us all, one that shows the true worth of love for thy neighbour. The Priest And The Peaches will leave you with feeling of warmth after days spent in the cold, bleakness of reality. This is a story worth reading and recommending to family, friends and neighbours. The secret to life is worth sharing, right Yimey?
(REVIEW BY LEE-ANN GRAFF VINSON)