HEIDI'S PICK SIX
1. Which of your characters is your favorite?
Robert Hamlin, main character from my first novel In My Dreams. He epitomizes what is best in all of us.
2. Tell me about your travels.
3. Coffee, tea, or milk?
That's easy, milk. Have only had one cup of coffee in my entire life. Thought it tasted horrible. Wish I said that about beer when I was in college.
4. What else can you do besides write?
Numerous things. Work full-time as an investigator. Teach American Politics, part-time, at two local community colleges, now for fifteen years. Try to be the best father I can. Am currently training to try and set the world record for walking on a treadmill. Event will correspond with the release of my second novel, The Call of Angels in September of 2008.
5. Who are you reading right now?
6. Pop culture or academia?
7. What is the toughest scene you ever wrote?
8. Where do you find your inspirations to write?
9. Food you could eat everyday.
That's simple: any pasta dish or pizza. I love spaghetti. Food is full of carbs.
10. Are you into sports or other physical activities?
I love sports, particularly football. Sports unite us as a community and give us something to cheer for, in a positive manner. I exercise a lot. As mentioned above, I am training for a world record attempt event next September. To date, I have lost 22 pounds for the year. After eating a large meal, go and work it off. I exercise now 4-6 days a week, from raking leaves to walking to swimming to running up a hill to jump-roping to leaping on a trampoline. I've learned in the past year you can lose weight and eat what you want. Here is the simple formula: you will lose weight if you burn more calories each month than what you take in. (The trick is do not weigh in each day because you'll be frustrated. Weigh-in once a month---and watch the results.)
11. What kind of music speaks to you?
Anything that is upbeat, positive and loud. That eliminates country music (lol). I love percussion instruments, which helps explain why I've gone to see Blue Man Group four times. When I pursue my attempt on the treadmill next year, upbeat music will help to keep me walking between 2 and 6 (am).
12. Do you outline your stories or do they just take you along for the ride?
13. Celebrity crush.
14. Who are the biggest influences on your work?
15. Do you still watch cartoons?
James T. Durkin is the author of In My Dreams, a novel about a young man from the Suburbs of Chicago who gets elected President of the U.S. at the age of 29. Many cities in the Chicagoland Area are named in the storyline. He has completed writing the sequel, The Call of Angels that continues the storyline set forth in his first novel. It is scheduled to be published in August of 2008.
Durkin is a Civil Investigator serving as a contract employee for an agency of the federal government. Before beginning his career he earned both his Bachelor and Masters of Science Degrees in Political Science from Illinois State University.
He is a part-time college instructor of American Politics. Teaching Political Science classes since 1992, he believes in a lively discussion format and encourages his students to challenge their opinions in addressing today’s problems. He performs various charitable activities. They include: participating in a number of activities in his church; walking as a Team Member at the Relay for the American Cancer Society at Downers Grove North HS and organizing an annual drive in February through his church to collect personal care items to benefit the Woodridge Community Pantry.
Durkin is also training to set the World Record for walking on a treadmill. He is doing the walk to raise awareness of Deep Venous Thrombosis (DVT), which is having blood clots in the deep vein of a leg; and to benefit a local educational foundation. The event is scheduled for September of 2008.
He used his experiences from working on several political campaigns, knowledge about politics from teaching in the classroom, and from his academic studies to write a novel that many readers have described as educational, inspirational, and motivational.
Also, he is the co-founder of the Authors Marketing Group. The group consists of published authors from the Chicago Area who wish to share positive marketing experiences with other published or potential authors on how to sell more books. The group meets six times each year at the Woodridge Public Library.