In PsykoScribble's first ever author interview, I've has invited the author of Jazz Baby, Beem Weeks, to tell us more about himself, and about his writing. Since I've already reviewed, Jazz Baby a few weeks ago on PsykoScribble (see PsykoScribble - May 21, 2014), I'll leave it to readers to check out my review at your leisure. But for now, I'm proud to introduce fellow indie Author and Rave Reviews Book Club member, Beem Weeks!
Beem: My third grade teacher inspired every student in her class to give writing a try. I recall more than one assignment requiring the writing of a short story, a poem, or an essay. I’d already been bitten by the reading bug since kindergarten, so writing, for me, seemed a natural path to travel. It became serious for me as I wrote concert and record reviews for my high school newspaper.
Beem: Jazz Baby came out of a fascination I’ve long had with 1920s America. I recall many stories my grandparents shared from that era and just developed a vivid imagination for what life must have been like during the Jazz Age. I’d watch these amazing documentaries on PBS and the History Channel. Ideas began to form. It took years to research the era, to assure accuracy, and to construct a story that would entertain readers.
Beem: Emily Ann “Baby” Teegarten is a young white girl from a poor family. Her ticket out of poverty is an amazing singing voice, which she uses to sing spirituals in church every Sunday morning. Most people claim she sings with the soul and sound of a black girl, which suits the form of music she prefers—which is jazz. Baby is headstrong to a fault. She intends to get to New York to sing in the jazz clubs—by any means necessary. Fame and fortune is what drives her. But so does a budding sexuality, a taste for the party life, and a need to be seen as something other than the child she truly is. This gets her into situations no thirteen-year-old ought to ever have to face.
Beem: From the reviews I’ve received so far, it’s the narrative voice of Emily that seems to resonate with readers. A few readers were drawn to the action enough to suggest I write a gangster novel for my next project. I’d like to think readers would enjoy the fact that I did a lot of research into the era and locations, creating a story with authentic details.
Beem: I have a collection of short stories entitled Slivers of Life that should be published this summer. I’m still hard at work on my second novel, another historical fiction story called The Secret Collector. The novel is still a ways from publication.
Beem: I’m on Twitter @VoiceOfIndie and @BeemWeeks. I can also be found on GoodReads. Just search for Beem Weeks and leave a message. I always respond to messages on GoodReads.
For readers who are as intrigued as I was by the unique setting and storyline in Jazz Baby, I strongly recommend that you download it for your eReader. It's the best reading value for my dollar that I've had in the past year, and I hope you'll feel that way about it too! Click on the button below to find Jazz Baby on Amazon.com. Read the great reviews and download it today!