Happy Friday! Today’s indie author is Trel W. Sidoruk. Read about his cross-country adventure with his family and his simple plan for world peace that involves cookies (sounds good to me). Do some holiday shopping at Amazon where Trel has The Alien Club on sale this weekend for $0.99!
Hell on Earth is a phrase that has been used to describe everything from war to gridlock. Now it will be used to literally describe Hell on Earth. The Bronx can be hard and hot, especially when you’ve decided to screw the mob in the middle of the summer. Professor Dunlop is a loser’s loser, posting a winless record over the past decade, both personally and professionally. He’s got one shot at the title, but as with most boxers with a glass jaw relying on a puncher’s chance, he’s no more likely to succeed than a snowball in Hell. The Mob wants him, but the Devil owns him. Nothing left to lose, including his soul, Dunlop goes to the mats on the very people that coined the term. All Hell breaks loose, even before, Hell breaks loose…
A truly mesmerizing journey created by a series of tragic and fanciful events that are thrust into motion by seemingly mundane issues that grip and alter the trajectory of an innocent youth. The Alien Club follows the path forged by a ten-year-old boy, blindly clawing his way through the confusing, frightening and utterly fascinating life afforded him via a magical neighborhood situated in suburbia USA, during the summer of 1979. The book tackles real world issues affecting today’s youth, i.e. peer pressure, child abuse, drugs, family dynamics, even your first love. A handbook for a first time explorer, The Alien Club presents the naked truths, pitfalls and opportunities that present a young soul’s journey into the beyond. Read as an adult, reminiscing and/or rehashing your youth, or read with your child as a guide to facilitate a meaningful dialogue. A worthwhile tale!
If you could tell your younger writing self anything, what would it be?
Be the journey. Don’t be the kid that continually asks, “Are we there yet?” Look out the windows and roll them down whenever possible. Let the wind blow through your hair while you still have it.
The process of writing The Alien Club was a moment in time I will never forget. I had started writing the book more than 25 years ago and picked it and discarded more times than I care to recall. Fast forward to three years ago – We sold everything in New York (Wasn’t much…) and decided to travel the country for a year to find a new home. My wife was able to home school all three children, due her being an English teacher prior to them entering the world, and of course, an amazing, loving mother. (3 separate curriculums, spanning 7 years in age… You think writing a book is hard? WOW!)
Outside of affording them an education neither of us could have dreamed of giving them, I was able to finish the book (and take it to another level entirely). My oldest daughter, Isabella Rose, became the Assistant Editor on the book. Sharing our love of books and my youth during such a magical, finite moment in our relationship was an unexpected vision quest. The intimate environment that only a 12 X 33 foot tin tube can afford a family, made the story I was writing, tangible.
I could see it every day. The interactions between the children, their spellbinding imaginations and unfiltered desire to know the truth of everything. I began to take inspiration from everything around me. I relived my childhood through them, and then in turn poured those unfiltered feelings and memories into the story. I began meaningful dialogues with my parents and sister, which was a major feat, considering they were all in Heaven. Before writing the book, I would have thought that to be madness. It wasn’t… It was therapeutic. Writing was therapy… Until that happened, I didn’t know the true power of the pen. The journey was epic. Allowing myself to be fully immersed within the journey was the secret to finding my way home. Remember young writer – When you’re on the open road, make sure to open the windows and stick your head out like a dog!
What is something memorable you’ve heard from your readers/fans?
Being that I wrote the book with my Daughter, and developed the story into an important piece of literature (I believe so at least), it was extremely gratifying to have a father contact me with a heartfelt thank you. He had begun reading the story and at about a third of the way through, realized the book was a perfect opportunity to bond with his 12-year-old son. He used the book to open a dialogue about certain influences and self-evident truths that would greatly impact his life. They read the book together over several nights, and on a rainy weekend when the family had gone up state.
When we spoke over the phone, I could feel his throat tighten as he remarked on how well their relationship was going ever since reading the story together. How he felt more comfortable sharing tales of his youth, both happy and sad with his son, and how his son in turn had opened up to him.
Though similar scenarios via email and online reviews have happened several times since, this particular phone call will go down as one of the most memorable moments of my entire life.
What do you love most about the writing process?
I love leaving reality and getting inside the story. I do not write a story, I witness it. I am merely taking dictation, hoping to type as fast the characters talk. I love following them… Seeing where and what they’ll do next. Watching them, while being strangely vested in them, allows me to enjoy their success or failure in a uniquely intimate, but yet sterile way.
What’s your favorite kind of cookie and why?
Neiman Marcus Bars a.k.a. Vacuum Cleaner Cookies
My mom changed up the recipe back in the day and renamed them Vacuum Cleaner Cookies, because they would literally be sucked off the pan, before they were even cool enough to be put on a plate to serve. Sooooo good. My wife made them (Still does from time to time), but my oldest daughter makes them at least once a month, and the smell reminds me of LaRue Drive and a loving kitchen… If the world leaders got together tomorrow and were forced to smell warm butter, cream cheese and vanilla cake mix, there would be a chance at world peace. Make a batch today and start loving life to its fullest!
Who would win a fight between Spiderman and Batman?
I don’t want to sound like an expert on this, because in reality, I couldn’t fight my way out of a paper bag, but… my last book, Hitman from Hell, did force me to workout extensive fight scenes between characters (There’s also a massive battle in The Alien Club). As with all my stories, I allow the characters to fight for themselves. What does that mean? I do not predetermine the winner, even if it means a character I want to win, dies. How do I do this – Similar in fashion to how I did it as a kid playing Dungeons & Dragons (a board game from the 70’s & 80’s). I layout each characters’ physical and mental attributes, as well as if they have the element of surprise and/or weapons. I then take those parameters and play a chess game – move, counter move – until one is standing and the other is not.
A huge element to Spiderman VS Batman would be the element of surprise. And being that both Super Heroes have heightened senses (Spiderman literally has Spidey Sense), getting the jump on the other would be the most difficult aspect of the battle for either to accomplish.
In the end, I think Batman would win. Batman is far more intelligent and ruthless. In addition, if he had the proper time to prepare for the battle, he would have more than enough Spiderman specific weapons and countermeasures created to thwart Spider Man’s webs.
If you could be any character in fiction, who would you be?
Karsa Orlong – He is the ultimate man. I have over the years (I’m much better since my mid-life crisis) been unhappy my physical attributes… Low self-esteem, coupled with an active imagination has left me second guessing myself on questions no one asked. Karsa is a warrior, philosopher, dreamer, lover, leader, etc… Basically everything I want to be. If you read some of the books he’s in, you’ll know he’s done some terrible things (so I will put an asterisk next to my selection, for I would like to omit those horrific acts of debauchery to my story), but maybe in the end, those moments define his character and journey just as much as the good he did. Such is life in fantasy adventure…
Trel W. Sidoruk is first and foremost a family man. Having been blessed with a beautiful life that started in Brooklyn, NY in 1973, his life has been a series of very fortunate and extremely unfortunate events.
Since leaving Brooklyn at the ripe old age of 18 months, Trel has lived in an old whaling town along the north shore of Long Island, a beach community in southern California, a ghetto in Boston, and an alfalfa farm in the Bitterroot Valley of Montana.
Forged by the lessons learned wherever he roamed, Trel is now a business consultant (Project Manager) for international business & trade. An avid outdoorsman, Trel enjoys the simple pleasures of nature.
A writer, painter, cook, and stonemason, Trel is best at creating things that people will enjoy for years to come.