Guest Post Featuring Author, Craig Tomashoff
Date Published: January 2016
Publisher: Bobtimystic Books
I’m not a political person by nature. Most of the time, it seems the political world plays out more like a lame ‘70s sitcom with all its predictable characters and routine storylines. However, last spring, I got tired of hearing friends and family complain about the lack of exciting, innovative candidates for president. Everyone seemed ready to vote for "None Of the Above." So, I decided to take a 10,000-mile road trip across America in May 2015 to meet several of the more than 1600 "real people" who are legit candidates for the presidency. Including a couple in New England.
The Can’t-idates is about dreamers -- not all of whom are tin-foil hat crazy -- who just want to fill a hole in their lives by running for president. And as I drove to meet them all, I realized a lot about not just my life but also about the country. If we could all take time to believe in what our parents always told us -- "Someday you can grow up to be president" -- maybe we wouldn't be in the shape we're in.
Craig Tomashoff is a freelance writer/producer based in Los Angeles. His blogs appear regularly at Huffington Post.com. Most recently, he was a producer for The Queen Latifah Show. Prior to that, he served as Executive Editor of TV Guide, and has also worked as Associate Bureau Chief for People. In addition, he has written for the Hollywood Reporter, the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times and Emmy Magazine. Prior to The Can’t-idates, he was the author of You Live, You Learn: The Alanis Morissette Story and co-wrote I’m Screaming As Fast As I Can: My Life In B-Movies with Linnea Quigley. He has also worked as a television writer/producer for such series as VH1’s Behind the Music, The Martin Short Show and The Late Show With Craig Kilborn.
STARTING OUT AS A WRITER – 5 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW
1. No (Writing) Time Like the Present. If you’ve ever thought about writing a story or an essay or poem or pretty much anything beyond your grocery list, you’ve probably done what we all do. That is, find a way to distract yourself from writing. Get a snack. Play with the dog. Channel surf. There’s always something that you feel you need to get out of the way first. I’ve always figured this came from our fear that we’ll discover we have nothing to say. But trust me, we all have something to say. Your stories are inside you ready to get out. And if you can put off getting a Snickers bar or watching a CSI rerun for even 15 minutes so you can put thoughts on paper or screen, you’ll discover there’s nothing to fear at all.
2. The Less You Know, The More You Know. As parents, few things irritate us more than hearing your three-year-old repeatedly ask “Why?” You can appreciate their curiosity. It’s just that at some point, we can’t think up any more answers. As writers, though, you can never ask “Why?” enough. Why was my day interesting? Why do people behave like that? Why can’t I stop eating white chocolate Macadamia nut cookies? Life is full of questions people want the answers to, and it’s up to us writers to uncover them with our words.
3. Everyone’s A Critic, But You Can’t Be. While out promoting my new book, The Can’t-idates: Running For President When Nobody Knows Your Name, I stopped at a high school to speak to some creative writing students. Halfway through my talk, a young girl explained that she had always wanted to be a writer but when she would show some of her prose to her family, they would all tell her how bad the work was. She was discouraged and now had deep doubts about her abilities. I have no problem with showing other people your stories. We write for ourselves but we also write to affect others. However, everyone really is a critic and the one person you can trust about your work is yourself. If you like what you’ve done, that’s what matters.
4. Fear Brings Inspiration, Not Trepidation. Outside of spiders, certain types of hot sauce and the phrase “Please welcome President Trump,” there’s nothing scarier than a blank page. It represents possibilities, but it’s also the greatest challenge you’ll ever face. Instead of being petrified at the idea of filling that page, enjoy the opportunity to dig deep and express yourself.
5. Life Should Be Enjoyed, Not Endured. Writing begins with living. If you’re going to tell other people about the world, you have to be in the world. For my book, The Can’t-idates, I decided to stop complaining about our election system and drive 10,000 miles to meet real people trying to run for president. These people had been through a lot of tough times but they still clung to their sense of purpose. They enjoyed what they were doing no matter what others though. So don’t just accept life’s suckier moments. Understand them, and share your observations with the rest of us.
CONTACT THE AUTHOR/BUY THE BOOK
Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-cant-idates-craig-tomashoff/1123191147?ean=9781943845316
Brought to You By:
Kimberly Ranee Hicks, Author/Poet/Reviewer