Sunday, December 27, 2009

GONEAWAY Into The Land by Jeffrey B. Allen


 GONE AWAY INTO THE LAND by Jeffrey B. Allen 
Hardcover: 510 pages 
Publisher: Strategic Book Publishing

This inspirational story is about 12-year old John Greber, who with his mother, Ellie, suffer abuse at the hands of John’s father, whom he calls “The Beast.” One day his father abandons his family, but he takes John’s six-year old sister, Marny, with him.

On a rescue mission to find his sister and confront his father, John and his mother find themselves entangled in a Civil War that could destroy the Land and the World. GoneAway Into the Land travels a totally different direction than expected. With its poignant theme of family abuse, the story proves that the strength of the human spirit can overcome all odds.

Jeffrey B. Allen
Review
Excerpt

20 comments:

  1. Warm welcome to Jeffery B Allen. His novel, Gone Away into the Land, is "A symbolistic Novel" says A.F. Stewart. Thank you Jeffery for letting us discuss your work. Jeffery offers the 11th and 22nd participants an autographed copy of the new edition of this novel. Good luck an thanks for joining us!

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  2. Check out Jeffery's website with the links above. Readers will discover all sorts of interesting info on this writer. Gone Away into the Land tells an intricate story that readers should enjoy and, I think while I researched Jeffery's work, I found that he was working on another. Jeffery, is that the case?

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  3. Hi Jeffery. What a pleasure to have you with us for the next three days. I'm looking forward to getting to know you better and to hear about the man behind such books as GONEAWAY Into The Land.
    I have a couple of questions I hope you'll be gracious enough to answer.
    1. When did you know you wanted to write professionally?
    2. What has surprised you the most about being a published author?

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  4. Yes, Annette. I am currently finishing up my second novel - Beneath the Quarry Waters. It is a novel that follows a similar Genre as Gone Away, whereby the hero must overcome his own past and conquer his internal demons before he can help those who need him the most. His sacrifices lead him into a strange world that one may think he conjures up out of his own mind, but does he? The uncertainty of what plane of existence my characters reside within is what has made Gone Away Into the Land so intriguing to readers. I think the theme of Quarry Waters will be even more thrilling in its adventure aspect and perhaps more of a nail- biter, although, I have had reviews on Gone Away that describe the last one hundred pages as impossible to put down. Those comments are very gratifying when they come unsolicited and completely out of the blue. That tells me that readers from all over the country, and in some instances, the world, are discovering my work.
    Look for the next book sometime in May.
    Thank you

    The sequel to Gone Away is also in the works.

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  5. In all of my professional life I have defined professional as a period when what one does with his or her time becomes for pay or profit.
    I have always been a creative person. My imagination has been my greatest asset ever since I was old enough to crawl. There were times when it got me into a heap of trouble, but for the most part, it has served me well. When I set out to write a novel there was no doubt I wanted to sell the novel. There was never any doubt I wanted to be traditionally published, which I thought, perhaps an opinion misguided,yet,I needed affirmation that my work was sale-able, and I knew I would only get it from a publisher who would be putting money into the venture.
    As a result, I searched high and low for a publisher who would accept my work on it merits. It took me an inordinate amount time and effort but I finally managed it.
    My answer to your question is that I would never consider being a painter, an architect, a writer or a musician unless I could be a professional -- at least for a time.If after a having achieved a professional status of sorts,I decide to gift my work, then I will have reached a point in my life where philanthropy is more important than personal gain. I strive for that time when I can give back what I have learned and, if I am lucky, what I have earned. I hope that day will come.

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  6. Several things have surprised me.

    One is the amount of time I need to devote to promoting my work. WOW
    The other is the number of people who aspire to becoming novelists but never quite get there.
    And, last but not least, the number of people who actually get there and have a novel or two or three in the market place.
    I guess -- lastly would be that I have found the fraternity of writers, if you will allow me to call it that, a very intellectual, diverse, sharing, and congenial group of creative people. A group I have become proud to be a part of ever since the day I became published. I share the same desire to help my fellow authors by lending the knowledge I have gained through my writing and publishing with others struggling to figure it all out just as I have done, and in many ways just as I am still doing.
    There is always much to learn about writing. But there is more than is imaginable to learn about promoting.

    Thank you for all of your support. I mean that sincerely. I have yet to meet a writer who was unwilling to speak about the craft of writing in ways meant to help and not intimidate.

    Thank you for having me on your blog. I look forward to signing a book or two for those who feel like commenting or adding to the conversation.

    All the best,

    Jeffrey B. Allen

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  7. It is true about the creative part of an author getting that author into trouble! It can also get us out of it!

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  8. Writing is a form of psycho therapy. Those things hidden deep within ourselves; those secrets we do not share with others are what makes us who we are. Perhaps the deeper the secrets - the more creative we are. Do you think that's true? I am often questioned about that aspect of Gone Away. On many levels Gone Away is a symbolic novel where the fantasy is nothing more than a guise for a deeply troubled individual. Some ask if I am that individual. I have asked myself that question a thousand times. The answer: I honestly don't know. What I do know is that all writers of fiction must draw from themselves for the personality of their characters . . . no matter how mundane or utterly disturbing those characters are. You may agree or disagree but until you, as a writer, create characters who live with you the rest of your life you will not truly have tapped into those hidden emotions that will cause your characters to either comfort you of torment you forever. Getting the characters from your previous works out of your mind so you can create new ones is sometimes one of the hardest things an author must do. The characters in Gone Away are as real to me as actual people who have come into my life, made an impact, and then drifted into the past only to become immovable impressions and vivid memories.

    Jeffrey B. Allen

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  9. I like the way you talk about your characters. They almost seem to haunt you. I haven't read any of your work, but I think I will now. Thank you for being so honest. I like to write, but I'm to shy or scared to really pour myself into my characters. Maybe I will try now.

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  10. Dear Anonymous,
    I would be honored if you would read GoneAway. Once you are finished write to me and discuss your work with me. I can describe what I went through while writimg GoneAway and maybe encourage you to push ahead with your ideas.

    Thank you,

    Jeffrey B. Allen

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  11. Jeffery B. Allen website is professional and informative. There's links to an interview where I learned a lot about the author. Jeffery, when you picked your publisher, what steps did you take? This is a big book and some pub's won't touch those because of the cost of production so, for those people who read and write books over 80K, what's your advice?

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  12. My advise to those of us who tend to be a bit wordy is to try and keep your first book under 100,000 words. The reason is two fold.
    One; it is a great exercise in writing because it causes a self editing process that will help you define what is necessary in your book and what is erroneous. Secondly; if you are a first time author,as I was, why hamper yourself with trying to push a large book that most publishers will be reluctant to take a chance on. Give yourself the most chances possible to break into the business. Then write to your hearts content. If your first book is relatively successful the publisher should allow you to write a longer second book.
    In my case, I was lucky to find a publisher who liked my first fifty pages, and after that they depended on their editor to advise them of the quality of the overall book. My editor was very instrumental in protecting the integrity of my word-count. Although, she did mention several times that it could be edited down at least by 20,000 words. When I looked at that possibility my reaction was negative because I could not let go of my chapters or portions of my story. To me every word meant something important and led the reader to the end in a way I thought could not be compromised.

    My mistake was my naivety.I never consulted anyone before I started writing Gone Away, and for several years of laboring over my novel,I never once sent any of it off to be edited or reviewed. I became an island, secluded within myself. When I finished the book, I found two editors who were willing to edit. One for content and the other for structure. Both are thanked on my acknowledgment page. I could not have turned out a quality book without them. The money spent was worth every penny. One word of advise. Choose editors who do not know you. You want honest, straight forward opinions, so if chopping needs to be done you will not put your editor friend in an uncomfortable position where he or she may hold back for fear of hurting your feelings.

    This was a long explanation, but to summarize: Try your best to write a short, concise story that has an early hook. Be very aware of your prose. Hold to the rules.
    Study proper conversation techniques. The biggest mistake first time authors make is that their conversations do not sound realistic or they tend to drift away from the persona of the character. Keep your sentences singing and watch very carefully for redundancy.
    Lastly; do not take rejection personnally. Be a contrarian. Take every rejection as an impetus to try harder. Hone the query and listen to parts of the criticisms that come bouncing back at you and adjust your thinking. Do not be stubborn or discouraged

    Jeffrey B. Allen

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  13. Good Morning Jeffrey.

    I was intrigued by this excerpt from a promotional piece of yours.

    "...The story’s entertainment value is enticing, but the book’s symbolism is inescapable. It’s an epic novel best described as a modern day Lord of the Rings. Fantasy and heart collide into a new genre in the first book of a promising series.

    You don’t want to miss this unique offering by Jeffrey B. Allen."

    I am a true fan of the Lord of the Rings. Can you elaborate a little about how your book mirrors that work? What a wonderful comparison.

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  14. Of course, it is difficult to compare anything to Lord of the Rings, however, what was meant by the above, when my publicist wrote it, was the epic nature of Gone Away, the larger than life saga and the multiple story lines that merge in the end. Also, the conclusion of the first book is certainly adequate to satisfy the reader,just as in Lord Of the Rings, but there is an element of non-closure that leads the reader to feel a need for the second in the series.

    Gone Away's characters are nothing like Lord of the Rings, however, Tolkien did impart many real life issues into his writing and, apart from the fantasy, the story was a parallel of real life struggles filled with symbolism. That is why it has endured as it has. Gone Away has those same real-life qualities to the story - as long as the reader sees the underlying philosophical nature of the fantasy John, the twelve year old boy, our hero,journeys into.

    Most of the reviews are telling me readers who enjoy the book are enjoying it for its symbolism and real life struggles -- not as much for the fantasy, although many have commented on the delightfulness of the Land as it is imagined by John and described by me. Also, I believe the Lord of the Rings has some of the most memorable characters in all of fantasy literature.I studied character development. I wrote lengthy biographies on each of my characters. They are definitely unique and I hope enduring. Some are despicable and others the reader learns to love, but, I assure you, the characters will stay with you for quite a while after you finish reading the book.
    The similarities stop there. No attempt was made to copy anything remotely close to Lord of the Rings. But, the largeness and scope of the story is comparable to Lord of the Rings and to stories like it.

    I think the comparison is a good one because most people are familiar with Lord of the Rings and with its depth of character development and its many parallels to the times in which it was written . . . as well as its historical and religious references. Gone Away has all of those things going for it, yet, as with Lord of the Rings, a reader has to be on the look-out for subtleties of story that drift between the lines.

    Jeffrey B. Allen

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  15. Thank you, Jeffrey, for an answer that closely resembled my own summation. When reading this work, I felt as though I had tumbled into reality, only to soar upward into fantasy, and then, at times, to hover somewhere in between. What a wonderful journey you take us on.

    I encourage the many lurkers out there, to take this opportunity to questions a really talented writer. Don't be shy! If you've already read Jeffrey's book, GONEAWAY INTO THE LAND, tell us what you think.

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  16. I wanted to jump in here before work and send my thanks to Jeffery B. Allen. He wrote a good book thats like a long journey. There were places where I wondered where the path was leading and, when I reached the end, all that got tied up. Anyone who knows me knows I usually don't pick up giant reads as my attention span is....oh, did I leave the water on? Well, usually I don't read long books but this was a pretty good one!

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  17. Dear Annette,
    I have had readers who gravitate toward the longer reads, and some, such as yourself, who would prefer a shorter story. Thank goodness for our differences or Barnes and Noble would have it way too easy.

    I have heard from some readers who have wondered the same thing about the journey Gone Away takes you on, but everyone says as you said. "It comes together in the end." Isn't that what we hope our journey will do? Come together in the end? Make sense? Be purposeful? This journey we take through the struggle of life, a journey that is ours alone and one we cannot lend. It is the essence of Gone Away. It is our hope that we will come to a place where we will feel complete and right within ourselves.

    Thank you for reading, and especially - thank you for featuring me on Between the Pages. I hope many people will take the chance on a book that is maybe a bit longer than they are used to, just as you have. And I am confident, if they do, they too will come away with something of value, making the time spent well worth their while.

    Thank you,

    Jeffrey B. Allen

    I want to take this opportunity to announce my 2010 donation program for school districts interested in having copies of GoneAway for their reading classes and their libraries. Please contact me through my web site if you have an interest. www.jeffreyballen.com

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  18. Jeffrey, thank you so much for being such a gracious guest. Before we let you off the hook, though, I'd like to ask you a few more questions.
    1.Of all the writing criticism or tips you’ve been given, which helped you the most
    2.If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

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  19. Thanks Jeffery. I hope your next publication goes well and good luck during your writing career.

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  20. Thank you to all who contributed and especially to Lynda and Annette who are the tireless supporters of authors while being authors themselves. You inspire us all.

    Jeffrey B. Allen

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