Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Hello. Thank you for visiting my blog today. I'm Rebecca Scarberry (@Scarberryfields on Twitter), and Indie author of a novella, MESSAGES FROM HENRY, and a short story, RAG DOLL. I have interviewed a multi-published author, Ed Benjamin (@colbenjamin) on Twitter. Enjoy!!

Scarberryfields: Can you tell us a little about your nationality?
Ed: Well, I am an American.  I was born in Oklahoma, but I grew up in Alabama and North Carolina. I entered the United States Air Force, after graduating from college.  I never flew airplanes, but spent much of my 27-year Air force career supervising and training people, who worked on airplanes. 
My wife and I live in the Texas Hill country north of San Antonio, Texas in a community called Bulverde, Texas.  We live in a rural area with assorted cats, raccoon, squirrel, birds, and other creatures.  We are cat lovers.  We currently have four cats, but have had as many as eight cats at any one time.  All of our cats were rescued (abandoned) when they came to us.
Scarberryfields: When you finish writing a story, do you miss the characters?
Ed: Absolutely, my characters are like my family.  Once they visit and allow me to write about them, they remain with me.  I think about them often.  I wrote some short stories about 15 years ago and found myself thinking of those characters the other day.
I love the characters.  For me, they take over and tell their own story.  I may start out thinking I will want a character to act in a certain, way but more often than not, they take on a life of their own, and push me out of the way.  All I have to do then is to stay at the keyboard and help them tell their story.  They get ahead of me sometimes and I can hardly keep up. I think I lose some things they want to say, but I hope they forgive me.  I’m going to keep trying to help them tell their stories.  I have a lot of demands in my life, but lately I’ve been giving more and more time to my characters.
Scarberryfields: While writing, if you need help with punctuation, grammar, etcetera, where do you turn?
Ed: Normally, I turn to family members.  My wife is a librarian and an accomplished editor in her own right.  She helped me with my most recent novella.  My son has helped me with my nonfiction book, on getting government business.
Scarberryfields: With the number of hours spent writing, do family members support you or complain about the time spent away from them?
Ed: Since I’m older, there’s only my wife and I.  She is very busy with volunteer work for the local library, and volunteers as the committee chairperson for a Texas Library Association subcommittee, which publicizes the Texas Bluebonnet Reading program.  Therefore, we’re both very busy with our projects and we meet in the evenings for a little TV.
After I retired from the Air Force, I became a proposal writer.  I write proposals to help people get business with federal, state and local governments.  I do some of that work in a home office, where I also do my writing.  My wife is used to my hermit-like activities.
Scarberryfields: Do you travel to places you mention in your stories for research sake?
Ed: Yes, my wife and I take a big trip every year.  I do try to absorb my experiences in light of how my characters might react to various stimuli.  My next big fiction project will involve my character in a situation, which will incorporate several trips we have taken.
Scarberryfields: When you’re writing, do you shut-off all social networks?
Ed: No, but I should.  It takes a lot of my time to interact via the social networks, especially when I have a proposal assignment, as well as trying to keep up with my fiction.
Scarberryfields: Did you use any family members as Beta readers for your stories?
Ed: Sometimes, my wife. However, I have been known to launch off on my own.
Scarberryfields: Do you feel social networking as a marketing tool, is beneficial?
Ed: Yes, if I can only figure out the formula for success.  I think I spend too much time on Twitter, trying to publicize my books.
Scarberryfields: What is the last book called that you completed and published?
Ed: This year I completed and published a novella entitled, “Harry’s War” about a USAF fighter pilot flying Combat Air Patrol over present day Iraq.  He encounters eight Iranian fighters, gunning for him.  The story describes Harry before the incident, during the incident, and then the aftermath; where he must deal with unexpected consequences.
 Scarberryfields:  Are you working on something new?
Ed: I currently have three works in progress.
One project involves taking some information from a nonfiction book I published in 2009, and add some information.  I plan to write a book focused on preparing proposals for the federal government.  My original book, which sold very well, was more of a secondary school primer to help people get business with federal and state governments, and to get grants.
My second project is to develop and update a novella I wrote in 1998 about an UFO abduction gone wrong from the visiting aliens’ point of view.  It was, and will remain a black comedy.
My third project is to continue my research for a full length Harry Miles novel.  I have the start in my head and am doing some research so that when Harry takes over the story, he’ll have a base of information to use.  I don’t want to give up any details at this time, but it will be exciting and fraught with drama, as Harry continues to battle within himself (but a lot of that is up to Harry).
Scarberryfields: Where can readers go to find your books?  
Ed: They can find Harry’s War” for 99 cents wherever eBooks are sold. Here are a few links:
My nonfiction book “Cash In on the Obama $3 Trillion Spending Plan” at Amazon and Barnes and Noble online.
My original novella, “The Mission” (electronic only) at
Scarberryfields: Where can people find you on the internet?


  1. I read "Harry's War" last year and quite enjoyed it. Good stuff!

  2. Great interview Rebecca and nice to find out more about about you Ed. Good luck with your books.