Jul 26, 2008

Blog Tour: Caught in the Headlights by Barry K. Phillips

Have you ever set out on a path to achieve a goal--something you desperately wanted--only to find out that the thing you thought you couldn't live without, wasn't necessarily the thing you needed? I think we all have. We go through life, thinking we are on the right path, only to find out we missed our turn three miles back.

Barry Phillips' new book, Caught in the Headlights, is about this exact phenomenon. Often we pursue one thing, and while on the path, figure out that we really want something different--something better.

The subtitle of Barry's book is 10 Lessons Learned the Hard Way. Throughout the book he discusses ten topics: happiness, self-esteem, pride, freedom, control, tolerance, forgiveness, success, the big event, and the perfect body.

Some of these are very serious, often sensitive, topics. Barry discusses them in a light-hearted way that will cause you to examine your own life and values. Through many personal examples he shares an intimate view of his life and the things he's learned, all in the hope of being able to influence the reader's life for the better.

My favorite chapter was The Big Event. We often go through life thinking that the next big thing--marriage, a child, a better job, etc.--will finally make us happy. Barry says, "Finally, after anticipating big event after big event, I noticed a few things. The first was that even if the event never happened, I would still wake up the next morning and life would go on. The other thing I discovered was that life--real, meaningful, lasting life--was rarely tied to a big event at all. Living life is much more about the small stuff--the little events that happen day by day."

I enjoyed the book. It is well thought out and written in an engaging style. It's an easy pleasant read, even though it discusses such serious topics.

You can get a copy of the book at Amazon or from Barry's website.

I also had a chance to interview Barry. You can see some of his answers below. It was fun to get to know him better.

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Interesting question. I've always written a great deal throughout my professional career, but I guess when I first started writing some training manuals about 12 years ago, I realized I had the abililty to write in "volume." Once Glenn Beck and his staff started using me to write for Fusion about 3 years ago, I finally got the confidence to write my own book.

How long did it take you to write the book?
I wrote the book over the summer months, in evenings, on weekends, and while on vacation.

What books or authors have most influenced your writing?
This may sound strange, but in the author category columnist Dave Barry and of course, Glenn Beck. I also like the writings of Mark Twain and C.S. Lewis.

What can we look for next? What current projects are you working on?
I have another humor-based book that I'm working on right now. I hope to have the first draft done in the next 3 or 4 months. I have several other ideas rolling around in my brain for books as well.

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your book?
Not really. I thought about making the book a little longer at one point. The book is relatively short, but most people don't have time to read a War and Peace sized book these days, so I'm alright with that.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Finding souces for everything. There are lot's of things that come to mind that I want to quote in a book. Sometimes it takes a lot of research to nail down the actual source. Just because 30 websites say someone said a particular quote, that's not a source. They all probably copied each other.

Do you have any advice for other authors?
Write about what you know, and what you love. In real business, if you turn your hobby into a business, most of the fun leaves it, because it's now a job and you have to deal with all the business issues surrounding it. But in writing, you get to know what you think you know a whole lot better. I love the benefit of what I learn through the writing process. The other bit of advice is have the confidence to just do it. I wish I would have written my first book way earlier than I did. Most authors are not known when they start. Clancy was an insurance salesman - you don't get less known than that!

What do you like to do when you're not writing?
Cook (and eat), hot-air ballooning, camping, golf, and watch movies. Mostly, whatever involves my family is what I like to do.

Any last words you want the reader to know?
If you'll permit my shameless plug, while you can go to amazon and elsewhere, you can get an autographed copy of the book (hope that doesn't decrease the value too much) at my website barrykphillips.com.

Caught in the Headlights
Trade Paperback: 116 pages
Publisher: Cedar Fort (June 2008)
ISBN-10: 1599551675
ISBN-13: 978-1599551678
Website: http://www.barrykphillips.com/
Blog: http://www.barrykphillips.com/blog


Barry said...

Thanks for the review Kim. I'll drop by a few times today to answer any questions.

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