Rolando Garcia is the author of the 2011 release The Sun Zebra.
The Romance Bookie: Describe the Sun Zebra in 2-3 sentences.
Rolando Garcia: The Sun Zebra is what I call a “children’s book for grownups. It is a collection of short stories about the adventures in living of an unusual little girl named Nell, her mother Rhonda, and Nell’s father who is the narrator of the stories. The stories deal with how the world of adults and its hard realities intersects with the magical carefree world of children.
TRB: How did you come up with the concept behind The Sun Zebra?
RG: I saw a photograph of a real sun zebra. Then in my mind a little girl saw the animal and went to tell her family about it. The happenstances that ensued led to the first story of the book, and the other four stories followed soon afterwards
TRB: I noticed on Goodreads, you call yourself an "eclectic" writer, why "eclectic"?
RG: I call myself eclectic because I am inspired to write in many different genres. I write horror, romance, science fiction, fantasy, family stories, naughty stories, poetry, non-fiction, etc. I like to think that I have many muses in my head trying to one up each other to see who ends up inspiring me to write my next story.
TRB: How long have you been a writer? And what do you think has drawn you into it so much as to write an entire book?
RG: In my youth I liked to write fiction but that desire got placed on the backburner as I followed a career in science. Also my native language is Spanish, but I ended up living in the English-speaking world so that required some adjustment time. Finally, about three years ago I started posting my stories on the document sharing site Scribd.com where I got more than 100,000 reads and hundreds of comments in two years. This enthusiastic reaction towards my work convinced me that it was worthwhile to be published. Right now the Sun Zebra has a rating of 4.7 on Amazon with 50 reviews, and people have written to me that the stories made them both laugh and cry. I think that getting these stories in my head down on paper (or pixels) was the right decision. I have something to say and people like to read about it.
TRB: What do you prefer: hard copies of books or e-books? And why?
RG: I prefer e-books because they don’t occupy space, they can be marked and unmarked easily, and they can be searched both for the marks one made and for book content. Also e-books cost (or should cost) less and they have a more agreeable time frame for authors to promote and sell.
TRB: Any advice for writers who want to make it professionally?
RG: What works for one writer won’t work for the next. Everyone needs to find their own way. The vast majority of writers will not be overnight successes. They will need to spend time building an audience for their books, and this is a process that will take years. However, even then a majority of writers will not earn enough from their writing to allow them to quit their day job and devote themselves exclusively to writing. Dreams and hopes are important, but be realistic in your expectations; especially when it comes to family finances.
The Sun Zebra sounds cute!
If you're interested in finding out more about it, check out Goodreads, Amazon, or check out Rolando's Website, Twitter, or Facebook!
The Romance Bookie :)