Paperback Writer welcomes our author for today, Balthazar Rodrigue Nzomono-Balenda, author of the book of poetry, The Depth of My Soul (I-Proclaim), on his first virtual book tour Pump Up Your Book Promotion. You can visit his website at www.ganymedeweb.com.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Balthazar Rodrigue Nzomono-Balenda ( August 29, 1981), known as Rodrigue or Balthazar is a French – born Danish author and he is originally from the Republic of the Congo. Balthazar was born in Oullins, which is a suburb in Lyon, in France and his parents were diplomats in South Africa, before he and his family moved to Denmark. His parents, André & Rose Nzomono-Balenda were diplomats under the mandate of the former Congolese president, Pascal Lissouba. In 1997,there was civil war in the Congo As presidential elections scheduled for July 1997 approached, tensions between the Lissouba and Sassou camps mounted. On June 5, President Lissouba’s government forces surrounded Sassou’s compound in Brazzaville and Sassou ordered members of his private militia (known as “Cobras”) to resist. Thus began a four-month conflict that destroyed or damaged much of Brazzaville and caused tens of thousands of civilian deaths.
Balthazar has written 2 books, “The Depth of My Soul” & “The Struggle of Power & The Fight for Survival”. He is a multimedia designer and a student at the Nordic Multimedia Academy ( NOMA). Balthazar identifies himself as a French – born Congolese because he is more connected with the Congo and France than Denmark. He speaks French, English, Lingala, Norwegian, Danish, partially German, Dutch and Afrikaans. Balthazar learns Chinese and Japanese in his spare time, he writes poems, he paints, he goes out and enjoys himself. Balthazar is also a member of the International Society of Poets, which runs poetry.com and he sometimes publishes poems at poetry.com. There will be more books from him this year.
You can visit his website at www.ganymedeweb.com.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
It is a book of poetry and in the book; I focus on injustices such as wars, corruption, war crimes, religious fundamentalism, child abuse, other types of abuse, torture, dictatorship, relationship problems etc. When I wrote this book, I was also inspired by the news I watch on CNN and other media. I have learned lots of things from CNN and I am so grateful to them for so many things. The goal of this book is to share my approach with my readers about the problems we face in this world and also to hear from them.
Change for our societies
Whether we like it or not these problems are real and I believe that everyone of us can make a change in our societies. Time after time, our leaders promise that those who stand behind war crimes will face justice, but when they are warned about the problems, they do not listen. I do wander if the national interests come above reaching out to people who are in pain and those who have been victims of torture and oppression.
In the book, I also talk about child abuse because I was a victim of many types of abuse, when I was a young kid and I have not still overcome that pain. I have gone through reaction and insults and I thought religion was the answer to overcome such a horrible experience, but I was wrong. I was raised a Christian and I was a Christian myself and did what Christians do, but I realized that the bible is self contradicted and phony. And I realized that there was never a god who could save me. I can save myself and be a fighter for my life. The message, which I want to send to my readers, is that abusers are cowards and their goal is to find someone whom they can isolate and blame for their problems. To be honest with my readers, my abusive past is the root of my atheism and my hostility toward religion. I was also a victim of psychological abuse and the only I deal with it is by being a hard working person.
Freedom and justice
I focus on the fight for freedom, justice and peace and hope for our countries, especially in the situation where we are dealing with the financial crisis because hope is the engine of optimism. Freedom is important because in our Western societies, we enjoy so much freedom and we still need to support those who do have freedom because if we don’t help those who don’t have any freedom, then we’re giving dictators wings to fly. When they fly, they oppress their people and find ways to corrupt some multinational companies so that things can go their way. In order to fight religious fundamentalism, we have do discover why people become religious fanatics and we have to fight for separation between politics and religion. When you mix politics and religion, there are more problems. I have written poems about people like Mandela, Martin Luther King, Kevin Rudd and Miriam Makeba because they are icons of justice.
I express myself through poetry because poetry goes beyond logic and I express my emotions about these circumstances. I have published my book at I – Proclaim publishing house, which is an imprint of Dorrance Publishing Company, America’s Leading Author Services Company Since 1920. The publishing house is situated in Pittsburgh PA.
Hi Balthazar Rodrigue Nzomono-Balenda
Welcome to Paperback Writer.
Would you share with us how you came up with the idea for your book?
I get inspired by people like Christiane Amanpour, Martin Luther King, Kevin Rudd, Nelson Mandela, Miriam Makeba, Lumumba, Patt Condell, Mark Steyn etc. because they are great fighters for freedom, free speech, justice and they bring so much hope, even when things seem to be tough. Christiane Amanpour from CNN does a great job talking about the hardest subjetc of all, genocide. And I have learned so much from her, her team and the rest of CNN anchors as well. It is said that people perish because of the lack of knowledge. I decided to get inspiration from the following documents: Scream Bloody Murder and God’s Warriors because I want to share my approach and thoughts about why there are genocides and what impact does religion have when it comes to such evil acts. I heard about my country of origin, the Republic of the Congo go through civil wars because of political instability, just like in most of Africa. That is why I decided to write a book where I express myself through poetry. I am forever grateful to Christiane Amanpour because her documentaries have opened my eyes, even if I am chocked, you ask yourself why in the world as humans could choose to do such evil acts. And why don’t we learn from it?
Was it a light bulb moment or something that you thought about for a very long time?
Yes. Whether we like it or not these problems are real and I believe that everyone of us can make a change in our societies. Time after time, our leaders promise that those who stand behind war crimes will face justice, but when they are warned about the problems, they do not listen. I do wander if the national interests come above reaching out to people who are in pain and those who have been victims of torture and oppression.
How did you come up with the title?
The idea behind the title of my book is my passion from the inside out. Talking about these themes from the bottom of my hear with deep emotions
How did you find an agent and publisher?
I don’t have an agent, but I would consider to have, if there is one who is interested in me. I have something to offer, but I don’t know anyone who is an agent, believe me. I contacted several publishers, but I had to pay them before my book could get published. There is a publisher which does not publish and sell my book, so I had to pay and sell my books myself. I was down and I quitted because I was frustrated and I felt like I could not publish books because I had to pay publishers for it. When I found I-Proclaim, I was skeptic about their service, but I decided to overcome my skepticism and I discovered that their service is what I needed. I struggled with the documents of my book because they had to meet a certain number of inches from the top to the bottom and from left to right etc. I said to myself, I either had to make changes or see my book get published in a way that would not please the audience. When my first book was published, I was glad that I started to jump all the time. I-Proclaim gave me some guidelines about promoting my books and they sent me another document that I have to fill up and send back. I will do it soon. I struggled promoting my book and I had to keep finding ways to learn how. I promoted my book on Facebook, without any success. I promoted my book at www.dailybookshow.com and www.humanmade.info
I even went in many websites, where I could advert for free. I am still in the process of promoting my books and I believe I will make it through.
Who reads you work in progress?
For now, one person did. My family and friends are also interested in reading my books. I am still in the process of promotion.
Who made a difference in the book’s quality?
My publisher did and they have made sure that my book should be meet their standards before it gets published and they have helped with an opportunity to choose a book cover.
How long did it take you to complete the first draft?
It took me over 6 months and there were times where I just wanted to give up because I did not see any hope. I was really pessimistic.
How long did it take from start to publication?
It took me over 6 months to publish my first book. I had a hard time finding a publisher who will publish my book. I contacted several publishers, but I had to pay them before my book could get published. There is a publisher which does not publish and sell my book, so I had to pay and sell my books myself. I was down and I quitted because I was frustrated and I felt like I could not publish books because I had to pay publishers for it. When I found I-Proclaim, I was skeptic about their service, but I decided to overcome my skepticism and I discovered that their service is what I needed. I struggled with the documents of my book because they had to meet a certain number of inches from the top to the bottom and from left to right etc. I said to myself, I either had to make changes or see my book get published in a way that would not please the audience.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
If you dream about being an author, go for it and remember that it requires time and hard work. If you experience rejection from a publisher, keep on marching until you find the publisher who values your talents and works. Whether your book is published by a publisher or you are a self – published author, remember that it is your responsibility to promote your books to your audience. Promoting your book require a lot of hard work and if you just want to write you book to gain millions, you are setting yourself up for deception. Do it because you enjoy it and the rest will come after all. You have something to share with your audience and believe that your book can make a difference somehow in this world. Be original and follow your dreams and your heart. You can be anything you want to be, believe in yourself. Remember that it you has to do most of the work when you promote your book. At the bottom line, it’s all about the readers, not you. Think about what makes then happy and what makes them angry. The AIDA model is a helpful tool.
Thank you, Balthazar, for stopping by Paperback Writer on your virtual book tour. I wish you continued success through the rest of your tour.
THE DEPTH OF MY SOUL VIRTUAL BLOG TOUR ’09 officially began on April 1 and end on April 30. You can visit Balthazar’s blog stops at www.virtualbooktours.wordpress.com in April to find out more about this talented author!