Gracious Living on Social Security – Author Interview – Valerie Kent

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With today’s economy some of us can barely live on our regular income let alone even thinking about a retirement income or social security. However, Author Valerie Kent found that she must have been doing something right when so many of her friends remarked at how well she lived on a minimum income. Thus, the idea for her retirement memoir/self-help book was born Gracious Living on Social Security (Tree Farm Books).

ABOUT THE BOOKGracious Living is an easy-to-read decade-long journey that offers tips and suggestions on how senior citizens can stretch their dollar and get the most for their money. Eleven chapters cover every important aspect of living together, from the wedding preparations to where to live. Key considerations follow each chapter for quick reference: considerations like where and when to buy clothing, choosing a place to live and juggling your finances. Artist Jeff Nitzberg adds his unique touch with original drawings introducing each chapter.

ABOUT THE AUTHORAt eighty-eight, Valerie Kent is the survivor of a long lifetime spent adjusting to dramatically evolving worlds. She moved from Britain to the United States in 1933. Valerie began at the age of forty-six the drawn-out process of education – seven universities – that would generate, initially, a career as a drug and alcohol counselor for troubled women, then a decade as a celebrated college teacher and – ultimately – a final, exultant marriage. This is her story.


Hi, Valerie Kent.

Welcome to Paperback Writer.

Glad to be aboard.

Q: Would you share with us how you came up with the idea for your book?

A: The writer and publisher, Burton Hersh, a good social friend, remarked at how well we lived on a fundamentally minimum income. Out of that came Gracious Living on Social Security.

Q: How did you come up with the title?

A: The title recommended itself. So many people commented on our elegant life style and demanded to know our thousands of secrets that I embarked on Gracious Living.

Q: How did you find an agent and publisher?

A: The whole idea was a recommendation of the writer and publisher, Burton Hersh, who nurtured this project and oversaw the publication within his own enterprise, Tree Farm Books. No agent was involved.

Q: Who reads your work in progress?

A: My husband Rick and Mr. Hersh kept me on track.

Q: Who made a difference in the book’s quality?

A: Imaginative editing and design by Burton Hersh and George Pequignot kept us on course. We were impressed by the brilliant, biting, and hilarious illustrations by Jeff Nitzberg.

Q: How long did it take you to complete the first draft?

A: Perhaps a year.

Q: How long did it take from start to publication?

A: Almost two years.

Q: Do you have any advice for new authors?

A: Writing is hard work and the publication process is sometimes maddening. Sell insurance.

Thank you, Valerie Kent, for stopping by Paperback Writer on your virtual book tour. I wish you continued success through the rest of your tour.

Thanks for giving me a chance to share a few ideas. For more detail about Gracious Living and me, look at the Tree Farm Books website,

Valerie Kent’s GRACIOUS LIVING ON SOCIAL SECURITY VIRTUAL BLOG TOUR ’09 officially began on July 6 and will end on July 31. You can visit Valerie’s blog stops at during the month of July to find out more about this great book and talented author!

As a special promotion for all our authors, Pump Up Your Book Promotion is giving away a FREE virtual book tour to a published author or a $50 Amazon gift certificate to those not published who comments on our authors’ blog stops. More prizes will be announced as they become available.

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2 thoughts on “Gracious Living on Social Security – Author Interview – Valerie Kent”

  1. Thanks for hosting Val Kent today Becky. This is a great book, and even though it’s targeted at golden agers, some of the advice could apply to adults of any age.


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