We would like to introduce Jay Alden Bailey, Author of Mudflap and Mudflap The Gloves Come Off. Jay Alden Bailey is an authentic 21st century Renaissance Man: He oil paints, is an architect, building houses, barns, ponds, gardens and restoration projects. A lover of antiques, he enjoys everything from homes to toys, working and displaying his passions in his studio and museum. After 40 years self-employed as an arborist and tree and landscape contractor, Jay brings his experiences to life. He shares them with us through his newly found passion as an author.
BBE: Welcome. Let’s get to know you first before we talk about your books. While my team alter the bright lights to shine—just so, tighten the thumbscrews and hook up the polygraph; why don’t you start at the beginning and tell us about your early life and upbringing?
Author Name: Jay Alden Bailey.
BBE: Where are you from, and where do you live now?
Jay Alden Bailey: I’m from New England. Born to privilege in Portland, Connecticut, with a second home in Florida. I was brought up impoverished in Durham, Connecticut, by my mother after a vicious divorce. Now I reside in New Hartford, Connecticut and have second home’s in Maine, too.
BBE: how did you perform at school, top of the class, or the child they said would never amount to anything as long as he had a hole in his—inkwell?
Jay Alden Bailey: 1st grade was fun. Elementary school was a hell plagued by old witches, and high school was a social party. A desk was a prison, and school was nothing but trouble for me. My teachers were frustrated on the whole, but interestingly enough, some were my friends.
BBE: Where are you now? Tell us a bit about your life, work, family?
Jay Alden Bailey: After 42 years of being self-employed, I would be considered an overachiever by most standards. My biggest problem is that I have more homes than I can live in, and yet, I am real estate poor. My biggest struggle is downsizing and organizing my retirement. I have a wonderful wife and 2 grown children, who are successful, stable and morally good people.
BBE: Where do you go when the world gets scary?
Jay Alden Bailey: When the world gets scary, I run right into the fight.
BBE: Which five people, alive or dead, would you invite to a dinner party?
Jay Alden Bailey: I would invite the current Queen of England, Attila The Hun, Aesop, the philosopher, Jesus Christ and D-Day Paratrooper Richard Winters 101st airborne. I really need to seat twelve at my party. I would continue the list with George Washington, Winston Churchill, Alexander The Great, William The Conqueror and John Lennon. I would reserve the last two seats for my parents. I really think I need seating for twenty.
BBE: What is your method for writing?
Jay Alden Bailey: Off-the-cuff and from the gut.
BBE: Favourite food, drink, pet, film and book?
Jay Alden Bailey: My favourite food is Cheddar cheese, it goes with everything, and my favourite drink is orange juice.
Pet? That’s easy—my daughter.
The film and book? I am way too fickle to tie myself to one author or actor.
BBE: What makes you different?
Jay Alden Bailey: I am a different writer using a satire style. I do something positive about the issues I have and those I see around me—I don’t just criticize them.
BBE: And how did you come to writing?
Jay Alden Bailey: I wrote my first book to Copyright and Trademark a character concept I created after sixty years of life experiences. The character concept Mudflap is defined as; anybody who puts their own interest below that of another person or cause and ends up under the proverbial bus.
BBE: What are your influences and your writing ethos?
Jay Alden Bailey: Real-life personal interactions are what inspire me.
BBE: How far have you come, and where are you going with your writing?
Jay Alden Bailey: I have brought my Mudflap character from introduction to a solid place. There are layers of meanings and advice that I offer my readers. My character concept is Copyrighted, and the Trademark is in an (R) registered rating. I hold the TM Trademark rating for digital cartoons, animated features and movies. I have a primitive cartoon already started.
BBE: Ready—Set—Go. Tell us about your books in order of publication?
Jay Alden Bailey: I have two books published. They are Mudflap and Mudflap The Gloves Come Off.
BBE: Which is the favourite of your books?
Jay Alden Bailey: At first, I liked my second book better because it’s more detailed, and I felt that my writing has developed; but after listening to my books on the audio versions, I think the first book’s style and the fact that it comes from the heart, makes for a nicer story. It is written from a deep place of honesty and integrity. They are two completely different books.
BBE: And your favourite character, how did they come about? What do you like or dislike about them?
Jay Alden Bailey: The character was there all along but only came into focus for me after my children became young adults. I realized that I had been under the bus my whole life and wasn’t ever getting out.
BBE: Tell us about your writing achievements and about things that haven’t worked so well for you?
Jay Alden Bailey: I’m not sure what I’ve achieved yet. That’s what is unfolding now, in real-time.
BBE: What are you working on?
Jay Alden Bailey: I am working on marketing and helping other authors. I am living the 1st chapter of my second book. I have a support group for authors on Facebook called The Authors inner Circle. The focus and primary mission of the group is marketing, helping new writers get published and refining the published works of existing authors.
I call authors, ‘An unintended cause I tripped over.’
BBE: Where do you see yourself in five years?
Jay Alden Bailey: In five years, I see myself running my country inn here at my primary residence in New Hartford. I have many friends who count on me to take care of their properties. Although I’d like to have slowed down by then, I will always keep a shortlist of my long-standing tree and landscape clients. I love being outdoors, and I want to spend more of my summertime in Maine, enjoying the environment and working on my own properties. I’d like to increase the time in my art studio. I have piles of projects in all sorts of mediums waiting their turn. In the bigger picture, my focus will be on helping others in different ways. I never intend to retire, only to change my routine of chores. Retirement is for the dead.
BBE: Which is your favourite cover? How did you come up with it, and did you do it yourself?
Jay Alden Bailey: My favourite cover is my original first book. Signed copies are still available on my website. I only changed the cover on the advice of a mentoring publisher who at the time was more experienced in marketing than me.
BBE: How do you market and promote your work?
Jay Alden Bailey: I am marketing my books on the internet and learning more all the time. I often tell new authors I meet and help in The Authors Inner Circle, ‘Writing is fun, publishing is a chore, and marketing is the work.’
BBE: Tips for other writers?
Jay Alden Bailey: My tip for writers is to join The Authors Inner Circle (a Facebook group) and always seek other writers to befriend, banter with and support.
BBE: What will your epitaph say?
Jay Alden Bailey: My epitaph should say; Big change starts small within us all. Mudflap, over and out!
BBE: Anything we haven’t covered? Write your own question and use the last one to say anything you’d like to say.
Jay Alden Bailey: I can’t cover everything here. It would take another book. Jay Alden Bailey. Over and out!
BBE: Thank you for taking our interview. We hope you’ve enjoyed it. Best Book Editors wish you every success with your career, with life and with you.
Best Book Editors, over and out!
Born in South Shields, Tyne & Weir, Katherine Black lives on the tip of the beautiful British Lake District. She lives with her partner, father-in-law and 4 dysfunctional but co-mingling pets. She is mother, grandmother and secret keeper of all. She is Best Book Editors’ principal editor.