Monday, March 5, 2012
Get to Know G.A. Zanni, Amazon Kindle Best-Selling Author of "Deceitful Things"
My name is Gilbert Anthony Zanni. My father and I share identical names and per Social Security I am not a junior nor am I a second. This gave me trouble when I started school, when I joined the US Marine Corps and in other necessary life evils, including banking, hospital visits and so forth and so on. So, as I prepared to package the Deceitful Things project, I decided to go with the semi pseudonym of G.A. Zanni. It may have had nothing to do with the shared name issue and more to do with the fact that our name is Gilbert. If that was your name wouldn’t you want to find a way to make your name sound cooler?
All of that notwithstanding the past few days have been very surreal for me. I am overwhelmed and grateful for the support that I have received from family, from friends and readers of the novel. This was my first novel and as such like a baby to me. I have to admit though, as much time, energy and sacrifice that I put into the project: I almost allowed the doubt of my skills, over thinking and self condemnation to keep me from accomplishing my lifelong goals and dreams of becoming an author.
As I began to progress deeper into the plot line, side stories and grow deeply attached to the characters, I questioned whether or not I was good enough to continue. My family said it was good, but that’s what they’re supposed to say. Unfortunately we all have heard positive feedback from family members that don’t want to crush your dreams. I’m guilty of doing it myself. And that is exactly what that guy on American Idol says when he bombs his audition.
He says something like this. “My family said I sounded like Wayne Newton.” When in actuality he sounds like a Tibetan Cowboy riding a baboon underwater. And then he stares confidently back at the three judges who look exasperated and occasionally the sound of crickets splits their silence.
So, in an attempt to not be that guy, I did what any married man without money who wanted a brutally honest critique would do: I asked my mother-in-law to read it. I was surprised to find out that she loved the story and then asked me for the rest. I told her that there was no rest of it. That was all I had. That was when I got the mother-in-law critique that I expected to get in the first place. Anyway, her interest in the novel and consistent yet sincere queries for more samples motivated me to continue writing the story. It has been a long time and a lot of late nights writing since I asked her to give me her “honest” opinion, but I could never express how grateful I am for the support that she has given me throughout the process.
Six years, a great literary agent (Hartline Literary Agency) and an amazing publisher (Trestle Press) later and the book was finally published. Late on February 28th 2012 Trestle Press released “Deceitful Things” onto Amazon and Barnes and Noble. I began reading the reviews of other authors in my genre and thought to myself: Self, I am a dead man. It took forever to go to sleep that night. I tossed and turned, sat up, tried to rest, woke up my wife, talked, stared at the clock and then did it a couple more times before I found sleep. When I woke up the next morning, I walked casually to my computer to check what was going on.
Okay, I may have understated the sense of urgency I had that morning. Still, when my blurred vision went away and I noticed that I was not seeing things, my wife and I were pleased to know that the novel had climbed to number two in the Christian, Science Fiction & fantasy, Hot New Release Category. I spent the rest of the day clicking the same link Trestle Press had sent me, checking my status on Amazon and watching the novel dance up and down between number one and number two.
I’d like to say that I checked up on it every three or four hours, but the truth is, I checked up on it about every four to seven minutes or so. My only concern was that moving forward the joy I felt remained with me. Just knowing that others are reading my work is a remarkable thing. I can’t express how grateful I feel when I hear from people that have taken the time to read the work and then give time to give me their take on it. I can talk about these stories all day long.
But, as the past few days have unfolded, I have been able to curb my urge to puppy guard my computer and check up on the Amazon and Barnes and Noble tracking numbers. And so far, the joy I feel has done nothing but intensify. Thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts, and I sincerely appreciate all of the support that has been shown. I will forever be grateful.