Once homeless and living in his car, award-winning novelist Jeff Rivera writes passionate stories of those often forgotten and neglected by society. He believes even in the eyes of a gang member, even beneath the soiled clothes of a bag lady or behind the tears of a lonely kid in the back of the class, there lies a common thread that links us all, the universal human story. He has made it his personal mission to help change the way the world thinks in a positive way through his stories. Mr. Rivera currently lives in Miami, Florida. Adopted by his Filipino stepfather when he was seven years old, his ethnic background is Black American and Native American.
Mr. Rivera was nice enough to let me interview him on the release of his book, Forever My Lady. Mr. Rivera has also donated a copy of his book to one of my readers. Just comment by Friday and I’ll chose a winner. I’m sure this is one you’ll want, gang, so make sure to leave me your email address (spaced out for security purposes, of course) so I can contact the winner!
Tell us the basic storyline of Forever My Lady?
It’s my first novel and I really wrote this from my heart. It tells the story of a teenager who feels like he has absolutely no body in the world until he mets a girl named Jennifer who is the one person who not only loves him just the way he is but promises never to leave his side. Then, one thing leads to another, Dio ends up in prison boot camp and promises her he’ll marry her when he gets out. He’s making all these changes in his life for her then he finds out from a friend that she has plans to marry someone else.
Why were you so passionate about telling that story in particular?
I felt it was a story that needed to be told, not one we see every day and it was one that I could relate to so I knew other people had to be able to relate to also.
Forever My Lady has been getting quite a bit of buzz even when it was self-published. Did you have any idea it would be so well-received?
No, I was scared that no body would like it actually but when I started getting great reviews from regular people then I knew it had struck a chord. Then the reviews from the pros came in and then that cemented things for me. I think as a writer you can feel a little insecure sometimes about whether people are “getting you” and it’s nice to know when people are.
What challenges did you face in getting the book published?
I think my greatest challenge was being shocked at the rejection. I mean, instead of getting depressed I was actually thinking to myself, “Are they crazy?” Haha. I must have received at least 20 rejections but the people at Grand Central really got it and I’m so grateful to be given the chance to finally show the world this story that I believe in so very much.
Is Forever My Lady available on Amazon.com?
Yes, Amazon.com, www.JeffRivera.com and bookstores everywhere.
Thank you so much for your time, Jeff! I’m sure we’ll be seeing your name much more in the future!