The upcoming Twist of Fate (ToF) anthology has been a group effort mixed with a little bit of madness as all book publications are. From editing, to formatting, and book cover decisions, books are a lot of work even after all the writing and artwork has been done. I’ve truly enjoyed collaborating with my fellow Indies In Action (IIA) members. While the project is still coming together, the rest of the group has been participating in other ways. One of these ways is through interviews.
Kiriti Sengupta (India) has been very hard at work interviewing some of the contributors of ToF and I thought I would share these with you so you can get to know the contributors who are helping raise money for the May Tornadoes Fund. Thank you Kiriti for all the interviews and thank you Stephen for all your hard work leading this project and the IIA group.
Kiriti: What made you form the group Indies in Action ?
Stephen: It actually began in 1996. I was in Oklahoma City the year after the Alfred P. Murrah building was destroyed by a domestic terrorist attack. 167 people died, and the entire community was affected. There was virtually nobody who didn’t know someone who was affected. I guess you could say I was mad at God, and I wrote my feelings down on paper. The result was the short piece “Angels Were Sent,” which is included in our anthology. I showed it to a few people, and then it was filed away, helping nobody but me. Then, on December 12, when the Sandy Hook school was attacked in Newtown, Connecticut, I was teaching middle school students when the announcements were made over the radio. I saw the shock on the faces of those 11 year-old students, and I was enraged! By the time I arrived at home, I knew what I had to do. Rather than sit helpless, or maybe write my frustrations down on paper to be filed away, I decided to put my emotions into action. It was that day when Indies In Action was created. I put out a call, and created a Facebook event inviting authors, poets and artists from around the world to join together and put their feelings into motion. Together we created a charity anthology, Angels Cried, to help the victims of that horrible shooting. Not only did our work provide a way to put our talents to use for a good cause, money was raised for the people who needed it the most, and many of us became friends because of the project.