IndieView with C.L. Hoang, author of Rain Falling on Tamarind Trees

End of Interview:
For more from Mr. All the characters were real persons from my travel group. From them I learned the importance of interesting stories, keen observation of human nature and local color, detailed research work. Filled with historical and cultural tidbits and personal reminiscences, and illustrated with over forty photographs, Rain Falling on Tamarind Trees offers the reader an insightful and fascinating glimpse of this tropical land. Yes, I did hire a professional (copy) editor after the manuscript was finished. Somerset Maugham, John Cheever, James A. Hoang – 16 January 2018
The Back Flap
Have you ever wondered what Vietnam is like some forty years after the war has ended? I love the classic story-tellers such as W. Books, history, and travel are my hobbies, and I love to write about my ancestral homeland, Vietnam. Do you have a marketing plan for the book or are you just winging it? It’s about my recent visit to Vietnam, my ancestral homeland. It brought up a lot of memories long since buried, so it wasn’t easy to decide how much of that to include in the book. Hoang, visit his website, follow him on Twitter, or like his Facebook page. I took her suggestions very seriously, but I retained final decision as to which of those to incorporate. What came easily? Michener. Filled with historical and cultural tidbits and personal reminiscences, the travelogue is illustrated with over 40 color photographs. The book describes the highlights of the trip: Saigon, my former hometown in the south; Hoi-An, the best preserved medieval port in Southeast Asia; Hue, the ancient capital of imperial Vietnam, on the central coast; Halong Bay, a world-renowned natural wonder; and Hanoi, the country’s thousand-year-old capital, in the north. If yes, what gets the fingers tapping? The name of my book is Rain Falling on Tamarind Trees: A Travelogue of Vietnam. Were there any parts of the book where you struggled? How long did it take you to write it? All my energy is currently going into launching my new book, Rain Falling on Tamarind Trees: A Travelogue of Vietnam, which was released on November 18, 2017. I had to go back and dig into the historical background of many of those places we had visited. What would you like readers to know about you? As mentioned above, I edit as I go along and also after I’ve finished. It took 9 months to write, and 4 months to prepare for publishing (edit, cover design, layout design, eBook conversion). Did you get your book cover professionally done or did you do it yourself? Get your copy of   Rain Falling on Tamarind Trees from Amazon US or Amazon UK. If so, do you do so extensively or just chapter headings and a couple of sentences? Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) But some names and identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals. The trip was my first time going back in over 40 years, since I’d left there in the 1970s. There was so much I hadn’t known or had simply forgotten. Do you have a target reader? When did you start writing the book? The rest is out of your control. About Publishing
Did you submit your work to Agents? If so can you please describe it? I currently reside in Southern California, and have been for the past 30 years. No, I did not. And I edit as I go along, after each chapter, and after the whole book is done. Was it a particular event or a gradual process? The travelogue is like a memoir. About the book
What is the book about? Where did you get the idea from? Edit, edit, edit. The trip touched me deeply, so much so that upon my return I began working on the book immediately. What made you decide to go Indie, whether self-publishing or with an indie publisher? Any advice that you would like to give to other newbies considering becoming Indie authors? What are you working on now? Do you edit as you go or wait until you’ve finished? I try to come up with chapter headings right at the beginning as they set the tone (and the contents) for the whole chapters. We all know how important it is for writers to read. My cover was designed by a professional cover artist, with my inputs. No music for me. About Writing
Do you have a writing process? Do you listen to music while you write? Anyone interested in travel, adventure, history, discovering new places and meeting new people. The trip touched me deeply, so much so that upon my return I began working on the book immediately. The research was the fun part. Are there any particular authors that have influenced how you write and, if so, how have they influenced you? I need quiet so I can concentrate. Remember: it’s all about the journey. Don’t forget to pause and enjoy every small victory. C.L. Are your characters entirely fictitious or have you borrowed from real world people you know? Then come along with the author as he returns to visit his ancestral homeland for the first time after a decades-long absence. I like to do all my research up front before I start writing. Then select a topic that’s near to your heart, write about it with passion, do everything you can to make your work the best it can be, and launch the final product with enthusiasm and with all the help you can enlist. Retrace his steps with him around his former hometown of Saigon in the south, and then follow him along on an itinerary of discovery to other unique destinations throughout the country: Hoi-An, the best-preserved medieval seaport in Southeast Asia; Hue, the ancient capital of imperial Vietnam, on the central coast; Halong Bay, a world-renowned natural wonder; and Hanoi, the country’s thousand-year-old capital, in the north. Learn as much as you can about all nitty-gritty aspects of writing and publishing, including the least favorite one for many writers—marketing. It was the desire to protect the integrity of my work and to have full control over every aspect of it: from contents to writing, to cover and interior designs, and ultimately, the publication schedule. Editing is the biggest part of my writing process. Do you outline? My first book, Once upon a Mulberry Field, is an award-winning novel set in Vietnam at the height of the war. Did you hire a professional editor? I pondered over this decision for a long time when I first started writing and eventually came to the belief that self-publishing, for now, remained my best option. About You
Where did you grow up? I am trying to get the word out through my social network and beyond, using all the social media available to me, as well as reaching out to local media, writers/readers blogs, book reviewers etc. It all came from the trip. I do have a marketing plan, and this interview is part of it. Then I adhere to a regular writing schedule (like every day). I was born and raised in Vietnam during the war and came to America in the 1970s. Where do you live now? I do need to have a general outline to work from, but it’s mostly in my head and it gets updated and filled in with details as I progress.