The Joy of Cruising
Paul Thornton's first book White Man's Disease
Interview with Paul Thornton
1) As TrendingWWWandW is a Luxury Travel Guide, I will begin by asking you to tell our followers your favorite spots in/around Fort Meyers, FL
where you would take family and friends when they visit you…..
Paul Thornton: Fort Myers is surrounded by picturesque locations near the water so Fort Myers Beach and Sanibel Island are nearby and there are a lot of places to take in the beauty of Southwest Florida.
2) Tell us about how your writing career began and it has evolved into being published.
Paul Thornton: December 6, 2013 was my oldest daughter Kina’s wedding day. I had to give the father-of-the-bride address to the wedding reception. Generally, memories of a daughter growing up is an easy for most fathers: standard stuff like school sports anecdotes, first date and prom stories, trips to Disney. I covered all of that. However, for me the most powerful memory of Kina growing up wasn’t standard at all, and my speech would lack authenticity if I did not mention it. When Kina was six years old, and I was 29, I was stricken by trauma—a doctor told me “you’ll be dead in six months” if I didn’t undergo major surgery. Upon my discharge from the hospital after twelve hours of brain surgery and weeks of hospitalization, I had to work on regaining my normal faculties—to the extent possible—including relearning how to walk at a normal gait. So, every day little Kina would grab her seeming giant dad by the hand, and with a cane in my other hand we would walk my mom’s neighborhood. I incorporated the story about the walks with Kina in my wedding talk; but I went further. I shared information at the wedding related to my convalescence and return to “normalcy” that I had hid and held inside for 30 years, out of shame and embarrassment—as I spoke, I could feel a huge burden lifting off my shoulders. The more I shared, the better I felt. It was liberating; cathartic; therapeutic. When the speech was over there “wasn’t a dry eye in the house.” That speech inspired me to write my first book, a memoir called White Man’s Disease.
3) What inspired you to write The Joy of Cruising?
Paul Thornton: I cruise each year with my grandchildren and in the process of researching cruises online I discovered that there is an interesting and passionate cruising fan base and I thought there was a story to be told
4)Tell us about your book The Joy of Cruising?
Paul Thornton: It is a compendium of the stories of 33 passionate cruises from all over the world.
4a) How did you determine which people to ask to participate in your book ?
Paul Thornton: Some I had heard of as they were well known cruise community icons. Other I discovered and via social media and just reached out to them. For instance Australian man who did 21 cruises in a single year was talking about it on Facebook and I sent him a message asking if I could tell his story
5) Please tell us about being an Amazon best seller for your book The Joy of Cruising.
Paul Thornton: Shortly after being published a friend sent me a Facebook post indicating that when she went to order the book at Amazon, the book was listed as a best seller in cruises. She sent me a screenshot.
6) Please tell us about your follow up book Cruising Interrupted and when it will be available for purchase.
Paul Thornton: I had so much fun writing The Joy of Cruising, and the book was well-received. I won a few awards, was in some local magazines, and have been on some podcasts. So I decided to write a follow up initially called More Joy of Cruising. I was about half done when the pandemic, and resulting cruise lockdown happened. After a several month delay, I decided to finished the book but I knew that it would be important to reflect the influence of the pandemic on the cruise industry; and, of course I change the title
7) Any advice you would have for new writers?
Paul Thornton: My advice is to make sure you are passionate about whatever it is you are writing about—whether fiction or nonfiction. Rather than struggling to find time to write, if you art passionate, you will make time to write.