Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Interview with journalist Jan Risher, author of Looking to the Stars From Old Algiers (Giveaway too)

I've had the pleasure of reading Looking to the Stars From Old Algiers and Other Long Stories Short by Jan Risher and doing a brief interview with the author. Her book is a compilation of her columns written every Sunday over 15 years for Louisiana's The Daily Advertiser. Look for my review this Thursday Dec 6. And enter to win a copy of her book!

An Interview with Jan Risher

LCR: Jan, welcome to Library of Clean Reads! Can you please describe your book in twenty words or less?

JR: Acknowledge and move on. Whatever the circumstances, Risher attempts to do her part to make the world a better place.

LCR: What was the hardest thing about putting together this compilation of your essays? 

JR: Believe it or not, the most difficult thing was actually finding all the columns! We’ve changed technology a lot since 2002. While I thought I had done a good job of archiving every column, I was wrong. I ended up having to go through microfilm in the university’s library to find some of the 2002 columns.

LCR: The easiest?

JR: The easiest piece of the puzzle was knowing a few favorites to be sure to include, especially the title column about the week after Hurricane Katrina when I helped the mother of a newborn find her missing baby.

LCR: What is the most important lesson you learned from your travels?

JR: The most important lesson I’ve learned through traveling is that finding common ground is easy to do.

LCR: What is the scariest thing that's ever happened to you?

JR: One night about 2 a.m., I reached Dakar, Senegal, and ended up in a taxi to my hotel. The driver pulled off the road into a field. I defended myself and yelled for help. People came running and then proceeded to run with me all the way back to the airport.

LCR: The funniest? 

JR: I once used charades to convey my request to a Polish bus driver to transport 11 friends and me from the place we were skiing back to the town where I lived at the time.

LCR: The weirdest? 

JR: Shortly after the Iron Curtain fell, for $134, I went on one-week guided tour of Spain — in Czech. I got on the bus and was ready for a fun trip. I had no idea the tour NEVER stopped at a single restaurant for food. Those people had packed every meal of the week — and I had none. Toward the end of the week, when we had all made friends, I learned that all the Czech school teachers on the tour had been afraid I was going to steal their stuff.

LCR: What do you want your readers to take away from your book?

JR: I’d like readers to be inspired to engage fully in their lives and realize that one doesn’t have to go far and spend lots of money on great adventures to have great adventures.

LCR: If you could travel back in time, where would you go?

JR: I would go back to Slovakia in 1993. My time there was a beautiful experience.

LCR: What was the last great book you read?

JR: Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

LCR: Where do you see yourself in 5 years from now?

JR: On the coast of Spain

LCR: Thank you so much for chatting and sharing your experiences!

About Jan Risher:

Jan Risher is an award-winning journalist and investigative reporter. She was managing editor of The Times of Acadiana. Before and after her time as a full-time journalist, she was an English teacher. She has taught English near and far, in its most basic and most lyrical forms. She continues her career as a freelance writer and now owns Shift Key, a content marketing and public relations firm. She, her husband and their two daughters have made their home on the banks of the Vermilion River.

Connect with Jan: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest ~ Instagram

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1 comment :

  1. Thanks for this wonderful feature and giveaway which sounds fascinating and captivating. A real treasure to enjoy.


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