In the first, two young people in the 1970’s meet, become friends and fall in love, in a story as old as time. Eventually, the two are separated by forces beyond their control and don’t see each other again for many years.
The book-end tale shows what happens when those two young lovers meet again, completely by chance, or fate, thirty years later.
Does the enduring power of first love last forever, and can it overcome anything? The answer, along with a nostalgic walk through the ’70s, is in Feels Like the First Time.
Targeted Age Group: 40+
Genre: Memoir/Romance/Coming of Age
What was your inspiration for this book?
I met the love of my life when I was just a boy. We became best friends, and over time I realized that I trusted and cared about her more than anyone else in my life. After several years of being together, we were separated against our will. I didn’t see her for almost 27 years, but I never forgot her.
In 2009, fate conspired to give us a most unlikely opportunity – to find out if what we had felt all those years ago had endured.
Before that chance to be reunited had arisen, I had already written many thousands of words about the girl I still loved, so when we finally got to resolve our long-held feelings for each other, I knew I had to write the story. Initially, I did it just for my own private remembrance, but my oldest sister Terri convinced me to release the story to the public. That’s why the book is dedicated to her.
When you wrote the book did you know you were going to offer it as an audio book?
Once I decided to publish our story, I knew I wanted it to be out there in as many formats as I could – ebook, paperback, and of course audio. As soon as the book was published, I began looking for a narrator that could bring the book to life.
Why did you decide to produce an audio book?
I am a huge fan of audiobooks. I have done many cross-country road trips, and they were all made more memorable by listening to books. A reader just emailed me a few weeks ago and said that he and his wife had driven from Canada to Florida and listened to my book on the trip. He said they often had to stop the story so they could talk about something I had written about – a situation, a song, a memory. That made my whole week.
How did you choose the reader for the book and the production company?
I actually attended a vocational school for radio broadcasting and worked in radio as a deejay for ten years. At the school I attended, I met lots of friends who also went on to long careers in radio, and one of them was Jeff Conwell. I had always admired his talent and professionalism, so when I was looking for a narrator of my story, he was my first and only choice. The fun thing about the process of creating the book is that Jeff and I are about the same age and grew up in the same area. Time and again as he was producing the audio book, he would send me an email and say “I was there, too!” Even though we didn’t know each other at the time, our paths had crossed many times before. It was serendipity!
If someone is thinking about creating an audio book, what advice would you give them?
To me, there is no downside to producing an audio version of your book. It is one more way to reach readers, and one more way to bring your story to life.
What else would you like to share with readers about your audio book?
This is a very emotional book, and I am happy to say that comes across in the audio version. I was lucky to work with a narrator who put so much of himself into the production of the book. It’s not just that he has an excellent voice, but that he cared so much about getting every detail of the production right.
As an author, it was odd to hear my story – my life, really – coming out of a speaker in someone else’s voice. I forgot about that in the first ten minutes I was listening, though, and just enjoyed the great storytelling Jeff Conwell did.