Joseph D. Smith is commonly known as The Legendary Graduate for his high school graduation ceremony, from Glasgow High School, in Glasgow, KY, USA. He had a graduation ceremony held in-place of his own high school graduation, hosted by the judge, Hon. Phillip Patton, who had a medal made for him, where the Barren County Sheriff, Chris Eaton presented the medal to him.
The graduation ceremony was held at the Barren County Courthouse, where only his closest friends and family had come. His little sister, Wendy Smith, got to come to the graduation ceremony, which was very special to him, because Wendy is low-functioning autistic, and she couldn’t handle big crowds; Joseph is high-functioning autistic, by the way; they were both happy and proud! She sat in the front-row on the other side of Joseph, where he sat to listen to the speech by the judge.
The judge started the ceremony, but shortly before he could speak, he had noticed Joseph’s dad’s cooler, and he had stated, “I hope that whatever is in that cooler is legal”, since we were sitting inside of a courtroom; they all laughed for a second and moved on. Joseph is proud of his dad, a Kentucky Colonel, Hon. Wendell Joe Smith. He is proud of his sister, Wendy, and his very sweet, loving, and talented mom, Mary Smith! They all love and take care of each other, where Joseph, his mom, and his sister live together, with frequent visits from his dad.
Joseph published a book of poetry, called The Legendary Graduate, which was inspired by his high school graduation ceremony. The book is a glimpse inside of an autistic mind, and it provokes thoughts that one might not have ever imagined, opening the minds of many! His mission with this book was to change the world, and to change how people think, as it touches very controversial subjects, but yet it entices people to keep reading, sitting on the edge of their seats; they often have to keep reading until the end of the book, and quite often they wanted to read it for a second time!
What inspires you to write?
I am inspired to write for comfort and to bring comfort to others who may be going through the same life experiences. I write to create positive and long-lasting change in the world by voicing my opinions, which inspires me to write poetry for a better world.
Tell us about your writing process.
I write out of the blue, and I just freestyle. Whenever an idea comes to my head, I just sit down and write a good poem. I will only write and publish poetry that is entertaining to me, because if you don’t entertain yourself, then you won’t entertain anyone else!
I am a typist when it comes to writing, as I have very illegible handwriting and it takes me forever to write with a pen or pencil! I will write down the words as they flow through my mind, then I will go back and edit the piece, and I edit the work extensively until it sounds just right.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I don’t really talk to my characters, as I am mostly writing about emotions and concepts, rather than writing stories. I am a poet, so it doesn’t take me as much effort as a story-writer. When I do create characters, I imagine myself as that character, rather than talking to them. I can be a good actor when I want to be!
What advice would you give other writers?
Write what feels good for you, and remember to entertain yourself before you entertain others. People will like your work way better if you would pour your whole heart out while being true to yourself! Just image, that there are thousands of people just like you, whether you know it or not, so somebody will like your work, as long as you write what you want.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I discovered Lulu.COM completely by chance on a message board, and I never knew there was a difference between writing a book and publishing it until I was older! I have always wanted to publish a book, and I seen that it was very simple to publish through Print-on-Demand technology. When I discovered this and seen that I could make a royalty, and that I only had to pay for a proof-copy of my book, I took that chance!
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
Self-publishing through Print-on-Demand technology is the new era of the publishing business. Many new writers want to have complete control over the writing and publishing process, as you can jump right in with POD because there is no inventory to keep, no start-up costs, and a book will only be printed by the publisher when there is an order, so that you don’t have to worry about it!
POD is usually as simple as uploading your manuscript, and let the publisher do the rest; but the only downfall is that you have to do all of your own book promotion, and all of your marketing, unless you hire somebody to help which costs money.
What genres do you write?
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print
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