Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Interview with Ginger Mayerson

GINGER MAYERSON
visits us today with an interview. She is the self-published author of Dr. Hackenbush Gets a Job.

Here's the short blurb:
Set in 1988, Mabel Hackenbush is between gigs, her baritone ukulele smashed, and her car in the shop, she is bravely temp secretarying her way to a kinder, gentler, not to mention, solvent life until she can get back to work as a jazz standards singer.
And here is the interview...

Why should the world read your book?
Because it’s witty, thinky, and so cool the world will get frostbite just reading it.

How did the process of being self published work?
The Wapshott Press LLC is the publisher, I’m just the owner/slave laborer,does that make a difference? If not, then the process of being S-P is: first you write a good book, then you beg your excellent, wonderful, love-you-in-spite-of-everything pals to edit, proofread, and do a cover for it, then you upload it to Createspace.com and start spreading the news.

What inspired you to write this novel?
The way we lived in the 1980s in Los Angeles, and the way I might have liked to live if I was as talented, resourceful, and determined as Mabel Hackenbush. As it was, I was composing string quartets in the 80s, but also going to clubs to see my singer friends, so this novel is for them as much for me. I don’t know if the world knows how much heart and hard work good singers put into their work. They make it look so easy, and it isn’t. So there are insights into the creative life, but also into the socio-political-economic situation Reaganonimics created in the 80s for anyone earning less than $50K/year (that was some money then). Essentially, Reaganomics gave to the rich and made up the difference on the backs of the working class. We still have an 8% tax on waitresses base pay (which is often less than minimum wage) because lawmakers in the 80s presumed (I assume, I can think of no other reason congress would do this) waitresses are going to lie about their tips. Waitresses? Waitresses hardly make any money at all, why take it out on them? Is 8% of very little really going to keep the Treasury in the black? It’s a scandal. So, yeah, this book is for artists, waitresses, and anyone who’s workin’ for a livin’. Also, unemployment benefits became taxed for Social Security (15.02% off the top of desperately little money) and GHW Bush raised the FICA (Social Security again) from 15.02% to 15.3 These look like small numbers but they still make a dent in everyone’s paycheck except when paychecks get to $106,800 in a tax year, then there’s no FICA tax on compensation above that. Yeah. I’ve never worked with anyone who made that much; I’ve just worked for people who made that much. Don’t get me wrong, I love rich people; I just think they should pay their fair share like the rest of us, that’s all.

What are your other hobbies and interests (other than writing)?
I make collages to let off steam(http://collage.gingermayerson.com/) and I have a day job I usually find somewhat interesting.

Is there a certain time, place, or atmosphere that is simply perfect for your writing?
Nah, wherever and whenever Microsoft Word and I get together is the perfect time and place to write.

If you could have dinner with any person (alive or dead) or book character, who would you choose?
Mabel Hackenbush, of course.

Tell us a little bit about your book, Dr. Hackenbush Gets a Job.
It will make you laugh, think, and want to listen to music, especially Billie Holliday and John Coltrane. At any rate, I sincerely hope so. It’s set in the 80s, but the ideas about music and living are the same as ever. Anyone who’s ever worked a job, office or otherwise, has probably run into someone like Mabel Hackenbush at least once. And most artists/musicians have had to take office or other types of jobs to make ends meet until they saved enough or had an art/music job that paid enough for them to get back to art/music full-time. It’s amazing how little one can live on while living for what one loves. “Dr. Hackenbush Gets a Job”salutes all of you and, yeah, it salutes the folks who sign the paychecks,too.

LINKS:
Ginger Mayerson Site
Hackenbush

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