Garden State Journal | Tuesday, May 20, 2014 | Interview with World Class Musician- Turned Novelist Ian Finkel
Celebrated musician and world renowned Xylophonist, Ian Finkel grew up in an entertainment family. Entertaining others is in his blood, and he has performed on every stage imaginable. With his new partnership with Amsterdam based publisher More4Many, he is expanding his ability to reach audiences by writing three deliciously off-beat, fun to read books, Three Is The Charm, Sex Stories by Wife Told Me and Transmutation Blues.
GSJ had an opportunity to speak with Ian as he explores the exciting and boundless world of fiction.
GSJ: You are a renowned musician, what made you decide to take the leap to be a novelist?
IAN FINKEL: I have always been telling stories to everyone and though they were true, they were unbelievable. I just had to put them in print.
GSJ: Which do you like more; music or writing? And why?
IF: I love writing and music equally....there is a parallel that runs between them....a good novel is like a symphony it’s all in its developments.
GSJ: You have three books about to be released? Can you give us a little description of each book?
IF: My first book has been out for a little while, it is called Three Is The Charm. It is about three prostitutes in the meat packing district in Manhattan in the 1950's. Despite its protagonists, quite a few people that have read it have said it is a love story, which it is. The second book is called Sex Stories My Wife Told Me (not my wife!!!! the protagonist in the book), it is a book about possession. It follows a postman, who always wanted to be a comedian, his wife who is the sweet "girl next door type," after 30 years of marriage starts to write very filthiest stories which she reads to him. The third book is a collection of short stories called Transmutation Blues, it’s about people changing their careers mid-life (for example a bouncer in a night club changes and sell birthday cards in a card shop, a model becomes a restaurant inspector etc.).
GSJ: How long did it take you to write each book beginning to end?
IF: Each book took me several months to write. I think out the whole thing then begin to write it.
GSJ: How did you get them published by More4Many Books?
IF: I met the publisher, Ms. Denise Notermans, on a cruise ship where I was performing, she saw me sitting alone writing and introduced herself to me. We started to chat and she asked me to send her my stories. Luckily she has a quirky taste and loves a fun story, we hit it off and the rest is history.
GSJ: What has been the biggest lessoned learned when you decided to write books?
IF: As one writes, he learns, very similar to music, that it takes years to become a virtuoso, there are no short cuts, you have to practice all the time.
GSJ: What do you hope people think or feel, when they are done reading a Ian Finkel novel?
IF: I would hope that after reading some of my books, the reader will come to the conclusion that, though the characters in the story are very different from them the stories are about love and respect
GSJ: When writing a book, does your music background com into ply at all, is it useful?
IF: Indeed, the discipline one develops in the practice of music can carry over into writing.
GSJ: Who are your influences as a writer? As a musician?
IF: There are so many writers I could mention, but Charles Bukowsky, Hugh Selby and Willian Burroughs come to mind at first. As a musician of course I adore Jasha Heifetz and Earl Father Hines.
GSJ: You come from a performing family, was it fun growing up in that kind of environment?
IF: I was fortunate to grow up in Brooklyn and my father (Fyvush Finkel) took me and my brother to see all the greats.
GSJ: Did you ever feel competition with your brother?
IF: there is no competition between my brother (Elliott Finkel) and me as we are very different in our music and writing, though we do perform together quite a bit we respect each other's strong points and use them to achieve what we are going for.
GSJ: What do they think of your books?
IF: If you mean the THEY is my family, yes they firmly believe I am nuts ,but they do enjoy my stuff.
GSJ: What is up next for you?
IF: I am continuing my appearances as a performer and I will also keep on writing about the truth as I see it. What I will try to do is to combine my performing skills with the writing and when I do readings such as the one coming up at the Warwick Hotel try to put them all together into a performance of literature and music. Ian’s books can be ordered from or downloaded by visiting: More4manywebshop.com and for more information about Ian Finkel, author/musician/performer please visit www.ianfinkel.com
(original article link)
The Warwick Hotel, NYC |
Tuesday, May 20, 2014
I guess when you have books with titles like “Three is the Charm,” “Sex Stories My Wife Told Me,” and “Transmutation Blues,” you can’t expect a humdrum book launch. And Entertainer/Novelist Ian Finkel does not disappoint. Son of Fyvush Finkel, the international performer plays the xylophone (a bit of jazz, Latin, and James Brown, thank you very much) in between reading snippets from his unconventional books.
“Three is the Charm” exposes the 1950’s street life of three working girls, while “Sex Tales My Wife Told Me” turns the marriage of a retired couple on its ear when the wife reveals an unexplored raunchy side. “Transmutation Blues” tells of the journey through unemployment from various points of view. Each book is peppered with dark humor, wry comments, tongue-in-cheek observations, and characters that push the envelope but still remain touchingly human. Enhance those qualities with the curmudgeonly readings fromIan Finkel and a delightful time was had by all.
All three books are available on Smashwords.com, and More4manywebshop.com.
- Laurie Lawson -