Alfy R. E. Meyer
Kitchener, Ontario, Canada
Good morning, Alfy, and welcome to Vision and Verse, the place for Art and Authors. I understand your nom de plume is A.R.E.M. but why Kitchener?
I live here because any city that celebrates the drinking of beer is a truly civilized city and Kitchener holds the second largest Oktoberfest in the world next to Munich Germany.
Tell us a little about yourself.
My favourite genre of writing/reading is mystery, crime, fiction, science fiction, fantasy, theology, philosophy, and history..not necessarily in that order. I also occasionally freelance write for a couple of national trade magazines that have nothing to do with my book but everything to do with my job. My articles have appeared over the years in Today’s Trucking, Highway Star and Truck News. I have been a semi-regular guest on www.truckerradio.com as a reporter as well as a health and fitness guru – not my idea but the producers.
My favourite food is eating...my tastes are sooooo diverse and varied. My only stipulation is that you leave the Tabasco on the table.
Coffee or tea?
I drink an average of 5-7 cups of good black coffee (premium dark/French roast from my local roaster) throughout the day with one to two cups of tea for health.
Pizza or ice cream?
Praline's n’ cream ice cream and Gelato.
Beer or wine?
Only craft beers, non of that industrial swill and preferably imported porter or stout. In Canada we have an excellent Guinness Black Lager but in the States I buy your Guinness Blonde Ale. Innis n Gunn from Scotland is to die for.
Where would you like to visit?
My next place to visit is Hong Kong. My son just moved there from Qatar as a commercial pilot. I’ve visited several countries in Europe, seen all of Canada and the USA except for Alaska, the northern territories and Newfoundland.
My favourite musical artist of all time are the Beatles; specifically John Lennon, but now that I’m older, I only listen to classical, Leonard Cohen and Andre Bocelli. Yeah, I’m a romantic.
What does Alfy Meyer like to watch on the telly when he has time?
Humour. I really like Jeff Dunham, The Muppets, The Big Bang Theory and good cartoons like Berkley Breathed. I used to like Bill Cosby until...
Favorite artist? I have to ask that. Vision and Verse is about authors AND art.
Van Gogh, Rembrandt and Pascal. Favourite sculpture is the La Sagrada Familia by Antoni Gaudi in Barcelona Spain.
When did you get into writing?
I wrote my first story/comic book when I was about 14 – 15 years old.
Describe your perfect evening.
Eating a tapis meal along with a local beer while sitting on a veranda overlooking the ocean at a resort in Ericeira Portugal. After, there is served delicate pastries with espresso coffee followed by an old Port aperitif...ah, been there, done that! Just didn’t have the right woman with me...sigh!
Where do you get your ideas?
History and an unhappy life. Lots of adventure/misadventure, heartache, death and a life of regrets.
What do you do when you get writer's block?
Because I have a regular day n’ night job, it’s something that doesn’t worry me. I write when I feel like writing.
Who are your favorite authors?
Ellis Peters, J. R. Tolkien, J. K. Rowling, Peter Carter and C. J. Sansom.
If you had to pick one, what is your favorite book?
Gulag Archipelago by Solzhenitsyn because of how it affected me.
What was the last book you've read?
The Ugly One In The Middle by Alex Stan Campbell.
What would you like to do for a living?
You mean, ‘what would I do for a living if I wasn’t a truck driver’; I’d probably write more books.
Who is the one person who has had the most profound effect on your personal life?
After almost 42 years of marriage, I’d have to give that designation to my wife, for obvious reasons...only to me and probably my kids.
Name one person, real or fictional, living or dead, that you would like to sit down and have a conversation with?
My son, who is very much alive and doing well now that he’s out of Doha Qatar and living/working in Hong Kong. He’s travelled and experienced enough of life – good and bad – in his 36 years that he’s mature enough to discuss almost all issues; be they relationship, religion, politics, social or economic and still be my son without animosity.
What advice would give an aspiring writer?
Get a real job to support yourself than start writing at every opportunity. Just don’t get a job that requires too much of your time, makes you too exhausted at the end of the day or messes with your mind. Be careful of the people who you work with; most will not understand your ambition, will ridicule you from envy or pester you for a free copy.
Do you have some links for us to follow you?
Links are www.theintrepidtrucker.com and www.facebook.com/abajamchronicles. My CTV interview is on my Facebook page May 8th 2014.
What's next for you, Alfy?My second book in the ABAJAM Chronicles series is 75% complete. All I need is some inspiration or motivation to finish it; like interest and more sales of my first book, along with the help of a good illustrator/artist to continue in the vein of my first book which is illustrated. I like pictures.
Well, it has been a pleasure to have you with us this morning. We at Vision and Verse wish you continued success in all your writing endeavors.