When I joined WordPress, I didn’t expect to make friends, much less become a test reader for a non-fiction work of a fellow blogger, author and friend. Life is full of surprises, isn’t it? And to add more to it, here is something I didn’t envision myself doing it ever in my life: conducting an interview 🙂 I literally shy away from it, even when forced to do it in my official environment. But the interview that you are going to read has been an absolute pleasure to do, because of the person involved. Without further ado, let me welcome my guest of honor, Mr. Michael M. McConaughey, known popularly in the blogging world as Mr. Navigator.
He is the author of the recently released book ‘The Mirror – Book One: Welcome to the Evil Sisterhood’, currently available in Barnes and Noble , Amazon and most other online book sellers. You can find the other sources for his book using the ISBN by search option.
Now, straight to the questions.
You started working on the book as far back as 2008. Why and when did you actually decide that you need to write a book to bring out all the injustice and pain that you have gone through. It would have reopened a lot of wounds, wouldn’t it ? What sealed the deal on the book front, for you?
[Nav] Although I didn’t realize it at the time, my initial 2008 research into parental alienation, narcissism, and feminism–which I was doing to help me understand why my kids were being taken from me–would help form the basis for what would eventually become The Mirror, Book One – Welcome to the Evil Sisterhood. I had a couple of false starts during the 2009-2010 period in getting the book going, but I was still knee-deep in fighting to protect my children. What sealed the deal for me was a strong sense of justice–you just don’t hurt children, especially not mine, and think you can get away with it.
I suppose I always knew that I would have to write about my story and my discoveries, and it did eventually open the old wounds afresh, but this was a necessary unpleasantness. It allowed me to process some powerful emotions that might have otherwise festered. The broader writing experience was cathartic, especially the bonds I’ve formed with my blogging friends.
I admire your courage on that front to go through the unpleasantness, and I’m glad to be part of this blogging world, to discover you here :).
You had to write the book using a different name and added to that you had to not disclose a lot of real names in the book too. How difficult was this during the writing process? How did you decide which names should not be changed, because some of them are actual names, aren’t they ?
[Nav] By law, I cannot publicly identify my children’s real names, nor my ex-wife’s, nor mine. This is to protect their privacy, which is fine.
It was initially a bitter blow to be told by my defamation lawyer that I should change the names of other actors, though, as I have written the truth as to what they did and did not do. I wanted to see these people held accountable. However, using pseudonyms ended up making for a better story, as I could be “creative” with the false names.
I generally used real names of experts whose work I refer to, for credibility. There is one case where I felt a moral obligation to use one researcher’s real name, as his influential work has been academically discredited, yet it is still used to rationalize feminist policies. His influence has to be countered.
Okay. You mentioned once in a post of yours that not revealing your real name might add a mystery element to the book. Do you have any doubts as to how using a pen name might have an effect on the personal impact of the book ?
[Nav] I initially had some doubts, as one is supposed to do very public things in marketing a book – book signings, etc. But the more I think about it, the more remaining publicly anonymous is “just right” when it comes to the book. The title and cover design, for example, are highly symbolic and fit perfectly with the book (i.e., narcissistic mirroring). Similarly, the story reflects the experience of so many fathers who suffer similar fates, in silence.
Better that I remain hidden, as my story is our story. Who actually told it doesn’t really matter. The names change in real life, but the angst and heartbreak doesn’t. I suspect this will contribute to the personal impact that the book will have on a reader.
Did you think at least once ‘Damn!!! I wish I could have my picture at the back of the hard cover ? ‘ 🙂
[Nav] [Laughing] I was thinking at one point to maybe put a joke picture on the back cover, perhaps Bozo the Clown or something else absurd, just to thumb my nose at ardent feminists. But, all things considered, I’m happy that I remain indistinguishable from everyone else when walking down the street. I’d sooner be an unknown than have any degree of fame or notoriety. My compass rose avatar will suffice rather well, I think.
Oh no! not the clown 🙂 and the compass rose says a lot. Does that feature in your book ? I don’t remember seeing it. As I had commented in another of your other posts, you have touched upon quite a few subjects like Philosophy, Law, Humanities and Psychology in your book and in a very well ordered fashion, too. Did I miss anything else ?
[Nav] The compass rose didn’t make it into the book or the back cover. The ones you listed are the most obvious subjects that I delve. I would add strategic studies to these, as I cite from classical military theorist Sun Tzu, and I also reference something from military doctrine known as Information Operations. While they won’t be discussed until the sequel and only in a non-technical and informative way, principles of geometry, social criticism, and feminist “theory” will come into play. The former might go under philosophy, and the latter two might count as humanities, though.
I hope it makes it to the 2nd part. It is an interesting picture actually.
If I were your child and I come to know about such a book written by you, alienated or not, I would want to give it a read to know your side of the story. I am not sure of the current status of your relationship with your children. Is that even possible , i.e. for them to read your book ?
[Nav] Research has shown that the average time to reunification for an alienated child is 20 years, and that it is a gradual process of dawning realization. Years of cult programming have to slowly unravel, and deep and powerful emotions have to be processed.
My 23 year old daughter, who’s completely rejected me since 2008, might reflexively avoid the book, or she may still be completely closed to my version of events. I enjoy reasonably good relationships with my two university-aged sons, all things considered, which was a minor miracle that I was able to achieve. However, they’ve been programmed (manipulated) to “defend” their mother against me. It’s possible that my book could trigger such an automatic response. All said, I will not engage my children on the subject of reading my book, for the time being. The time isn’t right; the risks of it being counter-productive are too great to ignore
Hmmm… I wish that they don’t have to wait that long to know the truth. Did you ever expect most of your beta test feedback readers to be women? Did you feel at least once how they would react to the contents of the book considering it was attacking their own gender who are doing injustice in the name of feminism ?
[Nav] No, this was a bit of a surprise, to be honest. I had assumed divorced fathers would be the most interested readers. It had occurred to me that the story, and how I told it, might be upsetting to some women. My assessment was that their displeasure would be directed towards feminists who caused the story, instead of towards me who wrote the story. The books exposes the true nature of ardent feminists, and this is actually a means of expressing respect for emotionally healthy women. The Mirror isn’t an attack on the female gender at all. Rather, it is directed towards a malignant element within it, and women test readers seem to agree with me on this.
I had to actually ask that question because that was there in my mind for quite too long 🙂 With that I come to the final question, what is the plan for the second book. Is there any tentative time frame that you have in mind? You are already in the process of writing it, aren’t you? How well is it going and how far along is it?
[Nav] The Mirror, Book Two – Harbinger of a Dark Age is a work in progress. It both completes the story of how the matriarchal family “justice” system wilfully abused my children and me in the divorce, and develops my thoughts on gender and narcissism. This second aspect is especially exciting—Malcolm Gladwell on steroids, if you will. Writing has begun, but I’ve still a fair bit of research to do, too, and now the marketing for Book One competes for my time. Realistically, we’re looking at 18-24 months for Book Two, but hopefully sooner.
Waiting eagerly for The Mirror, Book Two, Nav, and all the very best for the just released Book One. I hope that the marketing for this book goes well, and that you are able to achieve both social impact and considerable gains from the sales. Good luck on that.
Before I signoff, here are some quick tidbits about Mr. Navigator. If you happen to stop by his blog, be sure to read his Yogateria Chronicles (which I should say is a blast) and his recent experiments with cooking (still in preparation stage, yet to be cooked more). He is an expert with all things vinyl 🙂 He has also posted his journey of his book in his blog, which might be helpful for all the writers out there.
Here is my 2 cents worth on the book:
It is an extremely emotional and a very well organized book. He not only explains what happened in his life, but also why it happened, the background, why and how the officials, who happen to be women, tend to do some gross injustice to children (not only his) in the name of saving the women from men in the name of feminism, the laws, the loopholes, the misguided leaders or judges and more. And this book, which is the first part, is just the beginning. It explains a lot that often slips past, unnoticed by us, especially in the name of law. I am of the opinion that this book could be used as a research material for further understanding with respect to parental alienation and narcissistic-feminist behavior, because it has so much valuable information in it. It will take you on a journey to a father’s heart and soul on surviving the injustice meted out to him and his children, and his fight for justice.
It is a book meant for everyone.
Thank you for the read. I would really appreciate it if you could leave the comments about his book or anything related to it in his blog. I hope this interview has been as much fun and interesting to read, as well as acting as inside review for the newly released book, as much as it had been for me to do it with the strong support of Mr. Navigator 🙂
Thank you once again, Nav, for the wonderful idea and co-operating with me and giving me the confidence to go ahead with it.
[Nav] Thank you in return, KG, for the wonderful interview experience and the warm hospitality and support that I’ve received here. It’s very much appreciated, as the purpose of the book isn’t so much financial success as it is success in raising awareness and forcing positive changes to occur in society.