Aicha Zoubair

Jessica Bell

Friday, November 8, 2013

Author Interview – John H.T. Francis @JohnHTFrancis

When you are not writing, how do you like to relax?
I usually do one of two things that may seem contradictory: I either have a cigar with a glass of whisky, on my balcony, overlooking the bay, or I go long-distance running.
How many friends does a person need?
Real friends? People who you can really count on their long-lasting support? A handful. You can have a lot of very positive and lasting relations with a lot of people, but people who know you well under your different facets and will always be there for you when you really need them, people who you can consider to be your extended family, only a few is enough.
What’s the reason for your life? Have you figured out your reason for being here yet?
I define the reason for my life every day, through my actions and my thoughts. I do not consider that the reason for one’s life is pre-defined or fixed. You make of your life what you choose to, within the boundaries of the environment you find yourself in. You should not search for the reason for your life as if it is a treasure hunt; you should rather look at yourself deeply and honestly and ask yourself “How do I want to perceive myself down the road? How do I want to build my identity? What is really, fundamentally important to me?” Be comfortable with yourself and with the life you are building. Most of the time people do not like to make conscious choices about their life so they resort to all sorts of ways to go around it, including selectively looking into their past for reasons for their life.
Have you developed a specific writing style?
I think I did. You can judge it yourself by reading Reflections on Fundamental Matters, but I think I have a pretty distinct style. I guess it was not fully intentional; it came to me as a mixture of intentions, my background, and the nature of the subjects I treat.
What are your current writing projects now?
I write on a continuous basis. There is often something I am thinking or writing about. I like to publish short articles and posts on regular basis, including on my blog As for projects of new books, I have a couple in mind but it may still be a bit too early to talk about the details at this stage.
If you could leave your readers with one bit of wisdom, what would you want it to be?
Be honest with yourself, be courageous intellectually, be curious and open-minded, and do not easily waiver.
What are you most proud of in your personal life?
Two things in particular come to my mind: having been independent and self-sufficient since a young age and having been close, supportive, and protective of both my parents in their last days respectively.
Have you ever had writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?

Of course I have. I think everybody goes through dry spells from time to time. It can happen to me that I lose the train of my thought as if I am walking on a certain road and then suddenly the road disappears from under my feet. To deal with such situations, I usually drop writing for some time and take distance, sometimes for weeks. I engage in physical activities; I watch movies; I read magazines; and I start reading new books. And often, after a while, the ideas come back gushing.
Addressing important questions that have been discussed across many times and cultures, this essay, written in a simple style, seeks to awaken you from the slumber of intellectual complacency. Author John H.T. Francis presents a multi-disciplinary look at prevalent interpretations and fundamental questions of human interest. He tackles many of humanity’s most important and difficult topics, drawing on many fields of knowledge and action, including science, philosophy, sociology, economics, politics, anthropology, and psychology. This study explores history, knowledge, the human mind and psyche, the nature of existence, the phenomenon of life, socio-economic and political dynamics, ethics, religions, and several current, pressing individual and collective challenges. It provides elements of answers and attempts to position subjects of general importance under a new light. Universal in his approach, Francis reaches out to those who are interested in delving deeper into the human understanding.
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Genre - Philosophy, Non-Fiction
Rating – G
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