Valeri’s Retreat: #Author #Interview


Valeri’s Retreat: #Author #Interview

Joe Rinaldo

It has been quite some time since we have published an author interview on Grandmother Diaries. What a treat to have one for you now!

Today I am pleased to present my interview with Joe Rinaldo, author of Valeri’s Retreat.

My interview:

What is the title or working title of your current book?

Valerie’s Retreat

V.R. book cover

Please provide us with a brief synopsis of your book.

Valerie’s Retreat follows the life of a forty-one-year-old woman who happens to fall in love with a man sixteen years younger. My wife is sixteen years older than I am, so that might have helped foster this idea for a book. The jokes Valerie must endure, such as, “Do you have to cut his meat for him?” are actual barbs my wife received during our dating process. Like Valerie, I also worked in a bank. Unlike Valerie, I never considered robbing the bank where I worked.

Valerie doesn’t consider herself a “Cougar”. Franco, her boyfriend, happened to attend the same church singles dance on the same night. They talked, talked some more, went on a date, and presto- they’re boyfriend/girlfriend. That’s how it happened with my wife and me. “Cougar” makes the women dating younger men seem somewhat predatory. That isn’t the case at all with Valerie or my wife. For the record, my wife never considered robbing a bank either. Well, maybe considered, but never planned it out.

What genre does your current book fall under?

Valerie’s Retreat exemplifies the brand new genre MOVIE NOVEL. The Movie Novel format means that the book plays like a movie in your mind as you read it. In today’s fast-paced society, people expect to be entertained every moment. A Movie Novel does exactly that, with the characters telling the story. What really attracts me to this genre is the free-flowing format. An action-adventure novel ends with the hero surviving and reuniting with his love interest. Movie Novels guarantee no such happy ending; the reader keeps guessing right to the last page.

Do you always write for the same genre?

The four books I have released, Valerie’s Retreat, A Spy At Home, A Mormon Massacre , and Hazardous Choices , all fall into the new Movie Novel genre. The action flows from one scene into the next with enough description to keep the movie playing in the reader’s head. I really enjoy this new genre.

Who or what motivates or inspires you to write?

The actual impetus for me to begin writing came while I was reading Three Weeks With My Brother by Nicholas Sparks. At that point I was out-of-work and struggling to find a job. When I got to the part of the book where Nicholas Sparks received a million-dollar advance, I thought, “Holy cow! He’s a good writer, but I know I can do this, too.” I’ve been writing since that day in 2004. That might have gotten me started, but writing is not a get-rich-quick-scheme. A person has to love writing to stick with it. I’ve written nine books with four released and available on Amazon. The other five are patiently waiting to be professionally edited. Another three books are rolling around in my head hoping to be written. Writing has a way of consuming a person.

Tell us about your writing background.

I had to write a short story my freshman year of high school. This tough-grading English teacher asked five of us to help others who wanted help, so I knew mine was pretty good. Once I read another student’s story, I realized she was right! About ten years later I started writing a book or short story and over the phone I read the first few pages to my girlfriend at the time. She pointed out that my characters weren’t telling the story and a few other things. I saw she was right and threw it away. About ten years after that I read the Nicholas Sparks book mentioned above. This time the former girlfriend, now wife, helped me craft better more well-rounded tales.

How long does it typically take you to write a first draft?

About three or four months when I’m really cranking on a book. The first draft is the most fun to write. After that, the second, third, fourth… revisions are a matter of going through and polishing the story until it is perfect. Perfection is nerve wracking.

Do you employ an editor to assist you in your writing process?

Rinaldo Write, my publishing house, uses a professional editor. Shameless plug – David Pudlewitts of St. Albans Editorial is terrific to work with. He really takes ownership of the story and makes it better. A writer really needs a third party’s honest evaluation. David always performs at a high level for me.

Are you self-published or represented by an agency?

We self-publish. I say we because my wife is an equal partner. We have different areas of responsibility, but we’re a team. Be forewarned if you plan to self-publish; this is a hard road. A lot of us are out there, and getting heard through all the background noise is very difficult.

Do you have any tips or advice to offer fellow writers?

You really need to find someone who will tell you if your work stinks. Most people won’t. In fact, it’s very hard to find someone honest enough to do that.

Is there anything else you would like to share with your potential readers?

I understand people are hesitant to give independent authors a chance. If any of the books I’ve mentioned interest you, please go to the free “Click to Look Inside” and sample the first chapter. If a book grabs you that quick, you’ll probably be glad you got it. Also, if you are in a book club that reads one of my books, I’d be honored to join your discussion. Feel free to contact me through Facebook or my website,

Tell us how we can connect with you in the world of social networking.

Author website:

Author blog:

Amazon book link (US ebook):

Amazon book link (US paperback):

Amazon book link (UK ebook):

Amazon book link (UK paperback):

Twitter profile

Facebook author page: #/JosephRinaldoBooks

LinkedIn author profile:

YouTube video book trailer:

Goodreads book page:

Goodreads author page:

Other novels available on Amazon:

A Spy At Home

Hazardous Choices

A Mormon Massacre

Google+ page:

Library Thing profile:

Pinterest profile:

Shelfari profile:


Other YouTube video book trailers –

A Spy At Home:

A Mormon Massacre:


If you know of any other authors looking for an opportunity to publicize their work through an author interview, send them our direction. We are accepting submissions again.


Until next time…

Geek Girl







Geek Grandma


Filed in: Author Interviews

Comments (2 )

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  1. JeriWB says:

    Movie novel… that's a really specific yet general genre all at once that has piqued my interest. Good luck with Valerie's Retreat, Joe. It sounds wonderful.

  2. Valerie's Retreat sounds like a wonderful book! And I love the idea of a movie novel … this is the first I've heard of that genre! Thanks for the interview … it was fascinating!