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Black Cab Chronicles Interview

Reprint of an article posted on Writers Community UK.

Can you tell us more about your book “Uber Chronicles: Field Notes from the Front Seat” What is it about?

I started driving for Uber about six or seven months ago and soon on I felt compelled to tell the stories about what was happening in my car–who was getting in, where I was picking them up, where they were going, what we talked about. So I did. I write about every single passenger who gets in my car. 

Who do you think would be interested in this book, is it directed at any particular market?

I’ve heard from all walks of life in terms of people enjoying my stories: people who’ve taken Uber, people who’ve never taken an Uber but have been curious. I’d think that people who are interested in people would be a target market for this book. 

You must have experienced some really strange, wonderful and interesting situation whilst being an Uber driver. Can you share any of these with us?

Read the book! Hah. I don’t know if driving Uber is always about strange situations. Actually, it’s often the mundaneness and simplicity of life that shows up in driving for Uber and which, for me, is part of what makes it all so interesting. I pick people up from work; I take people to their dentist; I drive people to a memorial service; I pick up someone going home after a night out with friends. It’s mostly pretty basic … which mirrors most of life.

You mention that you never saw yourself as a writer, nor an Uber driver. What changed that led you to become both?

The latter is a longer story and is covered in the opening of my book. The former is that I felt an urge and need to share the stories; there was such a basic humanness to the experiences, e.g. picking people up from the grocery store, taking someone to work the night shift at a big-box retailer, taking a kid to his girlfriend’s house on Valentine’s Day. And yet, such simple things can be so rich in meaning, too.

Alongside “Uber Chronicles: Field Notes from the Front Seat” do you have any other books, or plans to write more? 

Yes, the Uber Chronicles books are a series, and I’m already working on the next one. And, yes, more books are cooking. Stay tuned!

Tell us more about you? We know you drive for Uber and write. What else do you do, or can you share more about who you are?

I am the business development manager for a digital marketing firm in the Washington, D.C. area; I sell some anti-aging products for the body, face and brain (that actually work); and I run a local community website where I currently live. Personally, I’m a citizen of Black Rock City, a gardener, a forager, a reader.

If you were not able to write, is there any other creative medium that you would use, and why? Would you present your ideas at conferences for example?

I’m considering podcasts and voice delivery of information. Scheming on that.

Out of all the books in the world, and all the authors to choose from, which book and author would you suggest to be your favourite and why?

For me, Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wind in the Door was the first time I had a deep spiritual experience while reading a book. That experience stays with me to this day.

What guidance would you offer to someone new to the writing work, or who was trying to enhance their craft or business?

The more I delve into publishing my book and learning from other experts about what’s involved, the more I realize that book publishing and book marketing go hand in hand. I heard one guy who has published a number of books and has a book publishing support business say that he spends as much time marketing his books as he does writing them. 

I think in this current era, where 90,825 new books were published in the last 30 days on Amazon Kindle alone, authors need to be looking beyond just book writing and toward book promotion. Developing the skills to market one’s books is–like it or not–part of book publishing today for the majority of writers.