Interview with Don Defreeze, Author of Climb Beyond the Crest

Apr. 26, 2018

I was privileged to invite Mr. Defreeze for an interview with BooKecCenTric to discuss his latest bookClimb Beyond the Crest. Enjoy!


Thank you @DonDefreeze for your time today. Let’s talk about Climb Beyond the Crest. What’s it about, and what inspired you to write it?
@DonDefreeze: Life is a journey. Whether it’s a day or a series of years combined, the winding road we weave is solely our own, even if we are surrounded by minions. No other can walk in the shoes of another. As an individual creature, what is the essence of the existence you find yourself? We may be comforted by others now, but where will you be in the end? 

As a youth, I had been inspired by Thoreau and his ideas expressed in Walden. Those ideas attuned my thoughts to the natural flow of everything around me and compelled me to seek the connection Thoreau sought. 

In some ways, Climb Beyond the Crest is a modern update to Walden. I’d like to know how he would have reacted to the discovery of black holes, nuclear fusion or quantum mechanics. We live in spectacular time for speculation. With consideration of contemporary science, the thoughts embedded in this story attempt to explain my conclusions about the essence of nature and the consequences we might expect. To get to that clear vision, you’ll have to take this Appalachian hike into solitude. That’s the inevitable state of every individual, and maybe it’s a fruitful idea to contemplate it before the fate our end is fulfilled.

Who is your target audience, and why do you think this book will appeal to them?
@DonDefreeze: I’m asked about a target audience. I hate to think of anyone as targeted these days though every reader is not equal. Some are satisfied with consuming what human culture has to offer while others thirst for a deeper meaning, a more personal connection to reality. 

These seekers can be anyone, from a seamstress to a CEO, peering out a window wondering what it’s all about. The important thing is that they want to know what takes shape once the walls and distractions of mankind are stripped away.   

I believe this book appeals in 2 different ways: First, a walk into the Appalachians is awesome by itself. The adventure of diving farther into the recesses of quintessential wilderness revitalizes a mind clogged with the monotony of our ordered lives. Second, being able to shed every aspect of our social and modern lifestyle is a scenario which most are unable to experience. What would that be like? How would I perceive my surroundings without anything I’ve grown accustomed to?

What message do you wish to pass across to your readers with this book?
@DonDefreeze: I hope every reader wakes up! One at a time. It’s an amazing feat that inert molecules have arranged to make you and consciousness. It is a priceless chance to understand the universal soup that concocted one’s existence and an opportunity to create a connection to it. This is not an armchair curiosity, all will relinquish their lot and lose their minds, thought and reason. Find your heartfelt link before it’s too late to do so.

What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?
@DonDefreeze: The hardest thing about writing is language. Words are imperfect and using them to convey an idea, precisely, is sometimes elusive.

As a writer, is there anything you've learned about yourself while writing this book?
@DonDefreeze: I learned what my limitations are. I had thought I could write well and still devote the required time to the rest of my endeavors and life. Well, this outlook was severely tested. The book consumed more time as it expanded, and certain thoughts and actions being written became an obsession to get them right. This resulted in some arguments with neglected friends and lost revenue. I think Clint Eastwood said it best in Magnum Force.

For your own reading, do you prefer ebooks or traditional paper/hard back books, and why?  
@DonDefreeze: I used to read physical books but rely on a screen more now. Due to time limitations, most of my reading is spent on research.

What is your niche genre, and if you were to write in a different genre, what would it be?
@DonDefreeze: Defining a genre for this book has proven to be slippery. I equate it to choosing a genre for Thoreau’s Walden, if you search for one online, you come up with a bunch of convoluted terms. Part of my book is true adventure, yet it contains pieces of self-reliance, philosophy, inspiration and science with considerations of spirituality, theology and moralism. 

I disagree, vehemently, with Amazon’s placement of this book under Religious & Spirituality, simply because not one religion is mentioned. I try to stick to facts and any conjecture is based on them and as limited as they allow. I guess Thoreau could have been listed under Religion?

What books and authors have most influenced you?
@DonDefreeze: Obviously Thoreau, but for escape i used to read King but have turned from fiction since it does not expand my understanding of the real world.

Is there anything you'd like readers to know about you?
@DonDefreeze: I’d like everyone to know that I’ve devoted the rest of my life to opening the eyes of as many as I can to the riches of the natural world and helping them understand the miraculous circumstances that have allowed them to open their eyes at all in a hostile universe. 

Whether it’s leading a guided tour into the depths of Appalachian bliss or a stirring story, I will feel fulfilled if I can even get one person to fully understand. Could that be you?

Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
@DonDefreeze: Yes, I've had several including a scathing one. I brush this off as inexperience while producing the first book in the series.

What is your preferred method to have readers get in touch with or follow you (i.e., website, personal blog, Facebook page, Goodreads, etc.)?
@DonDefreeze: It's easiest to follow me on twitter @D_Dfreeze or through the excihiking website. I also have a business page on facebook listed under hikemtn or Excihiking.

Any additional comments you would like to add?
@DonDefreeze: I have become a bit bewildered in the course that literature has taken in my lifetime. It seems more people want to be fed illusions, fiction, with little interpretive thought defining any relevance to reality or usefulness. I agree with some that say it's the "dumbing-down of society." I've always agreed that truth is stranger than fiction anyway.

Born 1959 Long Island, N.Y. Graduated Locust Valley H.S. with honors. Attended SUNY Oneonta earning a BS in meteorology, 1981. Relocated to Roanoke, VA. in 1989 and furthered his studies at VA Western Comm. College & Roanoke College. 

Currently, Don is the owner of Excihiking Treks. He has established a coordinated guide service helping others explore the wonders of the Appalachian Mountains near Roanoke. His book trilogy titled Please Read depicts a 2-day hiking trek along the Appalachian Trail which runs through the region.

Website link:

READING CHALLENGE - Kim Kiyosaki's Rich Woman: A Book on Investing for Women. Take Charge Of Your Money, Take Charge Of Your Life

Apr. 10, 2018

Book Synopsis:
Why do so many women accept the myth that men are better at investing? RICH WOMAN - which was self-published by The Rich Dad Company addresses this self-sabotaging habit head on and teaches women the essentials about finance. Key sections include:

The First Four Keys to Being a Successful Investor - Arm yourself with some financial education, start small, put a little money down, and stay close to home.

How to Get Smarter Quickly - Financial jargon can be intimidating. Kim Kiyosaki teaches the three easy rules to raising your financial IQ
increase your vocabulary every day, ask the basic questions about money, and don't worry about asking the wrong questions.

Why Women Make Great Investors - A recent Merrill Lynch report revealed that only 35 percent of women hold onto a losing investment for too long while 47 percent of men are guilty of the same mistake. Learn the strengths that women often have as investors.

This book is for you if you:
- never want to lose sleep over money again
- want to take control of your financial future
- and are tired of looking for a "rich Prince Charming" and demand financial independence!

Kim Kiyosaki's Rich Woman: A Book on Investing for Women provides a lot of insight on the power of investment as a vehicle to attaining more wealth, and the need for women to take that step towards investing. Investment was never meant to be just a ‘man’ thing; it's time women took their financial status into their own hands and gained control of their future. 

The book mainly focuses on real estate, which is great because real estate is a booming and evolving industry, however, it would've been even better if Kiyosaki had included other ways of investment. Also, some chapters covered quite a lot of dialogue between the author and her friends; again, I would've liked if it had a lot more details on various investment options, but I can understand the need to include the dialogue (you may understand it too when you read/listen to the book).

Rich Woman motivates women to take that leap and get some investments opportunites up and running. You don't have to wait for a man to always hold your hand or always fulfill your financial needs  you can have your own money and make your own investments. That's not to say you should go behind your partner and make investments without their knowledge  in fact, she emphasizes on having a supporting spouse and investing as a couple. But even if your spouse is't as supportive, you still shouldn't give up on that dream. 

It's hard to believe it was published in 2006; the information provided is still quite valuable in today's world. It's a great read, and I'll admit it got me fired up and brainstorming about investment opportunities. I love it when books get me that way – all hot n' bothered **wink** 

I encourage you to read it; it’s for any woman who loves money and desires to have more. I do – don't you? :P

(What's next on my Reading Challenge list?!)

Genre: Nonfiction/Self-help
Material Connection: This book was purchased for my reading pleasure only.

Interview with Dr. Gordon Fimreite, Author of 15 Steps to Healthy Living

Apr. 6, 2018

I was privileged to invite Dr. Gordon Fimreite for an interview with BooKecCenTric to discuss his latest book15 Steps to Healthy Living. Enjoy!


Thanks for your time today, @DrGordonFimreite. What's your book about, and what inspired you to write it?
@DrGordonFimreite: 15 Steps to Healthy Living incorporates many facets of health and well being including healthy eating, diet, optimizing nutrition, living longer, weight loss, dieting tips, mindfulness and brain health.  I was inspired, in part, by my 105-year-old grandmother’s lifestyle. 

I open my book with my healthy grandmother who lived to the age of 105 – healthy and happy: It’s fascinating how much the way she lived her life parallels what research studies are showing to contribute to healthy living and longevity. She ate nutritious foods, exercised, spent time in the sun to get her needed vitamin D, relaxed to handle stress, socialized, enjoyed humor, and had a purpose for living through her faith in God. Unfortunately, not everyone has my grandmother’s wisdom. Many people today eat poorly, exercise rarely, spend more time passively in front of a screen than actively doing mind games, socialize more on Facebook than out in the community, and lack purpose in their lives. Nor does everyone feel motivated to turn their lives around to a healthy lifestyle. This really hit home when I began giving speeches. People would share how difficult, even overwhelming it was to begin healthy habits and stick with them. During one of my speeches, someone yelled, "You have to die of something!" The audience burst into laughter. I thought I was passionately sharing ways to change daily habits and optimize health and add to a longer, more vibrant life. In truth I was overwhelming the audience with healthy tips and health concepts. Little wonder all they could think of was, "I can't give up my coffee" or "I can't give up my pastries and sweets," worried that there would be nothing left to eat to gratify their taste buds or their emotions. After the outburst and having lost my audience, I changed my approach. In future talks, I would say, “It is true we can't live forever. But if you and your loved ones can extend life 5, 10, or even 20 years and rid the feeling of constantly being sick and running to doctors, what’s that worth?"

Who is your target audience, and why do you think this book will appeal to them?
@DrGordonFimreite: This book is really for anyone looking for motivation and adaptable strategies to positively influence their health (body and mind). It's easy to read and can be a resource to those who are already living a healthy lifestyle or can be a source to those looking to start their health journey.

What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?
@DrGordonFimreite: The most difficult part of writing this book was organizing it and having a general goal for the reader. I didn't want the readers to become bored or overwhelmed with facts and complex strategies. I wanted simple concepts and stories so the knowledge would stick and anyone could start and continue a healthy lifestyle. Each chapter starts and ends with the take home points.

As a writer, is there anything you've learned about yourself while writing this book?
@DrGordonFimreite: The book was a process (much like developing healthy habits) so I learned how to be patient and enjoy the process. One of the most exciting things I experienced while writing the book was ideas would constantly enter my mind. At times I was on a writers high and couldn't write fast enough. It was such a fun and exhilarating process. My personal hobby and career revolves around health. I was in my element so it was a very special process.

For your own reading, do you prefer ebooks or traditional paper/hard back books, and why?  
@DrGordonFimreite: I grew up reading paper/hard back books, but started reading Kindle because of the convenience of it and haven't looked back. I find it easier pulling out my Kindle and start reading where I left off regardless of how many books I'm currently reading.

What is your niche genre, and if you were to write in a different genre, what would it be?
@DrGordonFimreite: The genre I prefer reading is health, wellness and self help books. If I was to write in another genre it would be an inspiring story of someone who succeeded in life with an extraordinary or challenging circumstance. 

What books and authors have most influenced you?
@DrGordonFimreite: I prefer reading different authors to get different perspectives, viewpoints and ideas.

Do you have any more books in the works?
@DrGordonFimreite: I'm currently focused on my wellness practice, but I'm sure I'll venture to my next project before too long... stay tuned.

Do you read your book reviews? How do you deal with bad or good ones?
@DrGordonFimreite: I do read my reviews. I'm curious how others have related to my book and what they have to say. The only control you have is to do your best and focus on the positive. If you can learn from a negative, then that's a bonus. Everyone comes from different backgrounds, experiences and upbringings. You can't please everyone and you can't take reviews personally, you can just do your best.

What is your preferred method to have readers get in touch with or follow you (i.e., website, personal blog, Facebook page, Goodreads, etc.)?
@DrGordonFimreite: Below are my website and social media sites: 


Dr. Gordon Fimreite is a wellness practitioner, author and speaker based in Chicago, IL. His work's mission is to help every individual live a fuller, happier, and more productive life through the natural healing powers from within. Dr. Fimreite has a passion for the human structure and function and inspires others on ways to optimize their health potential.

Website link:

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