Monday, July 22, 2013

Seeds of Transition by Carolyn Holland


Carolyn Holland grew up during the 70’s in the coastal wetlands of North Carolina in a small, rural fishing village. She married right after high school and started her family, in the same community where she grew up. Though life took her to other places, she lived in the Appalachians for a time and later in Alabama, she found herself drawn back to her roots in Coastal North Carolina. With her three children grown now, she resides there still with her husband James Holland, a retired US Marine.

Co-Author:
Kef Hollenbach was born and raised in Kentucky, USA. Going into business management after graduating from university yielded an eclectic set of experiences ranging from production work to mid-level management to business owner.

The very proud parent of a son and daughter and husband to a deeply appreciated wife, Kef revels in learning new things and visiting new places. With a strong propensity for sharing, he strives to weave his experiences and what he has learned into all of his writing.

Additional information about the authors may be found at http://BooksAuthorsAndArtists.com and on the Books, Authors and Artists Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/BooksAuthorsAndArtists

https://www.facebook.com/CarolynHollandAuthor
http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7138225.Carolyn_Holland


Seeds Of Transition: Book One - The Genesis Project is full of gripping adventure, psychological thrills, and emotional conflict from start to finish.

As the world’s population approaches 10 billion people, and severe weather extremes impact crop and livestock production, the demand for and price of food is rising. The American government, as well as other powerful individuals, find themselves looking for intelligent, albeit unlikely heroes in the world of academia.

Jarod Farra, a professor of agriculture at Cornell University, quickly finds himself at the forefront of both his longstanding dreams, and perhaps, some of his worst fears. Out of the turmoil and fear of an impending international food shortage, a range of characters come together to perform an experiment that will forever change the world as we know it, and provide new hope for generations to come.

Q) What inspired you to write this story?
Well, for me, I would have to say that I have a growing concern for the direction that our agriculture system has taken. Personally, I believe that the influence of big agriculture business is inhibiting necessary advancement in the industry and that a much more sustainable option is available to us. Although very necessary, alternative methods for growing food are not thought to be as profitable. Our governmental policies support the non-sustainable methods we are currently using, and most folks do not even realize the danger lurking behind the door. It was my hope to bring some of that to light and inspire people to think about these issues, because it will be the inspiration of others that brings about the changes that we so desperately need.

Kef and I share a concern for the future of agriculture and the effect we are having on the environment. We were both inspired by Dr. Dickson Despommier’s concept of the Vertical Urban Farm and what it could mean to our future as it could potentially solve several problems simultaneously. We were further intrigued by the fact that even though his rendition of the concept has been around since 1999, it has still not been put to use in any great scale.

It seemed at the time to be a great idea, to take an existing concept and write a fiction work where we explored some of the challenges to vertical farming and overcame them in a setting where its success was crucial to our own future.

In writing Seeds of Transition, it was our hope that through an entertaining fiction work, we might be able to inspire people to think about the future of Agriculture, and to stop and realize, wow…this really is everybody’s problem. While our agriculture system is having a major impact on our environment, our environment is likewise having a major impact on agriculture. I think it is a reality that we are going to have to change the way we grow our food in the very near future.

Q) How long did it take you to write? 
We actually started the process last fall. Our discussions and “think tank” meetings and tireless research started in October 2012. By December, we were putting the story together and completed it in the first week of June 2013. It took approximately six months and a lot of work to write it.

Q) What is your favorite thing about writing? 
My favorite thing about writing is the free reign to create a world or time exactly the way I imagine or hope that it can be, and the development of characters, villains and heroes alike, who make the story take shape. In Seeds of Transition, the real fun came from solving global food shortages and creating unique, strong leaders who could make this happen. In life, reality, I imagine that it would take these types of people to make the changes that we so desperately need.

Q) What is your least favorite thing about writing? 
Ah, the hardest part of writing for me would have to be the occasional bout with writers block and meeting deadlines. The creative juices flow freely when there is no pressure, but as soon as I learn that there is a benchmark or a deadline, the ideas seem to escape me.

The only remedy that I have found for this is to walk away for a short time, and allow my mind to wander to other things, give my brain a break so to speak. I am usually able to resume afterwards with fresher ideas and make that annoying deadline, but occasionally, I just have to beg forgiveness for my tardiness.

Q) If you could be any famous person for one day, who would you be and why? 
I would have to say that I would like to be John Steinbeck for a day. He is my all time favorite author and I would consider it a priceless opportunity to dwell in his mind and experience his creativity if only for one day.

I think he was the most skilled story teller. His characters were real and stayed with me for years; his stories were so well told that they seem like memories of actual events. I have never read another author who could so accurately capture the dynamics of emotion in his writing or have such a profound impact on the reader.

Q) What is the oldest thing in your fridge and how old is it? 
Well, I am actually pretty good about keeping up with the fridge and insuring that things don’t stay there beyond their life span however; there is a jar of grain alcohol in there that has been occupying a small space for about six months, it’s there for medicinal purposes.

Q) What can readers expect from you in the future? 
Presently, we are working on the second book in “The Genesis Project” series titled Stems of Discord. All of our favorite characters return and many new ones appear as The Genesis Project continues its quest to reestablish food security and expands its efforts into our water crisis. Our heroes work harder and our villains become bolder.

Roots for Longevity will follow about 6-months later as the third book in the series. 

3 comments:

Carolyn Holland said...

Good Morning ! Thanks so much for having me today ! I very much enjoyed the interview and I will be delighted to answer any questions....except maybe further questions about what is in my fridge... and please don't ask about oldest item in my pantry...it gets ugly in there, may not be suitable for young readers.

Sean A. said...

LOL! Honesty, with a dollop of humor and humility. This might be interesting.

Never heard of vertical urban farms before. Some quick research shows them to be rather expensive.

Why do you think these skyscraper farms are the answer to food production?

Carolyn Holland said...

Hi Sean, thanks for commenting !

Well, the initial expense of the building of a VUF versus traditional arable farming does seem high but there are other cost related issues to consider.
1) Production: If you compare the potential production of the VUF to the potential production of "season" controlled arable farming, the numbers become quite interesting. A VUF has the ability to experience 4 to 6 growing seasons per year in comparison to one, possible two in some circumstances with traditional farming.
2)Risk: Currently our food security is threatened by crop loss resulting from extreme weather caused by climate change. Growing food indoors means little to no crop loss.
3)Transportation: Transportation costs involved with arable farming would greatly diminish.
4)Refrigeration : Costs associated with the preservation of crops would disappear as these foods would be sold on site, mere hours after harvest.
5)Chemicals: The need for pesticides, herbicides and commercial fertilizers would be eliminated.

And my personal favorite, the best reason I can imagine for having these "super" farms in our cities is the environmental benefits, we would greatly reduce agriculture's contribution to climate change, water contamination etc.