Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Interview with Rick Banks, divorce attorney

Hi Rick, welcome to Reviews and Interviews.

I'd like to introduce you to my readers, so I have a few questions for you.

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
A few years ago I began shifting my focus from primarily being a divorce attorney, to doing more and more mediations, where I help people work through their divorces with as little trauma as possible, rather than going through the typical court-fought divorce. I realized that having a "Friendly Divorce" can save people thousands, and often tens of thousands of dollars that could be better spent elsewhere (e.g., like their children's college funds, or vacations, or purchasing a home, etc.). So, that's when I knew I needed to get the word out to as many people as possible that there is an easier way to divorce, and that I needed to write a book teaching people how to do that.

What inspired you to write Friendly Divorce: The Definitive Guide to A Stress Free Divorce?
I decided to become an attorney to help people get through what is probably the hardest thing they'll experience in their lives - a divorce! However, after 10 years I've come to learn that the legal system often makes divorces harder than they have to be - both financially and emotionally. And, although there are some good, ethical attorneys, there seem to be equally as many that don't put ethics, or what's best for their clients, in the forefront of the case.

Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
You mean besides the fact that it's a heck of a lot harder than one might imagine? Yes; I learned that for a non-fiction book, tons of research is a must. In my situation, I had to sift through the laws of 50 states and then write in a way that, no matter where you live, you can benefit from my book.

How long did it take you to write the book? Are you writing another?
Well, when I made the decision to finally write my book, I set a goal to have it completed in 6 months. However, reality set in after a few months and I realized that, for me, that wasn't enough time. As it ended up, I finished right at the two year mark. And no, I'm not writing another one just yet, but I'm getting pretty jazzed about some other ideas I have.

What is your work schedule like when you're writing? Was it a challenge to balance it with your day job?
My work schedule while I was writing was what caused me to take two years to complete my book. My typical work day is spending 10 - 12 hours at my office taking care of my day job (being a solo practitioner attorney does not lend itself to lots of free time). I would then spend a few hours with my family before going off to my quiet room to write. I usually get up between 3 - 4 a.m. and start writing again. As twisted as this may sound to many who don't consider themselves "morning" people, these are the best times for me - no phones, no televisions, no interruptions.

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
I guess I would have to go back to the time of day I spend writing so early in the morning. Once I get up, get a little bit of coffee running through my system, I can go for hours without stopping because it's go quiet and peaceful at that time of the day.

Besides writing, what do you do for fun? What are you hobbies?
I like scuba diving, camping, spending time with family, and traveling to different places with my wife to listen to Blues Music.

Do you have a website where writers can learn more about you and your writing?

Thank you for your time today, Rick. I wish you all the best with your book!

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