Sunday , April 21 2024
"I try to challenge the reader to look beyond the boundaries of their limitations to enhance peace and reconciliation in another world."

Interview: Michael Ditchfield, Author of ‘Life’s Too Short for Leftovers – 9 Lessons from a Third World Kitchen’

michael_106 (2)Michael Ditchfield grew up in northern England where he attended Bradford University and played professional soccer. He moved to the United States where he continued his education and sports career. His first book was published by Simon Schuster here in the States, and his second book has led to many speaking engagements around the country. When he is not writing you can find him at Jing restaurant where he is a partner with his good friend Charlie Huang. Michael is active in the Denver community with many philanthropic ventures and travels to Ethiopia often where he continues his charitable work at Project Mercy.

Congratulations on the release of your book, Life’s Too Short for Leftovers – 9 Lessons from a Third World Kitchen. When did you start writing and what got you into nonfiction?

I began writing his first book while I was attending Penn State University over 20 years ago and then moved into the nonfiction style over five years ago. I wanted to narrate my African journey through the experiences that presented themselves at different stages and in different countries. The journey continues as I work towards a documentary on the plight of the African culture seen through the eyes of the children.

What is your book about? 

The book explores man’s inhumanity to man and acts of nature that have left a lasting impression on a continent. I’ve spent time with the tribes and villagers in Ethiopia, Rwanda and Sudan, and taken from them a perspective of their life that can alter our own. Some of the poorest people on earth are the happiest. I wanted to find out more about what drives them and what their passion for life reveals to help us go through our own personal plights.

What was your inspiration for it?

I wanted to follow in the footsteps of my mentor and renowned chef, Noel Cunningham, who inspired change in Ethiopia. Noel gave me the tools and insight in how this world could be changed for the better. Along with Noel, one of the Lost Boy’s of the Sudan. Daniel Deng, also gave me a stepping stone to continue my vision for Africa. Both men were the catalyst to change my shallow existence.

LTS-front (2)Who is your target audience?

Students of life at every juncture of their journey. It covers the scope of any individual who wants to be inspired, motivated and challenged in their daily existence.

What type of challenges did you face while writing this book?

The story line took on a twist I was not prepared for. What I witnessed in Africa was pale in comparison to the loss I experienced here in the United States. I worked through it and what evolved brought a flavor to his writing that I did indeed put into words in a thought provoking manner.

What do you hope readers will get from your book?

To be able to have clarity on their lives and do something constructive with that life, from a podium that speaks volumes about the moral obligation to help others. I try to challenge the reader to look beyond the boundaries of their limitations to enhance peace and reconciliation in another world. Lives can be enriched by first looking at oneself and acting out the goodness inside of that self.

Did your book require a lot of research?

Yes. I visited the countries firsthand and sat down with many individuals who had different perspective on the many challenges that faced their lives. I also saw for myself on an emotional level, what work had to be digested before he could narrate the journey.

What was your publishing process like?

Challenging at times but enjoyable at the end of the day. I surrounded myself with individuals who knew more than I did in the evolvement of my dream. I never wandered from my message while others on my team added to it. My core beliefs stayed the course and the final product was one of total satisfaction.

Do you have a website or blog where readers can find out more about your work?

I has an amazing collage of words and video from the journey at:

Where is your book available?

Amazon now and signed copies from him personally via his website. Other book stores will carry it after the unveiling of the book in July

What is your advice for aspiring authors?

Put pen to paper and realize you are probably more scared of success than you are of failure. You just don’t know it yet.

What has writing taught you?

That people will listen when you have something worthwhile to say. Even a clock that is stopped is right twice a day.

[amazon template=iframe image&asin=978-0996253703 ]

About Mayra Calvani

Mayra Calvani writes fiction and nonfiction for children and adults and has authored over a dozen books, some of which have won awards. Her stories, reviews, interviews and articles have appeared on numerous publications such as The Writer, Writer’s Journal, Multicultural Review, and Bloomsbury Review, among many others. Represented by Serendipity Literary.

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