Josh Rivedal is the author of The Gospel According to Josh: A 28 Gentile Bar Mitzvah. He always wanted to be a movie star and dreamed of fame and fortune on the Broadway stage. Instead he faced a huge number of setbacks but has finally reinvented himself as a speaker, author, playwright, theatre producer, educator, marketing consultant, and arts entrepreneur.
If you could write your own biography, the story of your life so far, what would you include in it? Would you share everything or just the bits you thought made you look good? Would you share the highs and the lows, the positive and the negative? To do all of this takes courage. After all we don’t know who is going to read our story, and we don’t know how they will judge us for doing so.
Josh Rivedal has overcome that fear and has taken his life and put it into a book that others can learn from. His story is full of moments of when you just feel for him and others when you’d really like to shake him out of his situation. It will not be a passive read for the most people, especially those who have faced suicidal thoughts, the loss of loved ones or legal claims from those you thought loved you. But, he survived intact and now feels he has made the journey into manhood.
I’m not sure I could be as open as Josh has been and applaud him for it.
The Josh Rivedal Interview
What is one thing that no-one would usually know about you?
That while I have an eclectic taste in music—blues, soul, classical, bluegrass country, even show tunes—one of my guilty pleasures in life is boy band music.
What did the best review you ever had say about you and your work?
As far as traditional reviews go: “With the combination of theatrical wit, sarcasm and humor, raw emotions, familial turmoil, and heart-breaking honesty, Rivedal writes his story and takes his readers on an unforgettable and inspirational adventure that brings tears and laughter as well”. A private reader once reviewed by simply telling me my book helped save her life.
What did the worst review you ever had say about you and your work?
I’ve never gotten a bad review… but we’re doing a re-release of the book in the UK and Australia with a new round of reviewers. Anything is possible.
How did you choose a title for your book?
The word “Gospel” means “good news” and it’s also an homage to my religious upbringing. It’s basically the Good News According to Josh (me). And the subtitle “A 28-Year Gentile Bar Mitzvah.” I wanted to show people that there’s loads of comedy in the book that covers some pretty dark subject matter. A Gentile Bar Mitzvah is an oxymoron of course. I also wanted to diffuse (and even confuse) the idea that this would be a religious book (it’s not). And lastly, a Bar Mitzvah is when one enters manhood in the Jewish faith. A 28 year gentile bar mitzvah to me, is the idea that I also became a man but at the age of 28.
Are there any occupational hazards to being an author?
An occasional creaky back from bad posture. Pasty, white skin from lack of sunlight if you’ve got Northern European ancestry like me… and are prone to being pasty white anyway.
Have you ever wished that you could be or do anything else instead of writing, and if so what?
Well not “wished” per se; but I’m also an actor (mostly working in voice over), and that’s a lot of fun when there’s work. I do want to write for TV eventually and be a cast member on Saturday Night Live. And in what most would consider a long shot, I’d like to someday be an Olympic athlete in the winter sport, curling. The only sport I have a shot at when I become an older man (in 20 or so years).
Have you ever written naked?
Not entirely. I was wearing my favourite socks.
Who would you like to play you in a film of your life?
Do you have any hints or tips for aspiring writers?
Keep writing. Write when you don’t feel like it. Write when it’s crap writing. Practice writing other forms other than for your preferred medium. Read voraciously while you’re in the process of writing. It’s helpful to see other people’s work. And learn some business and marketing skills. It will help a great deal in getting your work out into the world.
How do you remain sane while working?
I take on other projects outside writing (performing, speaking, seminars), and walking breaks.
What has been the best experience you have ever had in your life?
Taking a vacation in France for 24 days and (nearly) unplugging other than some writing.
Are you jealous of other writers?
No reason to be. We’re all on our own journeys and I wish every writer the best.
Where do you find your inspiration?
Everywhere—TV, film, real life events, my family, friends.
Tea, Coffee, Water, Juice, Wine or Beer … which do you prefer when writing?
Coffee and water. I could never (to each their own of course) do beer or wine—too distracting.
Where can I find out more about Josh and his book?
You can find The Gospel According to Josh in Kindle and paperback format here:
You can also meet his on
- on his website here: www.joshuarivedal.com/
- on Twitter here: @joshuarivedal
- On Facebook here: facebook.com/josh.rivedal
- On LinkedIn here: linkedin.com/in/joshuarivedal
Why ‘The Thursday Throng’?
These posts are called The Thursday Throng in honour of the throng that waits eagerly outside the book store when a new author is doing a book signing event or appearance. On this website it takes the form of a ‘Meet the Author‘ online event with some information about our author’s latest book and an interview. If you would like to take part in the Thursday Throng then why not visit Thursday Throng Author Interview Guidelines to find out more.
If you would like to see all the Authors who have been featured on The Thursday Throng you can click here: womanontheedgeofreality.com/2012/06/17/the-thursday-throng/.