We had the good fortune of connecting with Adam T. Newman and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Adam, what’s your definition for success?
I always give my all when writing a book or performing to children. I am extremely passionate about what I do and take pride in knowing it reflects in my work. Success is not automatically given to you, but it is something you work hard at achieving. I do not define success by how much money you make or how many copies of books you sell. Those are all admirable achievements, don’t get me wrong, but I define success by seeing if I was able to bring my idea to life, from concept to creation. To me, being able to hold a newly published book in my hand is success. That along with receiving positive reviews and praises from teachers, parents and their children, selling many copies of my books and continuing to be asked to perform at schools and events. That tells me that I am successful and I have succeeded.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I think what sets me apart from other writers is what drove me to be here in the first place. When I began writing my first book, “How to Catch a Cold”, the focus to me wasn’t all about the fame and fortune, but rather what I was writing and why it was so important to me. After losing my in-laws, Mike & Lois, and seeing how it affected and devastated our entire family, I not only set out to do my best to honor them by writing a silly story they would have loved to laugh and read to their grandchildren, but I also wanted to show my children that during unpredictable and extremely emotional times, we can often find a tiny glimmer of light, a spark, that we can use to not only help us get through these tough times, but to have a way to pull together and find ways of preserving all the good that was taken from us. I focused on my type of humor and my choice of words. I wanted to make sure that my stories spoke directly to my children and also was relatable to other children. I use my children and other family members as many of the main characters in my books. This is my personal gift to them, but these characters and stories are also my gift to all families. As I have experienced first hand, life is short and life should be lived. I work hard and strive to create books that will encourage families to sit down with each other, promote reading but more importantly, help create wonderful memories that perhaps one day will help inspire someone else to do something great.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
It has been so long since we have been able to go out and experience so many wonderful places that once things open back up, I will be looking forward to revisiting some of my favorite spots I have missed. Before I moved to Los Angeles, I always wanted to visit the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre and the historic Hollywood Walk of Fame. The Hollywood sign is also a staple I would make sure to point out. There is a huge assortment of great Theme parks as well. Disneyland, Universal Studios and Six Flags Magic Mountain are amongst my personal favorites. I recently discovered The Valley Relics Museum, which I fell in love with. If you have never checked this place out before and want to essentially hop into a time machine and revisit the San Fernando Valley’s past, this is the place for you. Another favorite place is visiting the Santa Monica Pier. Hop on a ride, play a game and enjoy some of the most delicious boardwalk treats or simply stay for a calm sunset on the beach where the reflection of the bright lights from the Ferris wheel light up the waves of the neighboring ocean. Lastly, I would be sure to celebrate with a little high end dining by visiting Mastro’s Steakhouse. This is where you will feel like royalty. From their seafood tower to their mouth-watering steaks, this will always be my go to place for celebrating any occasion. Not to mention that their bartenders mix up the best dirty martinis I have ever had.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I dedicate my success to all the teachers I have had throughout my life. I have had favorites, and I have had some not so favorable, but without question, every single teacher I have had, helped contribute to me turning into the person I am today. Many teachers would give me positive reinforcement and encouraging words while some teachers took a more harsh approach and would grade a lot tougher. Those teachers would force me to redo, rework and give me the choice to settle for average or push myself for that higher grade. Although it wasn’t always a fun process, it seemed to motivate me and helped push me to achieve greatness.