We had the good fortune of connecting with Scott Casperson and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Scott, have you ever found yourself in a spot where you had to decide whether to give up or keep going? How did you make the choice?
Luckily, or unluckily, I have no choice. The product I create isn’t perishable so I can continue to pitch it until all books are sold. Now, stubbornly, I have the right to not do a reprint if things don’t fly off the shelf. And maybe some authors or publishers might cut bait & go home. But part of me believes that if I was able to sell the first batch of 500 then why not order another one to have ready to do again? Plus, stories are timeless. I’m blessed that parents continue to gift their children with physical books in such an electronic age! The other thing that keeps me going & in trouble is that new ideas constantly come to me. Books accompanied with illustrations allow me a vehicle in which to share those tales with others. Although not every idea gets turned into a book I have been fortunate to be able to successfully share with young readers those that I thought would be enjoyed. Three have been done & I’m excited to get the next two currently in route from the printer in front of audiences. I have yet to scratch the surface on getting these reads to the masses & maybe I never will. But in the literary world there’s always some new retail avenue to consider & that keeps me motivated. I see this as something I’ll be doing until that final worthy idea has been written, printed & shelved.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
The stories I create are entertaining but also (I hope) inspiring. Yes, there’s a message in them but I don’t mean to make them too over the head or monotonous. Having had a background in advertising, entertainment & teaching I think that I’m able to speak to children at a level that’s not demeaning. I usually test my work first with parents to see if anything wouldn’t be understood. But I’m also not against keeping a few challenging words or expressions in with the hope being that it will lead the young reader to learn something other than just a clever moral. So many literary pieces out there are franchise work: associated with movies or product tie-ins. Not having that luxury, I try to create moments that are bedded in truth while being somehow clever. I try to use characters or situations that aren’t just the ordinary since I know books like any other form of entertainment are a fleeting moment to be taken out of the same ol’ dull routine. What a gift it is to be part of that brief & appreciated escape.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
breakfast – Snug Harbor, Swingers or Hugo’s lunch – Barney’s Beanery (West Hollywood), Cassell’s or Hinano Cafe
dinner – James Beach, Jjuku Jjuku BBQ, Taylor’s or Escala
drinks – Tom Bergin’s, The Prince, Father’s Office or Frolic Room
Venice Beach, Westwood Cemetery or Temescal Gateway Park trails

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Kirsten Koza Lacey. Since we met in college she’s been the most dedicated, inspiring person I’ve met. She had a busy professional life in public relations for a ton of years but then threw herself wholeheartedly into the thing she loves the most – art. Since then she has been so proficient, so positive, so creative with the amount & type of work she puts out. She casts quite a shadow with all that she’s done & will continue to do.

Website: www.mixedmessagespublishing.com

Instagram: scott__casperson

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.