Aaron Dietz JamieQ&A Klouse Super author Aaron Dietz writes instructional manuals for crime-fighters from his spot in the Emerald City. Dietz is an instructional designer for online high schools and has written courses in game modding, computer programming, green design, and 3-D video games. It’s natural for him to write quizzes. He’s worked a decade in libraries. He has also been paid to count traffic and once failed a personality test. Dietz’s super powers include a high metabolism and the ability to put things back where he got them. He’s also pretty good at math. Q&A with Aaron Deitz, Gen X author and real-life super hero instructor. Q: Having captured the colloquial language of the Emerald City for the next generation, what is the best thing about being a modern day author? The best thing about being an author today is access. Through the Internet we have access to readers, publishers, reviewers, their reviews, reader reviews, chapter excerpts of other books and so much more. Not everyone wants to participate or has the ability to participate, but there is always the chance that you can get a dialog going with your favorite publisher / editor / favorite author just by politely approaching them through Twitter, Facebook, Google+ or some other mechanism. You also have more access to what readers are thinking about your book or even how they are using your book. You can look at reader reviews on Goodreads and Amazon, and you can even see what phrases people are highlighting in your ebooks. You can also get to know readers through social networking sites in a way that would have been impossible 15 years ago. I’ve received fan art and lovely messages of encouragement from people who liked Super, and I’ve been connected with authors whose work I adore and have developed relationships with them because of this tremendous level of access. And of course, an author today also has access to incredible amounts of technology. I can create my book as any number of ebook formats, or even write an app. I can produce a reasonably well-done video for a relatively low cost. Years ago, an author could only be concerned about text, usually laid 50
out in a traditional format. Now, the technology offers limitless possibilities for how you want to produce your work. This is because we have access to the technology. Q: So, why superheroes? Superheroes are decidedly relevant for many reasons. People are more empowered by the Internet and other technologies than they have ever been in the past, and as Voltaire and the Spider-Man comics say, “With great power comes great
responsibility.” It’s superheroes that symbolize the positive uses of power and remind us of this responsibility. We don’t have to put on tights or come up with an alter ego, but most of us have the time and therefore should be active participants in making the world better. It’s tempting to sit around and use the Internet as a plaything and time killer, but because it’s such a powerful tool we have the responsibility to use it to help others.