I am very pleased to present my written interview with Joe Nobody. Joe has authored several books including Holding Your Ground, Holding Their Own: A Story of Survival, The TEOTWAWKI Tuxedo: Formal Survival Attire, and Without Rule of Law: Advanced Skills to Help You Survive. All books are published by Prepper Press.
Here is some background information on Joe Nobody (via Amazon):
Joe Nobody (pen name for the author who wishes to keep his identity confidential) has provided systems, consulting and training for the U.S. Army, Department of Homeland Security, Office of Naval Research, United States Border Patrol as well as several private firms and government agencies which cannot be disclosed.
He is currently active in this area and for the security of his family and ongoing business, wishes to remain anonymous.
He has over 30 years of competitive shooting experience, including IPSC, NRA, and other related organizations. He has been a firearms instructor and consultant for over 30 years and holds the rights to a United States Patent for a firearms modification.
On with the interview……
Q: Joe, can you tell my readers a bit about yourself and your background?
A: I am just a regular guy with a wife and two kids, trying to make ends meet like everybody else. I imagine that your readers are naturally curious about a writer who chooses to use a pseudonym. The reason I chose the name “Joe Nobody” is that I am just an ordinary guy. I also wanted to convey that any old “nobody” can perform the vast majority of the content of my books. You don’t need Special Forces training or to have worked for Blackwater to accomplish good defensive preps. I don’t want anyone saying, “I can’t do what Joe recommends,” because they don’t have extensive combat experience.
Additionally, I don’t want a single reader to implement one of my ideas or suggestions because of a resume or DD-214. Preppers shouldn’t do that regardless if it’s my work or that of someone else. Every reader should prep in a manner that makes sense for them. I want to provoke thought and creativity, not have people rely exclusively on my suggestions based on credentials. Nothing makes me happier than when someone writes to us and has taken one of our ideas and improved upon the concept. That shows we are helping people think. From my perspective, the human mind is our most powerful weapon.
Q: Your books are great. What motivated you to start writing?
A: Thank you very much.
The last few years I have been involved in a lot of training. With civilian students, I started noticing they wanted to know more than just basic firearms and defensive skills. As I dug a little deeper, I found they were concerned about the future and being able to defend their families and property from more than home invasions.
It took a bit for many of these folks to confide in me, but when they finally revealed their inner fears, their primary concern involved a collapse of society at large.
I originally authored the first book, “Holding Your Ground” to pass out to my students as a reference manual. I never expected the book to become as popular as it is.
Q: My favorite question to ask: What triggered you to become interested in preparedness?
A: I was a child of the cold war era, and while growing up, many people were convinced that an exchange of hydrogen warheads was going to be “the event.” I often stayed with my grandparents who had lived through the Great Depression. They seemed less affected by the threat of nuclear war because of their self-sufficient lifestyle. I grew up with livestock, an outhouse, hand pump well, grape arbor, a garden for fresh veggies and canning for winter food. Even though my grandparents were moderately well off, they never forgot the lessons learned from the 1930’s. I guess once you have been truly hungry, you never forget the experience. Their confidence and self-assurance was refreshing. I have no doubt their attitude was due to their “preps,” even though they never heard the term. I think their independence rubbed off on me.
As an adult, seeing what rebellion, famine, war and general lawlessness could do to people influenced me as well. All these things, combined with the fact that I have experienced 15 consecutive days without electricity due to a hurricane, made me the prepper I am today.
Q: What is your personal philosophy about preparedness?
A: Most Americans saw on TV what happened in Iraq after the fall of Sadam. There was suddenly a vacuum of authority, services and most importantly – security. That entire experience opened my eyes bright and wide. As the situation there deteriorated, it became clear that security was job one. Everything else could work itself out if people felt protected and safe. If people don’t feel secure, they will not venture forward to recover or improve their situation. Bridges won’t be repaired, shops won’t open and livestock won’t be tended. Security must be established before anything else can advance.
I used to be like many preppers in that water, food and shelter were the primary focus of my efforts, mostly in that order of priority. Iraq changed all that. Now I rank security as the first priority. You can have all the food, solar power and supplies in the world, but it won’t do you a bit of good if some group of desperate, well-armed men come and take it all away.
This is a probably a good place to point out what I feel is the biggest single shortcoming with most preps: The average American does not comprehend total, ultimate violence. This is not being critical, it is merely an observation. I don’t know how many preppers I meet that believe a bedside pistol or their grandpa’s duck gun are going to be enough to ward off any potential threat after TEOTWAWKI. It won’t be enough if things get really bad. If I could get only one message across to my readers, it would be to prepare your security for the worst. Read, train, talk to experts, research and be ready from a defensive point-of-view. Don’t underestimate the level of pure evil and violence that men are capable of. This is especially true if people become desperate and live without fear of punishment.
Q: Survival & preparedness is becoming more “mainstream” as time goes on – why do you think that is?
A: Like so many trends that effect society, there is more than one catalyst. First of all, preparing is a confidence builder. It gives people a sense of control in a tumultuous world. With modern media, internet and communications, bad news travels faster than ever before. Not only do we hear about more worldwide current events, we are constantly avalanched with the gory details too. How could watching cable news do anything but make someone unsure of the future? Face it, the days of stoical delivery of the nightly news by Walter Cronkite are long gone. Survival and Preparedness is a way people compensate and keep their sanity as they are being inundated with an unstable global environment.
Another obvious reason is the economy. Many preppers, including myself, believe the economy is the most likely potential cause of a collapse. I have read the special commission report on 9/11. What stands out to me is how close the country was to falling over the edge due to the economic impact of that tragic event. In my fictional novel, “Holding Their Own”, that government report was a primary motivator for the storyline. Many of us “common folk” are smart enough to realize the country isn’t nearly as strong economically as we were when the towers fell. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to question what would happen if the United States were attacked again.
Even if you take potential terrorist attacks out of the equation, these are still unprecedented times. I have been a homeowner for over 25 years. Five years ago, if you had told me the value of my property would decline as it has, I would have thought you were insane. There has been a fundamental change in many of the economic “truths” Americans have believed in for decades. These changes are difficult to manage and deal with mentally, and again, preparing restores confidence and faith in our ability to survive – no matter what life throws at us.
Q: There are a lot of dangers in the world today – any predictions as to what the future holds for us?
A: I’m not smart enough to predict any future events, nor do I believe anyone else can. I prepare for the worst and hope for the best. A section from Without Rule of Law sums up my philosophy about preparing for unknown, future threats:
“You can drive yourself nuts trying to prepare for all of this. What is a prepper to do? How do you, within reason, plan for all of the eventualities? If you let your mind run with this long enough, eventually you will be trying to prepare for Godzilla stepping on your garden and ruining the crop. I haven’t figured out a way to prepare for every single eventuality. It is beyond me or anyone else I have ever met.
What you can do is develop advanced capabilities that are broad based and generic in nature. Like a multi-tool of personal skills, they may not serve as well as the specific wrench, but can get the job done.”
Q: Do you have an opinion on our current economic and political situation?
A: I don’t want to come across like I am bashing the media or anything, but I constantly see examples where media sensationalism degrades a situation, often feeding a ratings frenzy rather than delivering objective, hard-core journalism. I sometimes call this “trying to take a drink of knowledge from an information fire hose.” Until we learn to cope, filter and mentally deal with this recent access to 24 hour a day, real-time breaking news, our political situation will not improve.
I think our current economic situation is directly related to this phenomenon as well. Businessmen, workers, government administrators and even military are all impacted by the same constant, often overwhelming, flood of data. It will take our race some time to learn to adapt.
Q: What do you feel are the Top 5 survival & preparedness supply categories by order of importance?
- Security supplies/equipment.
- Water or water purification.
- Non-linear food sources.
Q: Do you have any new or upcoming projects you can give us a sneak peek at?
A: There are four new books in various stages of completion now that “Without Rule of Law” has been released.
The first, due out in early spring, is the sequel to the novel. I hope everyone will enjoy it as good entertainment and a break from all of those army manuals and instruction guides.
We are also working on a sequel to “Holding Your Ground,” called “Holding Your Ground – The Case Studies.” This manuscript has been a lot of fun . . . and a lot of work. We are taking five different types of locations and setting them up for defense. A rural home, an urban home, a suburban apartment, a ranch and a camper are all being prepped to withstand a pretty serious threat level without hurting the value, appearance and utility of the structure. This book is scheduled to be out mid-summer.
The other two works are in the early stages of development and may evolve differently than I currently plan. Let me just say that we are constantly researching and developing new ideas for our readers to find valuable and enjoyable.
Thank you for the chance to tell your audience a little about Joe Nobody.
I wish everyone well and keep up your good work!
Thank you so much Joe! I look forward to more Joe Nobody books in the future.
Take care -
© 2012, Rourke. All rights reserved.