Author Interview: Barbara Carter

Today is launch day for Barbara Carter’s 5th memoir Joined – a memoir of marriage. It’s part of the Barbara by the Bay series. Shortly after I read the book, I interviewed her about the book, her memoir series and writing memoirs.

Joined – a memoir of marriage by Barbara Carter

1. This is the 5th book in your memoir series, now called Barbara by the Bay. Has your perspective on how to write a memoir changed since sitting down to write that first book? In other words, do you feel more liberated to write the truth without sugar coating it? Or is there still a voice inside that says, “That’s harsh. Let’s soften it a little bit?”

My perspective has changed a lot since writing my first book. That book took sixteen years to write and was a major learning curve!  One learning curve was to slow down and learn how to tell a good story.  To learn all the techniques of fiction writing, especially dialogue.

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Book Review: “Joined” by Barbara Carter

On September 15th, Barbara Carter releases the next book in her memoir series, Joined – a memoir of marriage. Barbara sent me a copy of the book in February to read and review. February? I know. That was a lifetime ago. Who plans seven months ahead? More over, how can she wait seven months to release the book after it’s ready? I couldn’t. That’s why I’m horrible at pre-launch promotions. She must have the patience of some religion legend whose name I can’t recall.

Description

Falling in love is easy.

Creating a life together is another story. . .

JOINED is a real-life read, a true confession, a compelling story of life’s many challenges and its few choices. It is the fifth in Barbara Carter’s memoir series, Barbara by the Bay (Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia).

It stands well on its own, not requiring the reader to have read any of the earlier books, although certainly knowing about her earlier life will enhance the experience of travelling with her into marriage and motherhood.

This is a story of the perseverance a woman needs while trying to make marriage work through a surprising barrage of adversity. Dealing with issues that could end their relationship.

My Review (written the day I finished the book on March 25th)

We all make mistakes in life. Some of us are addicted to making mistakes. Yet we can’t let past mistakes define who we are today. I’ve lived long enough to know the past is the past and if we dwell on it, we limit our future.

This philosophy I’ve developed over the years kept coming to mind while reading Joined – a memoir of marriage. I also kept reminding myself the early 80s was a different era. What we understood as normal and what we tolerated was different than today. I knew people who were living similar life styles as those in this memoir. Today, I don’t.

Joined is the story of young Barbara, who endured many ups and downs in life, some brought on by her own actions and some by others in her life, including the man she marries in this chapter of the memoir saga.

Readers will be met with thoughts like, “I remember doing that,” “I knew someone who did that,” and “I’d never put up with that.” Though I really can’t speak for the person I was in my 20s, so I may have tolerated it.

As Barbara navigates married life with a husband who drinks way too much, she’s faced with complicated pregnancies, health issues, financial woes and the continued conflicting philosophy of her mother. One night, looking to relive a little freedom she had in her pre-marriage, pre-mother days, she makes a huge mistake. Yet, she endures. Isn’t this what warriors do?

Learning through experience is how we get through life. Learning through the experiences of others, gives us a boost we wouldn’t otherwise have to get ahead.

This memoir will appeal to readers who enjoy reading the raw human experience, one in which a turbulent childhood turned into troubled teen years delivers a woman into marriage, motherhood and deciding if her future will be that like many other women with alcoholic husbands in rural Nova Scotia or something different, exciting and one that will satisfy her soul.

Author Barbara Carter

Barbara Carter: artist and author. Born in Nova Scotia, Canada, December 25, 1958. Married, with three grown children and three grandchildren. Healing from past wounds is the focus of her work. She shares her life experiences and lessons learned, to connect and hopefully help others with their healing journeys. This is her fifth memoir.

Connect with Barbara Carter

Where to buy the book

It is available for pre-order at Amazon. Release date is September 15th.

“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming “Wow! What a Ride!”

~ Hunter S. Thompson, The Proud Highway: Saga of a Desperate Southern Gentleman, 1955-1967

Wednesday’s Word: Barbara Carter presents “Ain’t Easy”

Barbara CarterIntroducing Nova Scotia author Barbara Carter. She has several memoirs to her credit: Floating in Saltwater, Balancing Act, Loose Gravel and a book of poetry Sad Girl, Bad Girl, and I. Her Most recent memoir, Ain’t Easy, was released in July. In this interview, she shares a little bit about it.

1) What is the title of your recent book? Is it a series, what genre is it and is it suitable for all ages?

My latest book is Ain’t Easy, a memoir of looking for love in all the wrong places.

This is book 4 in a series of memoirs that I’m working on. Each book can be read as a stand alone, or in sequence.

Most of my readers have started from the beginning and anxiously wait for the next book. Each book has a certain focus and theme and suitable for an adult audience.

2) In a few sentences, tell us a little about the book. Give us a glimpse of the plot without giving away any spoilers.

In the 1970s, a seventeen-year-old woman thinks she’s found the man of her dreams—a thirty-four-year old man. But when he turns out not to be the man she thought he was she tries to find love and happiness elsewhere. But it turns out not being so easy and she ends up losing herself to men and addiction, and ultimately must face the part she plays in creating her own misery.

This book is also about double sexual standards.

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Saturday Morning News Briefs

Shadows in the Stone Permanently Free at Amazon

FREE eBook Read Everywhere

Many years ago, before self-publishing really took, the goal for many writers was to get a book permanently free at Amazon. It was relatively easy back then but for the past six years, Amazon has been reluctant to set books at permanently free. I was told the only way to do it was to set it for free at other vendors and hope (or scheme) customers would tell on you and Amazon would price match it. However, I’ve tried this several times over the years without luck. Until now.

I checked my sales record this week and discovered the book was being sold for free starting on May 9th. Yet, the book still showed a price of $0.99. Confused, I let it play out, watching my books be purchased for an invisible free price sticker. Last night, I checked again, and the Amazon sites finally revealed the true price: FREE.

Why do authors want a book permanently free? In my case, it’s because I want the first book in the series free in hopes the second book will be bought. Next spring, I hope to publish book 3 in the series, and with this boost in ‘sales’, it should do well. At least that is the hoped for outcome.

You can download Shadows in the Stone at Amazon Canada and Amazon US.

Who’s Pointing at Your Book at Amazon

Last week I shared David Gaughran’s experience with Also Boughts at Amazon. Since then, he’s written a post to share more information on this subject from a different angle. Gaughran’s experience in analysing data such as this helps explain some of the mysteries behind how Amazon works. Read more about this in David Gaughran’s post Who’s Pointing at You.

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