Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Interview with L.B. Johnson, author of The Book of Barkley

Inside the Book:

Title: The Book of Barkley 
Author: L.B. Johnson 
Publisher: Outskirts Press 
Genre: Memoir 
Format: Ecopy/Paperback

2015 Indie B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree. 
2015 Reader's Favorite International Book Award - Silver Winner. 

Gripping Memoir, Hailed "An Instant Classic" by Critics, Shares Journey of Love & Life through the Inspirational Eyes of Man's Best Friend... Crafted from the heart and experiences of L.B. Johnson, 'The Book of Barkley: Love and Life Through the Eyes of a Labrador Retriever' takes readers from the author's depths of grief and personal despair to an empowering new life chock-full of love. But Johnson's radical life change didn't come from finding God or attending a cookie-cutter support group, but instead from a black Labrador called Barkley who taught her the real, innate meaning of love. In a wholly-unique and uplifting new memoir, Johnson tells the deeply-personal story of her life and experiences with a rambunctious Labrador Retriever named Barkley. It's not just a story of one woman and her dog; but a bold journey to discover what love really is, and why learning to live like a dog gives humanity a powerful new meaning.
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Q: Please tell us about The Book of Barkley, and what inspired you to write it.

A:  The Book of Barkley was written after I lost my black lab Barkley and my only brother, within a couple of weeks of each other to sudden aggressive cancers.  It’s a story of a dog, yet it’s more, it’s the story of growing up, of family and how the lessons my dog taught me helped me use my past to have faith in the future.

Q: What themes do you explore in The Book of Barkley?

A:  It’s a memoir – so there is a lot of philosophical reflection within the book on faith, and trust and how we deal with loss.

Q: Why do you write?

A:  I wanted to be a forensic pathologist or anthropologist as a child, but ended up working as a professional pilot when money for graduate school just wasn’t there in my 20’s.  After 20 years in the sky I went back to school for 7 years so I could pursue work more in line with my childhood dream. It’s a demanding, technically detailed career.  Writing gives me a chance to unwind, using words to paint pictures that aren’t so black and white.

Q: How picky are you with language?

A:   I like long sentences, but as long as I understand what’s being written, I like several styles of writing.

Q: When you write, do you sometimes feel as though you were being manipulated from afar?

A: There is definitely a certain mood for me to write, and once I sit down to the computer I don’t craft the words in my head, they just flow out from my fingers.  Caffeine helps J

Q: What is your worst time as a writer?

A: When I feel like I HAVE to finish something by a specific time.  My muse goes to Aruba and does NOT send a post card.

Q: Your best?

A: Early mornings with a cup of coffee and a blank screen in front of me.

Q: Is there anything that would stop you from writing?

A:  I do occasionally stop for chocolate and a good single malt scotch.

Q: What’s the happiest moment you’ve lived as an author?

A:  My first book club.  The ladies contacted me after reading my book in a Chicago library.  I had SUCH a good time and truly felt like an “author” at that moment, as it hadn’t really sunk in yet.  It was also fun, fleshing out some of the stories based on their questions.  I didn’t have permission of my employer to write about my current job in law enforcement in the book so they had some questions.  Basically it’s “NOTHING LIKE ON TV”.

Q: Is writing an obsession to you?

A: Yes, if I don’t do it several times a week it’s like not having enough air.

Q: Are the stories you create connected with you in some way

A: My books are both memoirs, though they deal with different themes.

Q: Ray Bradbury once said, “You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.” Do you agree?

A: Yes, the world can be a very hard dangerous place.  Writing is the perfect shelter in place.

Q: Where is your book available?

A:  The book is available at Amazon (all countries) and Barnes and Noble online.

Q: Do you have a website or blog where readers can find out more about you and your work?

Meet the Author

A former commercial pilot, LB Johnson grew up out West where she later received a doctorate in a Criminal Justice related field in order to pursue a career in federal service after hanging up her wings. She lives in Chicago with her husband and rescue dog Abby. Mrs. Johnson is active in animal rescue and donates 100% of her writing proceeds to animal rescue organizations across the United States as well as Search Dog Foundation.

Her books include the #1 Amazon Best Sellers "The Book of Barkley" and "Saving Grace - a Story of Adoption". She also has been awarded the Readers Favorite International Silver Book Award for Excellence in Writing.

Check out writing updates and news at her author's webpage


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