Interview with Lisa A. Baeringer
Tell us about your latest book.
Bet You Didn’t Think MS Could Look This Good is a memoir. It gives a realistic and raw account of the battle leading up to and including my Multiple Sclerosis diagnosis. This book stands apart from others of its kind because it doesn’t follow the typical story arc style of writing. Quite literally, everything in the book was taken from my personal journal. It’s not pretentious. It’s an emotional and sarcastically humored journey that resonates with people because I’m just like one of them, an everyday ordinary person.
Why do you think readers are going to enjoy your book?
Well, because it’s real. It’s not depicting some celebrity who has a vast amount of resources at their disposal. It entails my life, a person who can’t miss work due to a flare up because I can’t afford to lose pay. It’s a person who has children and a home to attend to because I can’t hire a nanny or a maid. I definitely think the twisted humor and sheer will power of a woman with MS will give readers someone to root for.
What’s your favorite quote about writing/for writers?
“I don’t think writers should write about answers, I think writers should write about questions.” – Paul Haggis. I always try to remember this when I’m writing. It’s natural to write about some dilemma, whether true or fictional, and want to give some type of explanation for it. You have to fight that urge. You want to lead readers on a journey and allow them to come to their own conclusions. They want to be engaged and have their interests peaked. If you just lay it all out for them it’ll just feel like they’re reading from a history textbook. So I never like to wrap up a story all tidy like and tied with a neat little bow. I want to keep them thinking about it even after they’ve finished the book.
Did you learn anything from writing your book that way unexpected?
I learned how much I despise editing and proofreading. Even with an editor you still have to go over it and maybe tweak it. By the end I was sick of my own story. I also learned how much of a procrastinator I can be with certain things which struck me as odd since I usually tackle everything head on. You really do need to write everyday even when you don’t feel like it. The best I discovered though is how much I love that feeling you get when inspiration strikes. That’s a high I definitely can get addicted to.
Who or what inspired you to become a writer?
I don’t believe it was any particular person or event. I just love to express myself by being creative. I enjoy being sucked into a story, an alternate world so to speak. Even though I’m grounded I have quite the vivid imagination. Although my current book’s a memoir I wanted people to get absorbed into a different world which just so happens to be my real life.
When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?
Well, I’m like every other person, I have responsibilities but I enjoy reading and watching TV. I also like being with family and friends, drinking some wine by a fire pit, or even playing board games. I get a kick out of being goofy with my pets and going on new adventures no matter how trivial they may be. I adore learning. I’m like a sponge and want to absorb all the information I can. I wish I was like that when I was in school but learning is so much more fun when you’re not required to do it.
What are your thoughts on self-publishing versus traditional publishing?
I’m no expert on the publishing industry nor do I tend to be. I believe each and every author needs to assess their own needs when it comes to publishing. That being said, I think there are pros and cons to each. Self-publishing allows you the freedom of not having to adhere to traditional publishing companies guidelines and you set your own pace. Yet, so many self-published books get lost in the pile and not taken as seriously. As for traditional publishing you get the recognition and validation of being a serious author. You’re more inclined to gain more exposure. But traditional publishing has more restrictions and it’s extremely hard to break through especially as a new author. I chose the route of traditional publishing because I wanted the validation that my work was considered good enough to be chosen. If my work wasn’t considered worthy then I wouldn’t want it out there. Let’s face it; an author’s success depends on public opinion. Hell, I was rejected a lot but that made me go back to the drawing board to improve my writing and myself. I keep all the rejection letters as a reminder that there’s always room for improvement. Writing is hard work. I don’t think may people outside the industry realize that.
Where can people find out more about you and your writing?
They can go to my website: www.lisabaeringer.weebly.com or my Facebook author page: Lisa A. Baeringer. I enjoy connecting with other writers and people in general. I’m very accessible and like to speak to anyone who reaches out. I’m very down to earth. On these sites you become part of a community, you’re not just an outsider or a fan. You definitely aren’t another face in the crowd. Plus, you’ll get to take advantage of promotions and discussions.
What formats is the book available in?
It’s available in both paperback and Kindle, something for everyone. Paperback’s for more of the traditional reader such as myself whereas the ebook is fitting for more of the progressive reader.
Where can a reader purchase your book?
Right now it can found on Amazon. Soon it’ll be available on Cedar Loft Publishing’s website along with brick and mortar stores such as Barnes & Noble.