Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, martini in the other, totally worn out and screaming,
"WOO HOO, what a ride!"

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Interview and Giveaway: The Home Fires Are Burning...My Feet! by Nora Barry

I can't stress enough how much I related to this book! Nora made me laugh at her story and my own. Sometimes, that's all you can do is laugh...
She was kind enough to grant me an interview and provide a book for a giveaway!

(Wrighty's Reads) I have three sons so I laughed so hard at your book! How did it come about? 
(Nora Barry) When my boys were both in diapers I was telling a funny story about them to an old friend from school and he said, “You sound like Erma Bombeck, you should write this stuff down.”  But I became a single mom a few months later and frankly between single parenting, diapers and working, I barely had time to breathe.  I eventually began to write late at night, but it wasn’t about parenting.  I don’t think I had the perspective for it then.  When the boys were in high school I was frustrated at something I was working on and George suggested I take a week off and just write.  I remember saying, I can’t afford to do that!  So he wrote a check and said here, here’s a paycheck.  Go write for a week and see what happens.  So I did.  I wrote about five or six 800 word stories—I was thinking column size and that was a standard column word count (this was 2007).  I shared the stories with friends and they all said, keep going!  So I created a blog, The Dame Domain, and started writing posts several times a week.  It was a pure writing exercise for me, like going to the gym.  And you know, high school just gives you a slew of material—proms and learning to drive and sports and sex and—you don’t have to make it up.  It’s just there day after day.  Eventually the blog was picked up and syndicated to Reuters and some other news outlets.  I stopped writing when the Snapper graduated in 2010.  A year later I read an article about self-publishing and thought, hey I can do that.  So I took the blog down and began winnowing essays from it, and created a narrative sequence of what I had written.  I published it as an eBook last year in May, and then as a paperback in November. 
Where did the title come from?  
 I have no idea, truthfully, it just popped into my mind.  And I liked it because it nails what a lot of us feel—I love being a mom but sometimes it gets to you—burns your feet a bit I guess.
You've been compared to Erma Bombeck and your writing is a riot! Where did you get your great sense of humor? (It sounds like your family shares it too!) 
 My parents have a great sense of humor—they’re the ones who taught me the expression, “Aside from that Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?”  which I take as words to live by! But also, I started writing the blog when I was 49 and age gives you perspective.  I truly believe that when things get tough you can give in or you can find the absurdity and laugh.  I just choose to laugh. That wasn’t always the way—I went thru a very tough and long divorce.  I left him and he was angry and got nasty.  I can assure you that I cried more than I laughed.  It took me a few years to eventually change my attitude and once I did, I was able to find the humor.
Would you like to put in a plug for Druid Media, Inc and/or Webdame? 
Webdame is a sometimes blog.  I took down The Dame Domain but I don’t want to get lazyJ  Druid Media is my company and under that shingle I still write and produce for a lot of corporate clients.
What is your background? 
Writer, producer, Francophile.  Lover of medieval history and the history of storytelling. I come from a large, rambunctious, Irish Catholic family.
How is your family now?
Good!  Wally just graduated from college, the Snapper is a rising junior, George survived cancer.  I as I write this I worry however—the Snapper has a tendency to break an arm during the Republican Convention.  It’s the oddest thing but it’s true and now one is coming up this month!:)
More books to come? (please!) 
 I started a series of short stories, “Story Courts”, that are modern re-tellings of fairy tales.  I’m fascinated by fairy tales and how the same narratives are found in cultures all over the world. So I’ve finished three so far—“An Apple A Day” (Snow White), “Theresa A Twitter” (Arabian Nights) and “A Different Story—The Chess Queen” (actually based on a real character, Eleanor of Aquitaine).  I have another 95% finished, “In The Swim” (The Little Mermaid).
What do you hope to be doing five years from now? 
 I’d like to be producing along with writing.  I’m fascinated by transmedia storytelling.
photo from Goodreads
 Favorite dessert? 
Ice cream!!!!!
Favorite season? 
Summer—I love being outside. 
Paper or plastic? 
I’ll be honest—I used cloth diapers for both kids.  So now, every summer, I use paper plates as an indulgence.  I feel as if cloth diapers gave me a free environmental pass!

Author Nora Barry has generously offered a copy of her book for me to give away here!
My review of The Home Fires Are Burning...My Feet!

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-  Winner has choice of paperback or ebook
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- Ends 8/26/12, 11:59 pm EST

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