Author Interview: Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein, Author of THE TRUTH (I'M A GIRL, I'M SMART AND I KNOW EVERYTHING)

Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein is the originator of The Enchanted Self(R). She has been a positive psychologist in private practice and licensed in the states of New Jersey and Massachusetts since 1981. She is currently in private practice in Long Branch, New Jersey with her husband, Dr. Russell M. Holstein.

Dr. Barbara speaks regularly on radio programs around the country, and appears on television in New York and New Jersey. Her inspiring audio shows and podcasts can be found on the web. Her articles and stories appear on the web on hundreds of sites. She also gives lectures, seminars, and tele-classes on happiness. Listen to her e-radio show, The Enchanted Self on http://www.ladybuglive.com/ . Also, listen to her e-radio show, Happiness for Women Only! on http://www.internetvoicesradio.com/

Her newest book, The Truth, I'm Ten, I'm Smart and I Know Everything! is another first in positive psychology. Written by a ten year old girl as a diary, Dr. Barbara has been able to imbed lots of positive truths that we all need to remember and live by, regardless of our age.The girl's edition, titled: The Truth, (I'm a girl, I'm smart and I know everything) debuted February 2008 in bookstores nationwide.

You can visit Barbara's website at http://www.enchantedself.com/ or her blog at http://www.enchantedself.typepad.com/.

Welcome to The Writer's Life, Barbara! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how long you’ve been writing?

I’m a positive psychologist in private practice in New Jersey. I’ve been writing since I was nine when I formally started my Girl Scout Diary. The writing has never stopped except for a few months when my daughter was a baby. When my son was a baby I wrote a couple of short stories and keep a journal of my dreams.

Can you please tell us about your book and why you wrote it?

I wrote The Truth (I’m a girl, I’m smart and I know everything) to help moms and girls hold on to the best of themselves and also develop better avenues of communications between them. I’ve been researching and treating women and girls for 30 years. I’ve been a school psychologist and a teacher and I know how precious a positive sense of self is and how vulnerable it can be to hold on to. I felt that a fictional diary was the simplest and purest way to share all the psychological secrets and wisdom that I wanted to share. Also, the format lent itself to humor, pathos and so many feelings that go with growing up.

What kind of research was involved in writing “The Truth (I’m a girl, I’m smart and I know everything)”?

As mentioned above, the research of working with women and girls for over 30 years in the most intimate setting of therapy and of course, also the classroom and schools. Another type of research was the introspection of reviewing my own childhood and lastly research on the developmental stages of growing up.

How much input did you have into the design of your book cover?

I discussed the cover and saw several samples until we were satisfied.

Has it been a bumpy ride to becoming a published author or has it been pretty well smooth sailing?

It has been a bumpy ride.

For this particular book, how long did it take from the time you signed the contract to its release?

This is the second version of much of this material. The first book, (The Truth, I’m Ten, I’m Smart and I Know Everything) was released for women last year. From deciding to do a girl’s and mom’s edition to actually getting it delivered to the distribution warehouse was about six months.

Do you have an agent and, if so, would you mind sharing who he/is is? If not, have you ever had an agent or do you even feel it’s necessary to have one?

I would love to have an agent. I don’t have one but I’m still open. I think it would be helpful for me as this book is the first in a series and there can be legal issues, etc where a good agent is so helpful.

Do you plan subsequent books?

Yes, a series as I mentioned above. I’m almost done with the next book which takes the girl up in age to almost 14.

Are you a morning writer or a night writer?

I am a night writer.

If money was no object, what would be the first thing you would invest in to promote your book?

Info commercial where kids could share how much they love the book and moms and dads and kids could be shown discussing different topics brought up by The Truth.

How important do you think self-promotion is and in what ways have you been promoting your book offline and online?

It is critical. I am doing a lot of the web. I am talking in chat groups on Amazon, talking about my book in my blog, beginning to book engagements in libraries and schools, and just setting up the first book signings. I’ll be busy a long time.

Any final words of wisdom for those of us who would like to be published?

Do it. In today’s world you can find a way. You can self-publish as a start with a company that prints on demand. It is a great way to get your feet wet and see what promoting is all about. Because at the end of the day the harder you work, the better your book has a chance to not just linger in the homes of your best friends. But even if that is all that happens it is still worth the adventure and commitment! As I said, Do it!

Thank you for coming, Barbara! Would you like to tell my readers where they can find you on the web and how everyone can buy your book?

My website is www.enchantedself.com and http://www.amazon.com/ is the best place to buy my book, as well as all on-line bookstores, my site, http://www.enchantedself.com/ and bookstores all over.

If you would like to comment on this interview, click here.

Barbara Becker Holstein's virtual book tour is brought to you by Pump Up Your Book Promotion and choreographed by Cheryl Malandrinos.


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