Interview with D.J. Burr, author of I Just Wanted Love

D.J. Burr
Darrett “D.J.” Burr is a licensed mental health counselor in the Washington State; national certified counselor and a specialist in problematic sexual behavior. He has been in private practice in Seattle, WA for five years. D.J. is the co-founder, owner, and Executive Director of A.B.L.E. Counseling Services, LLC.

D.J. is the creator of ABLE Affirmations, ABLE Life Recovery, and the ABLE Care Clinic. D.J. published Unfinished: A GLBT Domestic Violence Workbook while completing his Masters in Community Counseling at Argosy University-Atlanta in 2009.

Born in raised in Marietta, GA, D.J. has been known to many as a survivor. His childhood was less-than-nurturing. D.J. spent the majority of his early years tending to other’s needs and wants; not knowing what his were. He kept fighting for more–more understanding of himself.

Unfortunately, D.J. lost focus after being targeted by a sexual predator. D.J. lapsed into addiction to numb the pain of the molestation, broken relationships, dysfunctional family of origin, and loss of his childhood. However, the addiction did not stop him.

Over 15 years later, D.J. has learned to live life instead of surviving life. D.J. found answers to his long unanswered questions, primarily, who loves me? Twelve Step recovery and rigorous honesty saved D.J. from a life of addiction. He can now say, “I love myself.” Loving himself allowed D.J. to stop chasing unavailable people, places, and things. He now focuses on his recovery, which impacts every facet of his life.

D.J. enjoys writing, watching movies, especially horror/suspense. His favorite band is Nickelback. His favorite R&B group is Destiny’s Child. D.J. is also a huge fan of old 80s-90s cartoons like Transformers.

You can visit D.J. Burr’s website at

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 I Just Wanted Love

TitleI Just Wanted Love: Recovery of a Codependent, Sex and Love Addict
Author: D.J. Burr
Publisher: ABLE Counseling Services, LLC
Publication Date: December 31, 2014
Pages: 232 pages
ISBN: 978-0692299128
Genre: Memoir
Format: Paperback, eBook (.mobi / Kindle), PDF

D.J. Burr is a man on a mission; successful business owner, highly respected psychotherapist and survivor of a dysfunctional life. At a young age, all he wanted was to be loved, but instead found himself targeted by a sexual predator. D.J. slipped into a life of addiction and clawed his way through broken relationships and seedy sex clubs–looking for love in all the wrong places. D.J. will take readers on a roller coaster of emotions as he details his search for grace and love.

Author Interview

Q: Welcome to The Writer's Life! Now that your book has been published, we’d love to find out more about the process. Can we begin by having you take us at the beginning? Where did you come up with the idea to write your book?

I Just Wanted Love is the story of my recovery from codependence and sex and love addiction. It is the story that exposes every secret I held onto, which subsequently fueled my active addiction. This book is my greatest accomplishment. I no longer have to hide in the shadows of shame, guilt, and active addiction.

Q: How hard was it to write a book like this and do you have any tips that you could pass on which would make the journey easier for other writers?

It was extremely hard to write this book, yet easy at the same time. I knew that I needed to be my most authentic self in my writing. I wanted to cast a light on my problems, with the hope that others would be encouraged to get help for their sexual addiction and codependence issues.

I highly recommend being in active therapy while writing a memoir. I couldn’t imagine doing this really challenging work without having a sounding board that was not a friend, partner, or editor. My therapist taught me to be my own unique self – a person worthy of love, respect, and compassion.

I would also suggest spending a few days alone, if not longer, during the editing and rewriting process. Who needs distractions anyway! Being alone encourages a deep, emotional release that will only propel the writing further.

Q: Who is your publisher and how did you find them or did you self-publish?

I am grateful for the experience of self-publishing. It allows me creative control. I was actively engaged in every last detail of getting this book ready for publication. * I found the editor, cover designer and did most of the marketing myself. I look forward to more self-publishing adventures!

Q: Is there anything that surprised you about getting your first book published?

I Just Wanted Love is actually my second self-published book. My first book, Unfinished: A GLBT Domestic Violence Workbook, was self-published in 2009, through Xlibris while I was still in graduate school.

I was quite surprised by the cost of self-publishing. There are so many financial facets to self-publishing and many can be a bit daunting, especially if you have limited funds – like I had as a graduate student. I am grateful I was able to publish Unfinished and I Just Wanted Love because both books are meant to reach target audiences who need additional resources and support.

A small financial sacrifice for me has helped countless people. I feel tremendous joy when I receive an email from a gracious reader thanking me for being so vulnerable. I have received several correspondences indicating that the reader sought out professional help after reading one of my books. It’s a great experience.

Q: What other books (if any) are you working on and when will they be published?

I am working on a book about the complexities of dating while being in recovery. I am aiming for a release in spring 2016.

Q: What’s your favorite place to hang out online?

I am always on Facebook. I get to connect with my family, friends, and fans! I have to stay mindful of my usage of Facebook though – it can be quite addictive.

Q: Finally, what message (if any) are you trying to get across with your book?

The message is simple: you are not alone. If you feel powerless and your life is unmanageable – get yourself into a 12-Step meeting. We have to help each other get sober and stay sober.

Q: Thank you again for this interview! Do you have any final words?

Absolutely! I would like to thank everyone that has supported me on this journey. I couldn’t have done this without my family, friends, colleagues, clients, and fans! I truly appreciate the opportunity to carry the message of recovery.

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