I am a native of the state of Mississippi I hold a Master of Science degree in counseling and I am a Licensed Professional Counselor. I completed my undergraduate work at two private schools in Mississippi. My concentration was in history and Theology. I attended the University of Memphis and earned my Master's degree in 1993. Now a licensed counselor, I credit bartending for preparing me for my career. I am also an accomplished musician.
When did the writing bug bite, and in what genre(s)?
I guess I caught the writing bug and became serious about it around age forty, although I had written a few poems in my early 20s. My genres are poetry and nonfiction. My poems represent my bartending experiences told in poetry. My poetry titles are: Reflections from the Other Side (the world through the eyes of a bartender) and Vodka Tonics for the Soul.
When you started writing, what goals did you want to accomplish? Is there a message you want readers to grasp?
My initial goal was simply to get my work out there to as many readers as I could. My message is the theme of suffering that all experience, giving ourselves permission to acknowledge it, and being able to rise above our own struggles with persistence and determination.
Briefly tell us about your latest book. Series or stand-alone?
My latest book is a stand-alone book. Below is the synopsis:
UP FROM THE RUINS is the true and inspiring story of a family caught in the crossfire of an alcoholic father with a fiery temper and a love for alcohol who keeps the family on edge with a rootless life of transient living conditions. It is about courage, hope, faith, and the American dream. Faced with the head wind of damnation dealt out by all of the experts and predicted failure, Bruce hears only the beating of his own heart and marches to the beat of his drum. Academically, Bruce struggles in school. The family violence keeps him on edge. He has difficulty sustaining concentration in the class room and cannot complete homework assignments. This leads to the failure of many grades, requiring him to attend summer school. However, his dogs are his heroes and they save the family’s life and become his refuge and source of comfort in the midst of a family that churns with violence.
Ultimately, Bruce does the impossible and reaches the pinnacle of success when he earns a Master of Science degree in counseling and becomes a Licensed Professional Counselor. He identifies with the down trodden and the poor and uses his tumultuous life experiences to help heal the broken hearted. Up from the Ruins is a poignant portrayal of one boy’s journey whose adult life is mirrored by his life as a child. The main character descends downward and spirals upward stretching the emotional elasticity of the human limits, decidedly proving, that there is value to human effort. The reader should be prepared to take a downward descent into the deafened echoes of American life.
What’s the hook for the book?
In this age where the American family is being strained beyond its limits, there is a tremendous need for value on human effort, and feeling that one’s choices can yield results. The main character comes to the realization at a young age that nothing is permanent and ultimately, loss and gain must be the fulcrum that tips the balance of life. Filled with all the thrills of childhood as well as the despair of a lost child in his struggle for meaning and purpose, the character emerges from the depths of chaos.
How do you develop characters? Setting?
I start out by setting the background from which my story will emerge. I use vivid descriptions about the terrain and the places my character lives. I introduce my characters in chronological order and develop their personalities through sequential events. I carefully weave the background inside the family system and drift in and out of those two spheres without losing touch with my reader. Each chapter builds upon the other and draws the reader into each subsequent chapter.
Do you have specific techniques you use to develop the plot and stay on track?
I don’t know what to say about technique, other than to quote Earnest Hemmingway: “Writing is ninety percent perspiration and ten percent inspiration.” In Short, I just followed my instincts and ruminated over each word until I felt it was time to turn the book loose. I understand Hemmingway’s description, but I do believe there is also the element of being born with a skill to write as well.
How does your environment/upbringing color your writing?
I think that my upbringing and life experience is my writing. My latest work is an autobiography.
What are your current projects?
I have a project I want to begin working on that I have spent 15 years gathering research for. It centers on my own profession of psychology. Having been a professional counselor for 12 years concomitant the research, I will be able to draw from both subjective experience and objective scientific research.
Where can folks learn more about your books and events?
The main place to learn about my books is to go to my web site at:
www.brucewaynebooks.com You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for upcoming signings and additional information. My books can also be found on amazon.com along with more descriptions.