1. Let’s start with a little something about you. What do you want the readers to know?
I write from the heart and follow what it says regardless of genre and style for the first draft then see where it fits into a given category as I am cleaning it up. I began my creative writing life as a poet and have recently expanded into writing articles, essays, and various fictional forms. I like to try a little bit of everything at least once before deciding what is or is not for me. I post a new thought on writing or review of a book or cultural event at least once a week to http://www.facebook.com/Author.Veronica.Bergschneider. These run 300-600 words on the average, not too short and not too long to let the world know what I am thinking. Some reflect my life as a married mother of two young girls, others do not.
2. Now? Tell us about your book(s).
I currently have 2 books of poetry in Kindle format on Amazon.com that I self-published there. The first one, Marching to the Beat of a New Drum: The Musings of a Tortured Soul comprises poems in many lengths written from my high school days through early adulthood. It discusses topics ranging from Mother’s Day to young love plus real friendship and romance. The Art of Prayer in and Learning Through Song for the Young Christian uses poetry and original music to teach children and recent converts some key Bible readings and other major tenets of the faith from a Lutheran point of view. This project began as a tool to help my musically motivated daughters digest the information they learned in Sunday school. I feel that music can assist many people in learning more quickly than they might otherwise, making these songs containing simple melodies with accompaniments that can be recombined depending on a piano or guitar player’s level of expertise a wonderful tool for teaching.
Don’t Forget the In-Laws: The Other Side of Dementia’s Fence, soon to be published by booklocker.com represents my foray into the personal essay style of writing. In it, I use a conversational tone to relate my own stories and methods of coping to the reader so he or she can learn from my experiences. Upon my own mother in law’s diagnosis with Alzheimer Disease several years ago, I researched from each family member’s perspective what to expect, but found no real information for the in laws. This led me to collect the essays as I wrote them and compile Don’t Forget the In-Laws to help others see that they are not alone and can cope with what happens to a family facing such a diagnosis. I will keep everyone posted as soon as I hear a publication date.
3. List of favorites…
A. Quote? “To love another person is to see the face of God.” Les Miserables
B. Color? Purple
C. Food? General Tso’s Shrimp, as it is hot and spicy
D. Lucky number? 7 – my birth month of July
E. Movie? Words and Pictures for showing we need both methods to communicate at our best with our fellow humans
F. Actor? Actress? David Duchovny and Natascha McElhone in “Californication” for their portrayal of the writing life.
G. Song? “Only the Good Die Young” by Billy Joel
H. Memory? Singing the National Anthem in front of 5,000 people at my local minor-league baseball park before a Fireworks Night game in 1995
I. Way to spend your down time? Composing and arranging music
J. Word? Wonky
K. Author? JD Salinger for The Catcher in the Rye
L. Secret indulgence? Romance novels, songs, poems, and movies
M. Perfume/cologne? Drakkar Noir on a manly man
N. Place you’ve visited? New York City
O. Guilty pleasure? Chocolate cake, candy, cookies
P. Cartoon? The Jetsons
4. Do you have any rituals when you write? Always follow the muse who’s doing the talking to the computer or notepad and pen when it arrives. Don’t share a piece until I think it is in a place where I can get good honest feedback from those who matter most.
5. What/who encouraged you to be a writer and what/who inspires you to keep writing? Mom got me interested when she liked some of my English projects in school, everything inspires me to keep it up at some point including friends and my relationships with them, music, art, anything that is bothering me at a given point
6. Writing plans for the future? Keep using my words to entertain the world and teach it what it needs to know in order to function better and more peacefully and to keep trying new genres and styles as I go along.
7. What is your opinion on S’mores? Burnt marshmallow or not? Partially burnt as I like it hot but not dead.
8. Tell us a story about something you’ve witnessed that made you laugh. About a week before my last birthday, I saw on Facebook a photograph of a t-shirt. It read, “I’m a writer. What’s your superpower?” I showed my family the picture, laughing as I did. The shirt was funny for me because I have difficulty being taken seriously as a writer – most who hear that writing is what I do think it’s a cover for hanging out online. My older daughter before I knew what was happening, was on her dad’s computer ordering me the shirt for my birthday, all the while reminding me that I needed to pretend I had no idea what she was doing or what would soon arrive. I let her “hide” it in her closet from its arrival until the appointed day, but still get a good laugh when I look down while wearing the shirt.
9. Most embarrassing moment ever? When my relatives met my best friend/brother from another mother and saw me hugging him goodbye after we all had lunch together. I got accused many times over the next few years of having an affair with this friend. That is something I, a very loyal person, am simply not capable of doing. I attribute the many questions and accusations to the fact that the relatives are not used to my having friends, especially those of the opposite sex in spite of their always telling me that people are people and as long as nobody is hitting on the other or causing any extramarital affairs, everything is OK. My friend and I, however, have turned all of the embarrassment into plenty of jokes as strangers and friends of friends have had the same reaction to us going out and having fun when time and money permit.
10. You can teleport anywhere and any era you wish. You can only bring 3 things with you. Where do you go and what do you bring? I would go to Renaissance Italy but bring a sound recorder, camera, and computer to record everything I see and the people I get to meet.
11. What are your feelings about chocolate milk? It makes me more thirsty than when I began
12. Pet person? Do you have them? If so, tell us about them? I don’t have a pet person since I don’t play favorites. They all take turns in my world depending who is co-operating best at any given time.
13. Tell us about your first kiss. The first one I had with my husband beat all the rest. He was so romantic as to ask if it was OK to kiss me, then did it so softly and tenderly but with all of his mouth. It had nothing to do with probing, tonsil hockey style kisses but was a truly mature, sweep a girl off her feet style. These have always some with big bear hugs attached and I hope the method continues for many years to come.
14. Have you ever walked down a toy aisle at a store and pushed all the buttons? No.
15. It’s raining outside, you’re completely alone, what do you do? Sing and dance a la Singin’ in the Rain
16. Words of wisdom for our readers? Always follow your heart and muse. Write only what they say when they say it, not what the world tells you to write unless you are seeking a challenge. Don’t worry about genre and other such boundaries on the first draft, just write. You can clean it up and fit it into a category during the revision and editing process. Experiment with style, tone, and genre until you find what comes most naturally to you.