Featured Interview With Brittany Barbera
Tell us a little about yourself. Where were you raised? Where do you live now?
People tell me things. Personal things. Embarrassing things. Weird things, for sure. I’ve had lots of conversations with a variety of people, and I’ve learned we all have quite a bit more in common that we often admit. I guess you could say that I like to talk about the things most people want to keep to themselves, because I’ve learned that joy and pain, success and insecurity, confidence and fear, they’re all part of the human experience.
I’m originally from Bethlehem, PA and have been living in Nashville, TN for the past 5 years. I’m a singer/songwriter and I recently wrote my first (and #1 best-selling!) book, “Let Me Be Weak: What People in Pain Wish They Could Tell You.” It’s based off a song I wrote with the same name (https://t.co/UudfQRnlp5) and each of the lyrics became the chapter titles in the book.
At what age did you realize your fascination with books? When did you start writing?
I’ve always been a book worm. I even worked as a librarian for short stint back in the day. I love to learn and naturally gravitate toward non-fiction books. When I was around 8 or 9 years old, I started to write poetry and had a lot of fun. I’ve since written magazine articles, scripts, a thesis (for my college degree), songs—and eventually my book. I never concentrated on making writing the end goal, but it was always a skill I was developing.
Basically, I view it the way I view athletic training. I never set out to be a runner, but I loved to play basketball growing up. Part of being a good basketball player is being able to run quickly and have endurance throughout the game. By default, I got better at running and became more fit because our basketball team was required to run and practice drills every day.
As a writer, I had a similar experience. Though my focus was often on something else (a performance of a play or a song / a presentation at an academic conference etc.), I had to continually practice writing and improve those skills in order to complete my projects and successfully accomplish my goals. Thankfully, by the time I decided to write a book, I had already devoted a lot of time to developing the craft.
Who are your favorite authors to read? What is your favorite genre to read. Who Inspires you in your writings?
Favorite Authors: Brene Brown, Anne Lamott, Donald Miller, Brennan Manning, Beth Moore, Dr. Henry Cloud
Favorite Genre to Read: Self-Help, Christian Living, Psychology/Counseling, Humor
Tell us a little about your latest book?
I write non-fiction, so my ideas often stem from personal experience or things I’ve learned through watching others. I’ve done a lot of informal counseling in my personal life and knew I could contribute to that space, and hopefully help a lot of people who are struggling. I’m also a musician and I was working on a song idea that resonated deeply with me. I thought it would also connect with others and wondered if I could expand the song into a book. Once I dissected the song,I eventually used the lyrics as a guide and they became the chapter titles of the book. After I wrote a rough outline and realized that I actually did have a substantial amount of information to share and could craft into a book, it cemented the idea in my mind and I started writing.
“Let Me Be Weak: What People in Pain Wish They Could Tell You” is about understanding and articulating our emotions, particularly in times of crisis and grief. If you’ve ever wished you knew what to say when someone you love is hurting, this book was written for you. Through examining themes of grief and loss, boundary setting, compassion, and faith in times of distress, this book will help you become the type of person others can trust with their pain, as you learn how to love and support the suffering in your midst. Basically, if we ever find ourselves in emotional pain, it’s the book we’d wish all of our friends and family would read before trying to “help” us.
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