Today it is great to welcome Jane Carroll, author of Bertha-Size Your Life. First, could you tell us what your book is about?
Bertha, as I usually refer to the book, is a series of life lessons disguised as fun and sometimes zany short stories. Bertha has moved in with the narrator who is experiencing an empty nest and immediately begins to turn her life upside down while making it right side up. The fun in the book comes with Bertha’s outlandish antics and wardrobe but her wisdom is always paramount to her quirkiness. I laugh and say that Bertha is who you would get if you could cross Lucy, Oprah and dress her like Peg Bundy.
The stories incorporate a lot of Law of Attraction principles along with other wisdom gleaned from traditional self-help teachings. But don’t let that fool you… Bertha adds her own flare to it and you’ll hardly recognize it! One of my favourite stories is Pink Flamingos. You may read it here. http://janecarrollauthor.com/pink-flamingos/
What inspired you to write it?
I’ve always been interested in personal growth and had recently become a certified Life Coach. Writing a book just seemed like the next thing to do. My youngest daughter had just gotten married and the time seemed perfect to do something for women who were experiencing empty nest. The book started as a series of exercises designed to help the middle aged…don’t you hate that term…woman really get to know herself again. Then she could figure out how she wanted to fill her time. It made perfect sense to me.
The only problem was…it was boring. I know, I hate to say it but it’s the truth. Anyway, one day the Life Coach that I was working with left me a message that her daughter had moved out and asked what she should do. When I couldn’t reach her by phone I shot her a flip email about naming her nest and I jokingly named Bertha.
I thought that was that but Bertha had other ideas. Before I knew it all the chapters in the book were starring Bertha wearing lime green spandex and stilettos and fighting with the cat. The rest as they say…is history.
Your book listed as being part of the ‘Bertha Series’. Does that mean we can expect more Bertha books?
Yes. The sequel which I’m calling Becoming Bertha for the time being is almost completed but will then go through the editing process. In the meantime, Bertha has a guided journal, Where the Joys Are, that is already in the editing process.
If your book was made into a movie, who would you want to play Bertha?
Debra Messing, without a doubt! I think she would be a delightful Bertha. Now, who would we get to play me…hmmm.
What are you reading at the moment?
Don’t laugh! I’m reading Lionel’s Grand Adventure (Lionel and the Golden Rule) by Paul R. Hewlett. I know it’s a book for adolescent boys…but I am a school nurse in my day job so I’m always looking for good things to share with my kids at school. It’s kind of funny that Lionel’s mom is named Bertha…but I don’t think there’s any resemblance to my Bertha.
What do you like to do in your free time when you're not reading or writing?
Lately, there hasn’t been much of that. When I can get away I love to visit my daughters and granddaughters. I’m a porch gardener at best but do enjoy spending time in nature. Cycling has been a passion of mine for a few years that has gone by the wayside lately so I hope to get back into that. But…shopping for shoes…now that’s fun!
Do you have any parting comments?
I just want to thank you for having me and Bertha as your guests. It has been great fun! And as Bertha says, “When life hands you an ostrich…make a boa!”
Where can we buy your book?
Bertha is available primarily on Amazon in both Kindle and Paperback.
Where can readers find out more about you?
I would love for your readers to visit my website and blog. http://www.janecarrollauthor.com
Thank you so much Jane for taking the time to chat with me and tell me about your great book!
About Jane Carroll
Jane Carroll, author of Amazon bestselling Bertha-Size Your Life, is a Life Coach, Registered Nurse, Reiki Master, Mother, Grandmother, and long-time student of life. She has seen the focus of her over 30 year nursing career change from illness to wellness to wholeness, a philosophy that permeates everything she does. While she enjoys all aspects of her life, writing is her passion and she is currently working on Bertha’s latest adventures.