Q: Please share about your background (where you were born, where you grew up, siblings/family dynamic, career background , where you live now, etc.)
I was born in New Haven, Connecticut and grew up in Norwalk. My father was an educator, a Dean at the University of Bridgeport and then the superintendent of schools and Norwalk. My mother taught second and third grades in Westport. I was an only child until I was 17! I went to Barnard College and then Boston University. I majored in philosophy and minored in English. In college writing and drama were my passions. In graduate school I did my dissertation on creative thinking in children. For many years we have lived in New Jersey. I have been a practicing psychologist for over 30 years, with a specialty in positive psychology. I have written many books, including one of the first books in positive psychology for women, The Enchanted Self, A Positive Therapy. Another book of which I am very proud, is a fictional diary, written by a girl, for girls and tweens to enhance their self-esteem, The Truth (I’m a girl, I’m smart and I know everything). This new book is my first romance, mystery novel.
Q: When did you begin your writing journey? When I was nine years old and started to faithfully keep my Girl Scout Diary every night.Q: Please share about your book. My book is a romantic travel novel that is filled with intrigue, mystery and spiritual learning’s. The plot is as follows: Natalie and Maggie, best friends since college, find themselves in the romantic, mystical and intriguing city of Jerusalem when Natalie’s husband, David, takes a short sabbatical there. The appearance of Jack, a diamond dealer and Natalie’s old boyfriend from college, creates tension and arousal for Natalie. Will she do things she will come to regret? Maggie meets Jack’s friend: tall, dark and handsome. What about her boyfriend back home? Meanwhile, a mysterious woman named Chaya Sarah soon captivates both women with spiritual experiences. However, her actions and secrecy about herself baffle them, and they become concerned that Chaya Sarah may be involved in more than meets the eye. The mystical energy of Jerusalem along with the reality of terrorism compounds an already intense experience for both women.
Q: What are your top 3 tips to beginning writers?
1. Write every day, even if you throw it out later. 2.Keep a little notebook and put in it interesting ideas that pop into your head and interesting things you see and hear. 3. Write back stories for all your characters, even if no one but you sees them, as the back stories will make the characters more real.
Q: Most writers are readers. What 3 books are on your “must-read” list?
1. The Alexandrian Quartet. 2. Gone With The Wind. 3. Huckleberry Finn
Q: Where can readers find out more about you and your book?
For me: www.enchantedself.com and on Facebook: Barbara Becker Holstein. You Tube: enchantedself. For Next Year in Jerusalem: www.next-year-in-jersualem.com, facebook under Next Year in Jerusalem, YouTube: Next Year in Jerusalem.
Or on Amazon:
Q: Question for fun sake—what was your favorite childhood meal and why?
A wonderful question. I loved a delicious steak with a bone, baked potato and peas. My favorite dessert was coffee ice cream with fudge sauce. Yum.