Author Interview with Tralisa McNeal

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Tralisa McNeal

Question: What do you think prepared you or qualifies you to write in your chosen genre?

Answer: Life experiences.

Question: Tell us a little about your “real” (Non-writing) life — family, job, church life. Does it give you inspiration for your writing? Does it get in the way of your writing, or are there times when you get help, from people or circumstances?

Answer: I am a divorced mother of one adult child who means the world to me. He makes me wish that I had more children because I like him. He has been an inspiration to my writing. I do not currently work outside of the home. I am a Christian. I grew up in the church. My mother was a Sunday school teacher and I was president of the Jr. Choir and both the Young Adult and Jr. Usher boards. However, my adult experiences with the church have been negative. I have found people in the church’s I have attended to be judgmental, non-trustworthy and exclusionary. It’s like you’re not free to love just as Christ did. If you love the women you must have some underlying motive like maybe you’re gay or if you love the men you want to take them to bed. Too much drama. So for now I watch church on television. I know not all Christians are the same and I know this is a direct contradiction to the Bible. There are several scriptures that allow me to know that I am supposed to attend church. However, right now my life is difficult and I need simplicity. I don’t expect a perfect church but hopefully someday I can find a church that is right for me.

Question: Tell us about things you enjoy — what you do for fun or personal satisfaction?

Answer: I enjoy reading, writing, learning about other cultures. Spending time with friends and family.

Question: Tell us about working with any people who help you create your books — Do you use Beta readers? Hire an editor or proofreader? How do you get your covers?

Answer: I do not use beta readers because I have not been able to find any who keep their promises. I have given out so many book coupons with the promises of an honest critique but very few have kept their word. I would love to have some beta readers. I hate editing but I edited my entire book. If I ever make enough money from my writing I will hire an editor in the future. I was on Authonomy at one time and received feedback from some readers but I totally changed my book after that. My cover was done by Mary Campagna Findley

Question: Have you done anything writing-related, but besides your books, that seemed to get a lot of positive response? Something that encouraged you?

Answer: I currently host two blogs. One for my book that has a featured author page where I advertise for other authors. This blog is I am encouraged by this blog because I am having more and more authors who want to be featured. It’s nice watch my readership grow. I host my second blog is the home for my poetry

Question: Tell us about your newest book. Make us want to read it.

Answer: My newest book is titled Love Me Sane. It’s about one woman’s struggles to build a personal relationship with Jesus Christ after she is raped. The protagonist in Love Me Sane continues to experience abuse through self-defeating behaviors such as addiction and promiscuity.

Question: What is the “message” of your writing? (For example, is your purpose to encourage old-fashioned values, encourage romance, or do you have different purposes in different books?)

Answer: I write in different genres so the messages are different for each book. The message I want my readers to receive from Love Me Sane is that no matter what we have done in our past Jesus Christ still loves us and is there for us. His grace is never out of reach for any of us. Not all of my books are about spirituality or Christianity.

Question: Tell us one place you want to visit, or person you want to meet, and why.

Answer: I want to meet Oprah Winfrey because she is a reminder that success isn’t that far away. She offers hope to me as a black woman. I believe that if she did it I can too.

Question: Share something that’s amazing, touching, or that makes you angry.

Answer: Something that makes me angry is exploitation. I hate when people exploit others for personal benefit.

Question: What’s the worst trouble you ever had with getting a book written (plots, finding needed information, getting a cover done)?

Answer: Formatting books to download for sale is very difficult for me. This was so difficult that I don’t remember how I got through it the first time. I’ll have to learn all over again.

Question: What’s your next project? Tell us so we can’t wait for it to come out!

Answer: My next project is a sequel to Love Me Sane titled Beyond Transgressions.

Question: What are your future projects?

Answer: I am writing a children’s book about grief titled Auntie Don’t Leave without Saying Goodbye, a poetry book titled Lesson’s I’ve Learned and a fiction book that I just call a soldier’s story. I haven’t titled it yet.

Question: Are their characters/stories/scenes/etc based on anything in real life?

Answer: The protagonist in my book Love Me Sane is based on some real experiences I have had but not all that’s the reason it’s realistic fiction and not non-fiction. Auntie Don’t Leave Without Saying Goodbye is a non-fiction book about how my son deals with my sister’s death but I don’t have the illustrations for this book yet. Lesson’s I’ve Learned is a book of poetry based on my personal life experiences.

Question: What is your favorite book/character?

Answer: My favorite book is Love Me Sane. I like Stacey’s character.

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1 Comment

  1. Tralisa McNeal

     /  April 14, 2014

    I wrote the original alone posted on website and received feedback. Made some changes then re-posted.


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