1) Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?
I have alwasy been a writer. I wrote short stories and poems in elementary and high school. And enjoyed creative writing and journaling as an outlet into my adulthood. I got more serious about writing and publishing when my friend and I created a “novel” club to help with the sci-fi book he was writing.I enjoyed the creative process and was inspired by his success in self-publishing (he was later picked up by 47North Amazon imprint).I decided to try my hand at publishing a series of beach poems I had written and had an artist friend do the accompanying illustrations- just to try out the self-pulishing process from end to end. From there, I decided to work on a fantasy novel that had been begging for some attention. I ended up writing the award winning novel Glamorous and 3 novellas in that series.
2) What inspired you to write your book?
I had wanted to share my story of abuse and healing for a long time. My husband encouraged me saying my story could help other survivors. But being a survivor with what I would consider PTSD, my memories were not always accessible or cohesive, and often difficult to put in the context of the other events in my life. I thought if I couldn’t write a detailed memoir then I couldn’t share my story.Then the news came out about Dr. Larry Nassar and his abuse of hundreds of female gymnasts and my heart broke for them. Those women need healing help, I thought to myself. If I can’t write a memoir, I can write about all the things I did to help myself on my healing journey. So their stories inspired me to write a book to help all survivors heal from their abuse.
3) What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?
The abuse was not their fault. They have the strength to let go of the hold the past has on them.They are capable of healing from the abuse and living a life they love.
4) What drew you into this particular genre?
Self-help was the best way to share my story and the activities for healing that I had incorporated into my healing journey. I didn’t just want to write about my abuse. I wanted to create a blueprint for others for helping them on their healing journey. I wrote the book I wished I had had when I started my healing work!
5) What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?
Twitter. I can share about my book and about the various healing activities I enjoy practicing.
6) What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?
Read a lot of good books in your genre!
Do your research for the genre you want to write in to learn what works for genre from storyline, characters, book covers, etc.
Connect with other authors and find ways to share your writing with people who can give constructive criticism to your work. Their are author groups online, so no need to limit yourself to who is local!
When you are finished writing, get a good editor to help you take the book to the next level.
7) What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?
Right now I am focusing on my other artistic talents – photography. I teach contemplative photography and am working on putting together an online course. There are several novels playing around in my head, so you might see some of these stand alone novels some time in the future!
Denise Bossarte is an award-winning poet, writer, photographer, and artist. Denise is a certified meditation facilitator and contemplative arts teacher. She is an information technology (IT) professional working for a large urban school district. Denise holds a BA in chemistry, an MS in computer science, and a PhD in developmental neuroscience. And she is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse.
Thriving was Quarterfinalist in the 2019 BookLife Prize Nonfiction Contest, Self-help Category (as an unpublished manuscript.)
Thriving was honored with a GOLD AWARD by the Nonfiction Book Awards, via the Nonfiction Authors Association! https://nonfictionauthorsassociation.com/book-award-winner-thriving-after-sexual-abuse/.
Check out the awesome review here: https://thrivingaftersexualabusebook.com/awards/
And Thriving was selected as a semi-finalist in Non-fiction in the 2021 Kindle Book Awards! Finalists announced Oct 1st, Winners announced Nov 1st. https://www.thekindlebookreview.net/2021-book-award-semifinalists/
Thriving was selected by Kirkus Reviews Indie editors for the August issue. According to Kirkus Reviews, less than 10% of Indie authors are selected for this. The review is 1 of 35 reviews in the Indie section of the magazine! You can read the full review here: https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/denise-bossarte/thriving-after-sexual-abuse-break-your-bondage-to-the-past-and-live-a-life-you-love/
And finally, Thriving’s book cover was selected as a finalist in The Wishing Shelf Book Awards Best Book Cover – Adult contest. https://www.thewsa.co.uk/finalists2021/.