For this installment of “20 Questions and a Selfie,” we catch up with Barbara Bracht Donsky, writer for Desperately Seeking Paris, a blog about one woman’s search for bits of beauty in New York and Paris, and author of Veronica’s Grave, a forthcoming memoir published May 2016 by She Writes Press, available for pre-order now.
A prolific writer, Barbara opines about art, style, dreams, love and loss on her blog. In her memoir, she tells the heart-wrenching, factual tale of her mother’s disappearance, her father’s intent to erase her memory, and ultimately how it is “imperative when down for the count, to get yourself up off the mat.”
Our 20 questions with Barbara start now:
1) What is your full name?
Barbara Bracht Donsky
2) What is your professional job title?
3) Describe your organization.
Desperately Seeking Paris is a blog about one woman’s search for bits of beauty in New York and Paris.
4) Describe your surroundings right now.
An attractive home office with a view of Park Avenue, hundreds of cars and taxis slouching towards midtown.
5) What was your first paid writing gig?
A short story
6) What was the last thing you wrote?
A letter to a go with a book I’m sending to a cancer patient at the University of Penn Hospital.
7) What is the next thing you plan to write?
A piece for publication on what C.G. Jung referred to as the search for “wholeness” and how it relates to following your dreams.
8) Finish this sentence: The ideal way to start my day is …
with a cup of coffee.
9) Besides your computer, what is sitting on your desk right now?
A statue of Ganesha, the Hindu deity in charge of “removing all obstacles.” Starting with my computer problems.
10) So-called writer’s block is no match for you! What is your antidote?
Rise early; meditate for 20 minutes, and then write whatever comes to mind without censoring yourself.
11) Finish this sentence: I hate it when I read …
the same paragraph over and over, because I’m not concentrating.
12) What are the most important tools, programs and systems you use for your work?
My laptop computer; iPhone camera; a coffee shop; and walking the streets of New York and Paris. And a cup of coffee.
13) First book that comes to mind? Go!
Proust’s Remembrance of Things Past. It is always with me.
14) What are your favorite Internet/mobile apps and why?
15) What have you always wanted to write?
A historical saga called “Musseltown” based on my years living in historical Oyster Bay, aka Teddy Roosevelt Country.
16) What is your advice for aspiring professional writers?
Keep reading, keep writing.
17) First famous writer who comes to mind? Go!
18) Finish this sentence: My favorite thing about being a writer is …
19) Pencil versus pen—who wins and why?
Pen because you don’t have to sharpen it.
20) Finish this sentence: One word or phrase people will never read in my writing is …
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