Kindle Author Interview: Beatrice Brusic

Beatrice Brusic, author of Beyond the Snows of the Andes, discusses her book, her journey as a writer, and self-publishing on Kindle.

DAVID WISEHART: What can you tell us about Beyond the Snows of the Andes?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: Beyond the Snows of the Andes is a memoir that takes place in La Paz, Bolivia. It is a unique story of a heroic single parent and her extraordinary children, set against one of the poorest, most exotic countries in South America. The readers will learn about Indian Bolivia before our first Indian President, Evo Morales, took center stage. They will learn about the beauty and challenges of living in the highest capital of the world besides Tibet. But most importantly they will relate to the struggles of the family, to the feeling of being oppressed by lack of opportunities in a volatile, explosive country. It's a book about tragedy, survival and self sacrifice, but it is also an uplifting story of hope, courage and the power of dreams. It's a testament to the triumph of the human spirit, a tribute to the millions of immigrants who leave their shores in search of a better life.

DAVID WISEHART: How do you develop and differentiate your characters?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: The characters were based on real life people so they basically wrote themselves, all I had to do was to write them from memory, being careful not to over romanticize them and to present them with their flaws and qualities.

DAVID WISEHART: Who do you imagine is your ideal reader?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: My ideal reader is the person who likes to learn from a book, the person who wants to be transported to another world.

DAVID WISEHART: What was your journey as a writer?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: I suppose my journey as a writer was fraught with the same fears and insecurities as any other writer. I've always been an insatiable reader and the transition from reader to writer was not easy. I was plagued by self doubt because I've always held a reverence for the art of writing and wanted to do something worthwhile, something I'd be proud of.

DAVID WISEHART: What is your writing process?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: My writing process is steady. I try to write every day for at least a couple of hours a day. I think it's very important to listen to your body, however, and to stop when the well is dry and nothing is coming out. I find that when I return to it the next day, inspiration flows again.

DAVID WISEHART: What authors most inspire you?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: The author who most inspired me was, and will always be, Frank McCourt. I simply adored the man and the biggest regret of my life is that I never met him in person. I did manage to meet his brother, Malachy, however, and was able to express these sentiments to him.

DAVID WISEHART: What one book, written by someone else, do you wish you'd written yourself?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: What else? Angela's Ashes which I consider to be a real masterpiece.

DAVID WISEHART: How have you marketed and promoted your work?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: I'm just learning now the hard work required for promoting and marketing my book. This is a whole new field and I wish I was better at it, but I'm starting to take baby steps.

DAVID WISEHART: Why publish on Kindle?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: I published on Kindle because it's the way of the future. My book went around looking for traditional publishers at first, but despite good reviews and lots of encouragement, I began to see that it is a closed fortress. With Kindle, readers are the judges, the challenges are making sure your book doesn't get lost in the shuffle.

DAVID WISEHART: What advice would you give to a first-time author thinking of self-publishing on Kindle?

BEATRICE BRUSIC: First and foremost, I would tell a brand new author to make sure the book is well written, and to believe in it wholeheartedly. I would counsel against getting discouraged if the book sits there for a while unread, there are many books out there and as the cliche says, "Rome wasn't built in a day." It's a brand new sea to navigate in and we have to adjust our sails accordingly. Nobody wants to do marketing and promotion because it takes away from our writing but if that's what it takes to make the book a success, that's what we should do.

DAVID WISEHART: Thanks, and best of luck with your books.


Beatrice Brusic was born in Oruro, Bolivia. Her mother brought her to La Paz, Bolivia when she was five years old. She emigrated to America when she was seventeen years old and has earned her living as a legal assistant, always dreaming of writing full time. Beyond the Snows of the Andes is a fulfillment of that dream. Always a voracious reader, she finally made the transition from reader to writer five years ago when the memoir first began to take root. Throughout the years she's received positive reinforcement of her passion in her numerous attempts to express herself, but it took a great writer like Frank McCourt to finally break through the inhibitions that were holding her prisoner. She hopes you'll enjoy her memoir. She hope you'll take from it hope and courage for whatever endeavor you want to take in your life.

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