Here’s another Stevie interview for you. This time I’m interviewing Indie author M.K Jubb, who apart from being an author is also a qualified psychotherapist. You can find out all about her books by clicking on the link below:
1. Are you writing anything new at the moment?
Yes, a thriller called A Deadly Game- Travis & Fox investigations. It’s my second book in the Deadly Series. The first one is called A Deadly Truth. There are the same three main characters that will run throughout the series & there will be a total of six books altogether.
2. Do you prefer writing romances or thrillers?
That’s a tough one because I find writing romances a lot easier than thrillers. Writing thrillers makes my brain go in to overdrive, trying to think of new ways I can kill people off (so to speak) that hasn’t already been done. Romances can be pretty bog standard, but I try to throw in a few curve balls that readers wouldn’t have expected. I guess my preference would be writing thrillers because I have to use my brain matter a lot more.
3. What is your favourite book of all time?
That’s an easy one for me, A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. Love that book. My favourite before that was Lorna Doone, an aunt gave me it when I was about 9 years old, it was the first proper book I ever read & from that moment I have enjoyed reading. It was a good escape for me.
4. What is your opinion of small publishers? Would you submit any of your work to a small publisher?
At the moment I haven’t considered submitting any of my work to small or large publishers. I suppose in a way, like many I assume, I am scared of rejection because I like to think that they are the experts and know a good manuscript from a bad one. I wouldn’t rule out altogether sending anything in to a publisher at some point, but only when I feel I am ready.
5. Is it worth an author using social media to market their books when millions of other authors are all doing the same?
I think any outlet to promote your books can only be a good thing. I use Facebook, Twitter, Linked in and Goodreads.
6. How do you cope with writer’s block?
I can honestly say I have never suffered writers block. From what I gather, it can be quite debilitating and in some sufferers can develop into depression. I have had moments of mind blankness and so I take a few days to rest my brain. I use distraction therapy and do other things to take my mind off what I am writing. It works for me.
7. How do you market your work?
As I am new to this writing lark I have to say, not much. I use the social media I have mentioned above and word of mouth. I have given a lot of books away so they hopefully tell their family, friends and work colleagues. I also did a mini interview for Sine radio which my hubby had to do as part of his radio training with them, so hopefully a little radio exposure will help too.
8. Why did you give up running a catering business for 10 years to study psychology and psychotherapy?
It was mostly to do with the relationship I was in at the time; it was abusive which I won’t go into. I had always been interested in how the mind works since I was teenager. Due to depression within the family and with the experiences from my relationship that at the time had made me agoraphobic, I wanted to find a way of understanding my condition, so I sent for the home study courses in Psychology. When I passed with flying colours it got me thinking that actually I was pretty good at this and so decided to take other courses. I got merits and diplomas in psychology, psychotherapy, counselling and professional stress consultancy. Needless to say I helped myself in the process and decided to set up my own practice.
9. What does psychotherapy consist of? How do you treat a patient?
It’s basically helping people with various mental health issues and some psychiatric issues. With certain techniques such as CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) you can help a client/patient understand to think and feel more positive. It can help for anxiety too and help them to accept their weak and strong points. If they can understand their own feelings and the way they perceive things, they can become better at coping with difficult situations and therefore live what’s considered a “normal” life.
10. Do you find that now you are a qualified psychotherapist you tend to analyse everybody even though they are not patients of yours?
I suppose it’s an occupational hazard and I can’t help myself. I don’t consciously do it, but my husband tells me I do from the reactions I give to people when they are talking to me. I really should stop. The trouble is because I am a good listener, people tend to feel comfortable around me and tell me all sorts of things, then they say “I can’t believe I told you that”.
11. What type of person would not benefit from psychotherapy?
Most people could benefit from psychotherapy; it’s basically talking and listening and it can depend on the person. Some don’t benefit because they have already decided in their heads that it’s not going to work for them. There is only so much a psychotherapist can do for a patient/client. I figure it is 10% psychotherapist and 90% patient when it comes to putting in the hard work to recovery, because if the patient isn’t prepared to put in the work to get “well” again then they aren’t going to benefit from psychotherapy.
12. Do you think there is a link to depression in adult life and an unhappy childhood?
There can be in some cases. It all depends on the individual and what the trauma was that initiated it. Most people grow up and just “get on with it”. They are the determined ones who no-matter what happened to them, they will not be defeated and will fight against everything and become successful. In a way it is like forcing yourself to be happy but in a positive way. Then there are the ones who, for want of a better word, enjoy, wallowing in self-pity. They thrive on it and in some cases only have bouts of depression if they don’t get sympathy of their plight from anyone else. These types of patients/clients are harder to work with because it is inbuilt in them.
13. Have you found that girls tend to remember more about their childhoods than boys?
Not necessarily. Again it all depends on the individual. I remember only snippets of my childhood, (I had an unconventional childhood), whereas my hubby can remember a lot. I also have a female friend who can remember a lot about hers. I think it depends on the experiences they have had growing up.
14. How did you avoid depression when recuperating from your long-term illness?
My hubby. He keeps me sane and laughing. He even offered to shave his head if I lost all my hair. Thankfully I only lost little patches. At first I was worried about getting depressed because my mum suffered from bi polar and it can run through families sometimes, so it was a concern. I think if you have a lot of positive people around you and you yourself is a positive person, it is a big help and can aid your recovery quicker.
15. Where in the world do you feel most at home?
I have two places I call home, here in Pontefract and in Italy. My dad was Italian, he came from Puglia and came over here when he joined the British army at the age of 17. He met and married my mum when he was 20 and she was 18. She already had two children from previous “relationships” which is another story! They went on to have four more, me being the youngest.
16. If you could change one thing in your life, what would it be?
I wouldn’t change a thing. I’ve made mistakes, but who doesn’t. I wouldn’t be where I am and who I am today if I hadn’t lived the life I have. I have experienced a lot of bad, some traumatic things in my life. Stuff that would or could knock people down to the depths of despair. Not me, I got back up and brushed myself off every time, because I am not a quitter. My life has been a rollercoaster full of crap at times and after seeing people around me constantly giving up and settling or making excuses, I chose not to. We all have choices and we can either choose to live with them choices or change them.
17. Are you a realist, or do you tend to go for the sugar-coated option?
I am definitely a realist, seems odd I know considering I write romance. I get irritated by fake people who talk crap. I guess what I have experienced in my 45 years has made me more inclined to believe only what I see and hear for myself. I suppose you could say I am cynical in a way but that depends on the circumstances at that moment. I like to think I am optimistic too which is a contradiction I know, but that’s me all over. A walking contradiction!
18. Are you an outdoor person, or are you happy indoors?
That all depends, if it is sitting on a beach somewhere hot, then yes I like the outdoors but apart from that, then no, I prefer indoors. Like I said on the previous question I am a walking contradiction.
19. Where is your favourite holiday destination?
I would have to say the Algarve; we went there 3 years ago and we loved it. It was so quiet and peaceful where we stayed and a stone’s throw to the beach. I love being by the sea.
20. If you were on a desert island:
Your one piece of music: Mellow Jazz- Caro Emerald-Paloma Faith
Your one luxury: Books.
Which celebrity would you like to rescue you? My dream man Gerard Butler. I just love his ruggedness.
Thanks so much M.K for the interesting interview.