I have a lot of great friends in my life but at one point I went through a period of time when I was very lonely. My husband traveled for work, some of my closest friends moved, and suddenly I just found myself without the particular types of friendships I most desired. And that’s the key with loneliness. It isn’t necessarily about having lots of friends, it’s about having the close connection you crave.
I have been writing about relationships for over a decade now and I’m pretty comfortable admitting things, so I told a family member that I was struggling with loneliness. And you know what she did? Snorted some snotty response about how she wished she had time for loneliness! She was too busy to be lonely!
I was busy, too. Being lonely doesn’t mean you don’t have enough to do. And that’s when it hit me, that there are people who experience loneliness and aren’t as comfortable talking about it as I am, and this is the type of response we (their closest friends and family) give them. Some response that is meant to make them feel worse than they already do.
So when I wrote this book, I wanted it to be for people who might just want a few new friends (maybe the ones you have just aren’t giving you the types of connection you want right now) or those that need to meet a few people. Maybe they are feeling lonely right now. Maybe they just aren’t totally happy with the state of their relationships right now.
What started you on your writing journey?
I’m one of those people who wrote from very young on. I have written stories and poems since I was a child. Then I worked in marketing for twenty years and used my writing skills for things like press releases and proposals. And now, I’ve been a full-time freelance writer for over ten years. I write for businesses and magazines and also write poetry, nonfiction books, and fiction.
What distracts you from writing the easiest?
Research! I love learning and when I’m researching for articles or books I can get way off track.
Oooo, another research addict! What makes you smile and/or laugh out loud?
I laugh pretty easily at things like my own clumsiness and the way life can really throw you a curveball sometimes. But overall my dog Genevieve and husband keep me laughing on a daily basis. My dog high fives me during the day while I write and my husband and I share the same sense of humor, which is pretty helpful when it comes to marriage.
What is your favorite season of the year?
Fall! I love the cooler temps and hearing the leaves crunch under your feet as you walk in the yard. The colors of autumn are truly inspiring, and remind me of how God is the original artist in all things.
Me too! What do you like most about the area where you live and/or grew up?
I grew up in Milwaukee and I think people would be surprised to learn how much culture is here. We have a symphony and a ballet company and many theaters and music events. The people are hardworking and smart and I really enjoy all that the city offers.
Are there spiritual themes you like to write about?
Hope and forgiveness are constant in my writing and art. God has pulled me through so much and I like to talk about the dark places I’ve been to encourage people that there is a way out.
Where do you escape for some quiet time to reflect, pray, read, etc?
I have a home office spot that is quiet and overlooks the yard. It’s the perfect place to pray and center myself for the day ahead.
Excellent spot, I'd say. When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?
My next book is about tips for forming a friendship from scratch. It’s a companion piece to this latest book and should be out by October.
Thanks for joining us, Cherie!
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Cherie Burbach is a poet, mixed media artist, and freelance writer. She’s penned 17 books and has written for About.com, NBC/Universal, Match.com, Christianity Today, and more. Her latest book is 100 Simple Ways to Have More Friends. Visit her website for more info, cherieburbach.com.
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CHERIE is giving away a copy of 100 SIMPLE WAYS TO HAVE FRIENDS. The giveaway is only available to U.S. addresses. To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment along with your email address. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post.