1)Hello Sir, can you please introduce! yourself? So that the audience would get you know you better.
Hi all! My name is B.A. Bellec and I am a 34-year-old Canadian. My career has been interesting in that I started by going to college for Finance. Then I got a Certified Payroll Manager Certification. After that, I went to film school. Then back to Finance. Then I wrote my book and I have been riding that journey ever since. Many of the business skills helped me with my writing. I probably wrote a million words via business emails and then I designed multiple technical manuals which helped me structure and organize my writing. I combined my storytelling ability with those two business skills, and a novel popped out!
I live in Winnipeg, MB Canada with my girlfriend and Elsa, the Bernese Mountain Dog, but I grew up in Langley, BC Canada. I left Langley, BC because the cost of living around Vancouver, BC was ridiculous. The move to Winnipeg allowed me more free time, which is how I found the time to write my first book.
2) Congratulations for your debut book, what does the title says about the book?
Someone’s Story is about a character named Someone. When you pick up the book, you don’t know that though. You may think the title is being clever but the book is literally Someone’s story. The protagonist is a teenage boy who never is named and is referred to as Someone in the dialogue.
Everyone and anyone is someone, so in a way I was hopeful the title would intrigue people and even confuse them a little. This isn’t something traditional and that isn’t the only thing I do that a more technical writer might balk at.
3) Do you remember what you wrote first? How did you develop interest in writing, is this something you always wanted to do?
I don’t remember the first part I wrote. What I can tell you is that the moment I changed this to fiction, I wrote the jogger chapter at the beginning and end. I knew I would have to work in this ominous jogger throughout and the premise for my fictional book was born. That jogger became my first fictional character, Kevin the counsellor.
My interest in writing was born purely from a place of passion. Some life events happened to me and I didn’t know how to process them. I started writing as a coping mechanism. Deep down I always wanted to tell stories. To be honest, Someone’s Story just materialized. My second book is the project I had in mind when I went to film school, so it is an even longer brewing concept at about 4 years old now. In my head, Someone’s Story has always been about learning. I was just trying to find the skills to tell my Pulse story and Someone’s Story is almost a byproduct of my journey to tell the Pulse. My end goal is that one day I would like to be involved in the film production of my books.
4) Why the book’s protagonist is unnamed? What’s your idea behind it?
The backstory behind this is that it started as a journal. After a few months, I started to make it fiction. I didn’t bother to name the character. In my head, it was always me. I just started referring to the character as Someone and kept writing. It stuck and when I shared it with early readers I was considering changing it at that time. Most of my early feedback was that the story was unique in the way I don’t describe the main character or even name him. It makes it feel like you are in the story more. As I closed in on submitting my final copy I thought about changing it again, but so glad I trusted in those early readers and kept it. Proud of this unique piece of art.
5) What you usually do when you are not writing?
My hobbies are jogging, puzzling, watching sports, watching movies, and walking my dog. I don’t get lots of free time though. My digital book tour started on July 20th and I have barely had a half-day off since then. I generally unwind the day with Netflix. My super supportive girlfriend is helping tons to keep my life a little balanced because without her pulling me away from my desk I might work 20 hours a day.
Some of my recent watches are Avatar: The Last Airbender and Taskmaster. I just watched Juno the other night. Lately, I have been writing with X-Files episodes playing in the background because they are similar to Pulse. Being Canadian, I am a big hockey fan so I have been watching the NHL playoffs a bit.
My most recent reads are It and Ready Player One.
6) What obstacles you had to overcome while writing it?
The main obstacle for me was to get over my fear that my spelling and grammar were not good enough. I am a storyteller but I don’t write perfect English. For the longest time that held me back. I was afraid to share this because I thought there would be too many errors. Eventually, I found Grammarly and that improved my work lots. Then I brought on a pair of editors to help clean up my work more. Is the English perfect. No. I made some errors in spelling and grammar in the first published copy that I have subsequently fixed, the benefit of being a self-published author is that I can change the print copy in less than 15 minutes and all my books are made to order so only a few went out with the errors.
The other thing I am still struggling with, even on my second book, is past vs present tense. I frequently accidentally shift my tone. This is because I haven’t found my full potential yet. I hope that as I write Pulse this will happen less and less.
7) Describe your book in three words!
Never give up!
8) Do you think your book has a big role to play in an individual’s life? Why?
The message at the end of my book is to keep pushing forward. You might feel trapt or out of control. Usually, that is in your mind. You can change the way you think and change your life. My book can help you do that. Never use just one thing to make life decisions. My book could be part of a toolkit of things to help improve your life. I don’t recommend my book as a replacement for medication, counselling, or doctors though. If you need help, go seek it out in your community. Find mental health volunteer groups and see what kind of programs they are offering. Start talking. Start getting the issues holding you back out in front of you so you can work on them.
9) Are the book’s characters inspired from people around you or are they completely fictional? Do you yourself relate with the protagonist?
The characters are absolutely based on real people from my life. I changed the names but they can probably find themselves.
Now am I “Someone”? Yes and no. In the end, the protagonist is a combination of a few people so there are pieces of me in there for sure. For instance, I am an avid jogger and I love pop culture. Then there are pieces of some close friends in him as well. Like I say at the end, this is a work of fiction. I combined the lives of multiple people to make my character robust. My struggle with mental health is not as bad as the main character, but I have been around many people who suffered and struggled.
10) Are you working on any other projects right now? A life advice you would like to give to your readers!
Most of my August is dedicated to developing my second book, Pulse, to a point where I can beta test it. I put up a blog post teasing this project and I would highly recommend checking that out if you enjoyed this interview or Someone’s Story:
As for life advice. Always keep learning. Read articles. Read books. Do this to learn about mental health. Do this to help friends and family. Do this to help your career. Learning a new skill is never a bad idea. I didn’t go to school to write books and here I am. If you put your mind to a task and focus, you can learn anything!
Come find me here if you are curious in checking any of my work out: https://linktr.ee/BABellec
My book is free for a few weeks as part of a digital book tour. Follow that above link and enjoy!
Thanks so much. Good luck.