Self- published author of The Cycle of Resentment, Mesha Bonnie Barton, never thought she would become a writer, until her life was turned upside down, after being molested by her father at the age of six. Growing up on Chicago’s south side near 79th and Stony Island, Mesha was left to deal with an aftermath of anger, hurt, depression and resentment. The word resentment is the keyword in the title of her first novel and Ebook, The Cycle of Resentment. Her novel gives a real account [through fictionally named characters] of the painful moments in her life that shaped her into the young, woman she is today. Now, at age 22, she has come into her own woman and more powerful than ever. Check out the interview.
LB: At what age did you realize that writing was your passion?
MB: At the age of 21, I realized that writing was the best career choice for me, specifically, because I was going through a lot at that point in time. I was in a very depressive state and I figured that my best therapy would be to write for a living. That’s when I decided to pick up my pen and paper and I just went away at that point.
LB: Can you talk about what sort of things you were going through that put you in a depressive state?
MB: I actually, as a child was molested by my father. As you think about what I just said, you know it’s very obvious that’s something that could hinder or confuse a child. At the time, I did not deal with the situation. It kind of lingered on into my adulthood. And at that point, here I am 21, and I’m dealing with pain, resentment, anger, frustration, confusion and it really just depressed me. It took a lot out of me.”
LB: Where did you draw the inspiration for your book, The Cycle of Resentment from? Did some of it come from your experience with sexual abuse?
MB: Yes ma’am. The reason that I chose to pick the title, The Cycle of Resentment, it came from a generational curse that I felt needed to end. It was a situation, similar to what I went through within generations in my family. So I figured basically that was the perfect title to name the novel.”
LB: How long did it take you to complete the novel?
MB: It took me two years. When I first started writing the novel, I had no clue what I was doing. I just knew that I wanted to write. I wanted to express myself, so it did take me a while. I had to edit it, rewrite it and make sure everything was the way that it should’ve been. And I had a full time job at the time.
LB: How have the sales and reviews been thus far?
MB: It has actually been a lot better than I expected, considering I’m a new author, my name is not worldwide just yet. So I’m actually pleased with the results that I have. I’ve also gotten some great reviews, I’ve had people tell me that the novel is a revelation. It opened their eyes, so I’m definitely proud of that.
LB: What was your main goal when you decided to write and publish this book initially?
MB: I personally wrote the novel for everyone. I feel as though maybe not everyone has been molested or experienced that kind of situation. But, I feel as though at some point everyone has resented someone or maybe felt hurt by someone. The novel is for everyone. I wouldn’t recommend children under the age of seventeen read it, because it has special content- but I do feel everyone can benefit from the novel.
LB: What’s in the future for Mesha?
MB: I see greatness. At one point in time, I could not say that, but I definitely see myself helping people, talking to people, traveling the world, just doing my thing. I definitely see myself having people say she helped me or she encouraged me. I see myself as a future encourager.
LB: Where do you normally draw inspiration from in your writings?
MB: My inspiration would be my fans [and] my readers. I feel as though you have to understand pain, and know what pain really feels like to be able to relate to other people. I know what pain feels like. There were times when I just couldn’t sleep at night. I would have to take sleeping pills just to get to sleep. So I feel my main inspiration would be people who have gone through the same thing that I’ve went through. I want to be able to heal someone and let the world know no matter what you’ve been through, [or] how hard you have to cry, you can get through anything.
Stay tuned for part two of Mesha’s, The Cycle of Resentment, November 28.
Interview by Lisa Brown