Interview with Josef

When did you first start writing?
I began writing in my teens. I had a book I wrote in but didn't call a diary at the time. I simply used it to pen my thoughts and feelings and it was usually done in the form of poetry. I've continued this practise my whole life and several poems are woven into my book.
What's the story behind your latest book?
A Dark Journey Into The Light is my first book and the story behind it is my life. That made it somewhat easy to write on the one hand but also at times painful on the other.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I wrote the book as an exercise in healing. At the time I wasn't writing it with any intention to publish it. When the idea of publishing it emerged I used a publisher. That didn't really work, and the book needed rewriting, so the second time I went "Indie".
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
The greatest joy has been the release of old life patterns and the emerging possibility of living a true life free of lies.
What do your fans mean to you?
I'm not sure. I like people. Maybe someone can read my book and get something from it. If my book can help someone understand, accept, and grown from what they are going through, it would mean a lot to me.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The opportunity to change my life. Every day is another chance to work on removing the layers of deception I've built around myself since I was a small child. We're all in the same boat actually but lot of people don't see it. If my book can open someone's eyes to the truth of that it has been a good day.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Gardening, meditating, taking care of friends. Breathing.
This seems like a very personal story for you. How hard was it to put this story out in the world for people to read?
Incredibly personal and very hard. Writing about my infidelity was the hardest part and it ripped my heart out. I still cannot think about my wife without a regret that burns like a hot knife. She loved me deeply and the stupid thing is that I loved her too, but living as a slave to a life of sex made it impossible to be with her. I can only wish and pray that she finds true happiness now with someone. But just having the book is out there seems even harder in some ways (than writing) because everything is so different now. It’s confusing. I have a completely new life and am exploring feelings that I never thought possible. But in the end it’s all very positive because now I can live my life like the person everyone always thought I was for 60 years. Waking up in the morning and not having to live that secret life is an incredible relief, and I feel a massive weight has been lifted from my shoulders.
Do you have any advice for people who might be going through the same things that you have?
It depends how they feel about it. If people are going through the same things but don’t have any “life search” conflicts or infidelity issues, I would tell them to take the brakes off, and enjoy it. The beautiful world of BDSM, trans women and sex is delicious, and looking at it just on it’s own merit I love it. If someone is going through the same things I did, and living in a prison of guilt like I was, I’d tell them to find someone they can trust, and start to talk about it. They need to be 100% ready, and wishing more than anything to let it all go otherwise I don’t see that doing any good, but if they’re feeling like I was, then they are definitely ready. Finding the right person to talk to is the hard part, and it’s not as easy as looking up a therapist in the phone book. Some therapists are worse than useless, and could do more damage than good. I know that from experience. The first therapist I spoke to needs some serious couch time herself before she should ever be let loose to talk to someone about their problems. It only takes one session to know if you’ve made a bad choice, and when someone starts seriously looking for a way “out” they need to trust, and listen to, the voice in their heart that made them pick up the phone in the first place. It takes courage.
Who do you think would be the perfect audience for your book?
Anyone who has a secret that makes them afraid. If we can dissolve the fear that breeds loneliness and find a sense of ‘aloneness’ instead, we empower ourselves to begin to properly live our lives and find true freedom, so anyone with the courage to look at fear would be a good audience. The problem of fear comes up a lot in the book. The sad thing is that most people will never realise that their lives are ruled by fear, and the prison this creates, because they are too scared to look at it. That is an incredibly cruel irony of life. A very wise man once said that mankind has to overcome four enemies to find enlightenment. We’re told that the first enemy is fear. Unfortunately most of us are "taken out" by fear before we finish Elementary School.
Would you still have written this book if it had not been an assignment from your therapist?
That's an interesting question. During one of our sessions I made an offhand comment to my therapist that maybe I should write a book about my life, so perhaps the seed of an idea about actually doing that was already in me. She ran with the idea, and suggested that writing it down could be a valuable clarification in helping to understand my life, so I began writing it all down. She felt the experience could be very cathartic for me, and help me let go of a lot of anger and cynicism about the world that I had grown up with. The book may still have found it’s way into the world without my therapist’s encouragement, but I don’t know.
What would you like readers to take away from your book?
The idea that our lives, and every experience we have, is valid and worthwhile in what we can learn from it. The more difficult and challenging something is, the more potential there is for soul growth, and everything about life is about growth. It does not mean our lives should be difficult. Far from it. It just means that we should embrace difficulty, because fighting it only makes it harder, and why would we consciously want to do that to ourselves? We are given exactly what we need in life, but what we need is not always what we want. When we can open our minds beyond seeing ourselves as the center of the universe we explore a greater sense of being within the dissolving of earthly hurts and troubles. Living outside the prison of my urges and desires is helping me to see and experience that.
Did you develop any strange writing habits?
No, I don’t think so! I think I had some strange writing habits right from the beginning!
In your opinion, is the BDSM community correctly portrayed in the media?
Not at all. Every single person (and the media are people) who cannot accept BDSM as a part of life does so through ignorance, fear and judgement, so that will tell you how much value they offer in their portrayal. I’m not saying people should be walking their bitches (men or women) around the streets on dog collars. The BDSM community respects the general conventions of society and that respect should be reciprocated. The media could do a lot more to help people get over their fears and balance the equation.
What is one thing people would be surprised to learn about massage parlors?
How beautiful some of the women are. I’m talking about the ‘deeper than skin’ kind of beauty, although some of them are gorgeous looking as well. Some of the strongest, most honest, and loveliest people on Earth are working in massage parlours. I will always cherish the time I spent with them, with a heartfelt gratitude for what I learned about life. When I say "women" I'm talking about all of them. Hetero, transgender....and sex-workers!
What has been the most positive outcome of writing this book?
Being able to live an honest life and not having to constantly lie. For 60 years I had wished to be the person everyone thought I was, and now I don’t have to pretend.
What famous person would you love to have as a fan of your work?
Bill Clinton.
If you were stranded on a deserted island and you could have ONE character from a book on the island with you, who would it be and why?
Nelson Mandela. Mr Mandela knew more about forgiveness than anyone from the last century or so. If I could learn the art of forgiveness and apply it to myself I would be completely free. That would be a beginning to understanding and knowing true love.
Published 2017-01-09.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

A Dark Journey Into The Light
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 100,690. Language: English. Published: January 6, 2017. Categories: Nonfiction » Biography » Autobiographies & Memoirs
(5.00)
A Dark Journey Into The Light is an interesting and thought provoking book that looks at urges and desires familiar to us all. We all enjoy sex but the book provides interesting insights into the workings of the mind of a sex addict. This book explores what is possible when we find balance between heart and thinking but it's not a story about "finding God". It’s simply the story of finding myself.