#Q&A with Ben Burgess Jr #Author of Love and Happiness

In your own words, please tell us about Love and Happiness

Love and Happiness by Ben Burgess Jr Book Cover PhotoLove and Happiness is a romance story that makes you think. It’s told from both Karen and Chris’s perspectives so you can see where both of their heads are at. 

Karen is cheating on her husband Chris, with not one man, but two. On the outside, her life seems perfect, but on the inside, Karen feels neglected. Out of fear of losing Chris and breaking up her family, Karen ends the affairs but when Karen’s dirty secrets are revealed, Karen must decide if she should sacrifice her happiness for her husband’s love, and Chris wonders if he should stay with Karen because he still loves her despite her infidelity.

Where do your story ideas come from?

My first novel “Monster” was based on my personal life and experiences. My second novel “Wounded” came about while I was actually working on “Love and Happiness.” “Ken” from “Monster” makes a cameo appearance in “Love and Happiness.” I didn’t want fans to think I was a one trick pony or feel that my book was derivative so I was stuck with how I would write it.

My co-workers (Who happened to be lesbians) asked me to write a book with a Lesbian protagonist. At first, I thought it wouldn’t be possible since I wasn’t a woman, and I knew nothing about being Gay or the LGBT community. My co-workers decided to take me to a Lesbian bar. (They took me to the Cubbyhole, which is the first bar I mentioned in Wounded.) After going there with them and talking to the women, I decided to work on the book. To make the book feel as authentic as possible, I did a lot of research. I interviewed fifteen women and five couples, to hear their thoughts, feelings, and philosophies about being a Lesbian, and life. I also used one of my family members as a basis for my character development, so I felt personally invested in creating “Samantha.” For my latest novel “Love and Happiness,” I used real life relationships as my inspiration. I talked to several married and divorced couples. I asked them what they enjoyed and hated with marriage. I wanted to know what they wish they could change or what they regretted not doing. With all of my novels, my goal is to make people think. I want to help people see things from different perspectives to help the world to be more open minded. Continue reading