The Honourable Terry Lister is a traveller and a writer. Prior to that, he was a partner in the Deloitte accounting firm, a Minister in the Government of Bermuda, and a realtor. He retired at 60 and has been a solo traveller for the past seven years, and now has been to 98 countries including; 22 in Africa. Since retiring, when he’s not travelling, Lister spends time with his family, relaxes with a good book, or sits down to watch his favourite cricket and football teams. Author Name: The Honourable Terry Lister How long have you been writing? I have been writing books since 2019. However, at an earlier point in my life, I wrote occasional columns for two local newspapers. My columns covered sport, business and politics. Did you ever imagine that you would be published one day? I had a dream of being published as I have always wanted to write a book about one of our major sporting events in Bermuda. This dream has been with me for more than 40 years and I am yet to put pen to paper. What made you want to become an author? So, I wanted to do the still unwritten book, but instead, I have embraced my travels with the Terry Series and have written two books thus far. This happened because once I retired and started my travels, I was sharing randomly with family and friends. I was encouraged to write a blog, which I declined, but by 2017, I started to write daily Facebook posts; this led to more calls for a book. Finally, in 2019, I wrote the first book. How long have you been published? Having been published in 2019, working with a small publishing house in the US, I decided that it would be easier to work with a publisher closer at hand, so I now work with a Bermudian publisher. My experiences with both have been positive and I am most appreciative of their guidance. How does it feel to be published? It feels great to have my stories published. I read reviews very closely, hoping to learn what the reader likes, what I may have done wrong, or what I may not have emphasized enough. I do this because my goal in writing is to expose the reader to places that they may have heard about on the news. We all know that to make the news it had to be a bad story, so I try to give as accurate a presentation of the countries I visit as possible. In doing so, I share both the good and the bad. It does bother me when some tend to be impressed (in a most negative way) when I discuss the corruption that I have experienced firsthand. However, on the whole, I believe I am accomplishing my mission. Are you self-published or did you go through a publishing company? *Why? As stated, I work with a small publishing house. I do this so that I can focus on the writing and they can focus on the technical side, moving far more quickly than I could in that area. When I retired, I first went through all the countries in Central America. I experimented with the length of the trips to see what I was most comfortable with. Trips varied from six to twelve weeks; finally, I decided eight was best for me. I then went to every country in South America…except one. Can you guess which one? How many books have you written? Finally in 2017, I decided to go to Africa. In six trips, I have been to 21 countries. I have written two books detailing the first two trips, so I have four more books in this series to write!! What is/are the name of your book(s)? My first book is titled “Immersed in West Africa”. It shares my time spent in five nations: Senegal, Mauritania, The Gambia, Guinea Bissau and Guinea Conakry. My second book is “A New Day Dawns”. In this book, I share with the readers Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast and Ghana. What genre is it/are they in? Naturally, my books are in the Travel genre. However, reviewers comment on the inclusion of history throughout and that is because I like to “set the stage” and when one asks why, the question is best answered by sharing what came before. My writing style is such that my books are an easy read, so the reader is not bogged down in “ heavy stuff”. What do you feel will inspire others to never forget when they read your story(ies)? First, it is my hope that the reader will realize that Africa is a continent not a country. There are 54 different countries in Africa, each having their own customs and traditions. Second, it is my hope that the reader will be less dependent upon the media to form their opinions about Africa. Thirdly, I want the readers to have a desire to go see for themselves. What’s the hardest part about writing a book? For me, writing the books has been relatively easy. However, marketing the books has been the most difficult task of my life. I thought everybody loved to travel! What I have learned is that of the 28 genres, travel ranks 27! A hard sell right out the gate! On top of that, popular travel books are very Eurocentric. Often, 45 of the top selling 50 travel books are about Europe, so I have a very difficult task. Of course, I welcome this opportunity to be in front of this audience. What’s the easiest part about writing a book? My books are easy to write as I am telling my story; sharing my experiences. I do lots of research before my trips, so I know what I am looking for when I get there. The most important part is being real and to tell the story… Don’t write fiction!! Where can interested readers purchase their copy of your book(s)? My books are available on Amazon. They can be purchased as an eBook, a black and white book, and a book with full colour pictures. 99% of the pictures are mine, which I am very happy about as this is in keeping with sharing my story. Do you have any future projects in the works? *Is there a tentative release date? I plan to write the third book in the series over the summer. An early Fall release is likely. Do you have any social media sites that you would like to share with my readers? My readers can follow my story on my Facebook page.
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