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Maria Mendoza

October 17, 2012

Maria Mendoza (the pseudonym of Lisa Ball) is the author of Booze House, a novella about her trying youth. The novella vividly and powerfully portrays the experience of surviving a broken family unit. With gritty realism and candor she tells her traumatic tale of trying to help raise her younger autistic brother while being engulfed in a home of instability, addiction, and violence.

Lisa is also the editor of the anthology Episodes of the Norm, a collection of donated shorts, rants, slams, and poems dedicated to her late brother BillyJoe with 50 percent of the proceeds being donated to the Autism Society of America to aid them in their cause to educate and assist those with the disorder. Her works are available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

1. What is your hometown?

Wyandotte, in the Downriver area of Michigan. It’s a small city off the Detroit River, about 15 minutes away from the city of Detroit.

2. With what fictional character do you most identify?

Well I really can’t think of a female character that I can identify with, and my husband could guess this one and thinks I am head over heels for him (it’s not like that), but it would have to be with the character played by Eminem in the movie 8 mile road, I think his name was Jimmy or Rabbit? I have all that same built up anger/frustration, which to put it lightly I have trouble releasing in a healthy way verbally, but my writing allows for me to speak clearly and hope that my words can help others.

3. In the movie of your life, cast an actor to play you.

Hands down…Maggie Gyllenhaal

4. What work of art speaks to your soul?

I have no idea…music is what really speaks to me — Chopin takes me to that calm space in my mind, giving me that wonderful I just got back from the spa like feeling, allowing me to open-up in my writing.

5. What books are you currently reading or recommending?

Well, I have an 18 month old so most of my book and magazine reading lately have been Dr. Sears, MetroParent, and Oakland county Moms, but my favorite author is Arthur Nersesian (top title the “Fuck-up”) and I have read just about all of his books. I did pick up an interesting read I heard about on NPR titled “Dreamland”by David K Randall, the author speaks about our ancestors sleep habits/rituals – the review on the book grabbed me I think because of all the sleep I’ve missed out on since becoming a mother.

6. What song or album is currently in heavy rotation on your iPod?

The Lumineers – ‘Stubborn Love’

7. What’s the last movie that made you cry?

Wow…I don’t watch much these days but the last movie that made me cry was “Jeff who lives at home” – it was a great black comedy! The movie was just put together so well, and the cast really did an amazing job. Jeff the main character, a 30 something year old still living at home with his mom trying to figure out his purpose in life was hilarious, sweet, and someone I think a lot of us can identify with.

8. Cat person or dog person?

More a cat person but I love ‘em both!

9. What is more important, truth or kindness?

Tough one…but I have to say truth, I loathe dishonesty. I feel so violated when someone lies to me.

10. How do you define sin?

Failing one’s self. It is sinful to never reflect and take time for you, time to figure one’s self out and pursue your passions.

11. How do you define virtue?

A man’s worth is in his actions and words. If those words and actions are not filled in honesty and morality then he is rubbish to me!

12. Design your headstone: What does it say? What does it look like?

It’s never too late to be what you might have been (favorite quote by George Eliot) Lisa Ball, a woman who never tired of trying in life! Look like…I’d actually rather have my ashes put in a beautiful porcelain vessel.

Bonus Question: Who would you like to see answer these questions?

Edward Norton, sexy, cool, smart!

Maria Mendoza on Amazon

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