How I Ruined My Life by T. L. Bainter
Publication date: February 12th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance,
Kyle has gone unnoticed for the vast majority of his life and he’s always preferred it that way. Homeschooled, shy, and only attending church because he’s forced to, there’s not really anything outstanding or interesting about him. That changes, however, when he meets James Porter. The two are fast friends, but Kyle isn’t sure if that’s a good thing or not. While some of the experiences resulting from their friendship are grand, many other experiences leave Kyle broken, angry, and depressed. Is Kyle’s friendship with James really such a good thing, or would he have been better off if he’d simply remained the quiet, lonely boy that no one seemed to notice?
Interview with T.L. Bainter
1. Where did you get the inspiration for How I Ruined My Life?
The story is very strongly based on my experiences with a very close friend. He helped me grow as a person, and I wouldn’t be the man I am today if not for his friendship. My hope is that How I Ruined My Life will be a worthy tribute to his life (in addition to being a thought-provoking read).
2. Is anything in the book molded by real-life experience? As an author, do you put yourself into your writing?
How I Ruined My Life is derived entirely from real-life experiences, with a few embellishments here and there. I did this in an effort to make the book more relatable and believable. Hopefully, readers will see a reflection of themselves in the main character as he learns and grows.
As for putting myself into my writing, I think that’s unavoidable. Eventually, some part of the author is going to leak onto the page. Be it personality, philosophy, or some other miscellaneous attribute. Kyle is very much the kind of person that I was during my childhood and adolescence, but I’ve changed quite a bit since then. It was a lot of fun to relive those days (and recall just how unbearably ignorant I truly was).
3. How long did it take you to write this book?
If we only count the amount of time that I spent sitting in front of my computer, then this was a one month-project. I typically wrote about 3-5,000 words a day, every day, in November of 2014 as a NaNoWriMo project. There was a lot of revision and editing that took place in the following months, however. I wanted to make sure I released a high-quality product, and I believe all of the effort was worth it.
4. If readers were to walk away with only one thing from the novel, what would you want it to be?
There are a lot of themes in How I Ruined My Life, and lessons are unveiled as the main character grows up and experiences new things. If readers were to take just one thing away from How I Ruined My Life, I would want it to be the simple idea that friendships can be - and should be - life-changing. We never really understand the value of a friendship until it ends.
5. Any upcoming writing projects?
I always try to have something in the works because I fear that, if I stop writing, I may never start again. Right now I’m in the revision stages of a more adult-oriented novel, but most of my attention is still directed at How I Ruined My Life. There’s a long road ahead of me if I want to make this book as successful as it can be.
About the Author
T. L. Bainter was born in 1994 and began writing short stories not long after that. Since the age of six, he has been churning out short story after short story. After receiving an award from the renowned Writers of the Future competition for his short story Edwin, T. L. Bainter found the confidence and encouragement that he needed to write and publish his first novel: How I Ruined My Life. Currently, he resides in Kansas City with his cat, Sooba.