Monday, March 25, 2013

Featured Author: Elvie Dell

Elvie Dell is here today to talk about her non-fiction novel, All About Me – A Journey to the Inside, for youth to adults, published by Virtualbookworm Publishing

About the book:

This is a book that is for born-again Christian believers who find themselves frustrated and confused with internal battles and silently ask themselves, “What’s wrong with me? Everyone else seems to have it all together.” The key word is seems! There is a rest for God’s people!

II Corinthians 5:17 tells us that if we are in Christ, we are a new creature, old things have passed away and all things have become new. If you’re still struggling with a lot of “old” in you, this may be the insight you long for.

Being saved doesn’t mean an instant personality make-over. The new creature this scripture refers to is our spirit man. We are a 3-part being: spirit, soul, and body. Gaining a better understanding of ourselves and learning to differentiate between the three helps bring us peace.

As people begin to recognize where their struggles really lie, and how to hear from their spirits, they find peace in the knowledge of what’s normal and common to us all as part of the human experience. Learning to walk out this new found freedom is a fascinating journey. We can rest in the assurance that God has a good plan for our lives.

Interview with Elvie

How long have you been writing, and how did you start?
About seven to eight years, just piddling around with writing but nothing too serious.  This is my first publication. My kids and husband used to tell me, “You should write a book,” but I didn’t really think I had the time or the know-how. Then one day I felt impressed to write about THIS one topic, so I enrolled in a correspondence writing course to learn what I could, and to finish what I felt was a divine assignment.

What do you like best about writing?

I like the creativity. Especially with fiction, you can control the way things go and you can just make it up as you go. Non-fiction is much more difficult for me.

What’s your least favorite thing about writing? 


How did you come up with the title of your book?

I had a baby book as a child (one of those albums moms document their kids’ growth in).  It was a book that was “all about me.”  This piece is “All About Me” too, but in three different realms rather than just your physical growth and change.

Do you have another job outside of writing?

We have a family business, and I stay busy helping with the bookwork and administrative end of that.

How would you describe your book in a tweet? (140 characters or less.)

This book is for born-again Christian believers who find themselves frustrated and confused with internal battles and silently ask themselves, “What’s wrong with me?

Why did you decide to write this book?

I had been learning a lot about the different aspects of man (spirit, soul, and body) from many different sources and how to differentiate between the three.  When we don’t understand how we’re made, it can be quite frustrating. I also heard a teaching about “your assignment” (something specific God created you to do). Among other things, I felt like part of my assignment in life was to write this book—-to take these teachings and put them in book form, simply written so that even a child could understand. So I guess this is just the result of obeying the promptings of my heart. And hoping that others can benefit as well.

What will others learn from reading your book? 

Understand first, that this is a book for born-again believers. Without that foundation, it probably will not make sense. Hopefully they’ll learn that the things they are experiencing and the frustrations they face (even as believers) are common to us all. (We often think that once we get saved, life should just fall into place and that’s not always the case—we still have things to deal with—-like our nature and our flesh.) I hope they learn to differentiate between the different dimensions that make up a person (spirit, soul, and body) and find peace in being who God created by learning to allow the right aspect of their being to have the ultimate authority in their life. That is, learning to listen to your spirit and requiring your soul and your flesh to line up. Then you’re in position to fulfill whatever assignment God has for your life. It’s always a path of peace and great joy. It should come naturally to you and be something you enjoy, because you were made for that purpose.

Do you outline or write by the seat of your pants?

I had an idea of how it was supposed to be laid out. The outline was something I had to come up with after-the-fact to make sure it flowed.

Did you have any say in your cover art?

Yes. I knew it was supposed to have a lot of color; but I asked my artist to see what she got in her spirit as far as the design, and we were both in agreement.  That was a neat process. 

What do you think of it?

I love it.  It’s colorful, it has a message, it makes you think, and it’s appealing. My son told me that if the cover isn’t just right, people aren’t going to pick it up—-that the cover is a huge draw for the younger audience. I think it hits the mark. 

Tell us about the artist.

I actually did an acknowledgment page in the front of the book about her. She is gifted in prophetic art and that’s what I was looking for. She’s a personal friend, and I trust her walk with the Lord and the gifts in her.

Tell us about your favorite scene in the book.

I like peeking into the three different dimension of who you are—-the chapters on spirit, soul, and body, because it’s written from the voice of each—-the spirit has its own voice, likewise the soul and the body and each one reflects a slightly different personality.

What song would you pick to go with your book?

No idea…

Who are your favorite authors?

C.S. Lewis, Donna VanLiere, Jan Karon, William Paul Young, Frank Peretti, Beverly Cleary, Barbara Park, Stan & Jan Berenstain, and of course Dr. Seuss!

What are your favorite books?

a) as a child: all the Ramona books by Beveryly Cleary, Amelia Bedelia, Curious George and Dr. Seuss books.

b) as a teenager: All Quiet on the Western Front-—I remember reading this in high school, though I don’t remember much about it except that at the time I thought it was a good book. Most of my reading as a teenage was required reading. I went through a time when I simply did not like to read.

c) as an adult: As an adult, I started picking up children’s books again. I didn’t enjoy reading that much, but once I had kids, I wanted to make sure they enjoyed it. So I began to read to them—-A LOT—-and in the process I began to love it myself. I rediscovered my favorite books as a child and new authors such as Barbara Park (Junie B. Jones series).  We read the Chronicles of Narnia series. My own personal reading favorites included The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis, This Present Darkness by Frank Peretti, the Mitford series by Jan Karon, The Left Behind series by Jerry Jenkins and Tim LaHaye, The Shack by William Paul Young, all of Donna VanLiere’s books, and the Cape Light series by Thomas Kincaid and Katherine Spencer.

Which author would you most like to invite to dinner, and what would you fix?

That’s a toss up.  Probably either C.S. Lewis (because he’s so deep—-I’d enjoy just listening to what he had to say) or Beverly Cleary. She was just fun reading and knew what it felt like to be and think like a kid—-she just seemed to understand everybody.

What book are you currently reading and in what format (e-book/paperback/hardcover)?

A Time to Advance by Chuck Pierce--paperback

Do you have a routine for writing?

Only when it hits me. Then I better get it down on paper.

Do you work better at night, in the afternoon, or in the morning?

Whenever it starts to flow, which can be at any time. I prefer mornings but that’s not always the case.

Where and when do you prefer to do your writing?

At home at my computer.

Where’s home for you?


Do you ever get writer’s block?


What do you do when it happens? 

Walk away and do something else. If it’s not happening, it’s just not happening.

Is there anything in particular that you do to help the writing flow?

No. It’s not something I can force. It usually comes by inspiration. I have to really have a lot of quiet.

What’s one of your favorite quotes?

Eleanor Roosevelt: “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” 
And my dad:  “Where there’s water, there’s a hole.”

What three books have you read recently and would recommend?

This Present Darkness by Frank Peretti
The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis
The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I enjoy reading, cooking, gardening, being outside, and hanging out with my family.

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Right where I’m at! I think America is the greatest and most desirable place to live. I love to travel and visit other places when I can, but there’s truly no place like home.

If you could take a trip anywhere in the world, where would you go? (Don’t worry about the money. Your publisher is paying.)

I’d love to see Israel.

What are you working on now?

I have a couple of children’s manuscripts that have been in the works for a while...just fun and whimsical reading and not a lot of thinking required. Sometimes our brain needs a break—-both for the writer and the reader.

To read an excerpt of All About Me: A Journey To The Inside, go here.

About the author:

Elvie Dell is a free spirit, a freelance writer and poet (and a few other things that don’t pertain to writing). She loves to read, watch Lucy re-runs, cook, travel when she can, garden (on a very small scale), fish with her sons, shop and explore with her daughters, craft with her grandkids, just hang out with her husband...and read Dr. Seuss!  She’s intrigued by the very young and the very old and the simplicity of life.

Elvie has four grown children, and three grandchildren. She lives in Texas with her husband, two dogs and six chickens. For more about Elvie and her books, go to her website.   

Buy the book on Amazon