4 hours ago
Monday, June 7, 2010
Giveaway and Author Interview: The Stones
Welcome, Eleanor, and thank you for spending this time with us, here on Writing for Christ!
1: How long did you write before you were published?
I started making up stories shortly after graduating from diapers to potty but didn’t actually write anything until much later. My early writing efforts met with feeble enthusiasm from both my mother and an author in our church. They basically told me, “Stick to music.” I had a lot to learn. I kept working at it, and my first article was accepted for publication in 1978.
2: When you held your first book in your hands, what was your first thought?
3: What do you find the hardest part about writing?
The initial writing and shaping of the story is hard for me. Editing is far easier, though I’m slow—or a perfectionist—don’t know which. A conservative estimate is at least fifty rewrites.
4: How do you coordinate time between writing and other responsibilities?
Oh, I don’t. Life is totally out of control. I am list- and need-driven: i.e., hunger regularly moves me to consider food prep. Not easy when you include growing some of it, harvesting edible weeds, cooking from scratch, and committing to healthy, nutritious eating. Dandelion greens, anyone? The church-involvement list is long, email interactions even longer, caring about people through all media, and on and on. That I get anything published is remarkable. Just yesterday I sent off my book proposal for novel #5—probably five or more years in the making.
5: What are you working on now?
Now that #5 is out of my hands, I need to focus on the next one. I have something that’s half formed—partly in my mind, partly on paper. Will I live long enough to get it out there? Only God knows, but while the passion is in me, I write.
6: Where can readers find out more about your books?
My website is http://www.eleanorgustafson.com/ Along with some fun things, you’ll find Amazon links for The Stones. Amazon still lists used copies of my earlier books. A warning: Middle Night, my only self-published book, is dark, edgy, and difficult to get into. Few people have really liked it, but it is a powerful story of redemption and grace—with no religious language at all. My experience with that book did teach me many good lessons. I just checked the Amazon site, and they list a new copy for $61.25. LOL!!! Don’t buy it at that price! Read the two reviews instead. You can get the other two for as little as one penny—plus S&H, of course. Do buy The Stones, though. You’ll like that.
7: What message(s) do you want to be clear to your readers?
The David story yanked me around a lot. He was complex: a shepherd, musician, warrior, king, ladies’ man, lover of God, sinner. Out of this context of blood, lust, and fully engaged worship flows the on-going story of God’s redemption, culminating in Jesus’ blood sacrifice for sinners like you and me. A holy, sovereign God offers love and grace. I want readers to see and feel the implications of that love.
8: Why did you choose this profession?
I chose music as a “profession,” but I think writing chose me. Classical music, especially, moves my soul, and with that as a backdrop on my life, the writing juices have flowed freely.
Thank you for being with us today. Any final words for readers?
Don’t read just for entertainment. Read books that will expand your mind and help you grow spiritually. Consider this brief excerpt from my upcoming novel, Dynamo:
“Maybelle,” Jeth said, “Rob told me that most Christians don’t sense God’s presence in their lives or understand his language. You understand what God is saying, don’t you?”
To Jeth’s surprise, Maybelle’s face clouded. She closed her eyes, then looked at him through deep pain. “Jeth, dear, I wish I could say you are wrong, that most Christians do have a lively conversation with our Lord. Instead, I see people who are starved and emaciated, seated at a full-spread banquet table and just nibbling…nibbling at crumbs. The food is there, but they will not eat. They’re not hungry, you see. You are hungry, my dear, and that is why God has singled you out for extraordinary things.”
May you be blessed in your reading and writing.
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