Thursday, August 13, 2009

with Darlene Franklin

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Each Thursday during the Book Bonanza here at Patterings we'll spotlight a different Christian author and their devotional or nonfiction book. Today's author is Darlene Franklin--a lady who has experienced just how ditzie I can be when my brain is a few bricks shy of a full load. LoL She was so gracious and kind as she cleared the fog out of my head.

Thank you, Darlene. You get gold stars in my book! :-) And thank you for being with us today!

Award-winning author and speaker Darlene Franklin has recently returned to cowboy (and cowgirl) country—Oklahoma. The move was prompted by her desire to be close to family—mother Anita, son Jaran, daughter-in-law Shelley and three beautiful granddaughters. Her daughter Jolene has preceded her into glory.

Darlene loves music, needlework, reading and reality tv. Talia, a Lynx point Siamese cat, proudly claims Darlene as her person.

Visit Darlene’s blog at www.darlenefranklinwrites.blogspot.com.


365 Daily Whispers of Wisdom
for Single Moms

Single motherhood—it’s one of the toughest jobs imaginable. Yet amid all the cooking, cleaning, errand-running, and disciplining, you can find some of the great satisfaction imaginable. Sometimes you just need a little inspiration, a little comfort, a little encouragement. . .a much-needed pick-me-up.

This daily devotional provides the boost you need for every day of the year. Whether you’re experiencing the highest highs of motherhood or the lowest lows, 365 Daily Whispers of Wisdom for Single Moms will refresh your spirit and remind you that you aren’t alone on the journey.


Darlene, tell us about your epiphany moment when you decided you were going to seriously pursue writing.
After I had separated from my husband, and was dealing with serious emotional issues through therapy, God kept ministering to me over and over again through His word. One night I sat down and wrote about one particular verse in the tradition of “Writing is easy. Just open a vein and write.” Emotions spilled out of me onto the page. From that point on, I have written almost every day.

What prompted you to write this book?
I learned that Barbour Publishing was putting together several devotional books, including 365 Daily Whispers of Wisdom for Single Moms. Since I have been a single mother myself for almost two decades, I jumped at the chance to share lessons God had taught me. My work also appears in the companion volume, 365 Daily Whispers of Wisdom for Busy Women.

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
I struggle with getting going in the mornings. Once I get started, I’m okay, but getting into the flow is a struggle. I haven’t overcome it as well as I would like; I waste too many hours. But some things do help. A handful of friends keep me accountable. We share goals and challenge each other to meet those goals on a weekly, daily, sometimes even an hourly basis. I’ll write and say “I need a whip crack” and they’ll give me one. I also fool myself into miniscule goals to get into writing gear. I have a timer that says “You can do anything for 15 minutes.” So that’s what I do: I set the timer for 15 minutes, write furiously, and then take a short break.

Friends like that are such a treasure! What is the most embarrassing thing that has ever happened to you?
I wear dentures. Occasionally I forget to pop them in and head out the door looking like a toothless crone. I usually shrug my shoulders and go on ahead. Better toothless than late.

The last time I left home without my dentures, I went to work and walked into our team meeting. It was my last meeting before I left the company after almost ten years. My manager walked in, and with him, the vice president in charge of my department—to say goodbye. I felt completely embarrassed. But if they thought I was unprofessional, the worst they could do was fire me—and I was already leaving.

What would a perfect day for you look like?
A perfect day overall includes time with my precious grandchildren, an episode of a favorite TV show or a Rockies’ baseball game, a steak dinner and of course—a good book. Topped off with news of a writing sale!

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.
Unless I make myself look elsewhere, nine times out of ten I pick up a mystery. All kinds of mysteries, from hard boiled private eye to warm cozies. Since I am writing historical fiction, I read a lot in that genre as well. I also read nonfiction, but more slowly, trying to absorb its life lessons. At the moment, I can’t wait to go see the movie version of my favorite book of all time (after the Bible and Lord of the Rings), A Time Traveler’s Wife, which doesn’t fit into any of my usual categories.

For example, books I am currently reading include (in addition to the Bible, of course): Messy Faith by A.J. Gregory, There and Back Again by Sean Astin, Safe Haven by Hannah Alexander, Curse of the Kissing Cousins by Toni Kelner and California Girl by T. Jefferson Parker.

Are there certain foods or snacks keeps the words flowing for you?
Lots of diet coke. Any kind of food, really. Since I’m now in empty-nest mode, I often eat meals at the computer and continue working.

What lesson is the Lord teaching you right now or recently taught you?
2008 was the hardest year I have ever lived through. My daughter committed suicide in March, my mother had open-heart surgery early in October, followed by my own major knee-replacement surgery at the end of the month. God took me through the valleys of those months, loving me and comforting me every step of the way.

Now I feel like I’ve started a new phase of my life. I left my job of ten years, moved from Colorado to join my son and his family in Oklahoma, and have started writing full-time. I appreciate the sunshine of these days all the more after the dark times last year.

When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?
I have devotionals appearing in two upcoming volumes: Cup of Comfort Christmas Prayers (Christmas 2009) and The Book Lovers Devotional (date not determined). The Book Lovers project was a lot of fun, as I reread A Tale of Two Cities, The Grapes of Wrath, Sherlock Holmes and The Picture of Dorian Grey in preparation for writing the devotionals. There’s a reason they’re called classics! Each devotional explores a spiritual theme from the book in question. I’m currently working on short pieces for 365 Fun Bible Facts.

I also have two works of fiction under contract: Lucy Ames, Sharpshooter will appear in the Christmas anthology Wild West Christmas next month; and next summer, the first book in the Green Mountain Brides series, Prodigal Patriot, will come out. Except for the Cup of Comfort Christmas Prayers, Barbour will publish all of the books.

Here's an excerpt from 365 Daily Whispers of Wisdom for Single Moms
From Devotional titled “Letting Go,” based on Jeremiah 23:23
Mothers let go all the time.

For most of us single moms, leaving our children with a caregiver is a regular workday occurrence. But we vividly remember the first time we left our precious babies in someone else’s care. We gave the babysitter detailed instructions in case of emergencies. We cried as our children did when we had to leave them behind.

We let go on other occasions, too. There’s the first day of school, the first sleepover at a friend’s house, the first time at camp. Or we send our children off to visit their days, watch them leave for their first dates, and eventually, wave good-bye as they venture into adulthood.

As long as our children are in our sight, we feel that we can somehow protect them. We feel more confident in their safety. And we relish their company.

God knows how hard it is to say good-bye. So He gives us a promise. He is the God at hand—in our homes and schools and churches. He is also the God who is far off—at camp, in another state, with people who may not honor Him. Even when we can’t be present with our children, He is. No matter how far they roam, they cannot travel to a place where God is not.

As we say good-bye to our children today, let’s take courage in the fact that God goes with them—wherever they may roam.


You can purchase 365 Daily Whispers of Wisdom for Single Moms from Amazon and CBD.

Darlene is giving away a copy of 365 Daily Whispers of Wisdom for Single Moms. To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment and check back on Wednesday, August 19th to see if you've won. If you want to guarantee that you're notified if you win, then leave your email address in the comment, otherwise, you can just check back and email me through the button in my sidebar.

Darlene, thank you so much for being with us today!
On deck for tomorrow is Roxanne Rustand.

5 comments:

  1. Thanks for letting me come along as a guest!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have a friend who could really benifit from your book. You're upcoming "Book Lovers Devotional" sounds wonderful as well!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anonymous4:59 PM

    I know a few single moms who would benefit
    from this book. Sunny

    ReplyDelete
  4. This devotional sounds wonderful!!

    I pray that whoever wins is deeply blessed by your wisdom!

    ReplyDelete
  5. What a blessing for single moms! I think too often they get left out of the "church" mix. This will make a wonderful addition to my church library WHEN I win.
    :)
    Love
    Cat
    catrina@faithwriters.net

    ReplyDelete

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