Friday, April 17, 2009
FEATURED AUTHOR: Darla Foxx
The Alexis McDougal Character Building and Life Skills series feature an 8 year old precocious little girl named Alexis, her special angel friend~Gabrielle, her best-best friend, Chelsea, along with a host of multicultural classroom friends.
In book 3, “Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide”, Alexis and her best friend Chelsea believe they’re doing a good deed by offering support to a “friend” who appears to need help. However, Alexis has a hunch that something is just not quite right about this “friend”. Will Alexis choose to ignore her feelings and help a “friend” in need? Will Chelsea go along just to get along? What will they both learn about trusting and believing in oneself and listening to that still small voice within???
Darla J. Foxx
With over 20 years of experience in serving the public as a professional cosmetologist, Darla J. Foxx brings her customer resolution skills, life experience (and those of her clients!) and creativity to the field of writing, publishing and manufacturing. Although she’s a novice children’s author, she prides herself in writing stories that offer “a positive learning experience and not just a physical product.”
What would you like readers to take away from your book?
I would like readers to learn that we are all unique individuals born with a beautiful and incredible gift of knowing. Often times we tend to ignore it (our feelings), however, this story teaches children (and adults, for that matter) about the tool of intuition and how important it is to learn to pay attention, listen and trust it. This story also demonstrates that when something unexpected happens, we have the power to turn the most unloving incident into something wonderful and beautiful where everyone can benefit from the lesson.
Why did you choose to write this book?
I wrote this story because as a child, a similar situation occurred in my life and I’d like to help prevent a child from having to experience such childhood devastations by equipping them with safety and awareness tools while learning to trust themselves and their innate intuition.
What did you learn while writing this book?
I finally feel that I have totally gained my power back by writing this book and being able to say out loud, “a similar situation occurred in my life”. No one would believe how much it took me to get to this point without worrying about exposing or hurting the perpetrator’s feelings or family.
What was your favorite scene/chapter from the book?
Although this book is a valuable teaching tool for children (and adults), Alexis’ personality always shine through with her precocious and humorous way of expressing herself. So with that said, I would say my favorite chapter is “The Awakening”, chapter 5, where Alexis calls on her special friend for the help that only she can give and, also in the same chapter where Alexis decides to take matters into her own hands…
And, if I might add the last chapter is pretty amazing also, titled, “Awareness is the key!” but I won’t give anymore away, I’ll let you decide which chapter is your favorite!
What one thing about writing do you wish other non-writers would understand?
Although all forms of art are gifts from God, most artists need to exercise the very necessary alone time to create, which means that while an artist is on a sabbatical, please don’t take it personally…
What is the best lesson you have learned from another writer?
To be patient and to believe in your work. Eventually, your audience will catch on…
What Is the toughest test you’ve faced as a writer?
The toughest test I’ve faced as a writer is believing in my gift. Most writers I know have either studied their craft for years, have degrees in literature or English, or have read books all of their life, none of which is me. However, my life experience has been my teacher and my material.
What is something readers would be surprised you do?
I think readers would be surprise to know that I love cuddling up with my daughter’s newly found Chihuahua while I’m writing because she’s so soft, lovable, and loving. I’m convinced she’s a gift from the Heavens. Her name is Lily…
What are three things you wish you’d known before reaching where you are now?
I wish I would have honed in on my gift of writing as a teen because I would have kept a journal instead of keeping my feelings and experiences inside for soooo long.
I wish I had used my intuitive mind about wasting money on nothing. I could be using it now to support my family and me while marketing and advertising my books and building my business.
I wish I had more insight early on to the business of writing and how much time and energy it takes to get your work noticed and read by your intended audience and those who can help you make an impact to the world.
How do you reach new readers?
Hopefully by word of mouth, book signings and making school visits. Prayerfully, my new websites, once fully optimized will attract more new readers as well.
If you could have dinner with 3 authors to talk about their writing (living or deceased) who would you invite and why?
I love and respect Maya Angelou’s work. I believe she writes from experience and from the heart about self love, being a wonderfully created woman and being strong and courageous.
I love Louise Hay and Marianne Williamson’s work. I love their philosophies and teachings about life, self, health, love, and healing…
I love Barbara Parks children’s books because my daughter and I have read them for the last 12 years and have fallen in love with her characters. I love their self-expression, very funny and entertaining!
Can you give us one do and one don’t for those aspiring to be a writer?
Do observe the world around you and keep notes. There’s sooo much to discover and share…
Don’t make it harder than it has to be. If and when the so-called “writers block” rears it’s head, take a break, walk away, and do something else. The story will come when it’s ready to be born, so you don’t have to rush it.
How can readers get in touch with you?
Snail mail- Universal Messengers, LLC, P.O. Box 9039, Wilmington, DE 19809
Websites: http://www.alexismcdougal.com/ or http://www.universalmessengers.com/
Our theme for this month is Getting The Call. How should a writer prepare after getting the call?
Depends on who the call is coming from, however, for the most part, know what you want and don’t be afraid to ask for it. Have your media package together and just know that if this is THE CALL, then it is NOW YOUR TURN…
Can you give us a sneak peek of your next book?
I actually have two other books on the market that maybe the viewing audience may not know about. My first book published in 2005 is Alexis McDougal starring in “The Day I Met My New Special Friend”, which is about love, friendship, self-esteem, and being controlling of others.
My second book published in 2006, Alexis McDougal starring in…”Secrets Are Confidential Business” is about selfishness, sharing, and forgiveness.
I haven’t quite decided which of the 10 manuscripts will be the next one, however, I have a feeling that it may be Alexis McDougal starring in “Sticky Fingers”, which is a little obvious, but the plot is funny as heck and the lesson is greatly needed.
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