Monday, July 22, 2013

Author Interview - Carla Woody

What interests you about writing fiction? I’m most interested in teaching stories. The reader learns or resolves something themselves through identifying with different characters, in the course of being entertained. As the writer, the same is true for me. The process is magical to me. It’s like a movie unfolds in front of me, and I just write it down. It’s particularly surprising when a new character appears to take me somewhere I hadn’t imagined.

How do you come up with an idea for a new novel? The ideas present themselves. It may be something I want to explore myself, or a point I want to get across.

Are you traditionally published or self-published? Why did you choose that path? I’ve published articles through professional journals and magazine since the early 1990s. When it came to my books, I specifically chose to self-publish through Kenosis Press, my own small press, for these important reasons: 1) they never go out of print; 2) the publishing process is truncated; 3) I have control over the content. Since my books are vehicles for my work, I continue to feel this is important.

How do you work through self-doubts and fear? I’ve gone through quite a process in the last 25 years. I felt like I was on a high-speed train going through one station after another, dropping things off and picking up others along the way until I realigned my life for a right fit.

This is what I’ve noticed. When I’m ready to go through a threshold—the next evolution—the residue of whatever fears may still be present becomes strongest, They can present themselves through critical internal voices, body stresses, or even dreams. I know that any of these are just internal signals that I’m moving out of what has been familiar. I’ve seen this to be true for virtually anyone.  I do some objective exploring to see if there’s any validity to the messages. If so, I fine-tune but move forward if it’s a direction that’s beneficial. I tell my mentoring clients that it’s actually a marker of progress! Intent will prevail and the fears lessen over time as you get used to the (now) familiar.

What are you most proud of in your personal life? About 20 years ago, I moved out of a life prescribed for me by societal expectations into a lifestyle that truly enlivens me, the work I’m doing now. I was essentially working in corporate environments that didn’t support creativity, or much out-of-the-box thinking at all. In most areas of my life I was “settling.” My energy was slowly being depleted, which happens when an environment is an ill fit. My need to thrive overcame fears and I left the “secure” cocoon, albeit a stifling one. I made a leap of faith. At one level, it took a lot of courage. But my core intent was strong. Now I guide others on how to live through their deeply held values.

What books did you love growing up? My mother read to me a lot as a young child. I remember lying with my head in her lap and listening to stories: Huckleberry Finn, Tom Sawyer, a series called Mother West Wind’s Neighbors and many more. It was comforting and probably why I’ve always loved books. Jane Eyre was a favorite when I hit adolescence.

Location and life experiences can really influence writing, tell us where you grew up and where you now live? I grew up in a military family. My father was a JAG attorney. My mother was a stay-at-home mom until I was a teenager, when she started working as a bookkeeper. For shorter times we lived in Texas, Arkansas, Washington DC and Alabama. I lived most of my teenaged years in Ohio. The majority of my childhood we lived in Paris, and I grew up traveling Europe during family vacations. I’m quite sure exposure to other countries influenced me considerably, and the draw to travel hasn’t left me. For work and pleasure I’ve spent time in the Middle and Near East, North Africa, Europe, Central and South America. I come and go from my home near Prescott, Arizona.

If you could have a dinner party and invite anyone dead or alive, who would you ask? It would definitely be Eugene O’Neill. I never knew much about his work or life—and this sounds a bit crazy, I know—but he began to show up periodically in mine. In the mid 1990s, before I began my first book, or even thought about it, he appeared to me in a dream that was prophetic and came true. That wasn’t the end of it. Our relationship has endured for years. I even wrote a blog post recently: “Eugene O’Neill and Me.” I won’t say more here. You’ll have to read about it:

When you’re not working, how do you like to relax? Reading and artwork are favorites, and spending time with friends over dinner, conversation or hiking. I live in a wilderness area, which is very conducive to relaxation. I just step outside my door. About twice a year I take off and camp. I also like to travel out of country and explore.

Where can we find your books and websites?  Find <Portals to the Vision SerpentStanding Stark and Calling Our Spirits Home on Amazon, or order through local bookstores.
You’re invited to visit Kenosis and Kenosis Spirit Keepers to learn more about offerings and sign up for free material and the Kenosis Inspirations ezine. Follow my blog The Lifepath Dialogues.

Carla Woody Bio:
Carla Woody has been mentoring people toward conscious living for more than twenty years. In 1999 she established Kenosis LLC to serve human potential and support the vision: “One tribe, one world.” In 2007, she founded Kenosis Spirit Keepers, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, to help preserve indigenous wisdom ways. Carla is the author of Portals to the Vision Serpent, Standing Stark: The Willingness to Engage and Calling Our Spirits Home: Gateways to Full Consciousness. She also writes articles related to personal growth, natural healing and advocacy of Native traditions, and is a fine artist. She makes her home near Prescott, Arizona.

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Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre -  Fiction / Coming of Age / Historical
Rating – PG
More details about the author & the book
Connect with Carla Woody on Facebook  & Twitter


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