Today I am happy to have another old friend and classmate joining me for an interview, Rachel Dawn! Her first publication, “Now What? A Story of Broken Dreams and the God Who Restores Them” launches this Friday November 4th on Amazon.com.
Brad Covey: Thank you for joining me for the interview today Rachel! Would you mind telling us all a little about yourself?
Rachel Dawn: Sure! I grew up in Dry Ridge, KY, my extended family ran tobacco and dairy farms that I grew up working and playing on. I moved to Cincinnati right after high school and still live there today. My husband Barry and I live on the northeast side of the city, near Kings Island. Outside of writing and speaking, I do national account sales for a large logistics firm headquartered there.
BC: Can you tell us what inspired you to write “Now What? A Story of Broken Dreams and the God Who Restores Them”?
RD: After going through my divorce, books were what helped me with a lot of my healing process. Because divorce is so taboo, especially in the conservative Christian environment I grew up in, it wasn’t something I felt like I could talk about with other people at all. So books became my therapists. There was this one book on particular, “Live, Laugh and Love Again: A Christian Woman’s Survival Guide to Divorce”, it’s written by four women who went through divorces in all different stages and ages of life. I laughed, I cried, but most of all, I went ok, I’m not crazy! And I’m not alone. Other people have been through this, they have felt all the things I’m feeling and have had all the thoughts I’m having, so I’m normal and this is ok. And here’s where to go from here… I think that’s so important. Divorce is a very isolating event. So knowing how much books helped me, I wanted to pass that on and do the same for other people.
BC: Will you describe what it was like writing such a personal story?
RD: For me, sharing my story is just a part of who I am, I’m very open and transparent. Vulnerability just comes naturally to me. My husband sometimes accuses me off over sharing! Ha ha because his personality is polar opposite of mine. So other people, like him, have commented they could never share the details I do, but for me it’s like breathing.
BC: What was the reaction from your friends and family when you told them that you were going to write “Now What? A Story of Broken Dreams and the God Who Restores Them”?
RD: Everyone has been super supportive. Even my ex husband! Which is crazy. You don’t see that coming at all – when you read the first part of my story. But he’s excited for the impact the book will have on other people, even though (the beginning) is not his shining moment. For everyone else, I don’t think it came as much of a surprise. I’ve been taking about being an author since third grade. That’s why I didn’t go to college, my plan was to build my own business to financial independence so I would have time to write and money to hire a published author to mentor me. My plan turned out a little differently than I imagined, but essentially, all of that has come to fruition.
BC: Do you feel in ways that writing your story down helped you deal with that time in your life in a better way?
RD: oh yeah. For sure. It’s definitely therapeutic. Especially knowing other people were going to be helped by it.
BC: Can you describe the feeling and emotions you went through when you first held the print copy of your book in your hands for the first time?
RD: oh man! That’s hard to put into words because it was such a myriad of different emotions and just keep coming in waves. I had already had such an overwhelming sense of “Holy crap it’s really happening!” when my book cover was being designed and my website started coming together (I owe thanks to you for both those things!) But when the book came it was different. It was a tangible manifestation of something I has been dreaming about and working toward for two solid years at that point. It was a feeling of completion, of fulfillment and accomplishment. And as I started to flip through it, once I got to the page after the dedication page, which is the song lyrics to Phil Wickham’s song “safe” that says,
“To the one whose dreams have fallen all apart
And all you’re left with is a tired and broken heart
I can tell by your eyes you think you’re on your own
But you’re not alone
Have you heard of the One who can calm the raging seas
Give sight to the blind, pull the lame up to their feet
With a love so strong it never lets you go
No you’re not alone”
I lost it. I cry every time I get to that page, because that’s who the book is really dedicated to. Because I was that one. And I remember every one of those emotions. And my heart aches for every other person who will pick up this book in the same place. I so badly want them to know they are not alone, that their story isn’t over yet. I have a sense of excitement with sharing this with as many people that I can.
BC: What do you hope readers take from “Now What? A Story of Broken Dreams and the God Who Restores Them”?
RD: I want people to walk away feeling not alone and hopeful. hopeful about their future. Those are the biggest things.
BC: Do you have any signings or upcoming events that you would like your readers to know about?
RD: YES! My book launch party is taking place Friday, Nov 11th in downtown Mason, OH. I also just had a sweet friend line up a book signing for me in Louisville, KY in early December. Details TBA.
BC: What’s next for Rachel Dawn as an author?
RD: I got the idea for my next book as I was writing this one. Part 1 of my book is My Story, Part 2 is Other People’s Now What stories – everything from prison sentences, to military rejection, to medical conditions. To interview people for that section, I developed a “Now What? Questionnaire”. What was interesting is each of the people I interviewed found the exercise not only therapeutic, but had revelations about their own stories they had never seen before. I included the Questionnaire in the back of the book for readers to have a guide to write their own story. I have this vision of people submitting their “Now What?” Stories to me, that I can put into a book and teach lessons from. So my next book will be an entire collection of other people’s Now What stories. I’d love to have yours in there, Brad!
BC: In closing, is there anything you’d like to say to your readers?
RD: All of this started by me sitting down and telling my story to people one-on-one over cups of coffee. I saw how much my story was helping people, and in time, I realized there weren’t enough hours in the day, or cups of coffee in the world for me to tell my story to every person it will impact, so I wrote it down for YOU. I so wish I could be sitting across the table from you hearing your story too. Please know my heart aches for you and I pray you find comfort and hope in my words, even if we never have a chance to meet in person.
BC: Thank you so much for doing the interview with me today!
Please make sure to check out Rachel Dawn’s links below and show her some love!
- Now What? A Story of Broken Dreams and the God Who Restores Them: http://nowwhatstory.com/
- Rachel Dawn Official Site: http://racheldawnwrites.com/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/racheldawnwrites/
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/racheldawnwrites/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/rachdawnwrites