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Interview with Debra Shiveley Welch

A Very Special Child was your first book, for which you were given the Faith Writer's Gold Seal of Approval - Outstanding Read for my children's book which addresses adoption in a spiritual way. How did this praise effect your future writing?
It encouraged me to go on.
When I received the award, I knew that my work was good and appreciated. I can’t begin to explain how I felt. Yes, I can! Like I’d won an Oscar!
This also encouraged me to go beyond my comfort zone. Obviously, I could write…I was good. It was very liberating.

Tell us a bit about you latest book?
Son of My Soul – The Adoption of Christopher is a memoir written to my son. It begins with the prophecy of my birth and chronicles my life from childhood to the adoption and raising of my son.
Although this is an important part of the book, especially as a legacy for my son, as I got further and further into the work, I realized that I was really writing about breaking the circle of child abuse. It is an important message and one that I hope will help many who are veterans of child abuse.

Your son is also a writer. How do you help support each other?
Chris reads my work and I read and edit his. He is a great supporter of mine, and of course, you know I’m a proud Mama.
Chris is such a great kid. He’ll go over my latest work and tell me how much he likes it. He also asks pertinent questions, which sometimes help me figure out a snag I’ve run in to.
We work very well together. We have a lot of fun and great respect for each other.

You've been plagiarised in the past. How did you find out and do you have any tips for helping to prevent plagiarism?

I use Google Alerts http://www.google.com/alerts/
I have written an article on detecting and protecting your work here:
http://apps.debrashiveleywelch.net/Blog/?d=01/2009


Where can people find out more about you and your writing?

My web site is at http://www.DebraShiveleyWelch.net

Anything else you'd like to add?
Although I’ve been published since my early twenties, my first book was published at age 52, so don’t give up! Keep working, keep plugging away and you can make it happen.
Don’t go into this profession, however, thinking that you will make a lot of money. Most of us don’t. Write because you need to and have something to say.
I’d like to plug my current project, if I may. I’m working on Cedar Woman, a romance novel about a woman of the Lakota Sioux tribe who opens the first Native American restaurant in Central Ohio. There are a lot of traditions and ceremonies of the Lakota, all authentic, as well as much of the Lakota Plains language.
I’m very excited about this work and am having a great time. My sister, Julie Spotted Eagle Horse, is a consultant on the book, assuring the genuineness of my representation of the Lakota culture and language.
Chris, my son, and I are working on a cookbook together. Chris wants to be a chef and a musician. At age 16, he is already a good cook.
We’re having a great time inventing and recreating family recipes. I love working with my son.

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