MISTER D: A Children’s Picture Book About Overcoming Doubts and Fears, the first book by film and television writer/producer, Elizabeth Stevens, is an empowering, entertaining fable for 4-9 year olds about overcoming doubts and fears.
MISTER D has been approved for use in California public schools by the office of California’s State Superintendent of Public Instruction.
Elizabeth and her husband, James, had the opportunity to meet REE DRUMMOND, THE PIONEER WOMAN, at a recent book signing. Ree is one of the first people to have read MISTER D.
Elizabeth was born in Boston and currently lives in South Pasadena, California with her husband and writing partner, James Bruner, and their family.
A romantic drama, “Ice Dreams”, written by Elizabeth and James for The Hallmark Channel, was nominated for the $100,000 Epiphany Prize for Television by MovieGuide.org. Elizabeth and James are Executive Producers on “My George”, a romantic comedy premiering on The Hallmark Channel in June, 2014.
What inspires you to write?
I have always loved telling stories from the time I was a very young girl putting on “shows” for the neighborhood using sheets hanging from the clothesline as curtains for my “stage”. I got into singing and acting and then writing movies and television projects and finally wrote “Mister D”.
I love entertaining and inspiring people, and if they happen to learn something that could help them a little bit in life, while they’re enjoying my work, that really makes my day.
Tell us about your writing process.
It seems like my process for every writing project is different. I wish that I had a magic formula that worked for everything I write, but that isn’t the case. Once I decide to start work on a new story, it seems like I am guided to use whatever process is right for that story.
For instance, I may feel compelled to develop the characters as completely as I can before I put one word of the story down. Other times, I’ll have an idea for the opening of the story and I just start there and see what follows, surprising myself along the way with where the characters and the story go.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
When I really connect with my characters, I feel like they are talking to me – and each other – all I have to do is type fast enough to get everything they want to say down.
What advice would you give other writers?
Write what you love.
Everyone has different tastes so take criticism with a grain of salt. However, if two or three unrelated people have the same criticism, take a serious look at what they’re saying. The issue could be something as simple as clarifying a story point that you completely understand, but that isn’t clear to your audience.
If you want to be inspired, read the work of authors you admire – and read the life stories of authors whose work speaks to you. Even if you aren’t a fan of Harry Potter, author J.K. Rowling’s life story is truly inspiring.
“Never, never, never give up!” Winston S. Churchill
How did you decide how to publish your books?
After doing a lot of research, I decided to find my own illustrator for “Mister D”. I didn’t like the idea of a publisher selecting an illustrator. I used eLance.com to find the illustrator. It’s a terrific site where people from all over the world bid to do whatever work you need to have done.
As “Mister D” is my first book, I am learning the ropes of the trade as I go. I used a small publisher, Big Tent Books/DragonPencil, to format and print the hard cover edition of my book. They are terrific people to work with. I used CreateSpace for the paperback edition and Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing for the ebook version.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I think that while there will be a continuing role for traditional publishers, there will be more and more opportunities for successful self-publishing.
What genres do you write?
Children’s Picture Books, Mysteries, Thrillers
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print