Part of my goal in this new blog was to meet people in my writers’ associations.  Deb received my interview questions as a member of the Gulf Coast Writers.  Here is her explanation for her Mississippi ties.  Do plan to visit the Ford home in the Laurel area-now that I know it has an 89′ ramp, I may see you there.  Now we hear from new friend Deb.

I am a member of the Gulf Coast authors, but I live in Ft. Myers, Florida.

I guess due to where I live I don’t qualify for what you’re looking for. But thought I’d share my ties to MS.

Sciatica keeps me grounded sometimes, but I don’t mind being home and blessed with hubby who helps. 🙂

Our ties to MS:

Hubby Alton was born and raised outside Laurel area in a house built before the Civil War. Most of it still stands and sits on property owned by his folks. His dad is deceased but his mama is in assisted living in Bay Springs.

Alton refurbished house he was born in and when we visit MS we stay there.

Our oldest daughter graduated vet school at MS State in Starkville.

I’ve worked in Delta areas as an actor in film Beyond the Forest with Tom Lester (Eb from TV’s Green Acres).

My writing side has been 10+ years writing online articles and a children’s book series.

🙂 hugs, good luck with project!!!!!

Deborah Smith Ford
C 239.322.2377 (text only)

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Tell us a little about yourself .

Deborah Smith Ford is an award-winning model, actress and writer. She’s an officer with the United Film & Television Artists in SW Florida (also a Gulf Coast), and she’s a celebrity lookalike as well – her main look is from the sci-fi world (Trinity from The MATRIX trilogy). Her children’s book series is called Allie’s Adventures.

What inspired you to write your first book?

Inspiration to write my first book was a combination of keeping a journal, studying teaching in college confirming the need for children to read and WRITE, plus the desire to share about life on an apple farm. I wanted, and continue to want, children to see that there are farms without livestock – no pigs, no horses, no cows, no chickens, JUST apples!

Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

My message, in the whole series, is to show how strong even a child can be when circumstances pop up beyond one’s control  Determination, responsibility, patience and more help a child and adult to “survive.”

Are your writings based on someone you know or events in your on life?

My writings are based mostly on my own experiences with a splash of fiction. Some examples include farm life, third world missions’ adventures, the world of entertainment in areas of stage, music, radio, TV, film, modeling, circus, stunt work….

How do you help new writers?

I speak often in schools, and teachers encourage authors to say or do anything to inspire children to write. That too is my goal for kids – get them inspired! I try to make writing be fun with the use of whatever I think works at the time to pique their interest(s). Videos, hands on, Q&A….

What are your current projects?

Currently my series has been a challenge as I’m revising two of the three books, plus

prepping the new one as well. It’s my goal for the series to be with ONE publisher.

Other than family members, who has supported you most and how?

Support seems to come from those who understand – usually other authors!

Do you see writing as a career?

I’d like to think it can be. I’m realistic though. I’m not giving up!

If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

No need for changes with my latest book; I’m happy with it. I learned from the experiences of writing the other two books.

I’m blessed to be able to revise the first two. A series was never my plan, just ONE book. THAT idea changed!

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

My challenge is to not bore the reader. What might be interesting to me may not

be to someone else. However I know it’s impossible to make everyone happy.

If I find myself crying or laughing after rereading any part of one of my books multiple

times then I know I’ve hit the mark!

Who designed your covers?

I came up with many of the ideas, but talented illustrator Susi Galloway has created the illustrations for all three books. She’s originally from Switzerland, studied art in South Africa, and I chose her due to her work in BRIGHT colors.

What was the hardest part of writing your latest book?

One of the biggest challenges with my latest book is not using the names of real

celebrities in all 25 chapters. The topic is “Hollywood!”

Do you have any advice for other writers?

I think writers need to be persistent when it comes to writing and especially when dealing with everything else tied to it – publisher, illustrator, editor, marketing, distribution…. and don’t be afraid to read, read, read others’ works. See what suits your fancy, or not!

Do you have anything specific you would like to say to your readers?

When it comes to readers of my books I hope they enjoy and learn from each one,

and if anything else is accomplished that’s icing on the cake!

What are your hobbies?

I enjoy activities with my entertainment friends. In the past few years I have been involved in several film and TV projects. I love the process. It’s from those experiences that I get ideas for my books.

What TV shows/ films do you enjoy watching?

I enjoy all films and TV that include one ore more of the following – comedy, family,

mystery and nature. I refuse to waste my time viewing anything depressing. Life’s

too short to be depressed on purpose!

Favorite foods/colors/places to travel.

I am not a vegetarian, but I do enjoy fruits and veggies the most. I prefer them raw.

The occasional chocolate candy and crunchy type ice creams are great treats too!

If you were not a writer, what else would you like to do?

Since I’ve lived a pretty full life I’ve already been there done that – some of those

gigs have included teaching, motherhood, retail, dental assisting, missionary work,

vet tech, personal trainer, voice over acting, acting of all kinds, modeling… and

answering questions for Dot! I’m honored, thank you.

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