Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Interview with Colette Harrell, author of 'The Devil Made Me Do It'

Colette (Ford) Harrell the author of the debut novel The Devil Made Me Do It is passionate about the written word. Holding a master’s degree, she is a director of human services. Her creation and implementation of a health and energy medical program stands as a best practices model. Her philosophy of service is compassionate care through a spirit of excellence. A motivational speaker, she specializes in customer and human service workshops on state and national levels.  She is cofounder of COJACK Productions, a Christian entertainment company. As an active member of her church, Kingdom Christian Center, she serves in several ministries.

Colette is a wife, mother, author, poet, songwriter, and playwright. Her novel is a delectable read, where romance, suspense, humor, and the supernatural all come together to entertain, educate, and inspire. 

A Detroit native, she currently resides in Ohio, writing with humor and compassion to engage and minister to the human heart. Her motto is: whatever you do, do it “for love alone.”

Her latest book is the inspirational fiction, The Devil Made Me Do It.

For More Information
About the Book:

The voluptuous Esther Wiley has always known that she is special. She’s a tiara-wearing, wand-carrying kind of Cinderella princess in disguise. The problem that her very own Fairy Godmother, the Prophetess Mother Reed, struggles with is getting her to live like it.

Briggs Stokes is the reluctant heir to his father’s worldwide, multimillion-dollar televangelist ministry, yet he yearns to be his own man. His past mistakes have caused him a private life of hurt and loneliness.

Esther and Briggs meet and develop a deep soul connection, until tragedy strikes and the two are thrust apart. Their separation leads each down a different path scattered with emotional minefields. While each step they take brings them closer to who they were always meant to be, the devil is on assignment. He sends in reinforcements to usher in confusion and create chaos, and soon no one is safe. The members of Love Zion church reel from the rumors, innuendo, and downright sabotage that is going on around them. 

When others devise evil schemes to seek the destruction of Esther and Briggs through jealousy, greed, and murder, only divine intervention can save them. As an all-out battle for dominion breaks out in the heavens, will Esther and Briggs become a casualty of war?

For More Information

  • The Devil Made Me Do It is available at Amazon.
  • Pick up your copy at Barnes & Noble.
  • Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.
  • Read Chapter One here.

Thank you for this interview! I’d like to know more about you as a person first. What do you do when you’re not writing?

I am director of social services at a nonprofit. I love working with people and guiding people in fixing their problems. Along the way, I learn lessons that help in fixing my own. 

When did you start writing?

When I was a teenager with chicken pox, it was a way to pass the time. I ended up getting hooked, and stayed that way, way past the calamine lotion.

As a published author, what would you say was the most pivotal point of your writing life?

When I found the perfect ending to my book, and then had to lose it. It taught me to be more flexible in my writing. While I can love it, if I have to change something and it affects another part of the story, I have to be okay with letting it go. The most important act is telling a good story as a whole.

If you could go anywhere in the world to start writing your next book, where would that be and why?

I would love to go to a place where I could sit out on a veranda, sip something fruity, and write, write, write. A morning walk and weather in the high seventies would be nice. It doesn’t matter where, I’m only going in walking distance from the veranda. No distractions, no interruptions. Just me, my laptop, and no writer’s block.

If you had 4 hours of extra time today, what would you do?

Complete all my writing assignments today. Then crawl in bed next to my husband and cuddle. I think he misses me.

Where would you like to set a story that you haven’t done yet?

I want to write a story set in Ireland. I think it would be a gas. Definitely something that has been swirling around in my spirit.

Back to your present book, The Devil Made Me Do It, how did you publish it?

Traditionally. I thank God I didn’t know how hard it was supposed to be. I found an agent, she submitted it, and it was accepted. Later I learned that, that just doesn’t happen. I did the happy dance.

In writing your book, did you travel anywhere for research?

My book is set in Detroit. I’m originally from Detroit, so . . . The research was pretty easy. I clicked my heels three times, and went home.

Why was writing The Devil Made Me Do It so important to you?

I love to write a good story, and I wanted to entertain with a positive message. I also have some nuggets of knowledge I wanted to share. There are some issues in the book as old as time (adultery, lust, suicide) and some new issues (self-esteem, body image) that I wanted to address and how we handle them today. 

Where do you get your best ideas and why do you think that is?

I love to talk. While I’m talking I actually listen too it’s a gift. What people reveal between the lines is as telling as what they say. Later, as I sit in quiet thought, sometimes in very loud traffic, conversations are replayed, and as a result, different stories fall into my spirit. A red light daydream soon becomes an idea for a story.

Any final words?

I appreciate you having me. For years my tagline was “For Love Alone.” Then I started this journey, and I found that my love alone wasn’t satisfactory. Other’s love was needed. My new tag became, “It takes a village to raise a dream.” Thanks for being a part of my village.

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