Sunday, March 27, 2011

with Laura W. Eckroat

Welcome to the Barn Door Book Loft, Laura!
People talk about life before children— what was your life before writing?

I have always written – so my life was normal as I was writing. I am a wife and mother and a school teacher so I kept busy with all of that. My life after being published has changed somewhat. I have traveled a bit more going to different states and talking to children at schools and presenting to adults at Professional Conferences. I was the grand marshal of my hometown’s Easter parade a few years ago and that was really fun. I also talked to over 800 students at 4 elementary schools in 2 days – I spoke about writing, editing, publishing, illustrations, and word choice – this was to kick-off their summer reading program. All of the children received journals and copies of my book.

What is your most difficult writing obstacle, and how do you overcome it?
I find that I used to just write whenever and it didn’t matter if I missed a couple weeks. Now I feel guilty if I don’t write. The only obstacle I have found now is that I also need to market the books that I have published, so that takes away from writing time. But I used to have a huge obstacle – before I was published. I was very nervous to have anyone read what I wrote. Now I enjoy telling people my ideas about upcoming books and they seem excited to read the finished product!

What book have you recently enjoyed reading?
I recently read A Dog’s Purpose, by Bruce Cameron; I rarely read books more than once and this is one that I am going to read again.

Which character in your new release most interested you while you wrote?
My daughter intrigues me – she is very talented at so many things. Like me, she sometimes is nervous in sharing her talents. My daughter is the main character in A Simpler Time and I wish we could relive those things in the book. I look forward to doing those things with her kids someday – when I’m a grandma.

If you were a dessert, what would you be?
I would be Taffy Apple Salad. This recipe is fun because you add a bunch of things that you would not think taste like a Carmel Apple – but you end up with something amazing. I think my life has been like this – I’ve done many different things – Human Resources, General Manager of a toy store, Teacher, Author … All these things have made ME!
Laura Eckroat - Taffy Apple Salad

If you were to find a purple polka-dotted monster in your kitchen one morning, how would you respond?
I would not be surprised if I found a purple polka-dotted monster in my kitchen one morning … I would say “Hi, are you here to do the laundry or clean the bathrooms?”

Tell us about one of your favorite memories or moments in your life.
I actually have two favorite memories. The first is from when I was little and Lake Michigan froze over and it was REALLY cold in Northwest Indiana and my dad took my sister and I out to Lake Michigan and we walked way out onto the frozen lake. It was eerie but really very beautiful! The second favorite memory is the day I brought home my daughter from the hospital. I could have just sat and held her forever … sometimes I wish I could go back in time just to hold her as a baby again!

What's one of your dreaded things to do?
I’m not much for talking on the phone, so sometimes I’ll email or text so I don’t have to talk on the phone.

What is the Lord teaching you, or recently taught you?
To be thankful for what I have.

When is your next book due out and can you tell us about it?
My next book is called Went Out To Get a Donut – Came Home With a Muffin. It is due out late 2011 or early 2012. When I have asked kids what they think it’s about, they say “that the main character wanted a donut but the store was out.” OR “it’s about a trip to the bakery.” I have given three groups of children 12 and under a preview of this new book; once they figure it out, they all bust out laughing!

The book is actually a rhyming, repetitive book for ages 3 – 8 (or so) about our rescue dog Muffin. It was really fun to write and I’m excited for it’s release.

What do you enjoy about being an author?
I very much enjoy going to schools and talking to children about writing and the writing process. It is fun to answer their questions and hear what they have to say about writing. If anyone is interested in having me speak at their school, library, or professional organization they can reach me at

I’ve also enjoyed all the cool things I’ve gotten to do as an author; being the grand marshal of a parade, speaking at my grade school, being on TV, featured in Dallas Child Magazine, winning the Best Children’s Book Award at the North Texas Book Festival, and volunteering at the Fort Worth Nature Center. I’ve found speaking at the Western Massachusetts Homeschool Convention and the Massachusetts Reading Association Conference and at the end of March, 2011 – State of Maryland International Reading Association Conference has been very fulfilling and has helped me grow as an author and speaker.

You can purchase The Life of Bud and A Simpler Time from Amazon.

Laura is giving away TWO books; The Life of Bud AND A Simpler Time. To be entered in the book giveaway, leave a comment. You can enter the book giveaway twice--once on each spotlight post.


Anonymous said...

Please enter me to win these books!

cjajsmommy said...

That salad recipe certainly looks different! I may just have to try it. Please enter me for the giveaway. I'm sure some of my eight-soon-to-be-nine grandkids will enjoy it.

Mona said...

Please enter me for these 2 books. I would love to read them together with my daughter and add them to her library.

I found I have 2 things in common with Laura:
. I also rarely if ever re-read books
. I'm not much of a phone person either

Marianne said...

Thanks, Esther and Laura for the great interview and the giveaways. i would love to win them for the school library! mitzi_wanham[at]yahoo[dot]com
from Arizona

Joanne Sher said...

Oh, these look fun. Please enter me!

Linda Kish said...

I really want to win these two books.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Charity said...

Please enter me:) Thanks so much!


apple blossom said...

salad recipe sounds yummy. please include me in the book drawing thanks

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

windycindy said...

I would really appreciate being entered in these book drawings!
The covers are so imaginative and
the stories delightful...
Thanks very much!

Amy said...

Hi. Please enter me. These books would be great to read to my kids.


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