An Interview with Karen R. Kilby: Author, International Speaker & Personality Trainer
Sylvia: Welcome Karen. Please give our readers an introduction of yourself and a little about your book.
Karen: Hello Sylvia. My name is Karen R. Kilby and I am an international speaker, a certified personality trainer with CLASServices, Inc. providing Wired That Way workshops as well as a speaker and speaker/trainer for Stonecroft Ministries. I’ve had over 30 stories published in the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and other faith-based publications. I’m the author of “Becoming a Woman of Purpose, A Thirty-one Day Devotional,” addressing relevant issues people struggle with and offering hope for a new outlook on life, shedding light on the need to look beyond the ordinary and encouraging readers to look for God’s involvement in the hum drum of everyday existence. I was recognized as Family Time’s 2010 Woman of Achievement of the Arts and reside in Kingwood, Texas with my loving, supportive husband, David.
Sylvia: I absolutely love your book, very inspirational… powerful! What inspired you to write your first book?
Karen: Writing a book or even a story wasn’t my idea. It actually began with my good friend, Carol suggesting I write the stories that had given her so much encouragement. We had just moved from Wisconsin to Texas and Carol had come for a visit. When she realized we were sharing our home with my son and daughter-in-law who was an English teacher at the high school, Carol thought I should take advantage of Erin’s ability to mentor me. I questioned who would want to read something I would write but Erin agreed the stories I’d begun to share with her needed to be told to others and was anxious to be of help.
With their prompting, I recalled a verse in the Bible that was my final nudge. “Be very careful never to forget what you have seen God doing for you. May HIS miracles have a deep and permanent effect upon your lives. Tell your children and grandchildren about the glorious miracles he did.” (Deuteronomy 4:9) I liked the idea of sharing with my family and thought I’d put a collection of them together in a notebook. As I sat at the computer, one story after another seemed to spill out over the keyboard and with Erin’s help; they soon became ready to be sent out to publishers. Chicken Soup for the Soul became a popular outlet as well as other faith-based books, prompting Carol to insist I have my own book published. Then my husband, David, got excited about the idea of a devotional book sharing how an ordinary woman was trusting of an extraordinary God.
Sylvia: Kudos to them! Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Karen: I want my readers to realize God is a very personal, loving, caring God who wants to be involved in every aspect of their lives.
Sylvia: Do you have any advice for other writers?
Karen: Don’t give up. My manuscript had the typical rejection letters but one editor convinced me to keep submitting when she told me how one of my stories had been meant for her and could picture the book being small enough to fit into a woman’s purse to have on hand when she had a few spare minutes and needed a word of encouragement. The overwhelming positive response to Becoming a Woman of Purpose has been beyond my expectations.
I have a flip calendar on my desk from CLASServices with inspirational quotes from speakers and writers that I read on a daily basis to encourage me. I’ve started sharing these on my blog site along with a personal observation to encourage others in their writing.
Sylvia: Great advice! What marketing techniques have you used to sell your books and which ones have been most successful?
Karen: I find that when I have an opportunity to speak to a group about the book the response is very positive. Having been trained by CLASServices, an organization founded by Florence and Marita Littauer, I also conduct workshops on understanding the Personalities and that opens another door as I share about becoming a writer. Having book signings at local gift and boutique shops has also been successful. A couple of them carry my book on consignment. I also use the internet to drive people to my website.
Sylvia: Why should we buy your book?
Karen: In my book, Becoming a Woman of Purpose, I openly share from my own life where I saw God’s hand in the everyday moments to monumental occurrences. It’s my hope the reader will see God has shown his immeasurable love and hope in every situation and know they too can trust him for whatever situation they face. Every story is matched with scripture and with a lesson learned.
Sylvia: Is there a special place that you prefer when you write?
Karen: I typically begin jotting down my thoughts on a yellow legal pad at my kitchen table, then move to the computer to let the story unfold.
Sylvia: What projects are you currently working on?
Karen: After reading and re-reading my devotional book, many people have asked if I’m writing a second book. I’ve been collecting stories of more ‘God moments’ for my next book.
Sylvia: What is your POWER WORD? Why this word?
Karen: My power word is Encouragement. As I reflect on my life, everything I have accomplished has been the result of someone’s encouragement, seeing potential I didn’t realize I had. As I’ve grown in my faith, I’ve found myself wanting to be an encourager, helping others to see what God could do in their lives through sharing what he has done in mine.
Sylvia: Great power word! Thank you so much for the inspiration that you’ve brought us through your book. Please share your social media and book contact information.
Karen: You are very welcome. Thank you as well. My contact is below.
- Website: www.karenkilby.tateauthor.com
- Facebook: www.facebook/karenkilby
- LinkedIn: http://linkedin.com/karenkilby
- Twitter: http://twitter.com/karenkilby