Interview with Devorah Kalani

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote, and the impact it had on you?
In third grade a teacher took book covers from some books and passed the covers to all us kids. The one I got was "100 dresses". We were then to write a story using our book cover. And we were to color pictures for the inside. Well to the best that my chubby little 3rd grad fingers could, I drew pretty dresses and wrote a story about a little girl who had all these wonderful dresses that she never had to wear a dress twice. I did not really have a sense of time, but 100 dresses sure seemed like a lot. The teacher then bound the little books up and we each had a "book" that we had drawn and written. I brought it home to show my mom and she had a neighbor friend over. My mom liked it, but the neighbor lady said I was a "plagiarizer", that I stole other people's ideas. I tried to explain that it was my idea that I made up the story-that it was my story. She wouldn't stop, and it has taken me years to finally allow myself to write.
How do you approach cover design?
Although I have a Bachelor of Fine Arts, I prefer to hire a professional. Brian Beardsley makes movie posters and box covers and I trust him and like his work.
What are your five favorite books, and why?
I am a Libra, we are known for loving books. If you had any idea how many books I have, you would be amazed. I have one room floor to ceiling books and an 18 foot bookcase in my bedroom. Pick five? I love them all.
What do you read for pleasure?
Anything and everything. The one style I do not care for is the romance books. They just seem adolescent and silly to me. There is always a Tanakh (Old Testament) on my night stand. Sometimes I just read the dictionary- at least that way I will get smarter.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I prefer hardcopies. I like the feel of paper and something of substance in my hands. I especially like old books and the different weights of paper that was used.
Describe your desk
I have two desks- the one I write at is glass & metal. I feng shui-ed my desk which means it is much cleaner. Lower left is a couple of reference books, upper left is a two foot crystal, then my book is about mid top of desk, lower right is a letter opener and paperweight that Mrs Z gave me, when she ran the Malaysian railroads, I keep a glass of water in the middle of my desk, my computer is angled toward the left side. The other desk I use is wood and I paint at that desk.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I am a Navy brat so we moved around while I was growing up. Us Military brats are known to be able to make friends easily. Unfortunately, I have had to leave so many friends whenever we moved.
What's the story behind your latest book?
That would be on the back cover. Basically, it is a question that everyone should ask themselves continuously. What will you say when God asks you why you did this? or that? If it is something that you will be able to provide a good reason for doing, then you should probably do it.

Also, if you read the book you will see all the coincidences-far too many to actually be coincidence. In my opinion it was the hand of G-d guiding me, or rather pushing me.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
I am unknown, but I felt this was an important story to tell. I absolutely refuse to waste my time trying to get permission from someone else to be able to publish. Instead I felt it was better to spend my time promoting what I had written. Every military brat knows if you have to ask permission, it will always be no; and you can seek permission or beg forgiveness. So too, finished is better than perfect.
Published 2016-03-08.
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