Welcome to Barefoot Dokusha! Here you will find reviews of the books that I have been reading - a variety of genres, but mostly YA, places I have been, and deals that can be found.

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Saturday, June 16, 2012

Author Interview and Giveaway: Embracing You, Embracing Me by Michelle Bellon

PicturePlease join us in welcoming Michelle Bellon, the author of Embracing You, Embracing Me.
Embracing You, Embracing Me hit the shelves last month (May 7th). She is also the author of His Salvation and The Complexity of a Solider. Two lucky winners will receive a copy of Embracing You, Embracing Me. Thanks to Mrs. Bellon one copy will be signed hardcopy! The other will be a Kindle edition.

Michelle Bellon was born in Boise, Idaho. She currently lives in Olympia, Washington with her husband and four children. She earned her Associates degree in Nursing and fills her free time with her love for writing. She has published three novels.

About this author


 APAAT: It was great reading a book set in the 90s! What made you decide on this time?

Michelle: I wrote this novel set in the 90’s because a good portion of it is actually based on my own experiences, and I just happened to be a teen during the 90’s. I’m glad that I did, because a lot of readers are responding very enthusiastically to that aspect of the book. I think it brings back a lot of nostalgic memories. I mean- big hair, whatever! skinny jeans, The Cure, and Friends; what’s not to love?In fact, after my publisher read it, he suggested that I actually throw in a few more 90’s pop culture references to really make it stand out as a period piece. That was a great idea.

APAAT: I loved the 90s. Although I was a teen in the very late 90s and early 2000. I can remember listening to New Kids on the Block, and MC Hammer singing "U Can't Touch This". I still enjoy Bush, Oasis, Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Metallica...I could go on and on! When I would read something from the 90s I would think "Ooooh, yeah! I remember!"

What was the single most challenging thing writing in the past? At times I would catch myself thinking "Cell phone? Oh yeah, not happening!"

Michelle: It’s fun when you start listing all of that old music. The nineties had so much to offer in the music industry. I still listen to a lot of that music today.I didn’t find it that difficult to write in the past because even though that was nearly twenty years ago for me, it seems like just yesterday. I look at my seventeen year old daughter and think, “How can it be that she is already at that same point in her life?” There is something about that time in one’s life where the emotions are so much more crisp and vivid. You never lose that and even years later just the smell or sight of something can trigger those old emotions and there they are, alive and as real as ever. It’s quite a gift.
Although, it is funny you mention the cell phone thing because I even remember at one point almost writing that in and then realized, “wait a second, those things weren’t even around yet.” Except the earliest models, remember those bad boys, the ones that were so huge you had to carry them around in a bag? I don’t think I ever even got on a computer until the late 90’s when I was maybe twenty and my husband made me get an email account. 
It’s funny and amazing at the same time to think of how fast so many things have changed. We truly live in a fast-paced world.

APAAT: Was Embracing You, Embracing Me emotional to write? I bawled like a baby reading it! After I finished reading this book I made the comment to my mom that I am more emotional when it comes to books and movies than to real life!

Michelle: As I said before, though I changed names and certain details of how some things occurred to make it fit under the genre of fiction, this particular story is based on many of my own personal experiences, so yes it was very emotional to write. I remember bawling my eyes out as I wrote the scene where Roshell gets “the phone call.” At one point I had to step away from the laptop and walk away just to take a few breaths.  The fact that readers are responding emotionally to it as well, has meant a great deal to me. The most common feedback I’ve received so far is how much of an emotional experience it was to read as they transitioned from funny, to humility, to fear, to heartache and pain, all the while following along with this girl who is learning how to grow up and how to love, but most importantly how to accept love. I’m so glad that people are connecting with the book.

APAAT: What is something, if anything, that you have learned from writing Embracing You, Embracing Me?

Michelle: I learned so much. Even though it is my third novel to be published, it was the first book that I wrote. And to tell you the truth, it was a complete disaster at first. No really, it was a mess. Thankfully my publisher, Matt and Michelle Stephens, saw a diamond in the rough and worked with me, along with Madeleine, our editor, to take this novel to its full potential. I’m so very grateful to them for taking on this project. 
Since then, I’ve worked very hard to hone the craft. I joined a writer’s association, a writer’s critique group, and I write, write, write, to learn the craft as best as I can. There is so much to learn and I don’t want to just write, I want to write well. I also learned that I have all of this creativity inside of me. I never thought of myself as creative before, so I’m actually shocked every time I’m able to sit down and create an entire story. 

APAAT: What do you like to do when you aren't writing?

Michelle: Above everything else, I’m a stay-at-home-mom. I have four children who I adore and they keep me quite busy between basic needs, extra-curricular activities like sports and dance classes, and squeezing in fun time. I’d say other than writing, my favorite thing to do is to take little trips with my husband and kids and seek out new experiences. We just made a trip up to Seattle for the day to see the King Tut exhibit that has been traveling the world. Seeing those ancient relics was amazing and my children loved it. We like to learn, especially about anything historical.

APAAT: Any books anticipated for a 2013 release?

Michelle: I don’t have anything signed with a publisher at the moment. BUT, I do have a few finished manuscripts that I’ve been holding on to while I try to get my career off the ground with my current novels. It’s so much work to go through the publishing phase and then to promote and market the book and yourself. It’s much more complicated than I would have ever imagined. I’ve been on a huge learning curve. I will release more books and I will continue to write. I love it.  

You can find Michellon Bellon on her website and facebook page.

Embracing You, Embracing MeHis SalvationThe Complexity Of A Soldier


Up for grabs is a signed hardcopy (Thanks to Mrs. Bellon!!) and a Kindle copy. The contest will run until June 30th at midnight eastern time.

1 comment:

  1. Winner of the signed copy of Embracing You, Embracing Me by Michelle Bellon: Congrats to Stephanie T!

    Winner of the Kindle copy of Embracing You, Embracing Me by Michelle Bellon: Congrats to Chelsea C!

    Please e-mail me your information within 24 hours or new winners will be choosen. JeniNicole83@gmail.com