Lori Parks

Dropping By At Empowering Stories Is A Wonderful Author From Ontario, Canada.

Welcome to Empowering Stories, Lori! Would you please share a little bit more about you and your work?

I live in Ontario, Canada, with my husband Frank, and my 2 Golden Retrievers, Comet and Nevaeh.  I am an empty-nester, with 4 grown children, and 5 grandchildren. I knew at the age of 9, when I wrote my first poem, that my life’s purpose would be found in writing. I have won numerous awards for my song-lyric writing, and my grandchildren inspired me to try my hand at writing a children’s book. I have nurtured my other passion, a love of animals, by volunteering for my local Humane Society. Proceeds from each Power of One sold, are being donated to the animals.

We seem to have some things in common, Lori with the exceptions of grand children and numerous awards. Please tell me more about your book and what inspired you to write it?

My Inspirational Children’s Book; “The Power of One,” is a true story inspired by my grandson, Nolan. He was upset about children around the world not having enough food. He knew that he wanted to help, but was questioning whether “One” person, especially someone little like him, could really make a difference. The story follows Nolan on his journey from self-doubt, to empowerment, as he tries to find a way to help. With a little encouragement from his mother; he realizes that great things can come from “Only One,” and that he has the power to make a difference; he just needs to believe in himself.

I’m sure it was such a blessing to witness Nolan’s thoughtfulness and awareness of other people’s needs. Bless his heart! As a creative mind myself, I’m sure you’ve enjoyed putting the stories and illustrations together, but what was the most challenging part about writing The Power Of One?

The hardest part in writing it was learning to write in perfect rhyme. When writing song lyrics, the lines don’t have to end in perfect rhyme, but my editor taught me that in a children’s book, meter and perfect rhyme are very important. I also had to do several re-writes, making sure the story was written from my grandson’s point of view. It began as an inspirational poem from a mother to her child. I learned from my editor the importance of the story being written from the child’s perspective. The child needs to be the hero of the story, working through the problem and finding a solution, without a lot of adult intervention.

Wow, this is amazing! Having the perfect rhyme is very important when it comes to children’s books. Some authors especially, novice ones, bypass the editing part of publishing a book, and in my experience, it usually doesn’t end well.  I’ve asked about the hard part of writing your book; now I’d like to know what the most exciting part of the process was?

The most exciting part of the process was getting to choose my illustrator. I had so much fun pouring through artist’s thumbnails. When I came across Patrick Brooks, and his beautiful artwork, I knew he would be perfect for The Power of One. I loved his soft colors and whimsical style. As he began sending me illustrations, I noticed all the sweet little animals on the pages, and learned that Patrick is also an animal advocate. We were a perfect match, and I had so much fun working with him.

I am glad you were able to find the right illustrator. Finding someone you jibe with when it comes to creating your precious book is not easy. Patrick Brooks – and animal lover? What a perfect match?! Having Nolan as your main character inspiration must be an exciting part of your illustration process. How did you get your illustrator to capture Nolan’s personality?

The main character in the story is my grandson; Nolan. The story was born from a real conversation between Nolan and I. I sent my illustrator a picture of him. He is the little boy you will see featured in the pages. My Illustrator was kind to add some personal touches to the illustrations, like adding Nolan’s dog; Pablo, and basketballs as Nolan loves basketball. Nolan’s mother, my daughter; Lindsay is the mother you see in the story. Patrick came up with all the other characters in the book.

I can sense your happiness about having your grandson as your main character. Were there any memorable moments between you and Nolan once the book was released?

I loved writing a book that was inspired by, and written about, my grandson; Nolan. He was the first one to see it when it came back from print. Personally signing a copy to him has been one of the greatest joys of my life. He thinks it’s pretty cool that he has a book written about him.

Absolutely precious! Do you have a favorite part of the book, a dialogue, perhaps?

My favorite part of the book is at the very end of the story. It’s the “Power of One,” Pledge pages. There is a little poem to encourage children to always believe in themselves and to walk through this world with kindness. There is a personal Pledge Page for children to sign and date that reads:

I pledge to find One way each day

To help in my own special way

One small kind act is all it takes

To make this world a better place

Some great things come from “Only One’

I’ll let that One be Me!

That part is inspiring! I can see how this book can teach other children to be aware of the power of one. Is there any other message kids can learn from your book? 

I want to inspire children, at the earliest age possible, to understand their incredible personal power and ability to be, and do, anything their hearts desire through believing in themselves. I also want children to understand the beautiful difference they can make in this world through sharing simple acts of kindness. I am grateful to be inspiring children around the world. I believe that if you can be doing what you love, which for me is writing, and helping people at the same time; it’s like striking gold. I am truly blessed.

You have a wonderful heart, Lori! Your grandson and any other child who read The Power of One are blessed to have you in their lives. As a writer, do you have any advice you’d like to share?

Never give up! I knew at the age of 9, that all I ever wanted to be was a published writer. I was 59 when “The Power of One,” was released. It was a long journey, but my dream has come true. Keep taking little steps every day towards your dream. The self-publishing route can be much easier than that of traditional publishing; it very much puts you in the driver’s seat. You get to choose your own illustrator, and you can get your book out much faster than going the traditional route. You are in control of the timeline. It is also very helpful to connect with other Authors. There are so many amazing Facebook Author groups to join. I have learned so much from other authors.

Thank you so much, Lori! Is there anything else you would like to say to our readers before we sign off?

I hope to get “The Power of One,” into the hands of as many children around the world as possible. I believe that its empowering message is one that children will carry in their hearts for a lifetime, encouraging them in times of self-doubt. I believe that its timeless message makes it a book that children can keep and pass down to their children one day. I am Grateful!

I’m sure that The Power of One will inspire many children around the world! Thank you, Lori Parks for gracing us with your story.

You can purchase the hardcover version of The Power of One at loriparksauthor.com. You want an ebook version? Please visit amazon.com

Connect with Lori Parks on Facebook and Instagram @loriparksauthor or email her @
 authorloriparks@yahoo.com

If you are an author or someone who have an empowering story to share with the world, would like to be featured on Empowering Stories Blog Page or Empowering Stories with Jenn podcast, and my other social media, please head on to the contact page on this website and send me a quick email. I would love to hear your empowering stories!

Don’t forget to grab a copy of my latest book Wonder Mommy – a sweet tribute to mommies with chronic illness.

Just in time for Mother’s Day!

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