Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Introducing the host of Everyone's Story: Elaine Stock


By Ian Acheson

I first met Elaine in early 2013 as I started out on sharing Angelguard to the world. Elaine was kind enough to invite me over to her place at “Everyone’s Story”. Elaine is like most of us here at ACW: a lover of story and writing.

Elaine is passionate about supporting authors at all stages of the journey and loves promoting “new voices” from all genres. She is a delightful host who spends a lot of time on each of her guest’s posts and actively promotes them over the course of the following week. Angelguard has found its way to a number of Elaine’s readers as a result of her diligence.

Enough of me, please give a hearty Down Under welcome to Elaine.

In a few sentences share a little about yourself 

Brooklyn born, I’ve now lived a rural lifestyle for many years in upstate New York, married to my husband, Wally. Ever since I can remember I’ve enjoyed creating stories, but it wasn’t until the passing of my mother (who enjoyed the arts but never saw her dreams fulfilled) did I become inspired to take my writing seriously in pursuit of publication. Yet, it was only after the horrific event of 9-11 did I start feeling a pull toward writing for the Christian market and only a handful or so years ago did I surrender my writing to His hands in what I pray will be to His glory.

Writing aside, I live a very humble life. Back when Wally and I were in our 20s and not having much money (things haven’t changed!) we purchased a rundown 1850s former railroad station and converted it to half home, half business (piano restoration). I work a day job in the food industry while working on my writing whenever I can. My faith and writing is pretty much the only way I manage to stay sane! 

Now tell us a little about your writing journey. What kind of stories do you write?

I went from dreaming about being the next Neil Simon (back in my childhood days) to listening to everyone tell me how “easy” it was to break into writing as a romance author. Believe me, it’s not. I joined the Romance Writers of America many years ago, and although I’m currently not a member, I have so much respect for anyone who writes romances. That said, my stories do include love-story elements as a central thread. I’d describe my fiction as contemporary stories . . . I’d say mainstream geared for the women’s fiction and suspense reader (the latter, depending on which story).

I’ve written a lot, and for years. Emphasis on the latter. It’s to the point that I’ve stopped referencing the time because I’m choosing to focus on the positive. While I have also received my share of rejections through the years I’ve tried to move on, honing my craft, and letting loose, meaning to relax during the storytelling part. I’ve also learned a good deal of editing, which I think has been the turning point for me. However, when it comes to writing skills of any kind, because of the type of person I am, I will always have to be an ongoing student since the art of polishing a story is not a natural talent. Understatement.
A view from Elaine's doorstep in autumn.


Something has been changing for me. I can feel it. It started 3 years ago when I began my blog, Everyone’s Story. Maybe it’s because of a sense of taking control/direction in what I choose and pick and realizing that I must also control my own writing rather than let laziness or bad habits rule. Last year, through a writing contest on her blog, I obtained my agent Linda S. Glaz of the Hartline Literary Agency. I am thankful she “gets” my stories and is on my side. She presently is circulating two manuscripts. And recently, I’ve had the honor of receiving the People’s Choice Award in the 2014 FamilyFiction Short Story Contest

I’m hoping the proverbial tide is changing for me, but I know I cannot achieve anything short of what He wants for me. I am trusting God. His time will be the right time.

What aspect (s) of your faith are your most passionate in exploring in your writing? 

In the two manuscripts I’ve submitted to my agent the emphasis has been that we can rely on God as our Holy Father and that He loves us unconditionally, but we must also want Him in our lives as much as He wants us in His.

Everyone's Story. Tell us how this evolved. Your passion is to share "new voices" in Christian fiction? Why is that? 

Before I began my blog I felt a push by my writing peers and the writing industry to develop a platform. I didn’t have the means or the time outside of my day job to do anything extraordinary so I stuck to what I felt was/is this outside-of-me-force was/is gearing me to: writing. I’ve always been intrigued by people and how they think. Plus, as a reader, I can never overindulge in devouring inspiration and encouragement to thrive in life. It is my hope that my blog accomplishes this. I aim to uplift the reader and writer and all in-between.

As for my guests, yes, I’ve hosted many new voices. Established authors have also guest appeared, as well as non-published writers, and a few non-Christian writers. As I’ve said, I’m interested in encouraging others through the venue of what we share in common: our appreciation of story. 

If anyone is interested in appearing on my blog they can contact me using the contact form on my blog’s main page.

And is it possible for you to share some stats with us?

I’ve started my blog in April of 2011, on my mother’s birthday (though she had passed many years prior). Because of my day job I am only able to manage and commit to hosting one weekly guest from Friday to Friday. I am blessed to be booked into next year. Later on today I will be posting my 211th blog segment and will be turning 106,000 viewers from the international community (over 130 countries). 

Compared to many other bloggers or group bloggers Everyone’s Story may be small stuff. In the beginning I was more fixated on numbers, but not so much these days. Like my writing, I’m trying my best to kick back and enjoy it. My blog is what it is. I try my best to host my guests as if they’re guests in my home, trying to give them daily free publicity on social media sites. Give something and it gives back to you? Maybe. But one thing about blogging that has become priceless to me is the beauty I’ve seen exchanged and shared between guests and viewers, such as the encouragement to step forward in this scary world.

The same view but in Winter (brrrr...)

A final question I ask everyone, who are your favourite authors?

I read both ABA and CBA authors. My faves: Jodi Picoult, Harlan Coben, and Angela Hunt.

Thanks Elaine for sharing on ACW.

Elaine’s Bio

Elaine Stock never expected that a college major in psychology and sociology would walk her through the see-saw industries of food service and the weight-loss business; co-ownership with her husband in piano restoration and 10 years in community service. All great fodder for writing fiction. 
In the spring of 2011 she shouted with joy when she placed in the Semi-finals category in the ACFW Genesis Contest for her novel WALK WITH ME. In 2013 she received the honor of My Book Therapy's Frasier Bronze Medalist award for her novel NO GOING BACK. In 2014 she was blessed with the news that her short story IN HIS OWN TIME won the People's Choice Award in the FamilyFiction Contest and will be published in a printed anthology. She hangs out often on Twitter, daily on her blog, Everyone’s Story, and occasionally FaceBook.

Where you can find Elaine:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorElaineStock



Ian Acheson is an author and strategy consultant based in Northern Sydney. Ian's first novel of speculative fiction, Angelguard, is now available in the US, UK, Canada and Australia. You can find more about Angelguard at Ian's website, on his author Facebook page and Twitter

31 comments:

  1. Thank you, Ian, and ACW, for inviting me onto your lovely blog. It's a true honor.

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  2. As one who has been on the receiving end of Elaine's kindness and encouragement, I want to publicly thank her for hosting so many authors on her blog. And Ian, I'm glad you are showcasing her Down Under.(that is capitalized, right?) I've read her stories and it won't be long before you'll be interviewing her about a debut book! Oh, and that view she has every fall! Isn't it gorgeous!

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    1. Oh, Pat, thank you so much for your kind and most encouraging words… I think you've just taken words from my key-tapping fingers (I'm not used to pausing when writing!)

      Yes, autumn is lovely here, as well as one day of snow. But, that's it! Just give me 65-70 degrees year round and I'll be content.

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    2. Pat, I love that you've ventured across to ACW to support Elaine. (you might find it a useful blog to check out from time to time). I'm looking forward to that day when we at ACW can be featuring Elaine's first novel and give a copy away to our readers.

      Elaine's autumnal photo (oops, 'fall' for North Americans) reminds me of a street in Leura in our Blue Mountains for some reason.

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    3. Ian, I'm going to have to Google that area!

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  3. Wonderful post, Elaine. Love getting to know you more and more. I agree with you, Elaine, that numbers are not as important as following where God is leading us and serving those he brings to us and us to them. So excited for all you have coming up. Hugs and blessings. :-)

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    1. Lisa, thanks for visiting. Daily, I'm discovering I'm happiest when I keep my eyes and heart on Him--everything else gets too confusing and overwhelming.

      Amazing, btw. Just noted "tomorrow's" date and morning time on your comment when it is almost 6 PM and it's still Tuesday, the 12th in upstate NY. It's a huge world out there--another reminder where to keep my attention focuses!

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    2. Hi Lisa, wonderful that you've popped over to encourage Elaine. Thank you and hope you might pop by again some time.

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  4. Hi Elaine,
    It's lovely to see you here. I love your blog, with it's well-deserved following. Like Ian, I've been grateful for the chance to share in the past on 'Everyone's Story'. (And thanks to Ian too, for these good questions.) I've enjoyed this glimpse into your life and environment. Thanks also for being straightforward in telling people that writing is not an easy road.

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    1. One glorious thing about the Internet, Paula, is it does allow for international visiting, even via cyber is fine. I'm grateful to visit. I think the true test of whether we're cut out to be professional writers is whether we can pass the test of endurance while waiting and waiting, and whether during that time if we're tempted to give up. I know I can't.

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  5. Lovely to meet you Elaine and to hear about both your life and your writing journey. Your blog sounds just wonderful! Welcome to Down Under, Elaine, and thanks for hosting, Ian :)

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    1. Thank you, Andrea, for your lovely reception. It's almost 4 AM, which means I'm off to the day job...will check back later for more replies.

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  6. Wonderful to meet you Elaine and hear more of your journey. Thanks for the introduction Ian. Great interview. I'll admit, I'm coveting the picturesque autumn and winter views from that converted railway house. Sigh... :) You had me at 1850s.

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    1. Thanks for the cheery hello, Dorothy. Life and writing are certainly full of journeys. Ha--so is winter driving!

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  7. Elaine and Ian, great interview! Elaine, welcome to ACW :) I loved hearing about how your blog is supporting and blessing other writers.

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    1. Thanks, Narelle, for the kind words. Thanks for having me here.

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  8. I always love your honesty, Elaine. And thank you Ian for getting to the heart of Elaine's blog with excellent questions!

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    1. Hi Sara, great to have you along today. Thanks for the encouragement.

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    2. Sara, I thank you for your support and friendship through the years. I thought Ian asked great questions as well.

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  9. Thanks for this interview Elaine and Ian. I had not heard of your blog before but will now check it out.

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    1. I'll look forward to seeing you there, Dale. Hope you leave a comment--my guests often offer giveaways.

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  10. Thanks everyone for giving Elaine such a warm welcome and I'd encourage you, if you haven't already, to check out Everyone's Story.

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    1. I appreciate the opportunity for this appearance and for all of your support and encouragement.

      I am sincere in my offer to host you as a guest on my blog--just drop me an email via my blog's contact form.

      May you all be blessed by His love

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  11. Wonderful interview, Elaine! I can hear your Brooklyn accent. =)

    Ian, I’m also one of the ones who have received Elaine's kindness and encouragement, including being a guest on her blog. As you know, she is a blessing! =)

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    1. Thanks for visiting, Tanya, my friend and apparent cheerleader (g). I truly appreciate your sweet words. I just try to be a nice person in a sometimes huge and scary world. And you're a blessing in my life!

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    2. Hi Tanya, thanks for popping over and encouraging Elaine. We love having new visitors.

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  12. Fabulous interview, Ian. Although I've actually had the privilege of rooming with Elaine at ACFW and being her blog guest a few times, I learned a lot! I'm clearly not inquisitive enough. And I second Pat's public thanks, Elaine. You are a fabulous hostess. And I'm praying your writing will touch many souls.

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    1. Sandra, I am so touched to see you here. I'm smiling both outwardly and inwardly. Thank you for your prayers--that means so much to me.

      And your writing career certainly come a mega impressive way since we roomed!

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    2. Yay, Sandra. Great having you visit us Down Under. And yes, what a great couple of years you've had with new releases and such. See you on ICFW in the near future. Ciao

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  13. Informative and encouraging interview, Elaine. Blessings to you in your journey with Him!

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    1. Davalyn, what a delight it is to see you here. I agree to guest here, thinking I could encourage others but everyone has been encouraging me! Thank you. Blessings to you as well.

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