RAWA: When did you first discover that you were a writer?
PY: I always knew that I wanted to become a writer. I never wanted to be
|Author Penelope Yorke|
It was not later into my early 20s that I realized that I wanted to write spiritual books.
RAWA: What is your favorite part of writing?
PY: My favorite part of writing is the process of creating. I am always amazed when you first start off looking at a blank screen, and then at the end you have this end product. In awe I always ask: Where did this come from? I love to create.
RAWA:What do you think is the most challenging aspect of writing?
PY: The most challenging part of writing is definitely the editing process. It is so easy to miss something, and is grueling. Hiring a professional editor is a must.
RAWA: Tell us about your latest release.
PY: Compass: The Journey of Soul from Egypt to the Promised Land is very personal to me. The book chronologies my own spiritual journey, with me trying to get to my own Promised Land. In the area of work that is to become a best selling spiritual author.
The early stages of writing Compass for me came at a time when I was in what I call the Wilderness stage of spiritual development. I was not working, and I was in a lot of emotional pain, and lost and confused as to where my life was headed.
I was doing a lot of spiritual things to help uplift me during these challenging times. So I started as a daily exercise, to type up the inspiration I received each day after meditating. I never realized that seven years later it would be the same material found in the book Compass.
I had one basic question that I posed to God: Why do human beings have to suffer so much? I hated the thought of random, purposeless suffering. What I got back from God was a blueprint of the stages of spiritual development that each soul must go through in order to evolve spiritually. This changed everything for me. If you could follow the blueprint then that meant at some point you could enter the Promised Land where suffering could hopefully end.
I realized that I was on the journey of the soul for some time. I just did not realize it. My hope with Compass is to share some of my journey so that others can relate and connect to it on some level. Also, to outline in detail the stages of spiritual development of the soul, and what is required to get through each subsequent level of growth. My prayer is that everyone who reads Compass reaches their own Promised Land in all life areas.
RAWA: How did you come up with the title of your book?
PY: At first it was called the Journey of the Soul. Then I heard another book called that so I changed it to Compass. Then there was a famous book called Compass that came out a few years ago, so I finally came up with: Compass: The Journey of the Soul from Egypt to the Promised Land.
RAWA: Who are some of your favorite authors?
PY: I have so many favorite spiritual authors. So I would discuss the ones that had the most impact on me. Neale Donald Walsch, the author of the Conversations with God series of books impacted me the most. I read the first book in the series when I was in the Wilderness stage of spiritual development and it changed my life. I learned that God could and would speak to us, and I thought if he could speak to Neale why not to me. My own conversations with God began. The author generously answered a letter that I wrote to him after reading the first of his amazing books, and offered me profound advice.
The first spiritual book I ever read was in my early 20s. It was “A Return to Love” by Marianne Williamson. I saw her on “Oprah” and later went to see her speak at a church in Washington, D.C., where I purchased, “A Course in Miracles” which her book was based upon. I did not read ACIM until several years later. This book taught me how to forgive, and the necessity to return to a place of unconditional love after every perceived emotional injury.
But I would have to say my favorite author is Paulo Coelho. I know everybody loves his book “The Alchemist”. However, my favorite book by him is “By the River Piedra I Sat Down and Wept”. I never knew that fiction could combine spiritual principles so effectively. His writings are so poetic and moving, and yet so spiritual at the same time. He is a master craftsman.
RAWA: What do you think has influenced your writing style the most?
PY: Actually I write the same way that I wrote since I was in college. I would say an affirmation before I wrote anything. I always used the same one: “I empty myself of myself and ask the Holy Spirit to connect me to the I Am”. Then the words would just flow from a source within me effortlessly.
RAWA: As a writer what is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?
PY: I am most proud of not giving up. As an author having your book rejected eats away at your soul, although I always received pleasant rejection letters. Deciding to self-publish Compass is my way of refusing to give up.
RAWA: How did you get published?
PY: I attended numerous writing workshops that offered contracts to get published. They taught me a lot, but with thousands of people all vying to get the contract, it was a long shot. I came close a few times of getting published through traditional means. I received some very personable and warm rejection letters. But it did not hurt any less.
Recently, I decided that I have to self publish my book in order to get it out in the mainstream. The rest I would leave up to God. I started my own self publishing imprint called PCS Resources to publish Compass, and my subsequent books. PCS stands for At Precise Center is Sight.
RAWA: Do you have any advice for writers looking to get published?
PY: My advice to writers would be to have a clear vision for your product. Writing the book is only the beginning. You have to wear many hats other than just author in order to get published.