Monday, August 22, 2011

Interview with the author of "It Doesn't End Here"

I recently interviewed Dawn Marie Roeder about her book, "It Doesn't End Here."

Here is our interview:

DONNA-MARIE: Dawn Marie, you have quite a story to tell. I have only had a chance to read parts of your book, and I have to admit that yours is a book that is almost impossible to put down. Can you please tell us what it was that prodded you to recount your heartbreaking and courageous story?

DAWN MARIE: Thank you for your kind words Donna Marie. I wrote my book in the hopes that it would be helpful to others who have had to deal with extremely painful experiences, both those involving the death of a child and those fighting against the injustices that can be brought about by corporations whose primary concern often seems to be to place profits ahead of the public good.

In addition, I have a strong desire to educate people about the particular danger I had to confront in the adverse reaction I experienced to a prescribed ADHD medication that lead to a car accident and the death of my son, Nathaniel, Joseph. I hope that in the telling of my story doctors, teachers, parents, children and others who may know of a person who are taking this class of medications, are prescribing them or taking them themselves, realize, they need to be extremely cautious and conscientious while taking them and that just because they are legal it doesn't mean they are safe.

DONNA-MARIE: How long did to take to write your book?

DAWN MARIE: I lived the book for eight years, and wrote it in about a year and a half. Five and a half of those years were spent in a law suit where I was trying to pressure the drug company to beef up warnings on their medication.

DONNA-MARIE: What was the most challenging part of your writing process?

DAWN MARIE: One of the most difficult parts of the writing process was having to ask family members to recall certain details and facts about the time shortly proceeding, the day of, and the terrible days that followed Nathaniel and my car accident. A lot of the information I include in the book I had collected from police reports, hospital records and witness testimony and putting that together was not nearly as difficult to do than it was to ask family and friends close to me and Nathaniel to recall. It would bring everything right back up from the past into the present and it's not a day you want to really even think about.

Yet I believe that in my writing our story it has helped not only my family but myself come to a deeper level of healing, forgiving and letting go. Another difficult part in the writing process was the transparency in which I tell my story. I hold no punches, heck, my entire life from birth to that present day of the civil trial was invaded and paraded in front of a 14 person jury trial. I think I may have felt what Jesus might have felt when he was stripped of all of his clothes before he was nailed to the cross. There was nothing really left to hide in the telling of my story and though I share with discretion, I tell some very difficult moments of my life quite openly.

And, so, the hardest part was not perhaps so much the writing and retelling as it was thinking what in the world would other people think about all this. I think I would have to be a pretty callous person not to have healthy shame about my some things in my life. But, as well, as there were difficult moments, there were some incredibly blessed and amazing ones too, which I purposely share throughout the work so as to not overload the reader with the intensity of the story.

DONNA-MARIE: I'm sorry for all the pain you endured, Dawn Marie. What do you hope your book may be able to accomplish?

DAWN MARIE: I have big dreams for my book. I believe with all my heart that all things are possible with God and that as it is stated in Romans 8:28 God works everything for good to those who love him and are called according to his purposes. One of my dreams is to get the message of my book out to a wider audience so that more tragedies are prevented. I also hope that my book will get into the hands of those in higher positions in both corporations and in our government to shake them up in a sense to realize that change is necessary and that the client base that are dying off as a result of irresponsible and negligent decision making are called human beings. I truly love my country and I hope to be an instrument of positive change in this great nation of ours.

DONNA-MARIE: Because of the nature of your story and all of the suffering endured, I thought it would be advantageous to let our readers know how you found strength and courage to tell the story about the loss of your son. How were you able to find that strength and courage amid the suffering, Dawn Marie?

DAWN MARIE: Through the Lord, Jesus and His Mother Mary. Thankfully, I had been a person of prayer and had been very involved in Church prior to my accident. I leaned on my faith more heavily than I'd ever had before in my life, and I surrounded myself with positive people, read positive life affirming books, and learned as much as I could about the Church and the saints, -the Holy Scripture and the Sacraments were a life line. And the Blessed Virgin Mary and of her example at the foot of the Cross, her strength truly gave me strength during my most difficult hour and continues to do so to this very day.

DONNA-MARIE: Is there anything else you'd like to tell us about your journey?

DAWN MARIE: Well, most importantly, that it has really only just begun. I look forward to taking it one day at a time and embracing the gifts this incredible journey unfolds.

DONNA-MARIE: What a great attitude--that it has only just begun--God bless you! Do you have plans to do any speaking events or book signings?

DAWN MARIE: I have a book signing at Barnes and Nobles on September 6th with two other authors from one of my writer's groups and I am currently working with April Rovero of the National Coaliton Against Prescription Drug Abuse organization to coordinate an event for the month of October which is Prescription Drug Abuse Awareness month. What we are finding is that there are a lot of high school and college aged students, and believe it or not, middle school students who are misusing the stimulant and depressant class of medications and they have no idea what they are messing with. Details of these and other events can be found on the books website at  

DONNA-MARIE: Finally, Dawn Marie, where can we find your book for purchase?

DAWN MARIE: You can purchase the book at the book's website at  , also FROM and Barnes and Nobles Bookstores. It's soon to be available on multiple e-book formats and I invite anyone interested in carrying my book to please contact me for a discount.

DONNA-MARIE: Thanks a lot for the interview, Dawn Marie. I pray that your book may help to open some eyes so that the loss of life will be prevented, as well as other harm that certain prescription drugs may cause to unsuspecting people.

May God bless you in great abundance!