Best-selling author Pat G’Orge-Walker has done it again with her latest novel, DON’T BLAME THE DEVIL (Dafina – September 2010; $15). Appearances mean everything to sixty-year-old ex-fashion model and jazz singer Delilah Dupree Jewel. But just as she finally receives God into her life, she’s tested when her daughter-in-law dies. Long estranged from her son Jesse and granddaughter Tamara, Delilah steps in to help them put the pieces back together. But Lord knows she’ll have to dig hard to find her maternal instincts.
But Delilah soon discovers Jesse wants nothing to do with her. And Tamara, who’s following in her jazz footsteps, has her own ideas about making it to stardom—and they have more to do with using her talents on the “singing couch” than about letting her voice speak for itself. Just when Delilah thinks she’s had enough, she’s reunited with her old flame Thurgood Pillar—an ex-convict who’s traded in his gangster ways for a Bible. All Delilah knows is that she’d better hold on to her faith, ’cause she needs God now more than ever.
Pat G’Orge-Walker is the Essence® bestselling author of Somebody’s Sinning in My Bed; Somewhat Saved; Cruisin’ on Desperation; Mother Eternal Ann Everlastin’s Dead; Sister Betty, God’s Calling You, Again!; and contributed a short story to the anthology Proverbs for the People. Growing up a preacher’s kid gave G’Orge-Walker a quirky perspective on the church community and inspired her to create a one-woman comedy show centering on Sister Betty, an elderly super saint whose unchristian-like behavior blocks her blessings. With the success of the Sister Betty comedy show, G’Orge-Walker turned her humor and imagination to writing. She resides in Long Island, New York, with husband Rob. Visit her online on Facebook – HERE! or her websites: HERE! and HERE! You can also follow her on Twitter, HERE!
I spoke with Pat G’Orge Walker about her latest novel, and the craft of writing.
TD: What prompted you to write, Don’t Blame The Devil?
PAT: For many years I’ve wanted to explore several circumstances surrounding the lives of my parents. I touched on it a little when I wrote Somewhat Saved. I was able to explore a father/daughter relationship based upon me and my fathers’. In Don’t Blame the Devil I had the chance to explore a fictionalized account of mother/child/abandonment and ultimately what happens when one tries to lead God. I wanted to show that God does not change His mind…no matter how crazy we get.
TD: The main character, Delilah Dupree Jewel, is struggling to reconcile with her family after she herself has reconnected with her spirituality. What lessons can one learn in their own spiritual walk, or reconnecting with family after becoming renewed and reborn in their religion?
PAT: Dealing with family under any circumstance is both challenging and rewarding. Bringing a religious or spiritual element to those who think they often know you better than you know yourself can fill volumes. However, with this particular story, I wanted to show that actions have consequences and that sometimes those actions lead to generational consequences. I also wanted folk to understand that what God has planned for you is for you. It’s never dependent upon what others think or do. The dreams you have yet to achieve are just as real as those you have; one must continue to stay the course and stay in your own lane.
TD: In writing, Don’t Blame The Devil, did you experience any epiphanies or ‘Ah-ha’ moments that connected with your own life?
PAT: Since this story is based in fact there were several moments. One in particular was the conversation that Jessie had with his young daughter Tamara. Jessie was conflicted in how he both hated and loved/admired his mother. How could he hate when he claimed Christianity? How could he love/admire a woman who abandoned him at the age of two to selfishly pursue a career? I won’t give away the answer but it put a lot of pieces of my own puzzle into place.
TD: What do you want readers to take away from the novel?
PAT: I would hope readers take away from this story that we all have different paths; some will sail through, others will drift, a few will go through fire and many will ride the waves of doubt; yet with all we go through, just like lint…those experiences stick and are meant to construct whatever it is that God needs from us. However, the glue is obedience/faith/love and worship. I pray the reader gets that. I also want the readers to learn that seniors don’t stop living or loving when the gray appears or the sun begins to set.
TD: What is next for you?
PAT: There’s quite a few things happening and many that I am contemplating. This year I celebrated thirty-five years of Sister Betty and it’s been an awesome journey of which I’m still traveling.
Pat G’Orge-Walker has agreed to give-away three copies of her books – Don’t Blame The Devil; Somewhat Saved; and Sister Betty! God’s Calling You Again
The first three persons to email the answer to the following question will win a copy of one of the books.
What legendary ’60s singing group was Pat G’Orge-Walker once a part of?
Please email your answers to: email@example.com