“My Special Guest Author Interview Is With “Rhonda Sellers-Elkins” And Her New Book Release Of, “My Bright Shining Star”…


Hello And Welcome Friends, Readers, And New Visitors,

 

It’s my pleasure to share with you a good friend of mine who just become a “New Author”!  Please meet Author, Rhonda Sellers-Elkins and her new book release titled; “My Bright Shining Star:” A Mothers True Story Of Brilliance, Love & Suicide….

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Rhonda and I met through WordPress where we both have our blogs. I remember the first time I came across her blog, and her story about the loss of her beautiful daughter Kaitlyn. I was so inspired by her words, and how she was able to share such a painful experience with all of us through her blog posts that I became to admire her and her courage. We visited each others blogs many times and quickly became fast friends. Her daughters story really touched me, and many of her blog readers. I could relate to her feelings about the loss of her daughter,  as I had two failed attempted suicides myself from undiagnosed bipolar depression and a gambling addiction.

Her sharing taught me to see what others who are left behind from such a tragic event feel and go through when you lose a child.
I don’t know if I ever mentioned that to Rhonda before, but sharing her story of how to move on, to get through each day with keeping your head up and courage in your heart, I have learned so much from Rhonda. Now, in keeping Kaitlyn’s beautiful memory alive through her new book, I know this has been a “Special” accomplishment for Rhonda, and a “Tribute to Kaitlyn”…
Here is a little more about Rhonda and her new book!
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OUT THE AUTHOR:
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Rhonda Elkins lost her 23-year-old daughter Kaitlyn to suicide 4-11-13. The fact that Kaitlyn took her own life was horrible enough, but the fact that she never displayed signs of depression her entire life made it even harder to understand. She was a 3rd year medical student and was doing very well in school. After Kaitlyn’s death Rhonda began writing about her grief in her blog and after a time decided to write a book about her daughter to tell the story of her daughter and to bring out the fact that there can be hidden depression in highly achieving young people, a fact she did not know until her daughter’s death.

Rhonda lives in North Carolina with her husband Allyn. They have two cats, Dagny, and Kaitlyn’s cat Gatito who they adopted when Kaitlyn died. They also have another daughter, Stephanie Alford, and a son-in-law, Steve Alford, who also live in North Carolina. Rhonda is a registered nurse, but at the time of this book’s publication has not returned to work since Kaitlyn’s death. She is an advocate for suicide prevention.
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ABOUT HER  BOOK: http://www.amazon.com/My-Bright-Shining-Star-Brilliance-ebook/dp/B00JBMLXTA/ref=tmm_kin_swatchh_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=8-1&qid=1398705187
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To all that knew her, Kaitlyn Elkins was a happy, intelligent, compassionate and extremely talented young medical student with a bright future ahead. However, beyond her warm smile and string of impressive achievements lurked a dark secret-depression; something she hid so well from all those that knew and loved her. This is the story about a mother’s quest to find some answers as to how her daughter, who seemed so happy on the outside, could hide such a dark, horrible depression that ultimately lead to her suicide.
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It is a story about her wonderful daughter’s life, the lives she touched, the search for answers, the stigma of mental illness, the great love and deep bond they shared.  The book also incorporates insightful experiences from other depression sufferers, contributions from some of Kaitlyn’s friends, and views from medical professionals.  This heartrending memoir of love also serves as a caution to parents, teachers, counselors, and young people that depression can lurk among the high achieving, that they hide it expertly, and if not reported and treated, can lead to suicide.  It is a warning to everyone. 


Here is what readers are saying in All 5 Star Reviews!
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This review is from: My Bright Shining Star: A Mother’s True Story of Brilliance, Love and Suicide (Paperback)   Hope in the wake of loss, March 26, 2014 

“Though a beautiful life was cut extremely short, this story of a mother’s love uses the pain of that loss to provide both a beacon of hope to others who suffer from depression as well as provide warning signs to those who might not be familiar with depression themselves. I especially loved reading the personal stories from outsiders, most notably other medical students. The deadly nature of depression is a very real thing, and it goes unnoticed so frequently. It is my sincere hope that those who read this book will be able to see that there is always another option and that there are others who are suffering from the same affliction. It is not something that should be ashamed of, and the pain that results from the loss of a loved one is unbearable. Please, give this book a chance to touch your heart.”
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This review is from: My Bright Shining Star: A Mother’s True Story of Brilliance, Love & Suicide (Kindle Edition)Heart-rending, beautiful, and important,  March 29, 2014

“This book is a mother’s heart-rending, beautiful tribute to her daughter. I wish there was no need for this book, but given the circumstances, this story is important on both the personal and community levels. Still in the depths of grief, the author felt compelled to speak out about the stigma of mental illness. Her daughter never asked for help or gave any indication that she felt suicidal. I know that this book will help many people speak up and speak out. Kaitlyn’s brilliance will live on in her family’s love.”
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As many of you know when I have an “Author as my Guest,” I only ask them TWO questions of them. Here is my interview questions I asked of Rhonda, and her answers and thoughts…
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1.)  Since we follow each other from your beautiful blog, I know more than my readers about your life. But what made you decide to write and share your personal story in book form

 From the very day I found out about Kaitlyn’s death, I shared her death of Facebook to let her friends know who I had no other way to contact.  From that moment on, I got a great deal of responses and condolences and stories about Kaitlyn from her friends and many people I knew and did not know.  After that, in my horrible grief, I had no outlet for my grief except for crying almost nonstop and going through her things and touching them and remembering the wonderful girl who was my daughter for 23 years. I began to post on Facebook about my daughter and my horrible grief and confusion about why such an exceptional young woman could take her life.
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You see, she was brilliant, sweet, very accomplished, graduated valedictorian of her high school class, graduated summa cum laud from Campbell University in two and a half years (instead of the usual 4 years it takes) with a degree in biology. After a few months she was accepted into Wake Forest School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, NC, to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming a doctor. She was happy.  Always said and seemed to love medical school and was doing well in it, as well as her busy life.  She kept her body fit by eating healthy, exercising and running. She had run a half a full marathon only months before. She never showed signs of depression in her entire life and was a model daughter and student.
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Then on 4-11-13 she took her own life, leaving a note to us that she had been depressed all her life and hid it from us to protect us from it. She never told anyone and never sought help. So after writing on Facebook I started a blog devoted to writing about my daughter and that horrible thing that took her life, depression, by way of suicide.  Not long after that, I decided to write a book in the hopes that Kaitlyn’s story will help those people out there that are like my daughter; highly driven, intelligent, but hiding a deep depression that may take their life if not treated. So many highly achieving young people never seek help for their depression and never admit to it for a variety of reasons, the stigma of mental illness being one of them.   It’s also for parents, counselors and teachers so they will know of this often silent killer of our young people.  My book is to honor my daughter, tell of her life and suicide, and to provide some insights into how such a thing could happen. It is also a warning.
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2.)  Even though your new book has only been out a short time, has there been any one thing that has surprised you since the release?

There has not been anything that has really surprised me, but I am very pleased about the very positive reviews that it has received so far.  I was hoping so very much that it would do what I intended my book to do, and by reading the reviews it seems to be doing so.

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A Tribute To Rhonda’s Beautiful Daughter “Kaitlyn Elkins”…

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So I want to share a little of what Rhonda confided in me that many may not know about her and Kaitlyn. She wanted me to pass on to my readers and friends thoughts that are important to her and all who may suffer from Mental illness and Depression.
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“For those of you that have not yet read my book, I would like them to know that I suffer from depression myself and have for years.  My children have always been aware of my depression as I have always sought help for it.  However, Kaitlyn never shared her depression with me or anyone else and never sought help.  I do a whole chapter in my book on what I experienced with my own depression as well.
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I want to Thank my friend and New Author, “Rhonda Sellers-Elkins” for letting me introduce her to all of you here, my friends, readers, followers, and new visitors! She a woman “Brave, Beautiful, and Strong” for all she has gone through and endured the last year or so. She is an inspiration to all parents who have had the heart break of a suicide or loss of their grown child. We all know it’s unnatural to mourn the loss of a child before ourselves, but sharing her story is going to help others get through their own loss.

I’m at the same time so “HAPPY” for the release of her new book, and all the 5 Star Amazon Reviews tells me that she just may have a Best Seller on her hands! If you would like to buy a copy today, which I highly recommend, and visit here websites too, here is where you can find Rhonda Sellers-Elkins. I have her book on my GoodReads Book shelve already and can not wait to read it!
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AMAZON BOOK SITE:
http://www.amazon.com/My-Bright-Shining-Star-Brilliance-ebook/dp/B00JBMLXTA/ref=tmm_kin_swatchh_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=8-1&qid=1398705187

SHE IS ON GOODREADS:
http://www.goodreads.com/RhondaE

BOOK FACEBOOK PAGE:

https://www.facebook.com/kaitlynstar

MY BLOG:
http://welding81.wordpress.com/

OFFICIAL WEBISTE FOR THE BOOK:
http://welding81.wix.com/rhonda-elkins
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Email Contact:

welding81@intrstar.net
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And As Always, let Rhonda know Author, Cat Lyon sent you!
God Bless All and Thanks for the Visit,
Author, Catherine Townsend-Lyon
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>Thanks Rhonda! Your Guest Author Post helped me make a New Milestone here on WordPress!
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3 thoughts on ““My Special Guest Author Interview Is With “Rhonda Sellers-Elkins” And Her New Book Release Of, “My Bright Shining Star”…

  1. Reblogged this on My Bright Shining Star and commented:
    I have had the honor of being interviewed and spotlighted for my new book on my friend Author Catherine Townsend-Lyon’s blog today. Thank you so much Catherine. You are a great friend and special lady.

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  2. Catherine, I am SO honored that you have allowed me to be your special guest author on your site!! You have no idea how honored. I thank you so much for your friendship almost from the beginning of this rocky journey, you have been a priceless friend. Thank you so much for featuring my book. I would like my book to reach far and wide so that it can help others and you are helping me do that. Thank you so much my wonderful friend. Words are not enough to express how I feel.

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