1. What inspired you to write this book?  The inspiration evolved out of a
necessity: leading a prayer group in guided meditation.  The results were
remarkable hence the inspiration to make these meditations available to a
larger audience.


2. What exactly is it about and who
is it written for?
   The book is a manual that can be used by anyone
seeking guidance following a yearning for a union with a deeper sensibility yet
feeling at a loss as how to achieve that union.


3. What do you hope readers will get out of
reading your book?
  Meditating, not
just reading these works, I hope, will bring a more peaceful equilibrium, a
greater confidence, and a more hopeful approach to the daily rigors of life.


4. How did you decide on your book’s title and
cover design?
  The title came
to me out of a realization that it ought to state clearly what the book is
about; the cover design similarly ought to reflect pictorially the way — the
guided meditations as the tracks — the meditating itself as resembling a dark tunnel
of uncertainty — the bright light at the end, the resulting joy, peace, and
love in hope.


5. What advice or words of wisdom do you have
for fellow writers – other than run!?
  Write only if you believe in the journey, and you believe
you have something to say that will elevate, excite, stimulate and bring
satisfaction to yourself.  Always write for you, then others will benefit.


6. What trends in the book world do you see —
and where do you think the book publishing industry is heading?
  The speculation referencing the book
publishing world is one of hope.  How books will be manufactured will
change, is changing, away from the printed page towards electronic
reproduction.  This will certainly help the trees! 


7. Were there experiences in your
personal life or career that came in handy when writing this book?
  My personal life has always been
directed inward.  As an extrovert I have had to work hard to force myself
to pray, to meditate, to become introspective.  When I do, I have found
the rewards gratifying and humbling. As a Jesuit for 27 years, my career
has largely focused on the interior life manifesting in exterior acts of
compassion and love.  Loving others selflessly is all I really care
about.  It is the meaning and purpose of my life.  It is this
longing–because more often than not I do not succeed in this desire–that
called me to write this book.


8. How would you describe your writing style?
Which writers or books is your writing similar to?
   My writing style is
conversational.  I write as I speak.  Words ought not to obfuscate
the meaning but bring it to light.  I want my writing to be similar to
Thomas Merton, Henri J.M. Nouwen, Anton Chekov, Charles Dickens, Muriel
Spark, et.al.


9. What challenges did you overcome in the
writing of this book?
  The challenges
I tried to overcome in the writing of this book were laziness, procrastination
and seeking distractions.


10. If people can buy or read one book this
week or month, why should it be yours?
  Most people want to improve themselves in life. 
This book ought to be a tool to help them do so. It is easy to use methods
clearly delineated, the outcome ought to be one of liberation and joy.


About The Author: Dr. Francis W. Vanderwall, M.A., M.Div.,
PhL., Ph.D., is Emeritus Professor of Theology at Franciscan University as well
as a regular Instructor for the Lagniappe Studies program at Louisiana State
University as a Professor of Systematic Theology.   He earned his
M.Div. at the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley, CA, and his doctorate in
the Psychology of Religion from the Graduate Theological Union. He was in
active ministry as a Jesuit for almost 30 years and in Retreat ministry since
1973.   He is the author of seven books on spirituality and a video
series on prayer, as well as numerous articles dealing with spiritual
direction, psychology, Scripture, varieties of prayer and related topics. 

previously published work, Freedom from Fear: a way through the ways of
Jesus the Christ,
 won the Catholic Press Association award in the US
and Canada in its category in 2000 and his next book, The Liberating
stories of Jesus: Word. Context
reflections (2008) is all
about the parables, the very words Jesus used in proclaiming the imminence of
the coming of the Kingdom of God.  One of his works, The Enduring
a Christian’s attempt to explain other religions, Jesus, and
Christian practices: a textbook
-(2009) has gone into the international book
markets and is being used as a textbook in Colleges. 

He taught courses in
Theology at the Jesuit Spring Hill College and directed and lead spiritual
retreats at St. Charles College in Grand Coteau, LA.  He has also taught
for St. Joseph Seminary College, (St. Ben’s) in Covington, LA.in the Diaconate
Formation program and RSI (Religious Studies Institute) for the Baton Rouge
Diocese. He has a mandatum from the local Ordinary to teach
Theology in Catholic Colleges and Universities.  He has served, when
invited, on the accrediting agency of Universities and Colleges of the Southern
Region of the US (SACS) in Atlanta. He is married to Gloria and lives in
Louisiana. For more info, please see:  www.franvan.com 

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