Meet Gwendolyn Mitchell Diaz
Gwendolyn’s first book is The Adventures of Mighty Mom: Here She Comes to Save the Day…If Only She Could Find the Keys. In it she offers advice for the challenges that come along with motherhood, such as chasing after toddlers, struggles with the terrible twos, and reasoning with stubborn teens. The follow up, Mighty Mom’s Secrets for Raising Super Kids, is full of practical insights into parenting with a side of humor.
Her most recent project has been a series of books for teens that deal with issues—be they spiritual, moral, or emotional. The first book, Sticking Up for What I Believe, answers spiritual questions—many of which are in the area of apologetics. Gwendolyn explains that in middle school and high school she went through a time where she really questioned her faith. Years later, when her boys were teens, they began asking the she had at their age. She explains that as she researched the answers to the questions, she wrote them down in a notebook and included the illustration she had used to make the answer more applicable. That way it would be readily available when the question came up again.
The second book, Sticking Up for What is Right, answers moral questions teens deal with in every day life. The third one, Sticking Up for Who I Am, discusses emotional questions teens have, such as jealousy, anger, and discouragement. Rather than figuring out why God allows it, Gwendolyn tackles these topics from the what to do about it angle.
When she sent Sticking Up for What I Believe to the publisher, she expected to have to reformat it, because she had written directly to her sons in the book. The publisher surprised her by deciding to use the book exactly as she had written it (with her sons’ names and all). Gwendolyn says that the second and third books took a big longer, because she had rough sketches of the answers to the questions in the books. They were not written out with as much detail as the first one was, so she had to go back and add it in.
When asked about the purpose behind her Sticking Up books, Gwendolyn says, [of Sticking Up for What I Believe] “The number one reason kids abandon the Christian faith is because they haven't been given answers to their questions. We not only need to define their faith for them, we need to help them know how to defend it.” Of the other books, she says, ‘The bottom line for Sticking Up for What Is Right is that no society has ever survived past the third generation once moral decay has set in. And I don't know where you want to place this generation of teenagers, but we're in trouble unless we get things turned around! That's why that book is so important. The third book, Sticking Up for Who I Am really helps our teenagers understand how valuable they are in God's eyes and how meaningful their lives can be. It's an "upper."’
When asked if there was anything she’d like to say to teens, Gwen replied, “God has so much in store for you if you are willing to live life the way He has asked you to live it. Inside His parameters, the boundaries that He has set up, is where you can find protection and extreme blessing.”
Gwendolyn lives in Lakeland, Florida with her husband Ed. They have 4 sons.
Information from an interview with Christianbook.com. Posted 08/03