Mom’s Choice Awards is excited to announce another post in our interview series where we chat with the inventors, designers, publishers, and others behind some of our favorite family-friendly products.
Greetings, Mom’s Choice readers! We hope this finds you well- thanks for joining us for another installment of our interview series. We were privileged to speak with Mom’s Choice Award-winning Author M. C. Abushar, who wrote the MCA award-winning books, Tyler’s Promised Gift and Living God’s Truth: Find Peace in His Word. Keep reading to learn more about Mary (M. C.) and her journey of becoming an award-winning pianist to an award-winning author!
MCA: Hi M. C.! Thanks for taking the time to talk with us today! Before we start, I do want to note that when we started this interview you were very humble about your accomplishments and told me, “I firmly believe that the book itself is much more important to the reader than the author. A child will sit down and enjoy a Mickey Mouse cartoon without missing at all not having watched an interview with Walt Disney. An adult will read curiously about the life of an author only after having admired the author’s work, and give the information about the author a very minor importance compared to the interest given to the book and its message.” It is my hope that this interview serves all of your readers out there who are curious about the woman behind your books! And of course, my first question is “Can you share a little bit about yourself?”
M. C.: I grew up being uprooted from schools every few years depending on whether my father was affiliated with the school of Pharmacy at the American University of Beirut, or with a school of Pharmacy at a university in different cities and states here, in the United States. I once remarked to my mother that I didn’t feel I belonged anywhere. She promptly replied without hesitating: “One day you will feel that you belong everywhere!” I have always had two main interests: Art and music. My achievements in both these areas peaked at age fourteen. Not surprising when you think of Olympic gymnasts winning gold at fourteen.
That year my father was affiliated with the school of Pharmacy at the University of Washington in Seattle. My junior high school orchestra conductor assigned me the piano soloist part of the Rachmaninoff Piano Concerto #Two three months before the Christmas concert. As a break from the hours of piano practice and doing school homework, I took a piece of charcoal and drew the face of a baby. To this day, after six years of university art classes, many believe that the babyface was the best artwork I have done. The performance of the Rachmaninoff concerto led one newspaper reporter’s review to state that I had surpassed the leading pianist in the U.S. at that time. I will not divulge the name out of respect.
MCA: Thank you for sharing that artwork with us. It is exquisite! I know you didn’t mention this, but based on my research, you are quite an accomplished artist as well and I think all of your pieces are beautiful! You are a woman of many talents: artist, classical pianist, writer. As I mentioned, you’ve written a few books, a children’s book: Tyler’s Promised Gift; and an adult book: Living God’s Truth: Find Peace in His Word. For those of you that have not read these books yet, Tyler’s Promised Gift is a delightful story of how a little rabbit named “Tyler” gave away his long-awaited birthday gift in order to make a younger rabbit happy and Living God’s Truth: Find Peace in His Word is a collection of 52 of M. C.’s thoughts supported by verses from the Bible, proving the truth in each thought as taught in the Bible. I hope I explained those correctly! Can you tell us your inspiration behind writing these books?
M. C.: I began making up and telling the story of Tyler’s red car to entertain my son when he was three years old. It was not yet illustrated at that time, and my aim was to keep him interested without his getting bored. I did not want superficial entertainment just to hold his attention, but meaning that would make him feel satisfied and would help him learn something that would guide him throughout his life in making the right decision, especially in behaving towards other people. I wrote Living God’s Truth as notes to myself of thoughts I had concluded after seventeen-hour workdays as a parochial elementary school principal, followed by doctoral classes at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California.
MCA: You are a very busy and accomplished woman! What are some of the key lessons found in your books?
M. C.: The main message in both books is to obey the command given to us in the Bible to love our neighbor as ourselves. Of course, in Living God’s Truth, I also point out the value of several other commands given to us by our loving Creator.
MCA: And what kind of response from readers have you received?
M. C.: Here are expressions from some thank you notes I have received:
- A three-year-old dictated to her mother to write: Thank you for writing Tyler’s story. I asked my mother to read it four times to me. She added her signature under her mother’s writing.
- An eight-year-old wrote: Thank you for writing Tyler’s story. I am happy to learn an important lesson about how to treat others.
- A parent wrote: Thank you for your gift of Tyler’s story. My four-year-old son wants to listen to it as a bedtime story every night. It has been four weeks, and he will still want to hear it many more times.
M. C.: The “Truth” is that doing what is in the best interest of others, is truly the best possible outcome for us as well.
MCA: I like that and such a great lesson for both children and adults! What’s next for you? Any more books in the works?
M. C.: Two sequels about Tyler are now completely written, and soon their illustrations will be completed. Persons looking out for the first, entitled: Tyler’s Baby Sister can expect to find it by around the end of March, and the second, entitled Tyler’s Acting Practice, by the beginning of summer.
MCA: Well, we can’t wait to read them! Thank you so much, M. C., for sharing your time, knowledge, and talents with us! Please let us know when your new books are available!