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Interview with Author Jennifer Luitwieler | ‘Run With Me’

Don’t miss the awesome giveaway after the review.

Run With Me: An Accidental Runner and the Power of Poo by Jennifer Luitwieler
ISBN:978-0615524764 
Publisher: Civitas Press
Publish Date: September, 2011
Buy It: Amazon.com and civitaspress.com

We’re so excited for Jennifer Luitwieler–one of our very own Prime Parents’ Club contributors–and her upcoming book release, Run With Me: An Accidental Runner and the Power of Poo. When Prime Parents’ Club  founder and editor (and current non-runner) Jacqueline Wilson finally caught up with her, here’s what Jennifer had to say about her herself, dog poo and why her book isn’t just for runners.

Tell us about your book.

The book starts with the reason why I began a running life, though I’m not a ‘natural’ athlete by any stretch of any imagination. Because running offered me such long periods of reflection, I began to wrestle with some assumptions I had made; about my past, about my future, about myself, where I’d been and where I wanted to go. Figured out that most of my assumptions were wrong, and I needed to get rid of them, move them out while The Dog takes care of his business. I reflect on a life as a Preacher’s Kid, growing up in different churches that taught many different lessons, most of which I carried with me, for better or worse, into adulthood. I also write about the daily fight I have with chronic depression, which I’ve battled since my teen years. 

I must admit, as a non-runner, I’m kind of intimidated by the title. Would I still be interested?

You’d be interested in my book because it’s actually not really about running. It’s about a woman, a dog and a quest. I write about running because it is merely a vehicle through which I discovered that once a stay at home mom does not equal always a stay at home mom; through running, I learned a grace I did not learn through the church. Through running, I found one more weapon against depression. I stopped comparing my butt size to other women’s butt size. I started wearing, saying and doing the things I wanted to wear, say and do. It’s really about a woman letting herself be who she is.

I like that, especially the part about butt sizes. Speaking of butts, your title has “Poo” in it. How did you swing that?

Yeah. I know. My mother is going to be so proud. Poo was really the impetus for the book and therefore had to be in the title. It refers to the fact that I began running to try to train The Dog from pooping in my house. Turns out his poo could be a rather pungent metaphor for the junk I had been carrying around in my own life. 

So poo was an inspiration for running?

The Dog was an inspiration for running, but the writing of the book came as a result of positive responses from some blog posts I had written about how amazing running made me feel.

How long have you been running now?

I started running in March, 2010. Been running ever since.

How is running like writing for you?

So many ways. When I finished the book I felt the same way I felt when I finished both half marathons I ran this year. Tired, sort of numb, and sort of blank. I feel like it took more of me than I expected it to take and I’m grateful for editors who pushed me in the right ways to “go deeper.” The reality is, writing and running are mirror images. Both seem high and lofty. Both require a certain skill set. Both can be improved with time and practice. Most people don’t just sit down and bust out a “Grapes of Wrath” or an Ironman triathlon. It takes grinding, daily work. And? the reward isn’t actually finishing it. The reward is what tiny nuggets of truth are revealed during the process. Weird, right? 

Actually, it makes perfect sense. If you had to describe your book in one word, what would it be?

Authentic.

What are you working on now?

First, I am focusing on learning how to answer questions like these and preparing for a first year in a homeschooling adventure. Yes. See? I write in the book about how my kids get to go to school full time so I can write during the day. And now that’s totally different, and a different interview. Once they get started on that, I’ll outline my first novel and get cracking on that. I plan to run the Tulsa Run in October (15K) and the Route 66 Half Marathon in November. 

Sounds…busy. Anything else you would like to share before you run off again?

I guess I want people to understand that I believe every story has value, that I think we all have inner strength we don’t recognize until we need it. My mantra is “I can do hard things.” Because it’s true.


Giveaway

Ready to win a copy of Run With Me: An Accidental Runner and the Power of Poo? Jennifer has graciously agreed to provide a signed copy of her new book to one of our lucky Prime Parents’ Club readers.

Here’s all you need to do:

Leave a comment on this post why you would like to read Jennifer’s book. (That’s it!)

On September 9, 2011, we will randomly select (via random.org) one winner from all comments. The winner will be notified via email on their comment. Good luck!

Entries must be received by midnight EST, September 9, 2011, to be eligible.

Sorry, U.S. shipping addresses only. See full giveaway guidelines.


Along with being a contributor to PrimeParentsClub.com, Jacqueline Wilson is: Appalachia Advocate~Supporter of Women~Writer~Accidental Pit Bull Advocate. Founder and executive director of Monkey Do Project and co-author of 50 Shades of Frayed: What Happens When 'I Do' Becomes 'Not Tonight': A Humorous Mompilation.

24 Comments

  1. Becky

    September 9, 2011 at 9:42 pm

    Sounds TerrifiC

  2. Tami Grubbs

    September 9, 2011 at 9:21 pm

    I want to read this book because. I am a non-runner and I need to spend more time with my dog. I keep telling myself that if I would take the dog out for a jog, it would help us both. I want to “accidentally” become a runner!!! Or even just a fast paced walker would be good. I also am going to write a book someday. This book has a lot to offer! What an inspiration.

  3. michelle fabec

    September 9, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    i will read this book because deep down I want to be a runner. I would also be oddly curious about the power of poo. I also feel just from the title that the book is about a journey and sometimes it is nice to go on a trip with someone!!

  4. Marni Arnold

    September 9, 2011 at 8:57 pm

    Wow…I am thankful I caught wind of this. This would be one of those books I will probably inhale. Though I am not a runner, I can see that her story reveals a depth of grace she lean red through her journeys of running…and I deeply relate to finding grace in the midst of the most obscure areas of our lives. I actually blog on the broken areas of our lives that help reveal grace…and I just really believe I would truly connect with this story (and find more that God wants to grow in me through her story that Jennifer has to share).

    Also, being a homeschooling, stay at home mom myself who is also a writer and suffered through depression (namely PPD…but also beyond that as well) I sincerely would love to connect heart to heart through her story.

    Thank you for offering such a beautiful giveaway!

  5. Crystal Paschal

    September 9, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    I want to read this book because I hate running. But I am envious of runners who seem to find such clarity through running. Maybe Jen’s book can help me learn to love running!

  6. SC

    September 9, 2011 at 5:35 pm

    I am not a runner, but am looking forward to reading this book. The author seems to have clarity now on lots of life’s issues.

  7. Living the Balanced Life

    September 9, 2011 at 11:33 am

    Although I cannot relate to the poo part, Jen seems to be have to come through a similar situation as myself, struggling with depression and trying to find myself. I am intrigued and would love to read, regardless if I win!
    I am also an aspiring runner, well, I haven’t actually started the “running” part yet, but I am walking my first 5k tomorrow!
    Bernice

  8. jenae

    September 9, 2011 at 11:29 am

    Really enjoying the book. Very insightful. Makes me think about the “poo” in my life that can teach me some valuable life lessons. Loving the humor and wit!

  9. Dan Moyle (@danmoyle)

    September 7, 2011 at 11:19 am

    As a recovering couch potato (I still slip off the wagon from time to time) who has run a half marathon and a few 5k’s I’m interested to hear Jen’s story. We all have running stories and reasons, and I’d love to know how a writer became a runner by the power of poo! Cheers Jen!

  10. Larae Lopez

    September 6, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    I have been following you on twitter and have also been running since March 2010. I have since completed several 5K’s a 7 mile race-Bix7, 1 half marathon and even got the oppritunity to run with Ryan and Sara Hall…any runner knows who that is! Great job and I am excited about reading your book!

  11. Anja

    September 6, 2011 at 5:27 am

    I would love to read Jennifer’s book! I am a runner myself and I like to know what gets other runners going. And yes, I can provide a US shipping address ;-)

  12. Elizabeth Ray

    September 6, 2011 at 12:16 am

    I am trying to get into running, and I could REALLY use all the inspiration I can get!

  13. Kelsey

    August 30, 2011 at 2:59 pm

    Sounds like a great book with some interesting inspiration! I’d like to read it because I also think of myself as a somewhat accidental runner (or reluctant runner) but enjoy the time for thinking. I’m interested in what Jennifer has to say about letting things go.

  14. Angela Taylor

    August 30, 2011 at 2:43 pm

    I would like to read this book because of many reasons… I love jenn, I need to get my own poo together and train myself to take better care of me… And my partner loves to run!

  15. Janet Oberholtzer

    August 27, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Great interview!

    I’ve wanted to read this book, now reading this post, especially this line “It’s really about a woman letting herself be who she is.” I’m really intrigued.

    Run on!

  16. Betsy

    August 27, 2011 at 11:52 am

    This book sounds wonderful! I want to read it becuase I am a runner as well and I would love to hear how someone else used running to positively influence their life!

  17. Laine

    August 26, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    I would like to win because the book sounds like a great story.
    littlegray88 at yahoo dot com

  18. Kathy

    August 26, 2011 at 12:05 pm

    Congratulations, Jen! I have watched your journey from the outside and I can attest that your words have resonance, authenticity and grace. Thank you for writing your fabulous book.

  19. Cynthia

    August 26, 2011 at 11:37 am

    How wonderful it is that the author wrote a book about working through challenges that life lays at our feet. I am looking forward to reading this book!

  20. Ellen

    August 26, 2011 at 11:14 am

    This book sounds fantastic! I will read it whether I win a copy or not because I want to hear what this author has to say about how she evacuated the “poo” from her own life through running and how she has learned that she can “do hard things.”

  21. Jake

    August 26, 2011 at 9:47 am

    I’m really looking forward to reading this book. When I was in the midst of debilitating depression, running helped me more than anything else and gave me clarity of thought. It also was often the only time that I could find the strength to pray. Long runs became my therapy and the euphoric feeling became my medication.

  22. TJ

    August 26, 2011 at 9:34 am

    Being a pastor I have had many opportunities to counsel on how we CAN overcome adversity, and I think this book would be an excellent resource to draw from and help others see into their issues for what they are; overcome-able!

  23. Becki

    August 26, 2011 at 9:20 am

    I want to read this book because it sounds like an excellent story that many people can relate to. I’m in a place in my life where I am trying to overcome some of the same assumptions about my life and trying to figure out how to move forward. So I think this is a perfect time for me to read a story about someone else’s journey.