Thursday, July 7, 2011

Author Interview: Jeff L. Dawson "Love's True Second Chance"

Today author Jeff Dawson is stopping by to share his novel “Love’s True Second Chance” with us.
From his novel’s description:
July 20th, 2009 7:00am I held her hand and kissed her face with the arrival of a sunny beautiful morning, hoping for a miracle. The shift change for nurses and doctors was in full swing. Staff checking in, charts being reviewed, doctors and nurses exchanging information; vital signs being verified. Debbie’s breathing is very labored as it had been for the last twenty four hours. I never knew if each breath would be her last. The cancer was running its course through her beautiful body at a terrible pace. An aide came in to change the sheets and clean her up. She asked if I would like her to wash Debbie's hair. I pondered the thought for a minute looking at the love of my live and replied in a hushed, choked tone, “She would like that. How long will it take you to change her bed and wash her hair?” She said about fifteen minutes. I stepped out of the room and called her friend Cathey to get an estimated time of arrival. She assured me she would be at the hospital within thirty minutes.

Debbie was in good hands with the aide. I decided to get a little air, purchase a coke and have a cigarette. I went to the store with one thought running through my mind, Is there anything else I can do for her? Had I done everything I could for the “love of my life”? Would God sit by her side and let her live out her life on earth or whisper in her ear, take her hand, and guide her to heaven? I had no control over what was happening to her.

Have you ever loved someone with all of your heart and soul? Have you lost a dear loved one to breast cancer? I have. I sought out my high school love for twenty-five years. We reunited in Jan of 2009 and were allowed to spend the most amazing seven months together.

Get a copy today to find out how deep one can truly love.
Rebecca: What was your inspiration for this particular book?
Jeff: Sharing a story about having a second chance at true love. I wasn't inspired to say, but more wanting to let others know that love is worth a second chance even if it might not have a happy ending.
Rebecca: A reader walks down the aisle of an imaginary book store and is about to pass up on reading the blurb on the book. What is the one thing that sets your book apart from the other hundreds of books on that aisle?
The broken heart on a bed of yellow roses. The cover will have the reader wondering why the heart is laying and surrounded by the roses. What caused the heart to be so thoroughly broken?
Rebecca: What efforts have you made to guarantee the quality of your book on the same level a reader might expect of a traditionally published book?
Jeff: I took the pains to have other readers review and read the manuscript. The provided insight I couldn't see. I had two editors work on the grammar and spelling issues that word didn't identify. I listened to all creative criticisms and made the appropriate changes.
Rebecca: You’re walking by a book club meeting that cannot agree on their next book. They decide to stop a random stranger (you) and ask for a book recommendation. Describe your book for us as if you are not the author.
Jeff: Hello ladies. How many here had a true love in high school or college that didn't end exactly as you planned? Have you ever wondered what would happen if given a second chance to correct the mistakes of the past? Would you give that person one more chance and how would you react when you find out your love has a potentially fatal disease? Would you take a second chance on love? Ladies, this book touches on all of those issues. The author pulls no punches. You will find yourself taking the author's side and then moving to her side when he shows how stupid males can be and then you will be pulling for both of them when she is re-diagnosed again. This is not a happily ever after book, but rather one that will have you thinking that love is worth a second chance even if the outcome is not the one we hope for.
Rebecca: Are there any hidden life lessons or underlying themes you hope the reader picks up while enjoying your work?
Jeff: Yes, Love is worth a second chance. Family can never be replaced and if that feeling becomes distant and somewhat forgotten, then we need to find it again.
Rebecca: Do you have a website/book trailer for your book?
Jeff: Yes. Facebook site
Rebecca: I took a look at your site, and I couldn’t help notice that on the 20th of this month it will be two years since Debbie’s passing. In my own life, I try to remember the birthdays of those I’ve lost rather than the day their spirit moved on. Is there anything special traditions you have to honor Debbie on any day?
 Jeff: I try and make it to Tulsa to place a yellow rose on her final resting place and talk to her and let her know how much she taught me in our short seven months. She and her girls taught me how to be part of a family again and that we work to live and not vice-versa. If I don't make it to Tulsa I play the video her girls and I made then go and visit the cemetery in Seagoville, Tx. where she, Dad and Larry last talked to me ( Knowing I did everything I could for her was a wonderful feeling. Her words that day "You did everything you were supposed to do" eased all of the pain I was experiencing.
Rebecca: For any else out there who has recently or is facing the impending loss of someone they love, is there anything you would like to say to them?
Jeff:  It is worth it. I always wondered how I would have felt if I had heard of her passing without seeing again. I don't think I would have ever forgiven myself for the way I treated her in college (Chapter 4: Break-up). Yes, I wish she was still here but being able to help take care of she and her daughters for such a short time was well worth it. I also was allowed to spend the last seven months with my father's day (RIP 2005). I was allowed to also take care of him as the clock wound down. Like Debbie, I wouldn't trade those seven months for anything. Knowing we are where we need to be when it counts the most, is a true honor. We aren't saying goodbye to them as much as forging their memories and remembering all of the great times we spent together. Yes, the pain is unbearable when they pass, but knowing we were able to be with them can never be replaced.   
Rebecca: Who designed your cover art?
Jeff: I hired a woman to perform the graphics. I gave her all of the information and she did a very nice job. Debbie loved yellow roses. The heart? That would be mine.
Rebecca: What aspect of your book do you feel your cover art relates to?
Jeff: How my heart and soul reacted when the Dr. turned and said, "I'm very sorry. She's gone."
Rebecca: What is the one question no one has ever asked you during an interview that you would like to be asked? (This question may be borrowed in the future, so please keep that in mind before answering).
Jeff: Knowing and going through what you have in the last two years, would you do it again or would you take the safe route and be satisfied with seeing her one more time and saying goodbye without pursing a relationship?
Rebecca: In seeing your devotion to your love through your novel, I’d say that you’d go full speed ahead without any hesitations even with knowing the outcome. Living life without experiencing the type of love the two of you shared, one that transcends years passed by and meeting once more, would be a life without a very fulfilling and coveted privilege. When there are so many who will never experience love on such a magnificent scale, to bypass it because of the inevitable-one will have to exist after the other passes, even if under tragic circumstances, almost seems like taking it for granted.
Rebecca: What do you think Debbie would say about the novel?
Jeff: What would Debbie think? That is a tough one. She was very private person when we dated in high school and even more so in her later years. Her life hadn't turned out the way she had hoped when it came to personal relationships. I believe I was able to awaken the little girl who had forgotten how to have fun and enjoy the little things in life. Taking walks, holding hands, watching tv, washing dishes (chapter 12: Seven Months of Joy), or driving around town with her girls listening to the radio or a chosen CD; God I miss her. I think she would be very skeptical, but the book also helped her girls in the healing process. They were able to see just how much fun she was a teenager. The oldest Jessica made the comment one day, “We only knew her as Mom the Pharmacist. You showed us how much fun she really was as a teenager. We never knew." I believe she would be pleased with it since it helped her beloved girls.
Rebecca: Thank you for stopping by and sharing your novel with us Jeff!
Jeff: Becky, it was my pleasure and remember, Love is Worth a Second Chance.
You can purchase a copy of his novel by following this link Love's Second Chance on


  1. Becky,

    I’ve had the privilege to be thread buddies with Jeff for the last few months. He is truly an inspirational person. While his books may be painful, they are from his heart and should not be passed by.

    Thank you for sharing his work with others.


  2. Hello Sandy,

    It was my pleasure having Jeff stop by. Anyone who has the courage to share their pain with others for their own healing purposes, or to help heal others around them (and those they have never met) with their words can be featured on here any day of the week!

  3. Good interview...sounds like a heartbreaking story, but also a story of hope, and triumph of the human strong love can be. How beautiful that it was so cathartic for Debbie's children :-)

  4. Teresa,Sorry I didn't respond earlier. Issues with Google and another sad evernt. It was very healing for her daughters. I stay in touch with them regularly. I saw her parents this weekend (after my mom's funeral RIP 7-4-2011 age 90) and they agreed that not only did their daughter her girls need me, I also needed them. Too bad it didn't last longer.