Kathy Bowes, M.S.W. has worked in the social work industry for nearly 30 years and, in that time, has gained a thorough understanding of how life’s complexities can impact children. Passionate about her message that we are all beautiful souls, Kathy wrote her first children’s book, Kathryn and PureLove. It is my pleasure to announce that today, it is officially published.
You can find our interview below.
MIRIAM LAUNDRY: Congratulations, Kathy! It’s so special to publish your first children’s book. Can you tell us a bit about how and when you started writing it?
KATHY BOWES: A few years ago, I started jotting down ideas for a children’s book series, about a healthy relationship between God and a soul. I noticed many people were disheartened with religion and no longer taking their children to church, and I wondered if my books could be one way to help parents or grandparents begin a conversation with their children or grandchildren about God or a Higher Power.
On New Year’s Day, every year, I go to the beach and spend time journaling with GodPureLove, my understanding of God. I thank GodPureLove for everything I am grateful for from the past year and note my hopes and dreams for the year ahead. On January 1, 2021, I noted my intention to write my first book within the year. Then in February, I saw a post about Miriam’s class on Facebook. It felt like a Godsend, and I have been working with her and her team since then, to make this dream a reality.
ML: It’s been such a pleasure working with you, Kathy. After you saw that post on Facebook, what made you decide to take the plunge and register for Publishing Mastermind?
KB: Feeling safe is important to me and you and your team provide a very positive and caring place to learn and grow. I knew there was a higher chance I would get this book out if I worked with you — and here we are.
ML: Thank you for the kind words! So, what inspired you to become an author in particular?
KB: I think it’s just who I am. I write all the time. I have been journaling since I was 10 or 11, and around that time, I started writing a book, Believe Me, Life Isn’t Easy. I have been a contributing author in a couple of books as well — and wrote a year-long program to help people break free of the pattern of overeating and active food addiction.
ML: In your author bio, you mention your career in the social work industry and that the experience inspired you to write this book. Did any of your own personal experiences as a child motivate you as well?
KB: Following my tough childhood, I struggled with some depression and an eating disorder in high school and beyond. I don’t think I would be here if I hadn’t felt close to God during that time.
I attained my Master of Social Work and worked on and off, in this field, for almost 30 years. I understand how painful and difficult life can be for children.
I still have that heart’s desire to let children know how loved they are. I hope, through my books, they will see an example of a healthy, loving, mutual, and playful relationship between a soul and their Higher Power, and maybe create something similar for themselves, so they never feel alone.
Also, I felt inspired to start touching on some other beliefs I’ve come to in life that have helped me. I was reading books about near death experiences by age ten. That’s where the life review movie idea comes from. Realizing at a young age that I would watch a review of my life after I died, and see how I contributed, or helped, or hurt others, inspired me to make better choices for the most part.
ML: Thank you for sharing. Did you face any challenges as you worked on Kathryn and PureLove?
KB: I understand anything related to God or spirituality is very personal. As I was writing this book, I was hoping it would come across in a way so children of all religious or nonreligious backgrounds can relate. My understanding of God is: above and beyond any religion, loves all of us unconditionally, is ever-present, and delights in connecting with us. I hope young readers trust what feels true to them and feel inspired to create a personal connection with their understanding of God or a Higher Power. This is just one example and way of experiencing God or a Higher Power. It’s not the only way. I see us all as beautiful souls and trust we each can find a way that resonates for us.
ML: You’ve done an excellent job navigating that topic. I hope children will find comfort in Kathryn's story. As you published, did you experience any memorable moments?
KB: My husband, Werner, is a social worker as well. He has always seen me as gifted in the field of social work, but I have felt called to write since before I met him. As I was writing the book, I recorded it in my memos on my phone to listen to and make adjustments. One day I asked him if he wanted to listen to it and he did. He really enjoyed it and wanted it to go on longer. I reassured him that this is the first of a series, but it felt like a meaningful turning point for me.
It was also fun to share this journey with my son, David, and my stepdad, who I call Dad.
David is a singer/songwriter, so he is used to receiving feedback on his songs. He really inspired me during the editing process. He helped me see it in a positive light, even if I was feeling vulnerable around it.
My dad was a huge support as well, reading the different versions and cheering me on. He loves to read and is an artist, so he shared how important it was to choose an illustrator who would complement my writing. Simon Mendez absolutely accomplished this.
ML: It’s always so wonderful to have a community supporting you as you work on a children’s book. Did you find the Publishing Mastermind community valuable during that time?
KB: Being a part of Publishing Mastermind was valuable in a multitude of ways. It helped me stay on track. I am also my son’s manager and am used to putting him first, but I had to keep up with my commitments each month. Miriam was checking in to see if I was doing what needed to be done and encouraging me on. Also seeing my classmates meeting all their milestones inspired me tremendously.
On a deeper level, it feels like it is changing the trajectory of my life. I’m feeling more aligned with my life’s purpose again and forever grateful to GodPureLove, my loved ones, Miriam, her team, and my classmates.
ML: Yes, I’ve always said that you never know where publishing your first children’s book might take you. To any writers contemplating whether they would publish, what advice would you give?
KB: Take Miriam’s class! Truly. I could never have figured all of this out on my own. It helped me so much to take it step by step with her team and my classmates. I’m so grateful.
ML: Thank you, Kathy. I’m so glad the program helped you reach your goals. Before we sign off, what do you hope parents and children take away from this book?
KB: I hope every person who reads this book feels loved by God, or a Higher Power, and never alone. I hope they see this one example of what a healthy relationship with God or a Higher Power can look like and feel inspired to create their own unique and personal connection with their understanding of God, a Higher Power, or The Universe.
ML: That is beautiful, Kathy. Thank you for taking the time to chat with me about Kathryn and PureLove. I’ll be cheering you on!
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Kathy Bowes, M.S.W.
Kathy Bowes, M.S.W. studied psychology, religion, and education in college and attained her Master of Social Work from The University of Chicago.
A born writer, Kathy started her first book Believe Me, Life Isn’t Easy when she was 11 years old. More recently she created a year-long program to help people move beyond overeating, titled Living Happy Joyous and Free on The Road Less Traveled with Food.
She is also a contributing author for the best-selling books The Gratitude Book Project: Celebrating Moms and Motherhood, and The Gratitude Book Project: Celebrating 365 Days of Gratitude by her good friend, Donna Kozik.
Kathy hopes children reading this book feel inspired to reach out to their Higher Power, so they can have someone to talk to, feel loved by, and remember they are never alone.