- World Traveler, Author, Teacher
- Conference and Workshop Leader in America, Asia, South America, and Africa.
- Listed in Who’s Who: America, The West, Women, Teachers
Travels from Honolulu, HI and Harrisonburg, VA
Keynote Fee: Contact Forte Speakers
Elaine’s speaking style is folksy. Fueled by her vast knowledge of children and how they adjust (or don’t) to travel, changing schools, mild learning disabilities, making friends in new places, and surviving difficult living circumstances, she uses stories from her own experiences in traveling with her husband and four children. Audiences are engaged and eager to hear more.
She’s a prolific writer, having published eighteen books for adults and for children. Two of her children’s books won top awards in Hawaii: the Po’okela Award for LULLABY MOON and runner-up for THE ROYAL WAKER-UPPER. Her book about Thailand, WHAT THE WITCH DOCTOR TAUGHT ME, won two awards from Xulon Press: Best Missions Book published in 2012 and Third Best Book of all Christian books published by independent publishers in 2012. Her next book, MINGLING WITH MUSLIMS about Bangladesh is in the process of publication.
Elaine has also served as the State Moderator for Women’s Aglow Fellowship and later as co-director for the state of Hawaii for Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. She has also had two stories included in Chicken Soup for the Soul books and many stories and articles published in numerous magazines and newspapers.
Kids Love to Read and Write
Really? Many parents and teachers would disagree with that! It seems that getting children to read, much less to write, is difficult. But kids are doing it all the time; we just don’t recognize it. Idk is a far cry from “I don’t know,” but American kids know what it means. Our children read and write actually too much on their techie tools while walking down the street or sitting in the back seat of the car when you want them to look at the Grand Canyon. They’re forced to learn the alphabet and how to communicate or else be left out by their friends. (Their spelling, of course, is atrocious.) Elaine will describe how she motivates her reluctant students and inspires those who are already loving books, and what role teachers and parents play.
Teaching Jorge, Georges, Saleem and Sarah in the Same Classroom
America is probably more multi-cultural now than ever before, although in the late 1800s with the bombardment of Italians, Irish, Bohemians, Swedes and others, racial conflicts and discrimination were also rampant. Elaine has taught in International Schools overseas, and recently in Hawaii in a classroom of South Sea Islander First Graders. How do you deal with children who speak little English and have parents who don’t understand the importance of regular school attendance? Or perhaps the opposite, with parents who load the children with after-school tutoring, squelching their creativity and weakening their bodies? How do you help that shy outsider, that belligerent bully, the kid who lived on the street until he was eight years old? Elaine’s seen them all. Her solutions will help you.
Keeping Sane While Keeping the Home Fires Burning (the Bible Way)
There’s a lot of good stuff in the Bible: Husbands, love your wives as much as you love yourself; Wives respect your husbands; Children honor your parents; everybody take care of widows and orphans. Good stuff, all of it. How can we bring kids up to be honorable adults who respect others and contribute positively to society? Elaine and Husband Don’s two sons and two daughters are now adults and gainfully employed, an accomplishment in this day and age. She can tell you how they did it. You’ll find some helpful ideas for your own brood.
Surviving and Enjoying Travel Overseas
Elaine’s husband, Don, was a foreign service officer with the State Department. Together, they traveled with their four kids for twenty-seven years, usually moving to a different country every two years. After learning the difference between a passport and a visa and why you need both for some countries, and getting over the shock of customs officials pawing through their belongings, they fell into a routine. Get a business card from the hotel where you’re staying so you can show it to a taxi driver and not stay lost. Learn survival words: hello, goodbye, thank you, where’s the toilet? How much? Too much! Practical things. When Elaine trains teams of short-term missionaries, she teaches that flexibility is the key to survival. Remember, you’re the foreigner.
Live the Second Half of Your Life Dynamically
Do you feel old? Elaine felt old for the first time on her thirtieth birthday. By the time she reached fifty, after surviving the scary five years following a mastectomy to get off the Bell Curve, she lost her fear of dying. She figured any more years were a gift from God. People marvel when they discover her age. She lives in the present, not wishing for the “good old days.” (They never were as good as we think they were.) Now, what about you? What would you try if you knew you could not fail? Where would you go? What work would you do? If money were no object, what would your plan be? What is really holding you back? Can you change your environment, your circumstances, your responsibilities? Elaine will help you think through what you really want to be and guide you in making decisions that support your dream.
Write, Publish, and Get It Out There!
Elaine’s eighteen published books run the gamut from board books for babies to narrative non-fiction for adults. If you have a burning desire to write, and if you, like Elaine, are happiest when you’re writing and restless when you’re not, then this is for you. Crediting magazines and books on writing along with her patient critique groups and writer conferences, Elaine learned to write award-winning books that inform and entertain. She will show you how to choose a topic and develop it, how to polish the nascent manuscript, then decide how to publish it. Her books were born through traditional royalty-paying publishers, work-for-hire, co-ops, and self-publishing, in ebooks, audio, paper and hard cover, and she will discuss the pros and cons of each. After hearing her talk, you’ll be itching to get to your computer!
“I have worked with Elaine in many different settings, including large conferences such as Children’s Literature Hawaii, Read to Me International, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. Elaine is always well-prepared for her presentations and has extensive knowledge of children’s literature, writing and sharing literature, and has participated in some exotic Asian travels. Elaine knows how to grab the attention of her audience and encourage them to interact with her, often with the use of props and visuals. Marion Coste, Children’s Author
“Elaine was the regional advisor for the Hawaii chapter of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators before I was. In that capacity, she moderated workshops and conferences, as well as presenting workshops of her own. I always found her to be an engaging and competent presenter.” Bruce Hale, Author and Presenter