Welcome to the Summer Book Blog Tour Kickoff!
Today, I am pleased to introduce, Elizabeth Fournier, author of All Men Are Cremated Equal: My 77 Blind Dates
Elizabeth earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications and
Broadcasting in 1991, but she followed her heart and pursued a career
in the death care industry. She currently owns the funeral home in
Boring, Oregon and can be heard narrating the autopsy exhibit in the
forensic wing at the United States National Museum of Medicine. You
can also see her online as the Video Spokesperson for Chinook Winds
Casino Resort, and she also teaches Ballroom Dance at Reed College in
Leave a comment or question today for Elizabeth and you’ll have chance to WIN a copy of her book!
Interview by: Mary Jo Campbell
MJC: OK, first of all, I have to comment on your vast variety of careers: ballroom dance instructor, voice over for an autopsy exhibit, radio personality and TV show host and finally your full time job as a mortician. How fascinating to have all of these experiences. What has your writing career/background been prior to publishing All Men and have you written about any of your other life/job experiences?
Elizabeth: For quite some time I fancied myself as a country song writer. I’ve penned a spiral notebook full of songs, titled things like “Smoking Lucky’s All Alone,” “He’s My Kind of Grit,” and “You Drove Me To Drinkin’ Now I’m Too Drink To Drive.” That last title is so awesome I have a feeling I probably heard it somewhere before.
I also did a smidge of freelance for Metro Newspapers. Here’s a quick sample:
Best Way To Feel Love For Under A Buck
Forget about all the upscale watering holes. When you need a fix, nothing satisfies like a cool 44 oz. refill from the ubiquitous little stores with the green signs. This way-downtown ode to the trash culture has its competition beat in fair-‘n’-square, mega-corporation style. Shaken, stirred, on the rocks–it’s all iced goodness. And at a mere $.75, my cup runneth over with love. Bound together by the fellowship of The Super Big Gulp, the faithful come to worship a bubbling cup of sugar-water devoid of all nutritional value. Synthetic? Maybe. But tasty? Always.
MJC: Did you know going in to the one-year “escapade of blind dates” that your experiences would turn into a book? And if so, did you accept dates just because they would make good story material?
Elizabeth: My dating was purely dating. All I wanted was to get off the dating roller coaster and find the right guy to marry. The character study question is a great one because I was set up with such colorful people. They provided me with great stories to and dialogue to write about. I couldn’t make any of them up! At the time it was quite frustrating to meet off the wall people when I was serious about my search. But beyond a doubt the wackier dates certainly made my book zesty.
MJC: I love to try and relate all things to writing somehow. How would you compare being a mortician to being a writer?
Elizabeth: Being a mortician doesn’t involve that sort of creative energy. When the work presents itself (in the form of a corpse), it’s there to be done. And being a mortician involves so much personal contact with family of the deceased and the people attending the funeral service.
I suppose that being a writer takes creative energy/inspiration — which doesn’t always come when one would like it to. So perhaps the writer is sometimes not able to write… like it’s going against the flow of the moment. … Also, writing is primarily “the loneliest sport” as Dick Button would say. (Am I aging myself here?)
MJC: How did you market this book so as not to blend in with all the “other dating books” on the market today? Is your book’s purpose strictly to entertain or give dating advice, as well?
Elizabeth I just don’t think there are many blonde morticians who went on 77 blind dates to find their husband, so marketing has been easy. The title intrigues people, plus the storyline is entertaining. I wrote it and market it as self-help, but fortunately people get my humor, too.
MJC: Last but not least, you got the book – did you get the guy?
Elizabeth: Absolutely! The message to women in my memoir is to stay true to yourself. Always. I thought about what I wanted, I stayed the course, and yes, got the guy. It wasn’t always easy, and it certainly wasn’t always pretty. But it was effective and I am happily married to a very supportive, wonderful human.
MJC: Please tell us what’s next for Elizabeth Fournier: any tour dates, appearances, readings or upcoming titles or projects you’d like us to know about?
Elizabeth: I am currently on a blog tour, so below is my schedule if any “Writers Inspired” want to check out more of my random thoughts:
5/22/09: Kristin Bair O’Keeffe www.kristinbairokeeffe.com
6/ 02 /09: Nice Shoes! and other life observations (http://barbjacobucci.blogspot.com)
6/05/09: Fatal Foodies http://fatalfoodies.blogspot.com
And look for me this summer in a fun online film. Toshiba chose Boring, Oregon (where I live!) to compete against another aptly named town in a friendly contest to see which can become more “exciting.”
Camera crews will document my project on Green Burial education using Toshiba Laptops’ innovative and helpful technology. Over the course of the project, online viewers will vote on which town they believe achieved more and collectively became more “exciting.” The town with the most votes will receive a technology upgrade to the local school system, courtesy of Toshiba. Award-winning documentary and commercial director Mark Foster has been tapped to helm the project. Visit: www.elizabethfournier.com
Leave a comment or question for Elizabeth today for a chance to win a copy of