Q: Business career and writing…any connection?
A: People are people. All of the foibles, egos, complexities and kindnesses, whether originating with customers or employees, are always there in any business. I loved my clients and employees and I knew many, like me, were suffering from the stress of rules, rules, rules in their religion or had no spiritual life at all and felt empty with only what society offers. There is much more to see and know about life and spirit, and my novels attempt to show that in a simple yet developed way.
Q: What inspires you?
A: So many things but I think Nature number one (especially trees), followed by great conversations and, of course, music. And, we must never forget as Mark Twain put it, that “against the assault of laughter, nothing can stand!”
Q: What kinds of conversations?
A: I love it when people reveal their truest feelings and beliefs in a discussion. The give and take brings a lot to both parties. People are fascinating and for the most part kind and giving.
Q: You are a musician and have been a professional singer. What inspired that?
A: I came to singing rather late but had some great opportunities to meet so many talented musicians and directors. I learned a lot from Craig Jessup, later director of the great Mormon Tabernacle Choir, John Miller and others as far as choral singing went. Later, however, I was able to corral some guys into singing the music I loved from the fifties and sixties. I was eleven when the British invasion occurred and had received a transistor radio for Christmas in 1963 from a dear aunt, and that’s all it took to be hooked on the Top 40. It’s been a joy to recreate some of those wonderful sounds in so many venues here and in Europe.
The human voice and its beauty will always fascinate me. It is the greatest of instruments.
Q: You write about monasteries. Did you ever think of becoming a monk. You seem to know them so well.
A: Yes, I love monasteries. Nowhere else do I feel the peace that seems to emanate from those good monks, both men and women. A magnificent lifestyle in many ways, but definitely not for everyone. I don’t think I could do it, but I love to visit and stay and renew myself as a guest. I have some great monastic friends. They are wonderful people. As a footnote to that, I didn’t realize how many people are fascinated by that institution…I receive so many comments about how interested readers are in that concept of living, which surprised me. But there is a spiritual hunger out there, so maybe it should not have.
Q: Any more books on the horizon?
A: Oh, yes. I am not done by a long shot. Readers want more from Jean Moreau and we’ll see about that. I will definitely produce more of his books on virtues in his Little Books of Wisdom series. I’d like to do some humorous books, too and have some ideas. I enjoy my podcast with Doc Martens and Mark Twain. Great fun…and funny, we hope – Two Twits and Twain.
Q: Any other thoughts for visitors on The Abbey Chronicles trilogy?
A: Let me quote from a Press Release published by the Associated Press a few years ago which might sum up nicely what I am trying to do in that series.“I am writing this series because I have seen how people, particularly when they reach a certain age, are hungry. Their search for meaning and fulfillment in life has not always been satisfied by their traditional religions,” says Eide. “What satisfies that hunger are not ‘things’ or ‘dogma’. What satisfies is more subtle, waiting to be discovered. It is the spiritual dimension of life. Most have followed the traditional religious path to spirit yet therein lies the issue: over reliance on traditional religion as their only reference to provide answers. But these are often complicated and inadequate, rarely allowing room for one to pursue that connection individually. I wanted to give people ways to achieve this framed within the context of my character’s personal experience, even a monk, one at the heart of a traditional religion’s institution.”
Here’s another thought…
Yogananda once wrote that it is good to be a “smile millionaire.” He said it well. Try it.