Thursday, September 20, 2012

Sophia Stone and THE MORMON DIARIES

Hi guys! I wanted to take another opportunity this week to tell you about another super-talented author, Sophia Stone who has released this incredible book, THE MORMON DIARIES.

First, a few interview questions.
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What does the ornament on the cover stand for? 
As a child I was taught that the only way I could experience true joy was by living the Gospel of Jesus Christ as found in Mormonism. The ornament is symbolic of that joy. Or, more particularly, what I feared I’d lose if I ever stopped believing in The Church.

Why did you hide your faith struggles from those closest to you? 
I was afraid my faithful Mormon family and friends would think me either prideful or influenced by Satan if I admitted to doubting The Church. There’s a common phrase faithful Latter-day Saints use to explain away uncomfortable issues: “The Church is true. The people are not.” Those who leave the church are often labeled as angry, easily offended, prideful, lazy, or deceived. There’s no good reason to doubt, no good reason to question, no good reason to stop believing. Faith yields loyalty and obedience.

What kinds of reactions have you had from your Mormon author friends?
This has been similar to my family response—lots of condemnation, lots of avoidance, lots of judgment, and lots of gratitude. Yes, I know, it seems odd that I’d hear gratitude from LDS author friends who are faithful in the church. But apparently there are people who struggle in silence, unable to tell a soul how they feel without losing those most dear to them. That’s the reason the Disaffected Mormon Underground (DAMU) exists. It fills a palpable need.

What are the best ways to support someone going through a faith crisis?
The most important thing is to listen. Don’t distance yourself. Don’t shy away. Don’t give advice, and definitely don’t judge. Just be a friend. Period. Sometimes it really is that simple.



Look at this cover. Isn't it exquisite?


Brought up in a religious home, Sophia believes the only way to have a forever family is by following church leaders and obediently choosing the right. She goes to the right school, marries the right man in the right place, and does the right thing by staying home to raise her children. But when she starts asking questions about grace, love, and the nature of God, she realizes her spiritual struggles could rip her family apart.

“Sophia Stone has a fine eye and a searching heart. Her story of growing up in and reaching through her Mormonism for a deeper, more authentic spirituality reflects all the ways that religion can both keep us satisfied with easy answers and push us to more difficult and complicated realizations. We need a hundred more books like this one . . . “ –Joanna Brooks, author of The Book of Mormon Girl

“Sophia Stone captured my attention from the beginning. This collection of personal essays, about questioning the legitimacy of Mormonism after having faith in the religion for the first 30-something years of her life, is not just a controversial quake to a reader’s heart and soul. Stone’s voice is brave, bold and intriguing. And surprisingly relatable to someone who is not religious.”—Jessica Bell, author of String Bridge 

Check out this beautifully done trailer:

AND Sophia is on Twitter! She will take any questions about Mormonism and answer them (minus the usual spin) under the hashtag #mormonquestions.
Sophia Stone @ask_a_mormon

You can find THE MORMON DIARIES on Amazon and Barnes and Noble. Thank you guys for stopping by, and thank you Sophia for being so brave and telling your story. 

19 comments:

Shelly said...

That this book comes at a personal price to her makes it all the more compelling to read.

Natalie Aguirre said...

Great interview Sophia and Lydia. I enjoyed learning what the symbol on your cover means. So sorry you've had to go through the challenges you've faced but hopefully your book will help others going through the same experience.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Just listen - that's good advice for anyone going through a situation.

Cold As Heaven said...

Looks like an interesting book.

Some years ago, when I visited the Mormon Museum in Salt Lake City, I bought a book titled "The Basic History of the Mormon Church". I read the book with great interest, and I was very impressed by the leadership of Brigham Young, and the way the early Mormons organized their society in Utah.

I've got a copy of Mormons Book as well, but like the Bible and the Koran, I don't believe a word of it. I'm definitely influenced by Satan >:)

Cold As Heaven

Clarissa Draper said...

I always wondered about the ornament. That's too bad that people are so easy to judge. I guess if your church was able to convince you of its truth and alleviate your doubts instead of condemning and saying that you're a horrible person because of your doubts, they would.

SA Larsenッ said...

Loved this! I just saw Sophia's book on another site. It sounds wonderful and like such an emotional read. The cover is just perfect.

Thanks for highlighting it and Sophia, Lydia!

Elizabeth Seckman said...

Looks interesting.

Charity Bradford said...

Wow, sorry your childhood was so hard on you. I'd like to think it's just a difference of family environment, but I know it's more than that. I'm currently the only active member of the church in my family, but we are all very close to one another even now. My parents taught me to love and accept everyone no matter what their religious or spiritual beliefs were. I'm so grateful for that.

My own daughter struggles and I've let her know that whatever she decides we will still love and support her. When it comes down to it, my family is too important to me to lose because our beliefs have drifted apart.

Good luck in all your endeavors.

Jai Joshi said...

Great interview, Sophia!

Jai

Karen Lange said...

Loved the interview, thanks to both of you! The book sounds good. Will have to check it out.

Rachna Chhabria said...

Thanks for this great interview Sophia and Lydia. Love the cover of Mormon Diaries.

Barbara Watson said...

What a hard thing to travel through, but I love that writing helps the writer and reading allows readers to see problems in a new way. This sounds like a powerful story.

Connie Keller said...

A friend just recommended this book to me. Now after reading more here, I'm very eager to read it.

J.L. Campbell said...

It will be interesting to read this book. The religion is established here in Jamaica, but many of us don't know much about the tenets of the church.

Trisha said...

I think Sophia is a very brave and strong woman for having brought this book out! Congrats Sophia!

Carol Riggs said...

Loved the trailer, well done. And cool that you're posting on "Sophia" too! (she's my feature of the week) I've downloaded the Kindle 99-cent edition and have read a few chapters. Great so far.

Have an awesome Friday and weekend!!

Jai Joshi said...

I came back because I've been thinking about the issue of being isolated in a community. I agree that just to have someone listen without judgement would be immensely helpful. We all need that kind of support because we're all creatures of society. We need other people around us to love us and to love back. I can't imagine how difficult it must be to have that community be in direct opposition to your thoughts and beliefs. I respect your courage in speaking out, Sophia.

Jai

Lynda R Young said...

Another great interview! I'm seeing this book everywhere. Wishing Sophia all the best.

Amy L. Sonnichsen said...

I agree, Sophia was very brave to write this book. It sounds intriguing. I just finished reading THE NINETEENTH WIFE, which is part historical novel about Brigham Young's nineteenth wife, who divorced him and sought to end polygamy in America. So interesting! I'd love to read this book, too. Thanks for the great interview, Lydia!

 
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