14 Jan Author Interview: Children’s Book Author Diane Scabilloni
Welcome to our author interview with Diane Scabilloni, an inspirational children’s book author who has made it her mission to help young readers discover their personal gifts from God and live their best lives. Through her heartfelt stories, Diane provides simple ways for children to align their thoughts with the Creator’s thoughts, enabling them to see the big picture for their lives and shed limited thinking. Diane is passionate about empowering children to embrace their full potential and experience joy, creativity, energy, fun, and a life filled with ease and flow.
Today, we will explore the motivations and inspirations behind her three captivating books: “The Power of Judge Naught,” “My Friendship with Doubt,” and “Rulers Don’t Measure.” Each of these stories offers unique insights into the challenges that children face in their daily lives, guiding them towards self-discovery, self-acceptance, and spiritual growth.
Join us as we delve into the world of Diane Scabilloni and uncover the reasons behind her heartfelt creations, her writing process, and the impact she hopes to have on her young readers.
Note: This is an excerpt of the full interview that you can listen to here.
J Ware: So one of the things that’s interesting about this interview, Diane, is usually we’re talking to somebody about their one book, but I’m so excited about having you to do an overview of all three of your books. So let me ask you a couple questions. The first one is, how long have you been writing these books and when did you feel the inspiration, the passion to start writing?
Diane Scaballoni: Yeah. I’ve been writing since I was a child, I was always that kid that had those little journals that had the key in the lock, I was always journaling. So I’ve been writing for forever. But I started with My Friendship with Doubt in 2015. So, oh my goodness. So we’re talking almost eight years now that I’ve been on this real, really true self-publishing journey. Yeah. Exciting.
J Ware: So, Diane, you’ve been writing since 2015. Well, you’ve been writing for a long, for many years ever since your journal, like you just said. But the pa my Friendship with Doubt, you were starting and really came out in 2015. So it’s been, you know, like you said, eight years or so. And since you started writing and getting passionate about these books, these books are are geared for kids. Is that right? It, they’re, are they kids books? Are they books that parents can use to teach their kids? In a couple sentences, tell us about these books. Maybe start with my friendship with doubt, and, and just walk us through these three books, who they’re geared for and what they do for somebody, what’s their mission?
Diane Scaballoni: Oh, thanks. Yeah. well, I’ll tell you that my friendship with Without It came about with I was talking to a business coach and I was super excited to tell her that I didn’t think I needed doubt in my life anymore. And that was like a big deal for me because I grew up with a lot of doubt and, you know, through my early young, my early stages in my life and everything. And so, and she knew that I journaled, so she said, you should write a book about it. And it was one of those things that if you ever had those experience where you just are like, oh, <laugh>, you know, like the, the heavens are lighting up and, you know, my chest was like on fire. I was like, that’s what I’m gonna do. I’m gonna write a book about doubt.
Diane Scaballoni: Now I had no idea what it was gonna look like or anything, but I was open to it. And then probably like later on that day, I started to have images in my mind, which are actually some of the images in the book, like, there’s a treasure chest in there, that was the first one. And and then I saw a cloud, which was like, huh, doubt is a cloud that, you know, I’ve had a friendship with my entire life and doubt has been protecting me from the world. It’s like, okay. I just, it was like all these things were sort of coming together and then it hit me. I’m like, oh man, this is awesome. This is a children’s book. I can write that because I had like a full-time job and I had young kids at the time, and they’re going to sports, and I’m like, I can’t sit down and write some big thick book about, you know, how not to have doubt, because I didn’t really even know.
Diane Scaballoni: So I just knew it was like happening and I was being quote unquote healed somehow. It was just, you know, feeling more strong in my power. And, and what was fascinating to me is all of these books have been my, a process of my spiritual journey a process of my spiritual growth, my spiritual maturity helping me to release my biggest hangups <laugh>. So it’s kinda like going along a, a journey with me and my self re self recovery and discovery because you know, like I said, doubt was a big deal. So when I realized like God was j and it, and these books were written through me, I, this creativity of these things, it’s all through God. It was nothing that I really felt like came to me other than through the Holy Spirit, because as I was writing and dreaming and sitting and just meditating about it, these images in these words would come to me.
Diane Scaballoni: And so you know, with a treasure chest, God was like, your gifts of who you really are are in that treasure chest. And that’s how the book starts, is that, you know, you had a conversation with God, and I came to Earth and he says, you’re gonna take this treasure chest with you, and in this treasure chest are strength, love, wonder, peace, joy, and gentleness. And I was like, oh my God, only the Holy Spirit reveals who he created me to be through such a thing like <laugh>. I didn’t even know that this, this was me, honestly. And, you know, as I’m maturing, I’m like recognizing these are the things that he put in me that he wants me to bring to the world, and we all have our own special treasure chest. And you know, and in this trust, these words are really invisible gowns.
Diane Scaballoni: So the book proceeds to say like, okay, in this chest or these gowns, and they re represent these special qualities. And, you know, the, the young girl in the book goes through life and she’s, you know, I’m gonna rock these gowns that God gave me. I’m gonna be strong. I’m gonna be, I’m gonna have joy. I’m gonna have wonder and peace. Well, when you grow up in an alcoholic, abusive environment, nobody wants that <laugh>. And so that’s where doubt came in and doubt was keeping me safe. I doubt was like, no, no, no, no, you can’t go out there and be joyful because you’ll get hit. Like literally my life as a child was, if I was too happy, I was told, what are you so happy about? I’m gonna wipe that smile off your wa you know, whack that smile off your face. So I was always subdued, subdued, subdued, and just a chameleon, how do I gotta show up here?
Diane Scaballoni: How do I stay under the radar? So I really had a friendship with doubt. Like literally that was my safety for survival. And then as I grew up and became a woman and started to know other people were quote unquote wearing these gowns, and they were showing up strong, and they were showing up joyful, and they were showing up being in honor of wonder, and they were gentle and weren’t getting hurt. I’m like, Hey, I can do this too. And so that’s what the story is about. It just goes through this journey of, you know, finding a, a different friend from, from Doubt. And it ends up that she finds a little son that is hope. And so it’s just a really happy <laugh> uplifting story of how to go through the journey and how to really like find yourself. And so I’ve been doing, I’ve been creating, and I’ve done some workshops on this to, to help people kind of like go deep. I feel like God is having me have conversations about hard things. Like nobody really wants to talk about doubt and the pains and, and you know, inner struggles, like even getting choked up as I’m talking about it. But if, if you don’t do it, you can’t experience all the beauty and the wonder wonderfulness of God, of, of what he has us to enjoy, you know, so.
J Ware: Right, right. Well, thanks for sharing that about that book and your passion behind it. I really appreciate that. And, and it is one of those things that what I knew about your books, where they, they’re they’re personal. They, you know, they’re from your life. They’re, it’s not just kind of thought up in, you know, something like a novel that’s, you know, kind of brainstorming some crazy place and new place. This is about, these are personal, these are, these are talking about big issues. And so Diane, we know your passion and that these are coming from your life. Tell us quickly about rulers Don’t measure, and, and then then we’ll jump into the Power of Judge, not okay. And just tell us a little bit about those books your second and third. Okay,
Diane Scaballoni: Yeah, of course. Oh, I’m happy to. Yes, rulers Don’t Measure That is another one that just comes right from my, my life experience of growing up in an alcoholic home. I had no idea how I’m supposed to live, so I didn’t know how to show up and what was normal. So I would compare myself to other people, and I would be a chameleon. I would watch what they do. If this is what these people that I liked and thought was, seemed to be pretty cool and had it together, then I would be just like them. And then I would compare and I would have some kind of not very great conversations with myself in my head. So this is about this adorable little character that is a measuring stick, and he has the cutest little red boots on, and he has a journey of life, <laugh>.
Diane Scaballoni: And so he just walks around life and, and meets people and identifies with them and, and says, okay, like he meets a sup, for example, he meets like a really strong guy in a gym and he recognizes like, Hey, you know what? This dude is ha he’s totally ripped and, you know, compared to him I am less, I don’t measure up. And so that’s what he finds out about himself or just what he thinks about himself. And come to find out that he forgot that when the creator, when God created him and told him, Hey, you’re gonna go have a journey called life and you’re gonna leave heaven and you’re gonna go do this thing you are blessed. I want you to know, and I want you to remember is what God told him right before he went on his journey that always know that you are my beloved child, and that you are very blessed.
Diane Scaballoni: So very quickly having experiences in life, he forgot that he was blessed. And so on his journey and comparing himself, he had a little kind of come to himself meeting under a tree and was like, I’m not really having fun here, <laugh>, what do I need to change? And then he remembered that God had told him that he was beloved and that he was blessed. And then when he encountered these, you know, these other people that he thought were really rocking it in the world, he was like, Hey, I can do what you do and take some of these things and just learn from you and still be me, and still just take what I like and leave the rest is one of the, the sayings from from Al-Anon and from AA and, and that is really it’s really the truth. And so he ended up standing in, in his own self with God, and he said, you know, at the, the very end of the story, he says to himself, I know I am loved and blessed without measure. So that’s, it’s called Rulers Don’t Measure. So <laugh> kind of like a, you know, he’s a ruler of his life and he doesn’t need to measure, he doesn’t need to measure up. He’s already a ruler in God. He’s already a weak, blessed person. Yeah.
J Ware: So, and these, these, so far, I’m, I’m hooked. I need to get these for my kids, you know, I think, I think they’d be really great. I want to ask you a question about that. And they’re maybe a little bit about their target audience and who’s using them, obviously kids. But let’s go to quickly, let’s jump to the Power of Judge, not that’s your, you have a new one coming out, but this is the most recent one you wrote. Tell us just quickly a little bit about the Power of Judge, not that book.
Diane Scaballoni: Yep. The Power of Judge Knot is, has a similar, it has a very similar vibe. And it started with, as I was just living my life, I kept seeing this little judge in the back of my mind with a gavel, and I’m like, okay, God, what is that? Like some, you know, in like quiet time, I’m like, praying and, and I’m just walking around the house and I see this little judge in the back of my mind. And so then God was like, no, this is your next book. And this was right when like Black Lives Matter was coming out and all this stuff, and I’m like, clearly glad you are not gonna have me write a book about telling people not to judge each other. Like, this is just not going to go well. And so he was just like, you know, just, just go with me on this.
Diane Scaballoni: Just go with me. And so ultimately what the story is about is Judge not comes in and he helps us to judge not the promises of God because we’re so quickly to, you know, just criticize ourselves and, you know, have all this kind of, you know, trash talk to ourselves. And there’s very clearly things that we have been told that we are powerfully loved, that we have special gifts and talents, and that we are guided and we’re protected by God. And we blow that stuff away and we’re like, no, that’s not true. We decide to just believe whatever the world is telling us. And, and so this is where, you know, judge not comes into this little character’s life and anytime they’re getting down on themselves, judge not comes in and says, judge, not the promises of God. You are blessed and highly favored. And it, and it helps the character to get like that, that mind shift of, okay, let’s get back in there and let’s live and see the way God wants us to live and see and not get pulled into darkness, not get pulled into sadness and negativity.
J Ware: Well, that’s, that’s beautiful. I, I I think that all three of these books are books that people should have. And we’re gonna talk about it, but you can get this on Amazon. I just I’m gonna say this a couple times, but this, I’m with Diane sca Diane is d i a n e, SCA is spelled S C A B I L L O N I. And you can find these books on Amazon again, the first one was My Friendship With Doubt. The second book is Rulers Don’t Measure, and the book that we were just talking about one second ago is The Power of Judge, not Question about these books, obviously the, these are children’s books. And you said you, you got the inspiration, you didn’t wanna write, you know, this huge book and maybe didn’t feel like you had all the time and the energy, and you said, this is a children’s book and the, and these are children’s book.
J Ware: But you know, as a parent, I also see this as an opportunity to get these for my, my kids. And since they have such a deeper meaning, you know, kids might flip through it and see clouds and sunshine and stars and red boots and you know, they’re like, okay, this is cool, but as a parent of five with my five kids, I think I could really read these to my kids and this could be really impactful because there’s such a deep message in these books. Have you been feeling that or seeing that or hearing that from people that have read these books or bought them for their kids?
Diane Scaballoni: 100%. Yeah. I mean, I, I really, and this is, this is not meant to be ego, this is all, it’s truly like they’re very Holy Spirit infused. I just believe it. I’ve had numerous thank you cards and you know, notes and I’ve spoken at some different schools and you know, then the little kids, they send me the cute little fold of eight and a half by 11 piece of paper in half and send me a thank you card. And, you know, I was blown away, collapsed and crying on the floor with they Get It. I was like, the middle school age seems to be the ones that get it, you know, like you were saying, the little ones like under five and stuff, that they’re just looking at the pictures and just love to cuddle with. Yeah. Once kids are so much smarter.
Diane Scaballoni: Like when I first these were coming out, I’m thinking, oh, you know, this would be great for like 16 year old girls. And, and it’s like they’re already somewhat close-minded because they already got it all together. I think it’s then when that 16 year old becomes like a 28 year old mom, that’s when they’re like, oh, this really hits home <laugh>. And you know, my experience has been like the middle school age. Like they, they get the message cuz they’ve been beat around by life a little bit, but they still can tap into the Holy Spirit and allow themselves to be vulnerable and like flow with a story. And so what happens is these books ha are definitely conversation starters. Like, I didn’t know that that’s what was happening as I was writing them, but just my experience and talking to people, it’s like, if you have a thi you know, if you think that your son is, is having some experiences with, you know, bullying or something, you could just like bring this book out and say, Hey, my friend wrote this book, I just wanna, I told her I read it.
Diane Scaballoni: Why don’t you sit here and we’ll read it together? Cause I gotta give her some feedback. And then it’s a dialogue starter. And then what kills me, like, not kills me, but like blew me away is a 75 year old man who is like a millionaire over, he sends me an email and said I was having a really bad day and I read my friendship with doubt and it really helped me. So it’s just, it’s all the things that we all deal with that maybe we don’t wanna talk about necessarily. Like bring it up. Like, I have two boys myself and they don’t really wanna tell me, mom, I’m feeling insecure today. But if you bring up, like, have these conversation starters and you start with being vulnerable yourself as the parent telling stories yourself about, I remember when, you know, I had to stand in front of class and tell my, you know, read my new, my paper that I wrote. I think then that helps the kids to soften and to then share their experiences.
J Ware: Absolutely. Diane we’re gonna move away from the books and get into a couple last questions for you. Th this has just been a beautiful interview. A lot of the, a lot of the questions that I would be asking you about where your passion comes from, where your creativity comes from, some of those things as an author about these books you’ve already answered and, and you’ve already gone there. So I I, I’m, I’m following every word. I love this. I’m excited about these books. Let me jump into a couple other things here. What does literary success look like to you? Is it fame, getting your ideas out? The artistic freedom is, you’re talking a lot about spiritual things and we share faith. And so, I mean, I’m with you on that, but what does success look like? Is it one of those things? Is all of those things, what would make you happy at the end of the day to say these books? Did this
Diane Scaballoni: Yeah, it’s such a good question. Wow. I’m gonna get choked up again. <Laugh> I, I’ve just been blessed already. But I know that God did not put these on my heart just to share with a few hundred people. We are in a world now that really needs to deal with these issues really needs to deal with these issues. So to have you know, to get this out there and to have a bigger platform to have these, and it’s not about me having fame, but it’s about God, <laugh> being the star of the show. And that true healing and true releasing doubt, true releasing comparison and truly releasing self-criticism, it comes from having a relationship with God. So that’s the star. And, and the, you know, my success has already been that my first book about doubt my son, my younger son was about 10 at the time.
Diane Scaballoni: And he said, mom, your book really helped me. So if I’m gonna, if right there my authorship is done, you know, to get my son in the, in the right direction. But yeah, I would just love this to be, you know, for God’s glory and because of what the message means and because they’re so Holy Spirit infused, to have this be a part of Bible studies, to have these series to be a part of vacation Bible School, like they’re the cutest little characters that could really come to life. It would be like super fun. And just to have like a podcast, to have conversations about this with kids, with grownups. We ha have this come into a world where we are allowed to talk about God, that we’re allowed to talk about the Father, son and the Holy Spirit. And cuz there’s people out there that are totally vibing with this.
Diane Scaballoni: There are so many people that believe in everything that we’re talking about, but they’re hiding behind whatever other agendas are out there. Well, I’m, you know, this, these books are about me not hiding anymore. And, you know, standing locking arms with God and the Holy Spirit and the confidence to just go out there and say, yes, I’m a Christian. Yes, I believe in God. Yes, I believe that we need to release ourselves from doubt, judgment, self blame condemnation. No more we’re done. So that’s, I guess <laugh>, it’s probably a little much, it’s kind of my soapbox, but it’s very, these things are important. These is really important for our families.
J Ware: Well, thank you for sharing that. I’m gonna ask you one more question, then we’ll review the books just so people know where to get them. But my last question goes along with basically everything that just said, maybe it’s just in a different way, but I told you I wanted to ask you this question, and you have the platform now, and you have the experience from your life, from writing. God gave you a mission with these books. Why does God care about us?
Diane Scaballoni: That’s a really good question, and, and I’m gonna go, I’m gonna use ki I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of Miles Monroe. He was a pastor back in the day, and not too, he passed away not too long ago. And, and he would use an example where talking about God being kind of like a manufacturer. So he created us like, just think about Ford created the Ford truck. Of course, Ford wants the trucks to succeed. He has a purpose, he has a vision for them. He, you know, wants them to be shared. So that’s why God created us, because, or why he cares about us. Because first of all, he created us. He created us with a purpose. He wants to enjoy us, he wants us to enjoy him. He gave us like not just a pink flower to enjoy in the world, but so many pink flowers that we can’t even count. So, you know, I just think he cares about us because he created us because he loves us and he wants a relationship with us, and it’s our choice to lock arms with him to and to enjoy him. We have choice.
J Ware: Wow. Thanks for sharing that with us. Diane, it’s, it, your, your passion for these books, for helping people, your passion for the Lord is is evident and very clear, and I really appreciate you sharing that with us. Your books again the first book you wrote was My Friendship With Doubt. Then the second book was Rulers Don’t Measure, and then the third book was The Power of Judge. Now anyone can pick these books up at Amazon.
Diane Scaballoni: That’s correct. Yeah. And then find me the same way on Facebook, on Instagram. And I have a YouTube channel too. Diane Scaballoni
J Ware: Right Again, her name Diane Scaballoni. I find her on Amazon, look her up on social media, follow her. She she has these three great books that are out, one book that’s gonna be coming out. Thank you so much for joining us, Diane. And I just, I really pray for great success and influence and that this will go to many places all over the world. So thank you for joining us.
Diane Scaballoni: Thank you so much.
Find My Friendship with Doubt
on Amazon now.