Talented local author and artist Dakota Frank inspires and entertains. Not only is he the author of the book Under a Sea Of Stars: Whisper Of Fate, he makes the most amazing and unique affirmation cards. These cool cards offer up prayers and affirmations for peace, love, light, joy, and more. The Denver, CO born and raised artist do not allow his wheelchair to get in the way of creating beauty and helping others. Get to know Dakota in this exclusive interview.
Colleen Bement: You happen to be one of the strongest people I know and I love how you inspire so many others. Where did you come up with the beautiful idea of the Sacred Self Prayer and Affirmation Cards?
Dakota Frank: I am honored that you would say such things about me. To answer your question, the first inkling I had for the project was a birthday gift for a friend. I wanted to do something for her, but I couldn’t afford very much. I bought her a small pewter figure which I painted (painting figures is a hobby of mine), and I had an idea to write my friend prayers and affirmations based on certain parts of the figure. Some time passed and I saw what was happening to the world; the violence, darkness, and hatred that was happening. I wanted to do something about that; to bring light back into that darkness. I don’t have a lot of money to donate to causes so I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. Remembering what I did for my friend, I created eight cards with prayers on one side and affirmations on the other. The prayers and affirmations were for Love, Peace, Joy, Health, Patience, Unity, Strength and Light. I struggled mightily with whether or not I wanted to sell the cards because I felt like I wanted to give to the world and receiving money for what I was giving felt wrong. But, I talked with my friend who is involved in the venture with me and we both agreed that we are giving abundance to the world and so receiving abundance in return wasn’t a bad thing.
CB: How does it feel to know you are helping others?
DF: I have had feedback recently about the cards that was very positive and made me feel very emotional. I have a friend who is blind, so one day I took the time to write her an email with all of the prayers and affirmations on it so she could listen to them through her computer. Her response was to tell me she uses the cards every day to help her deal with daily seizures and other stresses that directly affect her health. When I received her email I knew what I was doing was right and needed. I feel so very blessed that something I created could have such a powerful impact on someone’s life and I hope this project will continue to be a blessing to others.
CB: Let’s chat about your amazing book trilogy Under a Sea Of Stars: Whisper Of Fate. Where did you come up with the idea for these stories and the characters?
DF: My inspiration for Under a Sea of Stars was my friend Tillie. The year I decided to write the story, she lost both her job and her father in the same year. So I wanted to do something to cheer her up. I wrote her what was at the time a 60 page short story and gave it to her. As time passed I realized I could expand the story. Sixty pages became around five hundred and forty! Most of the characters came from my head, but there are some characters, at least as far as they look, that came from people I saw on TV or out in the world. (One very minor character bears a resemblance to a certain local meteorologist.) I went to Mile High Con one year just to visit an out of town friend who was vending at the con and decided on a whim to go to a novel pitching session panel. I went in completely cold with nothing prepared and just talked about the book. The publisher who was running the panel liked what she heard and told me to send her my manuscript. A year later she informed me that she wanted to publish the book, but she wanted to break it up into three parts; so we did that. The way the book was broken up, the first two books were just fine as they were. What would have been the third book was too short. I am in the process of writing that third book as of now.
CB: Whisper of Fate is the first book in the Under a Sea of Stars trilogy. When can fans expect the next chapter in this exciting trilogy to come out?
DF: The first book took two years to come out from the pitching session to actual release. I do not know when the next book would come out because I believe the first one has to sell well enough to justify continuing. I have a five-year contract with my publisher, so I guess we’ll see what happens.
CB: Do you have any new projects in the works?
DF: Right now I am concentrating on writing book three of the trilogy. But I have been busy with personal writing projects as well as trying to make Sacred Self as good as it can be. If we sell well on the prayer and affirmation cards I have ideas for other kinds of sets.
CB: Let’s get to know you better with some quick answer questions.
- Favorite superhero: Wolverine. I have a disability and so along with that, I have had many surgeries in my life. I like Wolverine for his toughness, attitude and a healing factor which I admit I am insanely jealous of!
- What type of music is on your playlists right now? Right now I have gotten into what has been called Epic Music. It’s the kind of music you would hear in action movies and such but the songs themselves, at least the ones I have heard aren’t in any movies. My favorite Epic song is called Victory and is from a band called Two Steps from Hell.
- Movie you watch over and over again: This one is a hard because there’s more than one I would watch over and over again. If I had to choose just one I would pick “The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring” because it was the first fantasy movie I had ever seen that took itself seriously. While there was humor in it, it wasn’t geared necessarily toward a younger audience. I had been praying for a decent fantasy movie since I was little and I felt like with “Lord of the Rings” I got six instead of just one! But Fellowship was the first and so it is my favorite.