writer. speaker. editor.
Award-winning novel: THE THIRD GRACE
Greenbrier Book Company
December 1, 2011
ROOTS AND BRANCHES: THE SYMBOL OF THE TREE IN THE IMAGINATION OF G.K. CHESTERTON
The Habitation of Chimham Publishing, 2015
WELCOME, Press and curious onlookers. On this media page you will find photos (standard headshots and a few more for interest); a bio; links to book excerpts, reviews, and interviews; curriculum vitae, and a press release. Feel free to cut and paste; for more information tailored to your specific needs, please contact me.
Deb Elkink lives with her husband in a cottage beside a babbling creek in rural Alberta, Canada. She grew up in Winnipeg and attended college in Minneapolis-Saint Paul (B.A. Communications), publishing her first short stories and articles. She married and spent twenty years as a Saskatchewan ranch wife and homeschooling mom (when she rounded up cattle on horseback and cooked for huge branding crews). Graduate studies (M.A. Theology) then prepared her to edit doctoral dissertations, a professional quarterly magazine, and an online expository Bible study. Today she writes, edits, and teaches, and she loves speaking to women's groups about the Christian faith. Her debut novel, The Third Grace (2011), received Canada's prestigious Grace Irwin Award, and her literary study on the fiction of G.K. Chesterton, Roots and Branches, was published in 2015.
A Sampling of Posted Articles featuring Deb Elkink:
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I have broad life experience and am effective in artistic communication and interpersonal skills, holding a B.A. in communications (Bethel, MN) and an M.A. in theology (Briercrest, SK). I edit academic projects for Ph.D.s internationally (dissertations and journal articles) and have published a nonfiction book, Roots and Branches: The Symbol of the Tree in the Imagination of G.K. Chesterton (2015). However, my love is fiction; my debut novel, The Third Grace, was royalty published December 2011 and received the coveted Grace Irwin Award for Canadian Christian book of the year, and I'm currently working on my second novel. I've freelanced various short stories and magazine articles over the years, with more than thirty nonfiction pieces appearing in a national legal quarterly for which I acted as staff writer and assistant editor. On my website, I post a blog (Motifs) that follows cultural and literary images found in the Bible (mirror, perfume, heart). I also work with theologian Dr. Grant C. Richison, having co-edited his recent award-winning apologetics book and continuing to edit his online expository Bible study circulated to over 100,000 daily subscribers. I speak to various groups of women on the subject of Christian faith, and I travel widely for pleasure--so far, to thirty countries on five of seven continents, having sojourned several months in both Mexico and France.
- ACFW: American Christian Fiction Writers
- TWUC: The Writers' Union of Canada
- TWG: The Word Guild (Professional membership)
- InScribe Christian Writers' Fellowship
- His Imprint Christian Writers
For immediate release
MEDICINE HAT, AB, Canada — Alberta resident Deb Elkink has received a major award in a national writing competition for her debut novel, The Third Grace.
Elkink, who accepted the Grace Irwin Award in Mississauga, Ontario, on June 13, writes from her acreage on the banks of Ross Creek near Elkwater in the Cypress Hills. She has lived in and around Medicine Hat since 1994, sat as a board member on the provincial Alberta Foundation for the Arts, worked for six years as staff writer and assistant editor with a national quarterly paper published in Alberta, and speaks to women's groups in the province and throughout western Canada and U.S. Elkink, who holds a B.A. in communications and an M.A. in theology, was raised in Winnipeg, attended university in Minneapolis, and cattle-ranched in Saskatchewan with her husband for many years while home educating their three children.
In her book, Elkink weaves the fictional story of a big-city costume designer who grew up as a Mennonite farm girl and is now on her way to Paris in search of an old French boyfriend and her own misplaced identity. (Read more on her website: www.debelkink.com.)
The Third Grace was listed as a finalist in one category of The Word Guild's Canadian Christian Writing Awards. Elkink attended the June 13th black-tie Awards Gala held at World Vision's headquarters in Mississauga, Ontario — the premier event honouring the work of Canadian writers who are Christian. Elkink hoped to win in her category, but the novelist did not expect to receive the prestigious $5,000 Grace Irwin Award. The award is Canada's largest literary prize for writers who are Christian, this year celebrating the top pick of 53 short-listed books published in 2011.
The contest received a record number of almost 360 entries from writers in eight provinces. The 35 award categories included non-fiction books, novels, articles, columns, poems, blogs and song lyrics. Six other Alberta residents shortlisted in various categories of the national contest, two of them placing first (Marcia Laycock of Blackfalds for her blog series and Murray Andrew Pura of Pincher Creek for his historical novel). Elkink shared runner-up status in the contemporary novel category with Hamilton, Ontario, resident Caroline Way. Another noteworthy finalist was Ann Voskamp of Gowenstown, Ontario, for her New York Times bestselling book, One Thousand Gifts. All shortlisted book category finalists were in contention for the Grace Irwin Award.
"To begin with, I was delighted to learn that The Third Grace was shortlisted in the contemporary novel category I entered," Elkink says. "But I was truly astonished at the Gala when it was named the overall book of the year! The feedback I've been getting on The Third Grace lets me know that readers are connecting with my characters, enjoying the plot, and finding that my message applies to their own lives. It's lovely to receive this substantial recognition for my first novel, and I'm encouraged to finish writing the next one."
The Word Guild, the organization sponsoring the awards, consists of more than 325 writers and editors across Canada who write from a Christian perspective and publish work in a variety of genres. The Word Guild also sponsors Canada's largest Christian writers' conference, Write! Canada (www.writecanada.org). After the Gala, 250 writers, editors, agents and publishers met at the Guelph, Ontario, conference for professional development, networking and marketing opportunities.
To see the complete list of winners, or to obtain more information about the Gala or The Word Guild, visit www.thewordguild.com.