Can you tell us a little more about yourself?

My author bio sounds a little fancy– but the truth is I’m just a woman with a huge heart for Jesus.  He fills my heart with joy and doing this entire book and ministry for Him has blessed me beyond belief.  I love hearing from my readers and listening to the stories of how God is at work in your lives through True Love Dates.  That alone is worth more than anything I could ever get as an author and blogger. Thank you, thank you!

I’m married to the sweetest man I know– and together we have two little ones that bring loads of chaos and heaps of joy to our lives every single day.  

Outside of my passion for writing I love books, coffee, and food.  All kinds of food.  

I am a part time Professional Counselor, a part time author and blogger, and an all-the-time wife and mom.  

How is the book, True Love Dates, different from truelovedates.com?

The posts in truelovedates.com are essentially articles and ideas surrounding the topic of love and relationships.  I post approximately 3 times a week and am constantly thinking of new content and information based on requests from readers!

The book is a much deeper look into the topic of singleness and dating, and offers a “systematic approach” to dating and unique concepts and ideas that have NEVER BEEN published on the blog.  It digs deep into my experience as a Professional Counselor- and shares some of the most life-changing truths I’ve experienced and learned along the way.  It’s a book that I hope will change lives and relationships.  But like I always say- if you like the blog, you’ll love the book.  If you’ve been blessed by this blog, please consider picking up a copy of True Love Dates and supporting my work and ministry!

Can I re-post content from truelovedates.com?

All of the content from truelovedates.com (minus a handful of guest posts) is original content copyrighted by Debra K. Fileta and belongs to truelovedates.com.  

You are welcome to re-post small portions (up to two paragraphs) of the truelovedates.com blog posts and articles on your site as long as you provide a link back to truelovedates.com and include this bio with links:

Debra K. Fileta is a Licensed Professional Counselor specializing in Relationship and Marital issues. She is the author of True Love Dates (Zondervan, 2013), challenging men and women to date in a way that is psychologically sound, emotionally healthy and spiritually grounded. Visit www.truelovedates.com and follow her on Twitter (@DebFileta) to get your relationship questions answered and to learn more!

For permission to repost articles in their entirety, please contact me HERE with information about your site and intended use of the article.

Do you take new clients for counseling?

I am currently not accepting new clients for counseling, though I am offering both Email and Skype Relationship Consultations for anyone interested in digging deeper into a relationship question or concern. 

This service is for individuals as well as couples, and a consultation can be completed via Email or Skype. Click here for more information, to schedule your consultation, and for pricing. 

For more information about receiving counseling from a Professional Counselor, please visit www.aacc.net to find a counselor near you.  

Is it okay to email you for advice with some relationship questions?

I love hearing from my readers with feedback and stories!  Unfortunately, because of the amount of emails I receive, I am usually unable to answer relationship questions/advice beyond referring to an article, blog post, or portion of True Love Dates. 

For those who are interested in a detailed consultation or are in need of timely advice- I will be offering a LIMITED number of Relationship Consultations via email for purchase.  If you’re interested in learning more about this, click on RELATIONSHIP CONSULTATION. And please remember, Relationship Consultation is NOT a replacement or substitute for Professional Counseling. 

Would you be willing to come and speak at our church, college, or venue?

Absolutely! I love traveling and speaking about love and relationships as my schedule allows, and I especially love meeting new people and being a part of what God is doing all over the country!  I would love to join you as a speaker at your upcoming venue. Check out my speaking and booking page for details. 

I’m interested in learning about how to become a professional counselor- what was your experience?

There are many different roads you can take to become a Licensed Professional Counselor.  I started by getting a 4 year Bachelor’s in Psychology.  I then received my Master’s in Professional Counseling which required approximately two years of classes and one and a half years to complete my Clinical Practicum and Clinical Internship hours.  

Upon receiving my Masters, I then worked for 2 years under Supervision in order to gain the required hours necessary to sit for the Licensure Exam for the State of Pennsylvania.  Every state has different hour requirements and specifics for Licensure, so be sure to look into your state requirements if this is something you are interested in.  This enabled me to become a Licensed Professional Counselor and I currently work in a private practice setting.  

I’m interested in learning about how you became a published author?

The first step in getting published is developing a passion and having something to say.  It can be a passion for anything–but the key is passion, because that is what will show through your writing.  For me, a natural overflow from my counseling practice was working with people in relationships who were broken and struggling.  I found myself developing a passion for helping people do relationships right.  That passion slowly seeped into my love for writing- and I began writing clinically focused articles in local magazines and newspapers.  This developed into a regular writing routine, and I pursued getting published in magazines on a more national level.  I also continued practicing my writing by starting a blog and sharing my writing with friends, family, and anyone who was willing to listen!

Eventually, I developed a framework for what I hoped to be a book about dating and relationships.  The first step was learning how to write a really great book proposal.  This is essentially a document that includes your book idea, target audience, biography, and a sampling of your book manuscript.  

The second step is deciding if you are going to try to publish on your own or go with a literary agent.  I noticed that a lot of the larger scale publishers required a literary agent and did not accept direct submissions- I decided to pursue getting a literary agent.  I recommend the Christian Writer’s Market Guide as an awesome resource for a list of incredible literary agents as well as direct contact to publishing companies who do not require you to have an agent.  I don’t have any experience with self-publishing, but I know that is an option that’s available as well.

After you acquire an agent, they will guide you through the rest of the process! Though publishing a book requires a lot of time and dedication- I highly recommend it to anyone who feels like God has put a message on their heart!

And the most important thing I recommend for the publishing process is that you seek God about it–and be praying about every step of the way.  If He put something on your heart–trust Him to make it into a reality.  

How did you become a blogger?

I started with a small blog long before becoming an author. I loved writing and so that’s where I allowed my writing skills to slowly begin to take shape and grow.  

Soon after that, I started writing for magazines and other sites as a way to increase my blog traffic.  Right before my book release, I started truelovedates.com as a way to focus my writing around the specific topic of love, dating, and relationships- which is what I am most passionate about. It’s been such an awesome experience watching it grow and reach so many people!  I think the most important thing about having a successful blog is making sure you are offering content that people want to read, and writing as often as you can. Just like anything else, writing is a skill that needs to be honed in and refined.  

You don’t need any fancy tools to blog.  My first blog was hosted on a free site, and I used my little HP pink net book the whole way through my blogging and authoring experience.  (Actually, the entirety of the book True Love Dates was written on this little guy!)

Though I would love to upgrade to a MacBook Pro someday, I currently use a Samsung ChromeBook which I have absolutely love as my blogging laptop.  It’s super quick and easy to use as well as extremely functional for turning content into blog format.  

Do you accept guest posts?

Yes.  Though I typically do 95% of the writing on my blog, I always love sharing my space. If you have a God-inspired relationship article that you’d like to publish at truelovedates.com, feel free to contact me with your original article! 

Can I advertise on TrueLoveDates.com?

As of 2014, I am offering very limited ad space on my blog as well as opportunities for “Sponsored Blog Posts”.  I’m particularly looking for businesses and messages that I support and believe in.  If you are interested in purchasing ad space, I would love to get to know more about you, your business, and your company. Please contact me HERE with the title AD SPACE and I will be more than happy to connect you with additional details.