Elle Young, born Leslie Leontyne Young, grew up on the south-side of Minneapolis, MN. She was born in Cleveland, TN, to two working class parents who decided to move to Minneapolis when Elle was six months old. Her parents were in hopes of finding a better life for her and her two older brothers. Elle has always had a passion for writing, starting at three years old she would make up song lyrics and ask that her family all gather as she performed them. This passion grew into poetry and short stories, by high school Elle would ghost write love letters for her girlfriends and recite spoken word poetry before its trend. By college she became a self-proclaimed poet but she put her passion for writing and poetry on the back burner as she focused on obtaining her communications degree at St. Cloud State University.
Later, Elle entered the working force as a mortgage banker but could not relinquish her desire to become a published writer. Mortgage banking had made her successful but writing had become her life. Elle says, “I want to be able to do what I love in my lifetime, to wake up every morning fulfilled because I’m living my life by design.” With that in mind she took a summer off from work to complete her first book, one that she had given birth to a few years prior but knew that she had to wait until the time was right to finish.
Elle completed her first book, I’m Raising My Husband, the summer of 2013 and is currently working on its sequel.
You can learn more about Elle, I’m Raising My Husband, and Elle’s other pursuits at the following online outlets: Elle’s website, Facebook. Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.
I’m Raising My Husband is a collection of journal entries over a five year marriage. The inner-most thoughts of a woman struggling with keeping her marriage together and watching her sanity fall apart. It’s the truth about what often goes on behind closed doors, the desperation to find help and what most are afraid to say out loud about it.
Revealing and honest, this tell-all starts at the core of the real matter. A husband never taught to do better, a wife too proud to leave and a family broken to pieces. The voice of this story is all too familiar to too many families facing separation and divorce. It has become the proclamation of this country’s cry.
Uncover the truth about pain, real life and testimony. Understand why you may think or react the way that you do in love. Find your purpose and power through discovery of who you are today as you work toward who you want to become tomorrow.
I love writing because I am able to journey through and to someone/someplace else. Even when I’m writing about myself, which is what I did in my book, I was able to journey back to those places in time that had so much meaning for me. I could see them objectively and was able to learn and heal from the experience. Writing offers so many open doors to escape through, you can creatively take your reader wherever they are willing to go!
If your passion for writing could be a color, what color would it be, and why?
My passion for writing would be a deep purple. A rich combination of blue and red! Sometimes my writing is sad or deep in thought and spirituality while other times it is hot like fire. When they come together; all the emotion, passion, creativity and desire, there’s this fusion of deep purple.
How do you keep the passion burning in your relationship with storytelling?
I like to tell the story like the story is. In non-fiction this is a natural feat. In fiction storytelling the “telling it like it is” comes through your knowledge of what you are talking about and truly committing to “keeping it real” as you possibly can. No need to over express the meaning of chocolate, everyone knows how sweet chocolate can be and we also know how bitter it can be, say it without over-laying it. My readers are committed to my writing style because I say it like their homegirl would, you know the one that tells you the truth no matter what (but without the overly done cliché voice we often hear African-American women expressed in). I keep the relationship alive because I’m invested in my writing, my story must be everything I have or it’s not worth it to me. I think my readers connect well with that and because of it they want more.