Written Works

An Actor Writes

In addition to performing, Elizabeth has put her thoughts about performing into writing. 

The Power of Pretend: An Actor's Struggle to Unite Faith & Work

The Power of Pretend is being published by Sword & Swan Media House, and will tentatively be available in November 2019.

After years of trying to integrate her faith with her work in the performing arts, Elizabeth Bernhardt was still searching for answers. As she struggled with the boundary-blurring, temptations, and emotional struggles of life as an actor, she knew there must be a better way--one only God could show her.

This book invites actors and artists who feel they have to choose between a passionate pursuit of Christ and excellent creative work. Can we trust God enough to do the impossible? Can we dare to believe that by making God our director, we'll be the artists we were created to be, watching the Kingdom touch earth through our work?


"Elizabeth Bernhardt's book is a vulnerable and transparent journey of an actor who loves both God and her work. She delves into the deep questions that every actor must wrestle with as they pursue a career as an actor. Her raw, real and thoughtful struggles will help other artists realize their journey is both meaningful and relevant. This book is a perfect example of what it means to wrestle with God."

-Joel & Michelle Pelsue, co-founders, Arts & Entertainment Ministries, Los Angeles


Table of Contents:

CURTAIN UP

Why I Wrote This Book

ACT I: EXPOSITION + INCITING INCIDENTS

1. My Story: An Impractical Dream

2. My Mission: The Heart of a Pioneer

ACT II: OBSTACLES

3. Morality: Your Truth or Mine?

4. Worship: Pretend Is Not Real

5. Boundaries: Where Do I Stop & My Characters Begin?

6. Romantic Boundaries: Romances & Showmances

7. Seduction: Actors as Sex Objects

8. Balance: Acting + Family = Impossible?

ACT III: IN SEARCH OF A SUPEROBJECTIVE

9. Guiding Principles: First Things First

10. Superobjective: Defining Our Mission

11. Tactics: How to Harness the Power of Pretend

12. To Playwrights & Screenwriters: Actors Seeking Good Stories

13. To Directors & Acting Teachers: Shepherd Your Actors

14. To Arts Leaders: Ideas for Arts Organizations

15. Offerings: What Actors Can Teach the Church

AND . . . ACTION!

Instruments of Peace



"The Effect of Acting on Actors"

Elizabeth's graduate research paper examining the ways that actors are affected by their work was honored at the 2015 Southeastern Theatre Conference in Chattanooga, TN. In addition to presenting the paper at SETC, Elizabeth also presented it at the University of Alabama's Department of Educational Studies in Psychology, Research Methodology, and Counseling (ESPRMC) Graduate Research Symposium in March 2016.

To see the paper abstract, click the photo for a link to Southern Theatre Magazine's June 25, 2015 edition and navigate to pages 32-33.


"Two to One" Short Play

Elizabeth's play Two to One was accepted into and performed at Tulsa Community College's 2012 Winterfest 10-Minute Play Festival. The play takes an abstract, movement-heavy, dialogue-light look at the issue of trust in a marriage--trust given, trust broken, and trust restored.



Blog: 1 Slice of Apple Pie

For more of Elizabeth's thoughts on the intersection of Christian faith and the arts--and many other facets of life here on earth--you are invited to go explore her blog.

Since 2010 (when her husband convinced her to do it) Elizabeth has been occasionally journaling publicly at https://1sliceapplepie.blogspot.com