It’s appropriate this week to thank you – to offer gratitude – to you. I’m thankful for reader friends and for those who support my writing in any way.
Whether it’s by following my blog or sharing a post, hitting “like” on social media, by showing up at a book signing, or by simply offering an encouraging word, I am grateful.
I recently read a post about envy. Isn’t that unusual, to think about envy during Thanksgiving, a time to express gratitude for what we have? I had to admit I had been guilty. I had wanted something that was someone else’s.
I think back to two years ago. I had wished I was one of those writers followed by thousands. One of the ones whose book had been picked up by a traditional publisher, with my book in a store. One of the golden few. And so when my memoir proposal was rejected by a top-name publisher, I was devastated, though I knew rejection was the norm. I took it personal.
I had a lot of good, wholesome reasons for my book to land in lots of hands. Or in anyone’s hands. But my envy was the fly that spoiled the soup.
I think envy may come from a few places, but for me it sprang from insecurity. I felt confident I could write a good news story, having been in the business for 25 years, but memoir writing was a different animal. Even though I received some great encouragement at a writing conference in 2016, I wasn’t sure I was good enough. I needed affirmation.
UPDATE: The book event may be postponed due to inclement weather. Watch my social media sights & the blog Thursday for any changes.
UPDATE to the Update: We are on schedule. Please join me starting at 4 p.m. today at Master Jewelers, Olive Branch, Miss.
Of course, I was having a bad hair day. Or maybe it’s a bad hair life, nonetheless, this isn’t really about me but about taking grief and mourning out of the shadows.
The former mayor of Olive Branch, Miss., Sam Rikard, interviewed Elizabeth Coplan and me about Grief Dialogues: The Book. As I’ve written, I’m a contributor to this publication, the brainchild of Elizabeth, an author and playwright who resides near Seattle.
Sam is called the Weather Mayor around here. He always wanted to be a weather man, and now in retirement, he is. He posted the YouTube link (below) to the interview immediately, and it will go on OBTV, a small station that broadcasts in Olive Branch, on today, Nov. 14. He was a great interviewer, and he’s at ease in front of a camera. Me? Not so much, but I’ve really been enjoying marketing the book this week. Read more
He called to me to get my attention – “Mom” – but I wasn’t sure I’d heard him correctly. I wasn’t his biological mom, but I wanted him to be attached to me in that way.
“What?” I asked. He shook his lowered head. “What did you say?”
He refused to repeat himself. I then realized he seemed embarrassed. He had spoken accidentally, and to my disappointment, he’d wished he hadn’t called me Mom at all.
Even in my youth of 25 years, even in my inexperience with grief, I assessed that he likely felt as if he’d been disloyal to his real mom. She had died months earlier, when he was 10.
Children’s Grief Awareness Day is on Nov. 15 this year. It falls on the calendar as the joyful togetherness of the holiday season approaches and punctuates the sense of the loss of loved ones.
To mark Children’s Grief Awareness Day, I’ll be at Master Jewelers in Olive Branch, Miss., to sign books. I’m one of 61 contributors to Grief Dialogues: The Book, the brainchild of author and playwright Elizabeth Coplan. Elizabeth and I found each other via Twitter while she was looking for contributions. She’s flying in and will do a reading at the Thursday afternoon event, and I will read from my entry, Standing in the Gap.