This is a modified replay of an earlier announcement of my most recent publication. The editor is sponsoring a blog roll during the month of November and I simply must participate as thanks for all her hard work putting this book together.
The Moment I Knew: Reflections from Women on Life’s Defining Moments, is the second anthology in Sugati Publications Reflection from Women series and I’m honored to have my essay “Powerful Eyes of Love” selected by Editor Terri Spahr Nelson.
This whole process has been an incredible learning experience, from the writing through publication. The essay started as a challenge exercise with fellow writer Tami Absi, whose work is also in the anthology, and I expected it would be light-hearted look at one of Hubby’s goofy hobbies (doing doughnuts in the mall parking lot after the first snow). Instead, as the words hit the page, they dredged up emotions I thought were long healed and morphed into a paean to his love and patience over the years as I’ve struggled to overcome what he calls my “ghosts.” Maybe I’ve not moved on as much as I thought, but the new awareness I gained from writing this essay is helping the process. The eighteen months since I wrote the piece have been a time of amazing growth, and I’m thankful to Terri for finding value in my words and choosing the essay for this collection.
During the months between acceptance and publication, I found myself fretting over the intensely personal nature of my essay. What was I thinking, sharing such a story? How would family react? Hubby read it before submission, of course; I never share details about him without his approval. Same with our son and daughter. But that still left parents and siblings, some of whom I was certain would be offended. Was it worth the risk? At one point, I nearly contacted Terri to withdraw my essay. Thankfully, I did not, and my anxiety thus far has been groundless.
However, that sense of vulnerability, of exposure, is a chance writers take when delving into personal issues. Even fiction can be fraught with peril, with readers parsing every sentence looking for clues to the author’s life and meaning that may not exist. But still we write, and if we are brave – or foolish – enough, share what we have written. I’m sure many of the women who opened their lives and their hearts in this intimate anthology suffered the same pangs. Yet as our stories reflect, we persevere, in life and in writing.
Terri asked that this blog roll offer a review of an essay from the collection, but I’m hard pressed to pick one. Tami Absi’s touching story of singing to her father in hospice? Mimi LaFrancis’ debut publication honoring her husband’s loving smile, so reminiscent of my own story, and yet so different? Or Lisa Clark’s reminder that the decisions we make to not act are as telling as the actions we do take, and can haunt us just as relentlessly.
Sugati Publications says, “There are some moments in our lives that are so significant they become etched in our memories and they leave behind indelible imprints. These moments often change us in ways we never expected. We asked women around the world: Tell us about the moment you knew. The top thirty most intriguing, captivating and touching responses are featured in this women’s anthology.” In my case, not only the writing of this piece but the sharing and publication of it have left imprints as well.
Copies of this unique collection of thirty essays and poems from women in six countries are available online at http://www.sugatipublications.com, at independent bookstores, and through Amazon.com. A significant portion of the profits from the sale of this book are donated to three charities that assist women: Women's Microfinance Initiative, the Nurse-Family Partnership Program, and Women Writing for (a) Change. If you purchase a copy online from Sugati, a greater percentage goes to these worthy organizations.
Again, my thanks to Terri and to Sugati Publications for the opportunity to share my story with the world.
Sugati Publications blog roll extras for the month of November:
Girlfriends special: Save 25% -- buy two books for only $22.00 (one for yourself and one for a friend) available only at Sugati Publications
Free shipping: discount code BlogSpecial (to use at checkout)