All tagged book club reading
Getting out of your comfort zone to a foreign country leads to emotional growth and change. A suburban family discovers that trading materialism for a simple life on a tropical island helps them reconnect in unexpected ways.
Most memoirists tell their own stories, often because they feel the need to vindicate themselves and other times for catharsis or self-actualization. But there are stories about people and cultures that, if they are not recorded, might be lost to the rest of the world—people who deserve to be remembered, histories that should not be sacrificed in the name of progress.
My life and experiences of those around me serve as inspiration and are my motivation for the stories I tell. What began as a healing process has turned into so much more. My stories are not your typical ‘love at first sight’ or ‘the rich hero falling in love with the everyday heroine’.
My team experiences taught me tolerance as I learned to live with inner city blacks, gays, French and Germans. As an educator, I applied that understanding and empathy to my teaching and coaching, as well as to my new experience as an expat in a different, more tolerant society.
Writers block hit me like a ton of bricks. I had nothing to say. My writing group allowed me to wallow for 10 minutes, then said, “Write anything. Write about what you know.” So I looked around panic-stricken and then looked down—there they were. I thought, I know about my breasts. Snarky stories came spewing out of my brain.
My writing is strongly based in the culture and values of the Midwest United States. My memoir—Growing Up Country: Memories of an Iowa Farm Girl—tells the stories of growing up in the middle of the United States in the middle of the 20th Century. A time when a family could make a good living on a 160 acres. A way of live that is rapidly disappearing from the American landscape.
I joined a writing workshop four months after my son Paul’s suicide death that ended his seven-year struggle with bipolar disorder. Every week for about a year I shared my deep dark prose and poetry about Paul’s life and death and our family’s grief when my instructor and classmates began to tell me I needed to get my writing work out into the world.
In a September, 11th memoir unlike any, my psychological adventure follows the ups and downs of bipolar, and examines relationships biological and adopted. So, when my beloved uncle died in the Twin Towers and the tension that had been building exploded. While everyone proudly believed I was fulfilling my dream to dance, I insanely thought I was a spy for the evil Illuminati who had unwittingly perpetrated 9/11.
After [my husband's] death, my life was defined not just by “widowed,” but as single woman and mother. I knew I needed to write about that journey because I felt many people would identify with being on their own and wondering where to go from here.
My story is centered on my life as an adopted kid. At the time of my growing up, adoption, for many adoptees, adoptive and birth parents, was a source of embarrassment and shame. Birth mothers were often sent away to have their babies. Sometimes, adoptive parents felt shame if they had problems with conception or carrying a pregnancy.