“Your reading makes me cry every time I think about it. It was raw. Powerful.”
“You should put it on audio, too. It was great, and you did a great job reading it.”
“A moving account of coping with profound loss and the challenges of holding oneself together while feeling utterly alone. That Janice was able to collect her remembrances in a gripping, coherent way is a triumph of the spirit and a fitting tribute to Ed.”
These are the first – and very unofficial – reviews in on my book, “More Every Day: A Journey of Grief,” the story of meeting my second husband, the late Ed Godleski, and losing him eight years later to metastatic lung cancer. Their comments came after I did a day-long reading from the book during ArtHampton in Easthampton on the first Saturday in October.
I started reading at 10 a.m., and I continued reading until 2:15. I was in the Old Town Hall in Easthampton, in the Flywheel arts café. Outside in the hall were women selling jewelry, note cards, handbags and other fine arts. I was the only writer.
I started reading from the prologue, and by midday, when the event was over, I had read halfway through the thick manuscript. I stopped only as new groups of people came into the room to listen, and then I started up again.
Some of my colleagues in the Mill River chapter of BNI came to watch, as did several friends, and there was, throughout the day, an assortment of people who had been shopping in the hall outside. As the day went on, I gained confidence in the book because many people just stayed put in their chairs – some for up to an hour. When I would stop, thinking they might be ready to leave, and ask them, “More?” They would nod. They wanted more. Several of them wept.
One guy in the audience, a member of my BNI and a writer himself, called the book “perfect.” Others described it as raw and intensely moving.
Now people are asking me when the book will be published. I am self-publishing, and my target is January 2012. The book needs to go through a thorough, objective edit. I’ve chosen one of the best editors in the Pioneer Valley for that task and will be handing the manuscript off to her soon.
Buoyed by last week’s public reading and the positive feedback, I am very eager to be able to get the book in people’s hands. It is a book I hope will be helpful to anyone who has suffered a loss, but it’s something that anyone who likes to read will enjoy.
If you know anyone who would be interested in either attending a reading in the winter of 2012, hosting a reading or purchasing the book, please let me know as I’m starting a mailing list.
I can’t wait to share my story with you.