Newly Published Memoir Author Speaks About Her Experience

by Matilda Butler on December 14, 2011

catnav-interviews-active-3Post #67 – Women’s Memoirs, Author Conversations – Kendra Bonnett and Matilda Butler

Two weeks ago, we shared Terri Spahr Nelson’s experiences in putting together anthologies of women’s memoirs. Today, Women’s Memoirs is pleased to welcome Grace Peterson, one of the authors in Terri’s most recent volume, The Moment I Knew: Reflections from Women on Life’s Defining Moments (Volume 2). Storytelling becomes story sharing when we carefully craft our stories and seek publication.

Grace tells one’s woman’s story.

The Back Story: This One’s on Me

Guest blog by Grace Peterson

It was 2005. My best friend and I were pondering the idea of writing about our turbulent growing up years. We were both capable; I was sure of this much. We had been exchanging verbosely opinionated emails for several years, honing our writing skills and cultivating our confidence. A fabulous writer, I had learned so much from reading my friend’s spunky, well-versed prose. With each other for support, I knew we could do it. 

Early one morning of that fateful June, I received a phone call that would change everything. Twenty-four hours later, I grabbed my laptop and documented the preceding day’s events in hopes that retaining a factual account would confirm the veracity of a very surreal event.  

It took a long time for the acute sting to ebb to a dull ache. When an extraordinary incident occurred many months later, it freed me to craft a narrative with ample heart and soul. “This One’s On Me” was the result. The story is about my friend’s suicide and coping with her loss. I am honored that it was chosen for inclusion in The Moment I Knew: Reflections from Women on Life’s Defining Moments (Volume 2) edited by Terri Spahr Nelson.   

A Memoir Writer Describes Her Road to Publication

When I saw Editor, Terri Spahr Nelson’s call for submissions, I didn’t hesitate regardless of the fact that I had already gathered several rejections for various essay submissions and was coming to the conclusion that maybe, despite a successful garden column and blog, my additional work wasn’t fit for publication. Terri’s correspondence was different, however. Rather than dismiss me readily, she requested more information. What was I writing about? She wanted a summary. She was interested. I hit “send,” then went about my daily tasks while missives of impending rejection doused the tiny spark of hope that struggled to ignite. But Terri was still interested. And when the news of acceptance came, it was another surreal event. I hadn’t prepared for acceptance.

Since then, I’ve learned about Reflections from Women, an organization dedicated to empowering women by means of The Women’s Collaborative and Empowerment Model. Put into practice, I was invited to provide input on the title of the book, the cover, and what non-profit organizations would be the recipients of the proceeds. I was given opportunities to promote the book. I was, and still am, kept in the loop with regular emails from Terri and her crew. Plus, I’ve corresponded with fellow authors and made friends. I feel honored to be a part of something so special.

storytelling, memoir, memoir writing

Grace Peterson is a newly published author and blogger. You can find more of her writing on her blog at http://www.gracepete.com and her essay in the book: The Moment I Knew: Reflections from Women on Life’s Defining Moments (Volume 2).

storytelling, memoir, memoir writing











{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Grace December 14, 2011 at

Thank you Kendra and Matilda for the honor of being featured on your blog. You are two of the “friends” I’ve made along the journey. Life is good! Again, thank you.

Also, just a heads up. If anyone is interested in being published in future additions, they can check out the submission guidelines on the Reflections From Women website: http://www.reflectionsfromwomen.com

Donna@Gardens Eye View December 14, 2011 at

Grace, Kendra and Matilda-wonderful to see this promotion of the book and Grace’s essay…working with Terri has been a great experience…of course I was able to start with both Kendra and Matilda last year with submitting a memoir that was chosen…

ricki - sprig to twig December 14, 2011 at

Grace is a treasure. You were wise to offer her a guest spot.

Grace December 16, 2011 at

Thank you, Ricki. Takes one to know one! :)

jalal michael sabbagh February 24, 2012 at

l ENJOYED READING THE MEMOIRS ,IT TAKES YOU BACK IN TIME.THANKS.

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