Yesterday, in my guest post at the A-Z Blog, I asked, "When do I get to call myself a writer?" Nicole of Madlab Post said:
I claim it, and I'll tell you why. It was an evening that will be etched onto my heart forever. Indulge me please as I share a bit about the occasion. (Don't worry, my brevity card is installed ;-)
I'm a sucker for the little things. Example: when I went to new teacher orientation for my first job straight out of college, I picked up my name-tag, and right there, under my name, were THE words I'd been waiting for and working towards my whole life: teacher. I saved it. Last night, Best and I were waiting in the very long line to get into the reception, and a woman comes walking from the front to the back, “Are there any authors in this line? We need to get you in right away so you can start signing autographs.” WOW. I got a red “author” ribbon on my pre-made name-tag! Others used a sharpie on a sticky name tag.
My first look at my story in print was right after the registration table where I picked up my books. (I bought some for my parents and in-laws). I found a sofa and found my story.
Right away people started coming over, “Would you mind autographing this for me?” Mind? I'm DYING TO. Not that I said that. I played it cool. On the outside. Inside? Jumping up and down for joy, happiness in every pore. Pure bliss.
Authors got recognized on stage! Standing applause! (Yes, there were tables and chairs, so it wasn't like they HAD to stand ;-) The various organizations that minister to the homeless population each had a booth set-up. The piece I wrote was about the director of The Center for People With Disabilities. The book included not just portraits and stories of the homeless, but of those whose jobs “intersect” with that population. At that booth they had the book open to MY story.
I'm done bragging now. After all, this wasn't about the volunteers, or the authors, or anyone who helped make it happen. This was and is and will continue to be about the invisible people we have given a face and a voice to.
If you missed my guest post at the A-Z blog, you can head on over there for more links and info should you choose to support this cause. Thanks.
P.S I highly recommend you visit Nicole of Madlab whom I quoted above. She's been an amazing resource for the co-hosts and has guest-posted several times with very valuable, creative, easy to follow advice for the challenge participants. Of course a big thanks to all of YOU for supporting me and helping me celebrate my first by-line!