On this Thanksgiving, four and a half months since the launch of my book, Dare I Call It Murder?—A Memoir of Violent Loss, I am thankful for my family of friends. I am thankful for the support, encouragement, and kind words I have received regarding this book.
I could not have completed this endeavor on my own. It took critical and brutally honest feedback from my peers as well as friends and family members (those who still speak to me) to get the story written well and structured appropriately. And it took your support, and your attending book signings and telling others about my book, to make it a successful venture.
I am most thankful to be married to Janis Cadwallader, my strongest supporter and without whom this book would not have been finished, let alone published.
And a big THANKS to my fellow survivors in the Survivors of Violent Loss Program, who lent their support (and Kleenex) over the past five years, encouraging me to finish and publish the book.
If you haven’t reviewed the book, please take a moment to do so on Amazon, or Goodreads, or Barnes & Noble, or wherever. It doesn’t need to be long.
In terms of numbers, since so many have asked, I have sold roughly 5,000 copies. (That’s as close as I can get right now—I’m a little behind on my bookkeeping.) That includes all formats: hardcover, paperback and ebook.
The greatest reward, however, is the volume of emails and cards I get from people, most of whom I have never met, who have had similar tragedies in their lives, thanking me for writing the book. They realize they are not alone, and it gives them permission to tell their own stories. That relieves their burden somewhat, and they can discover sparks of joy in their lives. It’s nice to know that my book is helping people in ways I never imagined. For that I am truly thankful.
PS: A word about the pictures.
The Native Americans living in what we now call Southern California relied on (and no doubt were thankful for) acorns as a source of protein in their diet. Never mind the intensive labor required to prepare the typically bitter nut for palatable consumption. [Cinnamon and sugar, like we put on toast, go a long way toward improving the flavor of this otherwise bland (after leeching out the acid) nut meat.] I and my pard Strummer gathered these acorns during an “acorn rain” in the local mountains last month.
The “holly” tree is actually a toyan, which at first glance is reminiscent of the holly. It’s indigenous to Southern California, and its evergreen nature and red berries add a delightful splash of color during the holiday season in this generally arid, brown-tone region. I took the picture while biking in Tecolote Canyon.