Sharing Our Stories: An Approach to Patchwork & Ornament

Although Patchwork & Ornament will be released officially at the beginning of March, I’ve shared some advance copies with people. Almost everyone who touches it expresses similar sentiments: “Here was a woman with plenty of struggles, who had the right to be bitter, but yet found her passion and created beauty anyway.”

This is the story of Patchwork & Ornament. Here was an ordinary woman, someone who achieved a certain level of recognition in her field, though not at the level she wanted, working through the challenges of her life through art and, as we discovered after her death, a substantial amount of writing. As people read her story, they often find within Jenny Feldman’s words their own stories, their own struggles, their own triumphs. I am so pleased to see this happening over and over. One of the reasons I chose to share Jenny’s work publicly was to get people thinking about their own stories, and maybe even to write them down.

As we enter 2010, I hope that some of you writers out there get busy telling your stories. The time for shyness and timidity is past. We need to know, in both fact and fiction, what you have to say, how you feel about life, what matters to you. I agree to do the same. I’m going to share Patchwork with as many people as possible; work on finding an agent/publisher for Blood and Loam; finish and load Exodus to offer free online; and start a new novel, as yet untitled. I’m learning, more and more, to value what I have to say…and to value what you have to say as well. I’m looking forward in 2010 to learn more about the work of others who, like me, travel an independent writing path.

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