When we first began writing “Pearl, The Little Light that Shines” Deborah was participating in a publishing contest at a Writer’s Retreat in Vermont. We had always intended the book to be for middle-grade and adolescent girls. As we continued writing the book, it took on a more mature voice, yet we were already committed to the book cover. The book cover was drawn by illustrator and artist, Sean Tate. Deborah did not want to disappoint Sean, and we really loved the cover, so the cover was used.
Later, using her Publishing Editor’s eyes, Deborah examined the book and recognized the cover looked more like a children’s book, so the book was not widely marketed. Over the past two years, the book sat waiting to be reborn. We carefully edited and rewrote some sections, and added a new section and new chapters. I am proud to say, the 2nd Edition of “Pearl” arrived Monday, April 11th.
I am so pleased and encouraged by the response that I am receiving from people who have read the book and looking forward to the next installment.
Well, it’s been a while since I worked on the second book. I am still struggling with a title. The working title is “The Cultured Pearl”. My plan was to continue Pearl’s story at the age of 12. A lot has happened to switch my original plan. I have been getting feedback from readers how “Pearl’s” life mirrored their own in many respects. These readers were also born and raised in the 50s, and some in the 40s. They could identify with Pearl’s life.
With the cultural changes or unmasking of existing social mores, my creative mind has been expanded beyond just Pearl’s own world, the world of the adults in both 20th-century, as well as, the 21st-century challenges.
As I worked in the kitchen this morning preparing breakfast, I played Tibetan meditation track on You Tube. I like the sounds of running water and the solemn sounds of the Tibetan singing bowls. As I work with my hands, my concentration is on the sharp knife as I cut the potatoes. I first cut them in half then in quarters, and then dice them and place them in the bowl. I have a sense of peace as I repeat this process. Half way through, my mind began to replay an image of Grandma and Aunt Clara working in the kitchen. They both rose really early. I was always
asleep and never heard Grandma get out of her bed, go to the bathroom and dress. I was always awaken by the smells from the kitchen.
By the time I washed, dressed and came down to the kitchen, most of breakfast was already prepared and the table set waiting for everyone. Aunt Clara would leave the kitchen and go to attend to Uncle Josh. She made sure he had his basin of water to wash. He dressed himself and came down the stairs to his waiting wheel chair.
Those visions brought a smile to my face and a warmth in my heart.
As a child, I loved to tell stories and limericks to anyone who would listen. My favorite audience were older women who lived on my block or in the boarding home where I spent part of my youth. My most ardent fan was my friend Diana Amati. She was gracious enough to sit for hours listening to my adventures and experiences in Fort Washington, Pennsylvania. She fell in love with Grandmom Rebbecca and Aunt Clara. She encouraged me to share bible stories with her because during the beginning of our friendship, she did not attend Sunday School. My stories made Sunday school very attractive to Diana.
One of my other friends, Liz attended the same church. I had a totally different relationship with her. She didn’t have the patience for my storytelling.
Grandmom Rebbecca tells Pearl how pearls are created through patience and perseverance.
Well I hope that you do. Deborah is placing my first book, “Pearl, The Little Light that Shines” on sale today. The book is written with the young reader in mind, but transcends generations. It is a good book for middle grade, young adults and adults who love reading to their young ones. The book will begin shipping May 1st. The retail price is $9.99.
To order your copy and to save $2.00 on your purchase until May 1, click here PEARL.
Sean Tate is the illustrator and designer of my avatar and is the illustrator of the book cover for “Pearl, The Little Light that Shines”. We are so blessed to have such talented and gifted people working on this project.
On Wednesday, January 8th, The Arts Avenue, hosted by Cedric Brown, Senior Pastor at Commitment Community Church in Lindenwold, New Jersey, interviewed Sean. I hope you enjoy the interview.
Oops! I forgot to turn the camera when the Sean’s video was shown, but you can go on his website to see Ground Up Studio’s incredible work.
If you are an artist of music, dance, drama or literature and would like to perform or be interviewed, please visit their website.
The Arts Avenue program is presented the first Wednesday of each month, with the exception of holidays. Lord willing I will be there each month, presenting talented individuals in my network. I hope to see you there too.