It’s Tuesday around these parts and you know what that means: Author Tuesday returns! I have a whole lot of writer friends who’ve pushed out a whole lot of books (because books, you see, are kind of like babies) – and I can’t WAIT to continue to showcase their personhood and their words. Check back every Tuesday over the next couple of months; read the story behind the story, and enter to win whatever they’re graciously giving away. And, of course, spread the word!
Tell us a bit about yourself, will you? Well, today’s a little different because you get to hear from me, Cara Meredith. The Redbud Writers Guild, which I’ve been a part of for the past three years, just put out its first book of essays – and I’m honored to have a spot, a couple of chapters in. So, who am I? A friend. A wife to the HBH (Hot Black Husband). A mama. A hopeful bestie of Oprah, ahem. And a writer and speaker who’s delighted to have her words in print!
Let’s talk about your book; what, in a nutshell, is your book about, anyway? Well, just to clarify: Everbloom isn’t my book, but it’s a book that includes essays from forty-two different writers. I wish I could remember the exact prompt, but we were asked to write a piece on a tree: roots, trunk, branches, leaves. As Christians, we were also asked to think about how our story might relate to God, how our story might speak of a deeply rooted and transformed life. The rest, I suppose you could say, is history – because, give a girl a prompt, and she’ll write for a lifetime.
Do tell, what was the inspiration behind it? Switching gears here, because I’m just going to talk about my essay, “Moving Home.” As many of you know, my family made a major move from California to Washington five months ago; the essay was due weeks before we were set to embark on a one-way flight into Seattle. There was nothing else on my mind than feeling like the rootedness in Oakland was being pulled out from underneath me. I wrote the article on a flight home from a speaking engagement, as release, as therapy, as a hopeful throw into Submission Land. And it was accepted.
How do you hope readers will be changed by your words? Like Esther said last week, I’m not sure my writing needs to change anyone – but I’m fairly certain that I’m not alone, when it comes to the rootedness of a people and a place. Moving, I’ve learned, is a kind of death, so there’s a mourning that comes with it. It’s like part of your heart gets left behind, even though life continues to go on without you being in the center of it all. In that way, maybe my words will provide a solace and an understanding to someone who’s going through the same thing. Maybe it will grant them permission to grieve.
Lest we forget to ask, how have YOU been changed by writing your book? Again, not my book. But I will say to myself and to all of you that there’s power in sharing our stories. Although I’ve always called myself a writer, it hasn’t been until the last four years that I’ve really pursued writing – and therefore found healing through writing. Part of my healing journey in moving home has been through putting pen to paper and fingers to keys. And, seeing my words in print, further confirms this practice for me.
How and where can we find you on the Internet? Well, people, you’ve landed in one of the spots, so subscribe to receive email updates if you haven’t already! Be sure to hop on the Facebook train (and “like” my page), because we are having a fun time over there. You can also find me on Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest. Otherwise, get to know some of the other writers featured in the book by popping over to Redbud Writers Guild, and be sure to pay special attention to our talented editors and fearless leaders, Shayne Moore and Margaret Philbrick.
Friends, you KNOW I want you to check out Everbloom for yourself – I am so proud of the words of the women featured in the book. I’m grateful to Paraclete Press for today’s giveaway, too: a copy of Everbloom and a matching coffee mug to go along with it! Enter by leaving a comment as to why you’re excited to read this book; contest ends at midnight on Sunday, April 23rd. Good luck!
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