I’ll tell you what this post was going to be about.
And it was going to be about my Doctor Who suit.
You see, I bought it four years ago (without, I must say, any notion it was like the one the last Doctor wore). It was going to be the suit I’d wear when promoting my first book. And wear it I did. I had the most brilliant and rewarding time working in schools, reading my work, signing books, running workshops. It was a brilliant, brilliant chapter in my life. But what followed was a whole load of rubbishness. A lot of pain, a lot of being let down and being bent out of shape. Realisations that I’d been doing things in the wrong way and, in a few instances, for the wrong people (seriously, the things you compromise for certain people defies belief at times).
So tonight was going to be the last time I wore it. It was going to be a funny kind of celebration of all the good bits from the last few years but, probably more importantly, it was going to be me shutting the door on the bad bits. It was going to be an important moment And it was.
That was what this post was going to be about. But.
I was talking to the very lovely Jo who works for the Alzheimer’s Society. She’d come down to my writing group so we could give her money. She was saying how pleased she was with how much money we’d managed to raise, and she was talking about what great ideas it’d given them for fund raising in the future.
And then she told us how useful the book (which contains flash fictions and poems written to photographs) had been. She told us how people who hadn’t spoken to their carers (wives, husbands, sons, daughters) in weeks or months have often sat down with the book and engaged with it. AND SAID SOMETHING! The book I’d help put together, with all the brilliant contributors, had actually made a difference. I’m still proud and really moved.
Jo said that the faces of the carers, when that happens, are quite something.
I’ll bet they are.
Now, isn’t that a big moment?
And the contributors, who deserve another big thank you, are:
Sue Heathcote, Caroline Smailes, Vanessa Gebbie, Joy Winkler, Lorrie Porter, Jenn Ashworth, Tania Hershman, Lynda Iverson, Jo Bell, Steve Howe, John Lindley, Barbara Challenger, Betty Challender, Jenny Martin, Katherine Elizabeth Lewis, Karen Crook, Sandy Milsom, Anne Brooke and Gay Horton.
Jo’s also agreed to write something for the blog on exactly how the staff at The Alzheimer’s Society have used the book – I’m really looking forward to reading that.