Saturday, September 14, 2013
Judy and her New Book
A couple decades ago I decided (actually I was no dang good at anything else) to write. Write what? Didn't know. Make a living? Still up in the air. Find compatriots who were along the same path. Got that covered.
One of the people I met was a journalist, Judy Steele, who was writing a column for our local paper. She was the beloved journalist, but she was also hungering to write something much more serious, much more visceral. And because we belonged to the same writers' group, I heard big passages of a fiction book that Judy was writing, set on a plantation in Brazil. She had spent her formative years as a Volunteer for the Peace Corps—in Brazil and had loved the people and the landscape.
Something that never leaves your soul? Probably something you should write about. That's what Judy did. But then she got distracted. In the most massive way possible. Her sister-in-law caught a big, bad cancer and it turned the whole family on its ear. After years of treatment. Judy's sister-in-law made it, thanks to good medicine and a good family.
The book went into the dresser drawer. And after a cancer scare, people are just not in their right minds for awhile. But Judy revived her heart and her mind, and moved forward.
So here we are, two decades later, I attended a book-signing party last night for Judy, now Judith McConnell Steele, a published novelist. and Mill Park Publishing, owned by the astute and energetic Elaine Ambrose. I am beyond pleased. This is a serious, lyrical, sensitive, elegant book, one of great depth. I'm sensing that the book will have a long and fabulous publishing run.
And, thanks to Elaine, Judy is getting to do the things authors need to do: get great reviews, meet the people who love your words and your story, and sign lots and lots of books.
You can look up Mill Park Publishing and order a copy.