Still here – old memories and feelings of guilt

I received a surprise Facebook private message two mornings ago that brought up a lot of old memories of our deceased son Paul and many old feelings of guilt about what I could have done to save him. Even though he's been gone from our lives for almost eighteen years, those things can come up without warning any time of day or night. The note, I'm sure, didn't intend to promote those old feelings. It was a lovely compliment about my book and how my book will help the writer with her work as a therapist. However, when I read it at four in the morning, I was through sleeping for the rest of the night. Here's the message I received from a young woman who was in Paul's high school class at Crossroads in Santa Monica. I don't remember ever meeting her until she asked me to be her Facebook friend a few weeks ago. "For seven years Leaving the Hall Light On was on my Amazon wish list because I graduated from Crossroads with Paul. When we found out at our reunion that he had died fr … [Read more...]

1,390 total views, 16 views today

Sales are down

Maybe reading a heartfelt and sensitive review will help get you over to Amazon to buy a copy of my memoir, Leaving the Hall Light On: A Mother’s Memoir of Living with Her Son’s Bipolar Disorder and Surviving His Suicide. "A beautiful yet heartbreaking story..a must read! As parents, we do everything we can to help our children become strong, healthy, well adjusted and morally upright adults. Yet there are obstacles that we cannot foresee and cannot even begin to understand until we see all of our efforts unravel right before our eyes. This is what Madeline and her family experienced with Paul. He developed a severe mental disorder that caused him to become someone that his family could barely recognize. As hard as they tried to understand, encourage, and help Paul, his illness took over time and again. The ebbs and flows, the highs and lows, the abstract hope and then disillusionment became their norm. In the end, no amount of intervention helped Paul to overcome his disease … [Read more...]

3,952 total views, 2 views today

CD launch time is almost here!

I’m getting more and more excited. We’re having a party to launch the CD of my son Paul’s music this coming Thursday. I just ordered refreshments, I’m thinking about the logistics of bringing CDs and books to the venue, and I’m in the process of making up the program – all the details that go beyond producing the actual CD. From the FB event and eVite invitations, we’ve received definite and maybe RSVPs from 45 people so far. It looks like the event will be well attended. Hopefully more people will tell us yes in the next couple of days – maybe some of you who read about it here, today. Here’s the details: Date: Thursday September 25, 2014 Time: 7 to 9 pm Place: Pages: a bookstore Address: 904 Manhattan Avenue, Manhattan Beach CA And here’s a photo of the actual CD. My husband Bob Sharples wrote: "This compact disc is an introduction to the jazz piano of our son, Paul Sharples. Listening to it brings to me memories of evenings when Paul simply played for himself in … [Read more...]

9,181 total views, no views today

Blog hops – another way to introduce our fellow authors

I always love to participate in blog hops and tagging games, so I thank author David Berner, whose new memoir recently won the Chicago Writers Association Book of the Year award, for tagging me to play this week. David and I recently met (virtually) through our publisher Mike O’Mary at Dream of Things. I heartedly welcome David into our Dream of Things family. David’s book due out this fall is Any Road will Take You There, the story of a father who sets out on a cross-country road trip, one he never had the guts to take as a young man. He hopes it will spark a new chapter in his life. But the once-delayed journey now takes on new meaning when he’s forced to confront his family’s unsettled past. Plus, this spring Dream of Things will publish David’s collection of essays: There’s a Hamster in the Dashboard. So here I am tagged IT and answering the: BLOG HOP AUTHOR QUESTIONS What am I working on? My list is long. I’m just about ready to get back to revising my novel based on four s … [Read more...]

9,998 total views, 2 views today