Off to the #IPPY!

It is actually surreal. Last year at this time I was recovering from major surgery and reading the news of books being awarded the IPPY in New York City just prior to the Book Expo. My book had just come out, and I had missed some opportunities to promote it because of illness. Winning an award was the farthest thing from my mind. But, how cool would it be to be with all those writers in a room celebrating an accomplishment like that?

I can’t help thinking back to when I was deep in the quagmire of finding my way through writing Replacement Child. Struggling with the voice for the story, the structure that would tell it best, the paralyzing responsibility to tell it right. A memoir does that to you. It’s deeper than a story. It’s your story. Often, your family’s story.

I know that all of the writers that I will be meeting tonight at the IPPY celebration have gone through the same angst with their own books, and it will be a little like meeting long lost relatives. I can’t wait!

 

Honored and Excited to Win an IPPY Award!

I am so excited that Replacement Child – a memoir, has won a bronze IPPY (Independent Publishers Book Award) in the category of Autobiography/Memoir/Family Legacy.

My congratulations to all the award winning authors!

You can see the full list here.

Reading and Discussion of my #Memoir #Replacement Child, November 12 at #JCC New Haven

Come join me tomorrow, November 12 at 11 am at the JCC New Haven for a reading and discussion of Replacement Child – a memoir. Hope you can make it!
JCC New Haven event flyer

Recent updates for Replacement Child – a memoir

First, many thanks to Madeline Sharples, and her Choices blog for hosting me today for a guest post. I hope you’ll check it out!

You may also want to take a look at my ongoing blog on Psychology Today.

And, a couple of articles in Book Marketing Magazine. Check it out on iTunes–it’s a great new pub!

And here are some pics from some recent book happenings::IMG_0800IMG_0799IMG_0798IWWG

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Talking About #Memoir: Themes, Messages and Book Marketing

In the last week I’ve been talking a lot about my memoir Replacement Child, the writing process and book marketing.

Booktalk Nation, a new author program from Authors Guild, was kind enough to have me as a guest. The idea is to support authors as well as local bookstores, and I want to thank The Hickory Stick Bookshop in Washington, CT for sponsoring my talk and agreeing to send out signed copies of Replacement Child. Also, a big thank you to Karen Holt, who interviewed me for the talk.

Booktalk Nation Interview

 

Women’s Memoirs, who have been my supporters and cheerleaders for several years now, interviewed me last week as well. We talked about writing memoir in terms of theme and message, and also about publishing and book marketing. Thanks to Kendra Bonnett for a great talk.

Women’s Memoirs: Taking Your Memoir Mainstream

 

Thanks to everyone who tunes in and follows my events and interviews!

 

 

Upcoming Events and Talks About Replacement Child – a #memoir

Judy L. Mandel
Judy L. Mandel

I am excited to be reaching out to more people at some events and talks in the coming weeks. I hope you can join me!

March 12, 2013: Connecticut Press ClubPanel Discussion: Getting a Book Deal.Tickets available at:    www.ctpressclub.com‘m excited to be reaching out to more people through interviews and bookstore events in the coming week. Hope you can join me!

March 14, 2013, 6:00 PM: UCONN Bookstore, 2075 Hillside Road, Storrs Mansfield, CT Click here for more details.

March 18, 2013, 7:00 PM ET Booktalk Nation – Online video interview and live Q&A. Author signed copies of the book available for purchase. For more information and to register click here.

March 23, 2013, 2:00 PM: Barnes & Noble, Book Talk, Reading and Book Signing. Blueback Square, 60 Isham Road, West Hartford, CT. Click here for directions.

March 25, 2013: 7:00 PM, Stony Brook University Manhattan, Book Launch Celebration, 101 East 27th Street & Park Ave.

 

On #Replacement Child, Writing, and Hearing Your #Memoir Story

Wildflowers 2In the past week, I’ve been contacted by people who were touched by my book, Replacement Child, my writing here and on my Psychology Today blog. Some are replacement children, and we seem like long lost relatives when we compare notes. Some have had relatives who were challenged physically, or disfigured in some way. A brother, a father, a sister. Some are struggling to dig up memories that illuminate their own memoirs.

I am grateful for these connections for many reasons. First, for the growing community of replacement children that seems to be springing up like multi-colored wildflowers; distinctly separate but of the same seed. We talk about our families and at some point in the conversation there is always one “aha” in our experience that we share so completely that I get goose bumps. A mother’s overprotection, a father’s rejection, a dream un-pursued, a love lost to indiscretion or withdrawal.

People who are the “other” in their family, for whatever reason have a great deal in common. An adopted child, now an adult, tells me she still feels that otherness in her life. And, those of us who assign ourselves as protector of a loved one who is different – whether physically or mentally, know that we can’t always lay the reeds down flat in the grass for them to pass unscathed. We, nevertheless, keep imagining how we could have done a better job at it.

The writers of memoir are all wrestling with synapses of memory. Molding and ordering disjointed scenes into a sculpture that reflects their journey. Discovering where the journey began and where it has led is sometimes the function of their writing, as it was for me. I offer some tips to anyone who asks, things that worked for me while writing Replacement Child. But, always with the caveat that everyone needs to find their own method. While some writers need a strict schedule, others recoil at that discipline. Many like outlines; others would rather put a pin in their eye. One constant, I believe, is to have other eyes evaluate the work and give advice. I’ll stick to that one.

As I start to have some book related appearances in the coming months, I am looking forward to talking to more of you who relate to my story, or are writing your own. Come talk to me if you are in the audience at any of these conferences or bookstore events coming up. Or write to me here. I promise you I am interested.

Excited to be Addressing the Westport Writers Workshop

If you are in the area, come join me in this discussion of transitioning to traditional publishing from my start as a self-published author on October 29 at the Westport Writers Workshop.

http://westport.patch.com/announcements/author-to-share-success-story-at-westport-writers-workshop-8bd034b5#photo-first

 

 

 

Reading from Replacement Child – A #Memoir

http://youtu.be/4XVu5ZcRN9c

A short reading from Replacement Child – A Memoir, to be released in the spring of 2013 by Seal Press. I read a chapter at Stony Brook Manhattan this past Monday evening. It was a fantastic evening, with several of my MFA colleagues reading wonderful pieces. @sealpress  (FB friends, just skip this–you’ve already seen it!)

#B&N Staff Pick#Biographies

Replacement Child is #7 today on the Staff Picks for biographies under $5.