Sunday, January 6, 2013

The time is now

Almost 10 years ago I decided that I wanted to write a book some day.  That day is now.  July 25, 2002 is the day that my life changed forever.  That was the day that I lost my brother, my only sibling to suicide.  This is something I don't talk about, but it has dramatically impacted my life.  The reality is that my career path changed at that moment.  Now I am a drug and alcohol counselor and I try to help individuals with all kinds of mental health issues and drug and alcohol addiction.

I think that the blog format will be the most helpful to get my thoughts out about this.  I'm not sure how all this will work in regards to this actually forming into a book, but it seems like going to "e-book" route is much less complicated and people will be able to get their hands on it much quicker.

My goal in doing this is to allow at least one person to benefit from all the pain that my family went through after his death.  My thought is that I have dealt with much of the grief effectively, but I am sure that this will bring up a lot of emotions.  This will be difficult because I do not really consider myself a writer, but I do have something to say.  Not only that, but the topic is very difficult and very sensitive as well.

A friend of mine suggested that I do some thinking about a few different points:

1.  Finding a book that might be serve as a model:  I found one that I wish I would have known about 10 years ago.  It is called An Empty Chair: Living in the Wake of a Sibling Suicide by Sara Swan Miller
I also downloaded several other ebooks that are similar to this
- An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness by Kay Redfield Jamison
-  A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: How I Learned to Live a Better Story By Donald Miller

Since I know nothing about writing and publishing a book I am asking for whatever help I can get.  Books I found that might be helpful are:
- The Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing a Memoir by Victoria Costello
- Writing Life Stories: How To Make Memories into Memoirs... by Bill Roorbach

I could spend a very long time reading these books along with tons of others that are about losing a loved one to suicide.  At this point I was surprised that there were a few books about sibling suicide.  When I looked 10 years ago I did not find anything that was helpful.

My goal with this is to present my experience and what I learned.  My prayer and hope is that someone else out there can benefit from it.

I will also be looking to find an "overarching narrative" to make sure that what I experienced can be utilized by others.

I know I will leads lot of writing support.  That's where you my reader come into the picture.  As I said I am the passionate one who has been through some difficult experiences.  It seems to me like the "best case" scenario would be that I could find someone who would be a "co-author" for this memoir.  The trouble with this is that they need to be able to get into my head and help me express what I'm thinking and be able to know something about what I've experienced.

I am also looking for a writing group.  Specifically a writing group that is focused on memoirs.  I'm not sure if it exists or not, but if I does then I need to be a part of it!

In regards to non-writing support I will be enlisting all of you to be behind me on this.  Whether I run with you, if you're in my men's group, or Bible study, or if we just sometimes hang out... or we've hung out in the past... whether you are friend or family... I need your help!

This is going to be a journey.  My biggest prayer request right now that I actually start doing things... I know I need to research to make sure I'm doing what needs to be done, but in the past I realized that I had the tendency of researching too much and not doing enough writing.  Ideally I would like this Kindle book to be available January 2014 if that is at all possible (if not earlier).