- Canadian Ideas
- About the consultation
To present my parents' life story and my growing-up story I hit upon two ways. (1) I could combine them, but only if I could find a beginning, middle and end for a unified structure. It couldn't just be that they were born and died and did something fantastic as a climax near the end. I had important things to say about their effect on me as I grew up. The central theme I wanted get at was one of ego. My solution was to frame the book as a sort of psychological detective story/family biography. I said at the beginning that I was on a search for their lost egos and one question I wanted to figure out was why she wouldn't let him have one of her chocolates the week before he died, even though he begged her for it. That way I could keep the reader in suspense and also make it an honest critique. That's my way as a nonfiction writer. (2) On the other hand, not every reader wants to see a beautiful, romantic love story spoiled by too much frankness and reality. My second book, just presents the story as the quintessential Canadian romance. Like the first book, it contains excerpts from their love letters but I framed it as a tribute to my parents' idealism and my mother's great courage. By tossing out the subtitle, viewing them through the eyes of the brat they conceived, I had room to include a dozen authentic pictures of her life and adventures. Digital technology made it easy for me to do this. I love that I used a POD printer so that it is easy to order just what I need and to make revisions whenever needed. When I sell my books the customers have a choice of which printed version they want to buy. I take my i-pad with me and I can download an e-version of either book. What I also love best is the number of fairs, bookstores, bazaars, schools, libraries, shopping malls, seniors' restaurants, family reunions, friend's parties, clubs, etc. where I have so far been able to sell my books. I like to look on the whole country of Canada as extended family who, no matter who they are or where they come from, will find we have a touchstone in common when they look at my books. We Canadians are famous for saying "Excuse Me" but I find we say "Thank You" an awful lot too.
A Book of Kells: Growing Up in an Ego Void
Kathleen's Cariole Ride