Today is the release day for Hold Her Heart. It's the sequel to my award winning Carry Her Heart. And I'll confess, I'm first-day-of-school excited. There's a big similarity to having kids and writing books.
Now, if you're a parent, you'll understand first-day-of-school excited. I have four kids and I love and adore those kids. But they are not quiet. Even as they've gotten older, they're still not quiet. And I'm a writer who writes best in quiet. I know some people enjoy music or noisy coffee houses while they write. But I just don't work that way. I like silence. My favorite place in the world to write is out at camp. I love having no sounds other than the birds. So you can imagine my love of the first day of school. I'm like this:
It's a mixture of happiness for me, but also there's an element of excitement for my kids because I was that nerd kid who loved going back to school and I always wanted my kids to feel that same excitement. I loved the sound a brand new text book makes the first time it opens. It's a creak of the binding that says you are going to learn so much in me. I loved the way the school smells. I loved... I really enjoyed school! LOL
But how is a new release like having a kid? you ask.
Here's the thing...as much as I felt that Staple's Dad's glee on the first day of school, and as much as I remembered my own love of school, there was still a bit of worry over my kids. I wanted to get a teacher who not only taught, but inspired a love of a subject in my kids. I wanted them to see old friends, but also make new ones. I wanted them to be happily received on that first day...and the other 179 days of their school year. I love my kids so much and I wanted everyone else to feel that love and joy in them.
That's how I feel about having a new book come out. Like I said, today it's Hold Her Heart. In Carry Her Heart, I introduced Pip...a woman who gave up a daughter and then built a life around her. In the These Three Words, you caught a glimpse of Pip's daughter and knew there was more to Pip's story. Hold Her Heart is that more. What happens when that mother and daughter meet after a lifetime apart? More importantly, it forces the characters to ask, What does home look like?
I'll confess, I cried every time I read the opening scene. And I know it was absurd. I was writing/wrote the book. I know there's a happily-ever-after at the end. Still I cried...I cry.
As I send the book out in the world, I'm hoping that everyone who picks it up feels as strongly as I do about it. I hope it makes them laugh...and cry. And if you think about it, that's exactly what kids do...make you laugh and cry, and make you fall in love all over again on a daily basis!