A Writers Festival, Facebook and a Forty-Three-Year Dream


I have been a storyteller all of my life, a journalist/professional writer for 43 years and an author since my first book, Chicken Wing Wisdom, published in 2005. That's a lot of words and a long time to work towards my dream of becoming a nationally recognized author/speaker.

Yesterday I realized that I am achieving my dream thanks to the South Dakota Humanities Council Festival of Books.

For those unfamiliar, the festival was started in 2002 and has become the state's premier annual literary event, drawing around 4,000 attendees and showcasing more than 50 distinguished authors, scholars, and publishers.

Everytime I read that description, I pinch myself, realizing that those last nine words include me.

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To help promote the event, festival organizers ask participating authors to donate one of their books to give away to interested readers. A random drawing on the festival's Facebook page is the process, with people winning by commenting on a book's post that they would like to read it.

Yesterday was the giveaway for Beauty & Grace.

To be honest, I was a bit nervous. What if no one wanted to read a book they'd never heard of, by an author from a state thousands of miles away?

One hundred and seventy three comments and 82 shares later, I learned that my fears were needless. Yet it was one comment by a woman from Sioux Falls, South Dakota that truly made my day.

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"Heard it's a great book."

Beverly Alexander, I don't know how or where you heard that Beauty & Grace is, "...a great book," but I am thrilled---not only for that acknowlegement of my work, but for the validation that state by state, reader by reader, book by book, 43-years of writing words and telling stories is turning my dream into my life's reality.

From the depths of my writer’s heart and soul, thank you.