Finding Joy

2022 is almost over. What a wild and crazy ride! So much has happened, most of it good. Some of it not so good, but in hindsight even the ugly parts were blessings in disguise. I call that a win!

One great thing that happened was publishing my novella Oliver. I love the story and it’s been wonderful hearing from readers who love it too. There’s nothing better for a writer than knowing your words touched someone.

Another great thing was watching the readership for WELL READ grow! I love this magazine so much and it’s turning into something very special. In September I collaborated with the team of William Gay’s archivists on a four part series to shine a light on William Gay’s amazing body of work. Dawn Major took the idea and ran! She published two articles on William that blew me away. In part two of the four-part series, she talks about how William’s writing crossed over into other genres, like horror and mystical realism. Dawn Major of Team Gay Explores Supernaturalism in Southern Author and Artist, William Gay. In part three, she did an incredible job focusing on William’s Folk Art and how his paintings reflected his writing (or vice versa) with this article Mystery Outside the Frame: An Analysis of William Gay’s Literary Landscapes. I didn’t think it could get any better, but y’all in December, thanks to TEAM GAY, WELL READ published a chapter that was cut from the original manuscript THE PIT before it was renamed and published as THE LONG HOME. If you’re a William Gay fan you have to check it out – if you don’t know who William Gay is – you have to check it out! Trust me – you’ll love all four parts of the series. It starts with a fantastic introduction from J. M. White, WILLIAM GAY: A LIFE OF WRITING and ends with LOST AND FOUND A ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSION ON WILLIAM GAY’S LITERARY LEGACY .

Who would’ve thought that I would get to be a part of something so cool? It’s amazing.

Which brings me back to the title of this post. FINDING JOY. That’s the name of a storytelling event I’m participating in this very afternoon. I’ll be kicking off the event on stage upstairs at Story & Song with my story, NEVER STOP LOOKING.

I hope I make people laugh and think and realize that being happy is a choice and joy is everywhere IF you look for it. We might lose it for awhile, but it’s never gone for good. I found joy again when I quit trying to be someone I wasn’t (working in the medical field) and surrounded myself with stories. The ones I read, and share, and write – whether it’s the freelance work I do for the Islander and three dogs write press, my books, or other people’s stories I share in WELL READ, I find joy in each one.

I hope you all find yours too!

Until next time, stay warm and be kind


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