Daddy's Lessons/Call for Submissions- Creative Non-Fiction
Last week, I spent the day at a high school, talking about writing and books. when I showed up, I had absolutely no idea what I was going to talk about, or if I was going to read from any of my books. On the way there, I received a Facebook notification that someone had mentioned me and made a comment about A Letter for My Mother--the book I'd edited--creative non-fiction, and since it was close to Mother's Day, I decided to spotlight this book.
If you follow me, you know the story of how this book started. The MIL whom I'd believed to share a mutual feeling of dislike with was dying, and the thought of her leaving this plane was very painful to me. I was bewildered by these feelings and being that I was across the country, could not go to her. So I wrote her a letter, and filed it. Later, on reading the letter, I thought it should be published somewhere and the book was born.
The task was not as simple as it seemed. I found myself shepherding, almost counseling, many of my writer-friends and women I respected as they moved through the process I soon realized to be cathartic for many of us. In the end, they helped me move to a place where I discovered that I had unsaid things to say to my own mother, even though she'd died when I was a child. My writing became the bookends of the work and the letters in between, written by 33 female writers and producers, became the chronicle of my own journey and tributes to the women who helped me to adulthood.
As I talked about this book, I rediscovered it. Although I'd edited all of the pieces, re-written some, it was as if I was seeing them for the first time and falling in love with them all over again.
I have played with the idea of optioning a few of them and bringing them to the stage or film, and still might. I love the piece by my long time friend, Shia Shabazz, and colleague Tracy Price Thompson, to name a few. I met Shia before I was published, and Tracy on the road in the early days as an author, and both and have grown with me and taught me things about myself. Reading about their personal journeys with their mothers made me respect them both even more.
Some of the stories are touching, some funny, and of course there are those that are heart-wrenching, but they all highlight the fact that there are things about motherhood that are universal and that that one relationship leaves an un-erasable mark on a woman for the rest of her life that impacts how she interacts with other women forever.
So what about the fathers? Since A Letter for my Mother, many of the participants in the anthology have expressed an interest in a similar work for fathers. Sharing that book with the students was like an intense study, and when I left at the end of the day, I'd decided that it is time for the father book.
So this, then, is a call for submissions. Did you have a strong father figure? I want stories (creative non-fiction) about you and your father figure, focusing on some lesson that he taught you. You can be male or female, prior publication is a plus. Although the book will include mainly authors who have been published, it will include the work of at least 4 people who have not been published before.
The submissions should be 4000 words or less. Deadline is June 3rd.
All accepted submissions will be paid.
Send submissions and question to firstname.lastname@example.org, as a word doc. No mail submissions