Category Archives: Featured

A Chance In The World

Steve Pemberton is an AMAZING person. He endured horrific abuse in the foster care system. Thanks to the kindness of a neighbor, he found hope and the possibilities of a different future through reading books.

His memoir and the recent movie, A Chance In the World, are both well worth it! I highly recommend them.

I had the good fortunate to meet Steve at an event. He has made it his mission in life to ensure all people are included and valued.

The video clip includes some thoughts on narrative arc and the great job Steve did of hooking the reader and keeping them turning the page.

Find it on Good Reads

Northwest Arkansas Magic

My co-author, Thuhang Tran, and I have been busy the past five days in Northwest Arkansas. Both of us used to work for Walmart, so it seemed fitting that our book journey would start in NWA.

On Saturday, we held a book signing in front of the Walmart Museum. It was a gorgeous sunny day and the Farmer’s Market was in full swing. We had many friends and colleagues stop by and buy books and ask for autographs. We also had several Vietnam veterans stop by—we appreciate their service for our great country!

We had fantastic speaking engagements at Shopper Events, the Bentonville Rotary Club, and Walmart. People were RIVETED when Thuhang shared her story. There were audible gasps and laughter at various times.

Tomorrow is the last stop on the NWA tour train. From 5 – 7 pm, at The Center for Nonprofits there is a wine and author event hosted by Inseitz Group. The wine is free—that is awesome! Hope to see you there!

Birthing a Book

Launching a book is similar to birthing a baby. There has been much anticipation, preparation, fretting, planning, and hoping.

It is a new beginning with fresh possibilities and it also seems overwhelming!

Thuhang Tran, my co-author, and I met in a coffee shop in November 2016. We had never met before. Her personal story captivated me and we put together a plan to write a book about her unrelenting challenges related to polio, war, death of her father, Communist policies, poverty, famine level food rationing, and immigrating to the U.S.

Thuhang’s story inspired me because she continually reinvented herself. I have never faced the type of insurmountable obstacles she overcame. Her story empowers each of us to face our problems head on.

In the final 30 day stretch before the book launch, I had many grandiose plans about how to market the book. Then my son tore his ACL while skiing and needed surgery and a Mom to take care of him. My daughter arrived home for Spring Break along with her boyfriend—they had broken up on the flight; the two of them spent 9 days with us post-breakup. Then my husband needed shoulder surgery. While taking care of my son in Seattle, my kitchen flooded due to a leaky valve. Water traveled down hallways and into a bedroom looking for an escape route.

Yet all these challenges I faced pale in comparison to the situations Thuhang encountered. I treat my problems like a walk in the park compared to Thuhang crawling at ground level for 17 years.