Tell us something about yourself.
I am originally from a wonderful island called Newfoundland, Canada’s 10th province. Many of you may remember this island during 911 when many US planes landed in Gander and St. Johnn’s. I moved to Ontario, Canada in 1976 with my family.
What inspired you to write this book?
My son Steven Tate Stringer died of suicide at age 23 in 1992, two years later my granddaughter Tate (whether boy or girl was going to be named Tate after her uncle) died a few hours after her birth of placentia previa.
In 1999 my husband Rhod died suddenly after a short illness. After his death, I realized I did not mourn Steven and Tate. I was a caregiver not a carereceiver! This was a wake up call for me. I then realized I had to mourn all three significant deaths.
I decided to keep a journal with the bigger goal of writing a book one day to help others cope and deal with loss.
I wrote in my journal daily for two years. I was 48 years old and this was the first time I had lived alone! It was scary and difficult. With the loss of my husband came many secondary losses like living alone for the first time in my life. My roof leaked , the local business where I bought his monument tried to rip me off and I had to take them to small claims court, my uncle died and several other good friends. This all took place within the year my late husband died.
After the two year mark I suddenly stopped writing on a daily basis. But it took me 6 months before I could start my manuscript. I was in deep pain and I did not want to feel it twice by revisiting it in my words.
When I had the courage to read I was stunned by the emotion that I felt and saw….the way I wrote….sometimes not legible…..angry, sad….so many feelings that I had to explore all at once. But I did know that the only way through the door was through the other side…”Helen Keller ” so wisely stated so long ago.
When the book was near completion my dear Mom of age 73 died of food poisoning (church turkey dinner). I was devastated and put the project on hold and did a lot of self reflection. In the summer of 2005 my 84 year old Dad came to visit me for a few weeks. I gave him a chapter of my book to read and left the room. I came back and he was crying and stated “Audrey, you are going to help so many people with this book”! This motivated me to finish this project.
How did you publish this book? Why did you decide to self-publish?
I wanted to self-publish because I wanted to be in control of my work and experience.
Did you learn anything from writing this book? What?
From writing this book I have grown emotionally, spiritually and physically and I know that I am using my gifts and live one moment at a time …not one moment….or one day.
What types of books do you like to read? Who are your favorite authors? Why?
One of my favourite books is Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
Are you working on your next book? What can you tell us about it?
I am working on another book called “Climbing the Mountain of Grief”- A Guide for Healing and Growth through Loss
What are you doing to promote your latest book?
I am a motivational speaker and do workshops and seminars, I do know that if you write a book and self publish….the marketing is up to you. Promote! Promote! Promote!
Where can readers learn more about you and your book?
On my website www.astringofhope.com
Watch my video “Turning Sorrows into Gifts”