New Release Spotlight! Summer Reading Begins with Mary Alice Monroe’s On Ocean Boulevard

New Release Spotlight On Ocean Boulevard

The New York Times bestselling author of The Summer Guests returns at long last to her beloved Beach House series in this breathtaking novel about one family’s summer of forging new beginnings against the enduring beauty and resilience of the natural world.

It’s been sixteen years since Caretta “Cara” Rutledge has returned home to the beautiful shores of Charleston, South Carolina. Over those years, she has weathered the tides of deaths and births, struggles and joys. And now, as Cara prepares for her second wedding, her life is about to change yet again.

Meanwhile, the rest of the storied Rutledge family is also in flux. Cara’s niece Linnea returns to Sullivan’s Island to begin a new career and an unexpected relationship. Linnea’s parents, having survived bankruptcy, pin their hopes and futures on the construction of a new home on Ocean Boulevard. But as excitement over the house and wedding builds, a devastating illness strikes the family and brings plans to a screeching halt. It is under these trying circumstances that the Rutledge family must come together yet again to discover the enduring strength in love, tradition, and legacy from mother to daughter to granddaughter.

Like the sea turtles that come ashore annually on these windswept islands, three generations of the Rutledge family experience a season of return, rebirth, and growth. “Authentic, generous, and heartfelt” (New York Times bestselling author Mary Kay Andrews), On Ocean Boulevard is Mary Alice Monroe at her very best.

Purchase On Ocean Boulevard Now! 

About the Author

Mary Alice MonroeNew York Times bestselling author Mary Alice Monroe found her true calling in environmental fiction when she moved to coastal South Carolina. Already a successful author, she was captivated by the beauty and fragility of her new home. Her experiences living in the midst of a habitat that was quickly changing gave her a strong and important focus for her novels. She writes richly textured books that delve into the complexities of interpersonal relationships and the parallels between the land and life. Her novels are published worldwide. With the same heart of conservation, Monroe has written two children’s picture books as well. She lives with her family on a barrier island outside Charleston, South Carolina and is an active conservationist, serving on the South Carolina Aquarium Board Emeritis, The Leatherback Trust, The Pat Conroy Literary Center Honorary Board, and Casting Carolinas Advisory Board. For additional information on the environmental topics in Mary Alice’s novels, visit her Conservation page.

Connect with Mary Alice Monroe

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Twitter

Facebook

Note: I am an Amazon Associate and may receive a small commission from book sales.

New Release Spotlight! I’ll Have Some of Yours, One Family’s Dementia Story by Annette Wick

New Release Spotlight-4

What my mother taught me about cookies, music, the outside, and her life inside a care home.

Annette Januzzi Wick longs to find the perfect care home for her proud, Italian mother, who is slipping further into dementia. In her memoir, Annette shares gripping truths about the mistakes she makes before ultimately finding a place where her mother develops a crush, heckles an Elvis impersonator, and magically bonds with her daughter through Frank Sinatra’s songs. Whether she is breaking up a fight between her mother and the Easter Bunny, advocating for her mother to avoid a tracheotomy, or struggling to duplicate her mother’s cookie recipes, Annette tries to balance the trials with the triumphs of being a daughter—and caregiver. But can she and her mother love without memory—or regret? I’ll Have Some of Yours is for anyone who longs to move past being a caregiver to find a deeply human and humane connection with someone you love.

Purchase I’ll Have Some of Yours Now


Annette Wick, AuthorAbout Annette Januzzi Wick

Annette Januzzi Wick grew up in northern Ohio. She graduated from the University of Akron with a Computer Science degree yet still sighs when her cell phone doesn’t work. For a time, she made her home in the Pacific Northwest until firmly planting her feet in Cincinnati. When she’s not writing, she is walking Cincinnati’s fifty-two neighborhoods or finding and making connections in the community.

Her writings have appeared in the Alzheimer’s Association Cornerstone, Erma Bombeck Humor Blog, Grief Becomes You: A Narrative of Loss, and Movers and Makers, and have received awards from Writer’s Digest, National Society of Newspaper Columnists, Sinclair College, and USA Book News.

Annette is available for speaking events, book signings and writing workshops. Visit annettejwick.com to purchase her book or learn more. I’ll Have Some of Yours is also available for order through Amazon and major distributors.

Connect with Annette Wick

Website  (includes links to blogs)

Instagram

Facebook

Note: I am an Amazon Associate and may receive a small commission from book sales.

AlzAuthors Publishes its 2nd Anthology “Alzheimer’s and Dementia Caregiving Stories: 47 Authors Share Their Inspiring Personal Experiences”

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As World Alzheimer’s Month begins I’m pleased to announce that AlzAuthors has published its second anthology, Alzheimer’s and Dementia Caregiving Stories: 47 Authors Share Their Inspiring Personal Experiences, Vol. 2.

I am a founding member and manager of this organization, the global community of authors writing about their personal Alzheimer’s and dementia experiences to light the way for others. My novel, Blue Hydrangeas, an Alzheimer’s love story, is one of 200+ titles featured on our website AlzAuthors.com. The stories included in this volume represent the writings published on the website from June 2017 through May 2018.

1566344163.pngThis collection of stories is a labor of love. The stories are personal and enlightening, poignant and hopeful. The six daughters of dementia who manage the organization and its editorial team assembled them with great care and love and released them into the world in a convenient book form to provide a soft-landing spot for those living with Alzheimer’s and dementia and those who care for them.

One of the more beautiful aspects of this book is that its authors are not famous. They’re not celebrities. They’re ordinary people who have lived with dementia as caregivers or as persons with dementia, and opted to share their stories. They’ve “walked the walk” and offer loads of wisdom.

We are grateful to our Special Projects Editor Jay Artale for all of her hard work and patience in designing and formatting  this book. We could not have brought it to life without her.

We are also grateful to our authors, those who are included in this volume and those who have written for our blog. Writing such deeply personal stories is also a labor of love, requiring courage and fortitude. We applaud your strength and selflessness.  AlzAuthors would not exist without you.

The book is available in Kindle format on Amazon.  Purchase Anthology Volume 2  now for the introductory price of 1.99. Don’t delay. The price will rise to its regular price of 4.99 over the next week or so. Paperback and audiobook versions are planned for future releases.

AlzAuthors, a 501 (c) (3) organization, features a new book or blog each week. With authors now spanning the globe, the site includes memoirs, novels, caregiving guides, books for children and young adults, and more, all written by those who have experience with Alzheimer’s or dementia.

AlzAuthors was created in 2015 after I connected online with Ohio author Jean Lee (Alzheimer’s Daughter), and Montana author Vicki Tapia (Somebody Stole My Iron: A Family Memoir of Dementia) and realized we could fill a need for overwhelmed caregivers by vetting books and blogs about the diseases. Since then, Kathryn Harrison from Ontario, Canada (Weeds in Nana’s Garden), Ann Campanella from North Carolina (Motherhood Lost and Found), and Irene Olson from Washington State (Requiem for the Status Quo) have joined our all-volunteer management team.

Our goal is to help dementia caregivers and others find quality resources that will provide knowledge, support, understanding, and comfort during what is often a difficult and stressful time.

Sharing our stories makes us strong.

For more information about AlzAuthors visit AlzAuthors.com.

AlzAuthor Linda Brendle Shares Her Alzheimer’s Caregiving Story in “Mom’s Long Goodbye,” a Memoir

By Linda Brendle

Several years ago I wrote A Long and Winding Road, the story of the hilarity and chaos that happened when my husband and I took Mom and Dad, both of whom had Alzheimer’s, on a seven-week, sixteen-state trek across the southeastern U.S. in a forty-foot motor home. In it I also told of the years and the life experiences that brought the four of us together. Readers responded to the emotions in the story – the humor, the joy, the sorrow. But most of all, they responded to the love, and they wanted to know what happened next. Mom’s Long Goodbye is the rest of the story.

This memoir is based on blog posts written as the events happened – when the details were fresh and the emotions were raw – and I knew I couldn’t write anything that was more real. The story takes the reader through grieving a continuous loss, some of the initial changes Alzheimer’s causes, the transition from caregiving to assisted living, Dad’s death, Mom’s last year, and the grief and closure of her final good-bye. It is about the good, the bad, and the ugly of Alzheimer’s – the harsh reality that dementia is bad and ugly, but the sweet truth that there are also precious moments.

I wanted to not only expose the realities of Alzheimer’s, but to strip away the face of the perfect caregiver and give the reader a look at the denial, anger and fear that come as a loved one loses herself a piece at a time to this insidious disease. Through sharing my own struggles, I tried to assure others that they are not alone, that perfection is not required, and that comfort is real. Most of all I wanted them to know that there is life after caregiving. Reader feedback indicates that I have been successful in offering hope and comfort.

One interviewer asked me what I thought my parents would think about my books. Here’s how I answered:

Mom and Dad were very private people, and from an earthly perspective, I think they would be embarrassed about some of the personal details I shared. I struggled with that before I published, but after much prayer and meditation, I decided to go ahead. Now, if they could look back from Heaven and see how their stories are helping those who are going through the same things, I think they would be pleased.

Folk wisdom says that “If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy,” and as I wrote one chapter in A Long and Winding Road, that saying was proved true in our family from time to time. However, I truly believe that both Mom and Dad would be happy with their stories and that, like me, they would feel that helping others through their experiences gives some meaning to their otherwise senseless struggles with Alzheimer’s. My task of caregiving was long and arduous, but after having told the rest of the story, I now feel that I have finished that task, and that I have finished well.

Purchase Mom’s Long Goodbye Now

About the Author

After years as a family caregiver, Linda Brendle began to write as a way of helping herself and others deal with the pain and frustration of caregiving. Now that her parents are eternally healed, she writes about life in the country, her feral Kitty, and her amazingly patient husband David.

Connect with Linda Brendle

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AlzAuthor Eleanor Cooney Reveals a Cautionary Tale of Alzheimer’s in her Memoir “Death in Slow Motion”

Cooney CanvaBy Eleanor Cooney

In the third grade, I was kicked out of show-and-tell for three weeks. I told a story that the teacher, Mrs. Fitz, had specifically asked me not to tell. She knew about it because she heard me blabbing a preview to some of the other kids early that morning. “I don’t think that’s the sort of story to share with the class,” she’d said, shocked.

Mrs. Fitz was a gentle soul, and we loved each other, but my story upset her. She didn’t want me to tell it, and I hardly blame her. It was pretty terrible. Roaming around the woods and river near my house in Connecticut, I’d spotted something snagged in the shallow water: a burlap bag. I dragged it ashore, opened it, and found a drowned dog. I remember what it looked like: A brown-and-white Bassett hound. Even though Mrs. Fitz was shaking her head sadly in the back of the room as I stood in the front and she saw that I was about to spill it, I went ahead anyway. I had to. It’s not that I wasn’t sad for the dog. I was, and still am. But I just had to tell that story.

slowmotionI know that some will find the story I tell in my book Death in Slow Motion shocking and terrible, and they’ll think I shouldn’t have told it. When my mother came down with Alzheimer’s and I undertook (in vain) to save her, a calm dispassionate voice, quite separate from the desperate babble of other voices in my head, whispered: Here’s your next book.

This is not to say my motivations were identical to those of that headline-grabbing eight-year-old. But I still know a good story when it comes along. In this case, though, I wouldn’t be telling the dreadful truth for its mere gratuitous shock value; the subject matter begged for a brutally frank telling, something as pitiless and unladylike as the disease itself. I was, by that time, a seasoned, published novelist, figured I had the “chops” to do the job. My writerly sensibilities tend toward the “noir” anyway, and you can’t get much more “noir” than Alzheimer’s. It was a match.

I started with an article, published in Harper’s magazine. Serendipity led me to an editor at HarperCollins, who said: “I don’t want the book to be just a longer version of the article. I want background and character development. I want to know who your mother was, who you are.”

The possibilities were tantalizing: My mother was a writer, and I’m a writer exactly because she was a writer. We lived in a town right out of Cheever. She’d had three husbands and plenty of lovers. Even without Alzheimer’s shuffling onto the stage, her life, the life my brother and I had because of her, would have been the stuff of literary memoir or a roman à clef. The illness added a classic dimension of tragedy to the story, but it was not the whole story. This is not a “help” or a “how to” book, nor even really an “Alzheimer’s” book, though there’s plenty to be learned about the disease, and about failure, including what I learned the hard, hard way. It’s a cautionary tale, and it’s also the story of a woman, my mother, a superb writer, anything but ordinary, brilliant, beautiful, and sometimes dangerous. I wrote it the way I did because of the writer she was. I wanted to bring her to life so that the reader will know, really know, what’s been lost.

About the Author


Eleanor Cooney is the author of the T’ang Trilogy, historical novels set in 7th- and 8th-century China. This September, her nonfiction memoir, written for Frank Gregory Ford, Midnight in Samarra (Skyhorse, NYC), will be released, the searing account of an intelligence agent and medic who went into Iraq in the ’03 invasion and witnessed high crimes and misdemeanors on the part of his countrymen. She’s completing a new novel, a literary thriller set in the 19th and 21st centuries in Wisconsin, plus a collection of essays, No Country for Old Women. Her work has been published in Harper’s magazine and Mother Jones magazine. She lives in coastal northern California.

Connect with Eleanor Cooney

Facebook
Website
The Tang Trilogy
Facebook/TangTrilogy

The links below are for her long essay “No Country for Old Women,” a new “final chapter” to Death in Slow Motion. The editor divided it into four parts because of its length. They should, of course, be read all together, as one piece. They’re in order here:
https://www.theava.com/archives/84373
https://www.theava.com/archives/84659
https://www.theava.com/archives/84904
https://www.theava.com/archives/85174

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For more vetted books about Alzheimer’s and dementia please visit the AlzAuthors Bookstore. Reposted with permission from AlzAuthors.

AlzAuthor Judy Cornish On Providing Dementia Care with Dignity

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By Judy Cornish

It’s been nine years since I left my law practice in Portland, Oregon, thinking I would semi-retire and spend most of my time gardening, skiing and enjoying the outdoors. Instead, I’ve been busier than ever before, with a task I just can’t walk away from. A friend asked me last summer why I’ve taken on so much and am working so hard. “I saw a mess and I saw a broom,” I replied, “and I couldn’t help picking up the broom and doing my best to clean up the mess.”

The ‘mess’ I saw is that we have a senior care industry well equipped to support people experiencing physical frailty, but that offers people with forgetfulness and confusion little more than misunderstanding, psychotropic drugs and locked doors. The ‘mess’ is that we, as families, don’t know how to help our loved ones cope when their cognitive skills begin to fade, and unwittingly cause them more pain and distress. And the ‘mess’ is that we, as a society, seem to have forgotten that life has three stages, not two: childhood and adulthood are followed by elderhood, and being an elder is no less valuable a role than being a child or an adult. The ‘broom’ I saw and picked up is what I learned from my clients—the many people I’ve worked with and come to love.

When I wrote and published my first book (The Dementia Handbook) in the spring of 2017, my dementia care business in Moscow, Idaho was keeping me very busy as the sole case manager, supervisor, accountant, lawyer and administrator. I had started providing dementia care in 2010, and founded DAWN (the Dementia & Alzheimer’s Wellbeing Network®) in 2014—because I wanted to help other families begin caring for their loved ones in the same way. I began developing a training program that would help families provide truly strength-based care at home. I’m still very busy; I’m running both businesses, teaching the DAWN Method, and developing a set of short, dementia care videos for families to subscribe to and access online.

Dementia with DignityBut at the same time, I began writing Dementia With Dignity – Living Well with Alzheimer’s or Dementia Using the DAWN Method® , and published it in January 2019. My first little book had explained the principles of the DAWN approach—what I’d learned from my clients here in Moscow as I strove to help them retain not only dignity and autonomy but also to continue to live rich and happy lives. But this second book is truly a work of love, from my heart. I knew I needed to give families not only the principles of DAWN care, but also the specific tools and techniques my clients have shown me are the kindest way to support their skills. Dementia With Dignity is filled with stories from my years with my clients—stories of their courage, wisdom and perseverance.

I’m still not retired. I’m still running both businesses, but I’m beginning to see that many of us have become aware of the ‘mess’ I saw back in 2010, that I’ve been joined by many who are also using their hearts and minds to the utmost—making a better world for those who experience dementia. We’re not there yet, but we’ve made great progress. Many families are now providing wise and supportive dementia care, at home, and our elders are beginning to enjoy more respect and autonomy, even with dementia. Once again—thank you! AlzAuthors, for the opportunity to share my vision with you and your readers.

About the Author

JudyJudy Cornish is an elder law attorney, geriatric care manager and author who has spent the past nine years working with families and people experiencing dementia in northern Idaho and Eastern Washington. Prior to her law practice and founding the Dementia & Alzheimer’s Wellbeing Network® (DAWN), Judy had worked in vocational rehabilitation and as a psychosocial skills trainer with the mentally ill. With her varied background—and education in literature, languages, fine arts and the law—she discovered a unique and truly effective approach to dementia care. The DAWN Method® enables families to recognize and meet their loved ones’ emotional needs, so they can live comfortably and safely at home for longer. Today, Judy runs Palouse Dementia Care, providing case management and care services on the Palouse, and DAWN, through which she consults and provides training in DAWN care.

Connect with Judy Cornish

Dementia With Dignity on Amazon
The Dementia Handbook on Amazon

Judy’s TEDx talk

Dementia & Alzheimer’s Wellbeing Network® (DAWN):

judy@thedawnmethod.com
www.thedawnmethod.com
The DAWN Method Facebook Page
The DAWN Method Twitter
The DAWN Method LinkedIn

Judy Cornish, JD:
Judy Cornish Public Figure Facebook Page
Judy Cornish Twitter
Judy Cornish LinkedIn

Judy’s dementia care company in Moscow, ID:
www.palousedementiacare.com
Palouse Dementia Care Facebook Page

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For more vetted books about Alzheimer’s and dementia please visit the AlzAuthors Bookstore. Reposted with permission of AlzAuthors.

Timothy Scott Honors His Grandfather in “Don’t Forget,” an Alzheimer’s Novel

I wrote Don't Forget as a reminder to myself and to all of us of the responsibility we have to the memory of those who made us who we are, and an inspiration for us to be that positive force in the lives of the

By Timothy Scott

Almost everyone I know has experienced the pain of having someone in their life affected by Alzheimer’s. The names and faces are different, but the stories are eerily similar. As is the impact and the pain. Forgetting is a terrible cruelty. For me, that someone was my grandfather.

My grandfather was a very special man. He was a larger-than-life figure to me as a child, and a constant source of encouragement and joy in adulthood. He was the same powerful influence on so many others in my family. Alzheimer’s took my grandfather’s mind, and it was hard for all of us to watch as the powerful man we knew slowly faded away.

But I treasure the memories I have of him, and to share his influence with continued generations, his stories have become my stories. The memories that slipped away from his mind have found a firm, honored place in mine. That is my tribute to him.

This isn’t a memoir of my grandfather, but it is a poignant story about the power of presence and memory in the relationships that shape all of us.

My greatest satisfaction in writing this book has been hearing from readers how they found themselves and their loved ones in the pages, and how the story stirred within them deep memories of joy and a commitment to cherish and carry their loved one’s memories.

I’d be honored if you read it. I hope it helps you to remember and keep the memories of those you love.

Purchase Don’t Forget

About the Author

Timothy Scott is a husband and father, and storyteller. He writes stories that celebrate the power of family and relationships in order to make a difference in the lives of others.

Timothy has climbed the corporate ladder, working in the recruiting and talent development functions of Dr Pepper/Seven Up, Inc., Trane Commercial Systems, Yum! Brands/Pizza Hut, and Southwest Airlines. He built a dynamic NextGen Ministry at a growing church, and served two terms as a city councilman.

Whether one-on-one, or on stage in front of thousands of people, Timothy is an engaging and effective story-teller, and has the ability to harness the power of story to inspire and motivate others.

Timothy and his wife, Stephanie, have a daughter in college and two spoiled dogs.

Connect with Timothy Scott

Website

Twitter

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For more vetted books about Alzheimer’s and dementia please visit the AlzAuthors Bookstore. Reprinted with permission of AlzAuthors.