Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Lannette Cornell Bloom's Operation Awesome Debut Author Spotlight and Emerging First Book

Debut Author Spotlight from @JLenniDorner on @OpAwesome6

Memories in Dragonflies: Simple Lessons for Mindful Dying by Lannette Cornell Bloom

1- Memories in Dragonflies: Simple Lessons for Mindful Dying has a publication Date of August 21, 2018, which is my birthday. Do you have any comment on the cycle of birth and death?

That’s wonderful - Happy birthday to you!

I used to work as a pediatric nurse and saw babies come into the world on a daily basis. I saw the first gasps for breath, exhaling the first cry, the tiny fingers and toes, the bright smiles of the parents—life anew.

And I came face to face with the other side of the life experience when my mom was diagnosed with a terminal illness—which is the basis of my book, Memories in Dragonflies.

What I’ve learned is that each stage of the life cycle is special in its own way. It’s all how you look at where you or your loved ones are on their respective journeys across the metaphorical bridge of life.

It’s important to keep in mind that death is just as normal and inevitable as birth—though usually not as welcome. We all have to die one day, whether we like it or not, and I’ve found that the more you can slow down and become aware of the beautiful moments underneath the heavy, tough times, the more joy there is to be found in each stage.

2- Would you please, in 160 characters or less, give a #WriteTip ?

When I sit down to write, I tend to pour my heart out for pages upon pages without knowing exactly where my words are taking me. It requires trust to let the words flow out and not try to control them and form them into something they weren’t meant to be. So my tip is to sit down every day in front of your computer or a notebook and release all judgment—just let yourself write with no outline or clear intention so that the words can guide you. Write, write, write—and save the editing for later.

3- What ignited your passion for writing?

When I was a little girl, there wasn’t email or cell phones—when you wanted to communicate with someone you called that person on the phone (and hoped they answered!) or wrote them a letter. I wrote lots of letters growing up, and also kept a journal. In a way, it has always been my main form of expression and also therapy.

Because writing was always so personal and sacred for me, I didn’t consider myself a writer until Memories in Dragonflies had become a reality.

4- Could you give a tip for the loved ones who will be left behind as to how handle watching an inevitable passing unfold before their eyes?

Whether you have years to say goodbye to your loved one or the passing is quick and unexpected, it’s important to accept that this was their time and it doesn’t discount all the memories and love shared between you.

Make the environment as comfortable and peaceful as possible. Allow your emotions and the emotions of those around you to flow freely. Be supportive to those also left behind and don’t be afraid to ask for support where you need it.
Lannette Cornell Bloom's Operation Awesome Debut Author Spotlight and Emerging First Book - Memories in Dragonflies: Simple Lessons for Mindful Dying #life #death #nonfiction #book

5- What's your Twitter handle, and do you have two or three writer friends on there to shout-out to for #WriterWednesday ?

I’m much more active on Instagram @lannettispaghetti. But my twitter handle is @lannettecbloom.
I’d love to shout out to some of my She Writes Press sisters: @ktaylorauthor and @cathy_zane

6- Would you share a picture with us of your book in a photogenic, peaceful setting?

7- What are some of your short and long term writing goals?

Since writing my book and going through the publishing process, friends and family have been opening up more about their own life experiences. I’ve bought them notebooks and encouraged them to tell their stories. Though it’s not my writing, it’s one of my goals to get the people important to me to write because, I think, it’s such a therapeutic activity and it means their stories will carry on through the generations.

Another goal of mine is to blog more often—a personal blog is such a great way to share your message and the wisdom you want to impart onto others. It’s my mission to help others find the simple joys in hard situations and so I will continue to share my experiences and advice through my blog regularly.

And my long-term goal is to work on a second book and do this whole process all over again!

8- What question about death should people ask experts, such as yourself, more often?

Death still tends to be a taboo topic in Western cultures. In my own experience of taking care of my mom there were moments when we tried to pretend everything was normal and other times where the reality hit us hard and there was no way to pretend that she wasn’t dying. I think the biggest question is:

Is it okay to talk about death with a dying person?

And unfortunately the answer is varied depending on the person. What’s important is to communicate, to not skirt around the topic, and to listen if and when the dying person tries to talk about it.

9- What is your favorite book by someone else and what do you love most about that book? #FridayReads book recommendation time!

Author name: Anne Morrow Lindbergh
Title: Gift from the Sea
Love because: This is one of those books I’ve kept and cherish throughout the years. It’s a beautifully written story that relates shells from nature to human relationships. Each time I read it, I take something new out of it.

10- What was your inspiration for writing this book?

You probably wouldn’t know it from reading the book, but I did not write anything down during my time taking care of my mom. In fact, I didn’t even realize how much the experience changed me until years later. It was as simple as waking up one night with the overwhelming urge to write down my experiences. The memories were all there, as clear as the day they happened. I think I finally had enough distance from my grief that I could come to a new understanding and perspective of the experience. It was another level of healing I wasn’t aware I needed and yet I am so grateful for!

11- What might be the best use of time for someone who knows they will pass soon?

12- What most helped you to improve your writing craft?

13- What's your favorite book with a diverse main character? #WeNeedDiverseBooks

14- Can you think of any small change in the world you could make to benefit hundreds of other authors or readers potentially?

15- As a reader, what most motivates you to buy a new book to read?

16- How will you measure your publishing performance?

17- What was the deciding factor in your publication route?

18- What's the best book marketing strategy you've come across?

19- What is one question or discussion topic which you would like the readers of this interview to answer or remark on in the comments?

20- Anything else you would care to share about your book and yourself?

Memories in Dragonflies: Simple Lessons for Mindful Dying by Lannette Cornell Bloom

1 comment:

  1. This book sounds beautiful. I lost 30 people in the last 8 years and I agree, death is too much of a taboo topic in America. We need to destigmatize it so that the dying and bereaved can receive the support they need! Congrats on publishing this beautiful book!


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