Celebration at the Gate

The blue moon and Big Topics at Midnight came out within twelve hours of each other.

In the middle of the reading last Thursday night, one of the friends who had gathered to celebrate the official coming out of Big Topics at Midnight: A Texas Girl Wakes Up to Race, Class, Gender and Herself pointed out a large window in St. Michael and All Angels Episcopal Church’s parish hall and called our attention to the bright full moon. In a room filled with old and new friends, family, the palpable spirits of my parents, grandparents and other ancestors and friends who couldn’t physically make it to the party, my life’s story was connected to the far away moon. It seemed fitting.

August 30, 2012 was a gateway moment for me and Big Topics at Midnight. Seven years of writing and editing, and two months of printing and preparing my website and beginning my blog were officially over. That part of my journey with Big Topics has closed. Finished. Done.

For years, I dreaded the next phase, commonly called marketing. I have had no experience in this aspect of promoting a book. Resource books packed full of ideas about getting my book out into the world were, and still are, overwhelming.

Then I began to remember. Every step of the way, I’d been guided, supported and excited about what was unfolding. Sometimes it was historical research, such as finding more information about the general that led my ancestor Jacob into war in 1775—where, who and why they fought. Sometimes it was my own shame that boiled and bubbled and had to be navigated before I could continue to write. Sometimes it was a paragraph that started when an opening line came to me first thing in the morning and flowed for hours before I could stop to get my first cup of tea. I trusted that the marketing and promotion phase of the book would unfold in the same way.

And now this phase is beginning to open up with ease. I know I want to work primarily through networks of friends and organizations. The path ahead is getting clearer. Good thing, because I’m already on it.

Signing Big Topics at Midnight for Ron, my brother-in-law

I may still be in the dark about all the steps I need to take in the upcoming months and years. And the Earth is trembling by the crumbling of unsustainable and unjust economies and structures. Here at this gate, it is midnight.

And yet the night sky also holds the moon and the stars. Civilization’s flickering lights can block the light of the cosmos from our sight, but the light remains that the darkness cannot overcome.

Spirit and Earth. Moon and a book. Personal and global. Big Topics at Midnight is the story of one small life—mine—and, as you remember and tell your story, we can support each other as we wake up and walk together. Shared stories hold transformative power strong enough to change the world.

I am on the other side of the gate now. My book is no longer exclusively mine. She has a life of her own. I have some remaining responsibilities,  big ones, but we are on a different journey now. Ideas are bubbling. People are stepping in to help show the way. The next part of this grand adventure has begun.

Thank you. Help. Amen.

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