Journey's blog

Family is the Substance Abusers Support

Richie Richie Lopes

Lori's picture for book (2) Lori Cahill

FAMILY. Reading the article at www.webmed.com about family being the MOST important factor with helping an alcoholic or drug addict brings tears to my eyes.

Looking back at losing my husband, Richie and my daughter, Lori, brings tears and pulls at my heart strings with guilt. I think we would all love to redo an event, a talk, or giving support to the ones we have lost. 

I bring this writing to those of you, fighting and struggling with addiction to drugs and alcohol in your family. PLEASE, listen. I’m not a professional but know from experience what may work as a savior. 

DON’T push them out of your lives and let them pull themselves out of the quicksand. It’s impossible. How many times I heard, “They have to do it themselves, they have to reach rockbottom.” NO! Their rockbottom may be their deaths. 

Substance abusers are sick. You wouldn’t throw patients with cancer, diabeties, dementia, or any uncurable disease out the door. 

Yes, sometimes, we do throw them out to face their habit praying to God they come to their senses, or maybe we do to keep ourselves sane from the stress of seeing no hope. I had a small breakdown from pushing my mind and body to the point it couldn’t handle anymore stress with no change. I tried two months counseling together and separate. Richie’s thought after the treatment was he had no problem with drinking. After all, his buddies were and their wives didn’t complain. 

I’ve had people ask me,”How do you know it’s a problem and not normal drinking?” I answer, “When the action causes problems in the family, relationships, work, with life in every aspect.

BUT, we should keep our loved ones in our lives. If possible, a phone call everyday saying, “I love you.” 

Not long after losing Lori, I watched a program on television called Intervention. I wanted to learn what I did wrong and what I could have done better. A woman, who looked to be in her early twenties, came close to dying in the hospital from her liver giving out. Her family was called to say goodbye.

To the doctor’s and counselor’s shock, she survived. A counselor asked her, “How? 

She replied, “My family. No matter where I was, what condition I was in, my family took turns; siblings, parents, relatives, and friends, called me each day or came by visiting to let me know they loved me. It was their love that pulled me through.”

How I wish I had done that loving jester. How many nights I wondered where Richie and Lori were, especially, Lori. Richie always found his way home nightly, but because I had made no demands on him, he went into blackouts, abusing me and causing my two daughters to witness things children shouldn’t see. 

Lori disappeared for months living in with other alcoholics and drug users and never got out of the atmosphire. When she did live with us, her aunt, her sister, she still found ways to enter back into that black hole.

So my strongest advice to all of you, please, do your best to keep in touch. If they are under eighteen, commit them to a center, fighting or kicking, but they will be alive. 

Alberta Sequeira
[email protected]
Purchase Books at www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira

What isn't Working for the Alcoholic and drug users?

Ignoring Alcohol Abuse

 

195_Someone_Stop_This_Merry-Go-Round-An_Alcoholic_Family_In_Trouble

This is my first book, opening up my life with a husband hooked on alcohol. The book is honest with reality where ignoring the signs of abnormal drinking…and not doing anything about it, brings the addicted deeper into their habit. 

Someone Stop This Merry-Go-Round tells of the conflict, confusion, and fear I dealt with behind closed doors. It started in the late 1970s and I see many families living the life I had back then. There is no reason to because alcohol and drug abuse are open in today’s world. Back then, we were ashamed our loved one was fighting this or we were hiding it, which protects them from making choices with their lives. 

There are many lessons in this book on what I’d do differently today​ if I had the knowledge back then. The non-drinker becomes just as sick because we remember what happened during the blackouts. Sitting back and doing nothing made me as bad as my husband’s​ actions because we allowed our two young daughters to witness battles they never should have to cause​ them to live in fear and insecurity. 

Follow the sequel Please, God, Not Two about losing my daughter, Lori, after Richie died from the same disease. 

Both books can be purchased at www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira

Alberta Sequeira
[email protected]
 

Need a Speaker?

Speaker

SESSION KEY-NOTES FOR TALKS




”The Effect of Alcoholism on the Whole Family”

* The devastating toll of alcoholism on the family
* The self-destruction of the addict
* For those looking for strength from their own alcoholic-driven problems
* The enabling
* Blackouts/physical and emotional abuse
* Denial
* Protecting the children
* Breakdowns
* Feelings of hopelessness
* Communication in the marriage
* Professional help
* Separation or divorce
* Ignoring the signs of teenage drinking
* Hidden emotional problems with the children
* Taking time to listen and communicate with your teen
* Giving complete support
* Being involved in their counseling, doctor’s appointments and recovery program 

“My Spiritual Changes Within” 

* Focus on relationships with our loved ones
* Strengthening your belief in your faith
* Tours to Medjugorje/spiritual renewals
* Alberta’s spiritual experience in Medjugorje
* The secrets Our Lady is giving the visionaries
* Description of the apparitions
* The importance of Confession
* Miracles all around us
* Awareness of God in our lives
* Alberta encourages us to examine our life
* Recognize the value of thankfulness
* Saying goodbye to our loved ones
* Renew the joy in life 



”Where am I Heading?”
(School Program) 

* The introduction to alcohol and drugs
* Signs of alcohol abuse
* Following the crowd
* Binge drinking
* Hereditary or a disease
* Habit, action, location, and friends
* Facing your family and school problems
* Recovery programs
* Breaking from the drinking and drug friends
* Getting on with life
* The reality of Cirrhosis of the Liver 

**Alberta is willing to talk on any topic you may want for your event. She would love to discuss what would be the best fit. Please feel free to send questions to [email protected]

Visit her website at http://www.albertasequeira.wordpress.com

References from the Bristol Correction Office at Faunce Corner Road in North Dartmouth, MA:
1. Rui M. Lima, MA, MSW, LICSW, Director of Substance Abuse & Social Servies Programs & Treatment: Telephone: 508-995-6400 ext. 2821
2. Matthew Robitaille, Director of Classification and Programs ; Telephone: 508-995-6400 ext. 2504

Family suffering with the addict

poster family addiction

Interventions are not only for the alcohol or drug user. As family members, we have many problems ourselves. Not facing them, realizing them, and correcting them can pass the stress over to the addicted. 

Intervention is a final step hoping to get the user to admit themselves into a recovery program or a rehabilitation center. If they are under eighteen, this is in your control. Over that age, they are in control.

Alcoholic and Addicts are great manipulators. We are great for carrying the load of feeling guilty when we make demands. We do need to treat this problem as a group–and listen to each other. 

After losing a husband and daughter from substance abuse, I could list many mistakes I chose, which I will list another time. Doing “nothing” and thinking this problem will ride itself out, is foolish. It’s not going to go away without dealing with it. And if you don’t, your loved one could be walking head-on into a freight train. 

Some users want help while others think they can handle the drinking or drugs. Like my daughter, Lori, she told her sister that she couldn’t see her life without a drink. That’s after three rehab stays to dry out and get counseling. 

I don’t take the blame for her death. We all have choices. But, I will take the blame for not listening, and staying by her side more with conversations which would have shown I loved her. Words are good, but the action is better. 

What I would give to go back and handle the problems when I saw them; some, I didn’t. It’s too late to get her or Richie back. I’m reaching out to family members saying, “Don’t give up on them, show your love, listen, put an arm around them, go to counseling together, if underage and they are killing their organs, admit them without guilt. Better they hate you than you burying them.

And last, pray together. Yes, pray. Go to your place of worship. 

Alberta Sequeira
[email protected]
Books at www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira

What is and isn't Working for the Alcoholic and Addict

BookCoverPreview.do

Having a loved one who is hooked on alcohol or drug abuse is horrifying. I lost both my husband and daughter from this world-wide disease. When I did, I wanted to know what I could have done better. Where to get the answers? I went directly to the source; the alcoholics, drug and prescription users who are struggling to get their life back. I asked them over 23 questions to learn what they think is and isn’t working in their programs. What do they need from us as family members, counselors, or doctors? 

One woman started drinking at five years old and another at seven. They follow what the parents do.  This is why I believe education with substance abuse should start in first grade.  Children are more informed about the use than we think.

This is the book not only family members but the professionals. As for readers who are struggling themselves, this is a book you will be able to relate to yourself. This book is a benefit to add to libraries and bookstores.

There are thirty-four testimonial stories of users from the USA and Canada. They are raw and honest. 

Addicts Statements:

Negotiating the ups and downs of the first few years of recovery contain numerous pitfalls which those in recovery must have the right kind of help with. The best-intention of friends, family, lovers, and co-workers can be healthy supports or obstacles to long-term sobriety. Having the addicts tell their story of what worked for them and what didn’t or doesn’t work would be a most helpful addition to the literature on the subject of addiction and recovery.
Addicts sharing their experience, strength, ​and hope with others​ is​ something that only a recovering addict or alcoholic can do.
It is a unique gift. ~John Daubney ~ Author, Mentor, and Retreat Leader
___________
I was tired of getting sick, my hands shaking, my vision deteriorating, my nose bleeding, my bowels moving sporadically, not sleeping and feeling safe, along with the violence and running from many situations being paranoid to the point of staying home all day.
~CW
____________
I would tell doctors and counselors to listen to us. We are drinking for a reason, but we can’t stop on our own. Help us to identify the reason we are drinking. What are we afraid of? What are we trying to hide, our insecurities, our short-comings? Maybe we just don’t like who we are sober and truly believe we are better people when we are drinking or using drugs. Most of all treat us as humans, not a disease.
~Anonymous
______________
It was very enjoyable to write this and take a look back on​ the journey to recovery! It helps a lot with letting go. The past does not define me anymore. It also reinforces the gratitude I have for sobriety.
~ Anonymous
_______________

Reviews:

I​ thought the book was an excellent account of the lives and stories of those people …

Many​ addicts stories
Very informative reading many addicts stories. What made them seek help. What helped them stay sober. What length of time needed in treatment. What treatment programs need.

John R. Daubney
5.0 out of 5 stars​ A Light in the Darkness!
Rarely has any​ book described a solution to such a devastating public and personal health issue, in such a variety of voices and pathways, as does Alberta Sequeira’s “What is and isn’t​ Working for the Alcoholic.”

Thomas Cirignano
There’s no better source of insight and understanding that​ the thoughts and beliefs of those afflicted. This was an ingenious concept. Each authentic and emotional story within this book gives you an understanding of the delusional workings of the alcoholic and addicted mindset. 

Alberta Sequeira
[email protected]
Order books directly at www.amazon.com/author/albertasequeira

Boston Events

From: NWU, Boston Chapter <[email protected]>
Date: Fri, Jan 18, 2019, at 3:01 PM
Subject: January Update 2019
From: [email protected]>


National Writers Union - Boston Chapter
January Update 2019

 Writers Night Out, Monday, January 21 (MLK Day)    
Our Fabulous Annual Book Party, Sunday, January 27
Our Book Party Needs You
The Beginning of America, <strong>Monday, February 4</strong>

WRITERS' DAY CAMP RESCHEDULED to Saturday, February 16
What Our Boston Chapter Accomplished in 2018
What Books Shaped Your Life?
Upcoming Events

KUDOS
Publicize Your Events and Services Here and On Our Website
The NWU-BOS Listserv Is Here For You
 
WRITERS NIGHT OUT
MONDAY, JANUARY 21
6:00-8:00 P.M.
CHRISTOPHER'S, CAMBRIDGE

At last month's Writers Night Out
Hello to Boston Chapter NWU Members and Friends:

There are many events this coming Monday--community breakfasts and lunches, lectures and panels and the like--to celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
We encourage you to attend one or to acknowledge his contribution in your own personal way...read his timeless "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" or watch a clip of his "I Have a Dream" speech with family and friends.

And in the evening, head over to Christopher's to join NWU colleagues and friends for our monthly chat and chew. Now more than ever is a good time to celebrate community and enjoy some intelligent conversation...

Christopher's is at 1920 Massachusetts Avenue, across the street from the Porter Square subway stop. There's metered parking on Mass Ave. and permit-only parking on side streets. (Don't park in the Porter Square Shopping Center lot; they tow.)

Hope to see you there!

Your Boston Chapter Steering Committee

Questions? Click here.


OUR FABULOUS ANNUAL BOOK PARTY
SUNDAY, JANUARY 27, 2019
2:00 TO 5:00 P.M.
THE DANCE COMPLEX
536 MASSACHUSETTS AVENUE, CAMBRIDGE


Keynote Speaker "Miss Manners" Robin Abrahams
Our annual Book Party, where we celebrate members who have had a book published in the previous year, happens Sunday, January 27th, at the Dance Complex
in Cambridge's Central Square. It's easy to reach by MBTA and parking is free on Sundays.

The day will feature short readings from our recently published authors and a keynote talk by Robin Abrahams, The Boston Globe's "Miss Conduct" columnist. Robin, who has a B.A. in theater and a Ph.D. in psychology, has experience as a stand-up comedian as well as a business writer, a teacher of psychology, and the author of Miss Conduct's Mind Over Manners. She has been writing the column since 2005.

Suggested donation is $10. Pizza and non-alcoholic drinks will be provided.


 Readers at Our 2018 Book Party


volunteer OUR BOOK PARTY NEEDS YOU

Would you like to be a SPONSOR? A donation of $25 to $100 will help us defray the costs of the book party and our Boston chapter's work. 

Or would you like to VOLUNTEER to help us set up, tear down, staff the registration desk, sell raffle tickets, or otherwise contribute to making the party run smoothly?

If you want to help us in either or both of these ways, contact Barbara Mende at  [email protected] Thank you in advance!

 
"THE BEGINNING OF AMERICA"
PORTER SQUARE BOOKS
FEBRUARY 4, 2019

Our Boston chapter will be the curator of a reading and discussion of The Beginning of America: Personal Narratives About Being Mixed Race in the 21st Century, edited by Cathy J. Schlund-Vials and Tara Betts, at Porter Square Books on February 4, 2019, from 7 to 9 pm. 

Four contributors to this "race matters" anthology will share their personal accounts of being mixed race people in the United States: Nadine Knight, Abra Mims, Via Perkins, and series editor Sean Frederick Forbes. Nadine Knight Director of Africana Studies at Holy Cross College in Worcester. Abra Mims blogs on mothering and race, and is writing a memoir. Via Perkins is a Boston area journalist. Sean Frederick Forbes is series editor of the 2Leaf Press Explorations in Diversity series and director of the creative writing program at the University of Connecticut. For a review of the anthology, click here. 

The collection of personal narratives by 39 poets, writers, teachers, professors, artists, and activists articulates the complexities of interracial life. This absorbing and thought-provoking collection of stories explores racial identity, alienation, with people often forced to choose between races and cultures in their search for self-identity. While underscoring the complexity of the mixed-race experience, they offer a genuine, poignant, enlightening and empowering message to all readers.  

 
RESCHEDULED!
WRITERS' DAY CAMP
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2019
10 A.M. to 4 P.M.
BROOKLINE COMMUNITY FOUNDATION
40 WEBSTER PLACE, BROOKLINE

This is Charles Coe, inviting you to join me for our next WRITERS' DAY CAMP, a writing workshop happening Saturday, February 16th from 10 to 3 at the Brookline Community Foundation, 40 Webster Place, Brookline (Brookline Village). PLEASE NOTE THAT THE DATE HAS BEEN CHANGED.

The day will include writing prompts and exercises, discussion of each others' work and coaching on how to read before a group...a day of "serious fun." If you're looking to jump start your writing, please join us. 

"We left charged up and inspired and ready to hit the keyboard."-- NWU Boston co-chair Barbara Beckwith, describing our recent WRITERS' DAY CAMP.

The workshop is in Brookline Village, two short blocks from the Brookline Village T stop, with ample on-street metered parking. 

The event is a fundraiser for the Boston Chapter of the National Writers Union, of which I'm co-chair. The fee is $100 (sliding scale available). VEGETARIAN LUNCH PROVIDED. To register, or for more information: [email protected]

ABOUT ME
I'm the author of two books of poetry and one novel. Memento Mori my next volume of poetry, will be published in April of 2019. I've taught at numerous writing conferences and served as poet-in-residence at Wheaton College and the Chautauqua Institution in Western New York. I've taught in Dingle, Ireland, for the Bay Path University MFA-Abroad Program and am on the faculty of Newport's Salve Regina University, teaching poetry in their new low-residency MFA Program.
  

WHAT BOOKS SHAPED YOUR LIFE?
We've had a great response to our request for the titles of books that have shaped your life, writing or otherwise. We're hoping to hear from even more of you. If you're so inspired, please email your thoughts on up to four books to [email protected]

FROM CHARLES COE:

I stumbled across Pearl Buck's The Good Earth as a grade school library rat. It's the book that sparked my early interest in becoming a writer, one that's become deeper and more meaningful over the years with every re-reading. 

FROM MICHAEL KORAN:

I am still moved by the story of Abraham in Genesis. I wrestle with my own inner voice and God by exploring the voice and God that guided Abraham.
 
James Joyce: Ulysses and Finnegan's Wake guide me.  Ulysses helps me enjoy my stream of consciousness. The Wake inspires plowing with weirds. 
 
Whitman, Dickinson, and Frost continually move me to co-create life and death artfully.
 
Dostoevsky and Marquez reveal the magic infusing my life.


WHAT OUR BOSTON CHAPTER ACCOMPLISHED IN 2018
by Co-Chair Barbara Beckwith

As both the publishing and political worlds faced turmoil in 2018, our Boston Chapter kept on keeping on!

We (unlike our government) know how to communicate. We keep in touch with both close-by and far-flung members who live throughout New England, via our monthly e-newsletter (thanks to Update editor Barbara Mende and copyeditor Susan Schopp). We also know how important it is to get together in person, which we do on the third Monday of every month at our Writers Night Out social/networking gatherings in Cambridge.

We welcomed fresh perspectives from Willie Wideman-Pleasants, who joined our nine-member Steering Committee this year, and from Roger Leisner, a new delegate at the three-day NWU national Delegate Assembly where representatives of all 12 chapters met to set the union's agenda.

We co-sponsored, with indie Porter Square Books, a lively conversation between authors Randy Susan Meyers and Meta Wagner. Our co-sponsored series continues in 2019, featuring the editor of and contributors to The Beginning of America: Personal Narratives About Being Mixed Race in the 21st Century. After our 2017 Black Lives Have Always Mattered reading, Willie Pleasants interviewed the contributors on her Boston Neighborhood Network cable TV show, Willie's Web.

We shared the value of the NWU's nuts-and-bolts free-to-members contract advice and grievance support, with the value of having a dedicated writing space, at The Writers Room of Boston's Open House (thanks to Mary Bonina) featuring our chapter.

We showcased our members' accomplishments via kudos, www.nwuboston.org, Facebook, and our annual book party. And added our voice to the Massachusetts Artists Leadership Coalition, thanks to John Hodge and Charles Coe.

We offered a four-hour Writers' Day Camp workshop for poets and non-fiction writers, co-sponsored and led by Charles Coe, who will offer a second, five-hour workshop in 2019.

We accomplished this all, despite publishing and political turmoil, because we know our words matter: "I'm a firm believer that language and how we use language determines how we act, and how we act then determines our lives and other people's lives" - Ntozake Shange

upcoming
  
Literary Events in the Boston Area

National Writers Union, Boston Chapter, World-Famous Annual Book Party - Sunday, January 27, 2019

The Beginning of America, Co-Sponsored by NWU Boston and Porter Square Books - Monday, February 4, 2019

Writers' Day Camp - Saturday, February 16, 2019 (RESCHEDULED)

kudos

Please send any news of a publication, award, or writing-related appearance that has already happened, to your editor, Barbara Mende. (A piece on your own blog or website doesn't qualify.) Send 50 words or less, plus your name and a link to the publication, event, or website where readers can find more info about you or the happening. Don't send notices of work that will be published in the future. Do send news of future events, but see the "Upcoming Events" block for that.
 
PUBLICIZE YOUR EVENTS AND SERVICES HERE AND ON OUR WEBSITE

Are you speaking or reading from your work in the near future? Do you want to publicize an event that writers would be interested in? Can you provide a service, such as editing or indexing or publicity, for your fellow union members?

Our Boston Chapter website, which you can reach at 
nwu.org/chapters/boston/ or www.nwuboston.org, is here for you to use. Not only that but if you send us an announcement of a specific event by the second Monday of each month, we'll try to include it in these updates.

Please send us news of any upcoming events that you'd like us to publicize, along with links to the venue or PDF posters if you have them. If you'd like to promote your services, plug your latest book, tell us about something writing-related that happened to you, or post anything else you can think of, we'll try to give it a place on the website. And we'd love to hear from you if you'd like to contribute to these updates.

Send all your news to your webmaster.
 

THE NWU-BOS LISTSERV IS HERE FOR YOU
 
Here's another way you can communicate with your fellow members - and not only about writing. All NWU-Boston members are invited to sign up for the NWU-BOS online discussion list. Send a blank email to [email protected], and you'll quickly get a notice that you're in. Then send any message you like (within the usual bounds of netiquette) to [email protected]

Use the list to publicize your achievements or announce an event. Use it to look for editors or illustrators or babysitters or accountants or Patriots tickets. Use it to advertise a room for rent or a concert you're in. You can even attach pictures or links or PDFs. It's one way we writers can help each other.

The more people who join, the more useful it will be. It won't be high volume, and you can unsubscribe easily. Try it!

Questions? Email your webmaster.
 
Co-Chairs: Barbara Beckwith and Charles Coe
Editor and Webmaster: Barbara Mende
    
National Writers Union, Boston Chapter, 8A Appleton Street, Cambridge, MA 02138

Boston Events

From: NWU, Boston Chapter <[email protected]>
Date: Fri, Jan 18, 2019, at 3:01 PM
Subject: January Update 2019
From: [email protected]>


National Writers Union - Boston Chapter
January Update 2019

 Writers Night Out, Monday, January 21 (MLK Day)    
Our Fabulous Annual Book Party, Sunday, January 27
Our Book Party Needs You
The Beginning of America, <strong>Monday, February 4</strong>

WRITERS' DAY CAMP RESCHEDULED to Saturday, February 16
What Our Boston Chapter Accomplished in 2018
What Books Shaped Your Life?
Upcoming Events

KUDOS
Publicize Your Events and Services Here and On Our Website
The NWU-BOS Listserv Is Here For You
 
WRITERS NIGHT OUT
MONDAY, JANUARY 21
6:00-8:00 P.M.
CHRISTOPHER'S, CAMBRIDGE

At last month's Writers Night Out
Hello to Boston Chapter NWU Members and Friends:

There are many events this coming Monday--community breakfasts and lunches, lectures and panels and the like--to celebrate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
We encourage you to attend one or to acknowledge his contribution in your own personal way...read his timeless "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" or watch a clip of his "I Have a Dream" speech with family and friends.

And in the evening, head over to Christopher's to join NWU colleagues and friends for our monthly chat and chew. Now more than ever is a good time to celebrate community and enjoy some intelligent conversation...

Christopher's is at 1920 Massachusetts Avenue, across the street from the Porter Square subway stop. There's metered parking on Mass Ave. and permit-only parking on side streets. (Don't park in the Porter Square Shopping Center lot; they tow.)

Hope to see you there!

Your Boston Chapter Steering Committee

Questions? Click here.


OUR FABULOUS ANNUAL BOOK PARTY
SUNDAY, JANUARY 27, 2019
2:00 TO 5:00 P.M.
THE DANCE COMPLEX
536 MASSACHUSETTS AVENUE, CAMBRIDGE


Keynote Speaker "Miss Manners" Robin Abrahams
Our annual Book Party, where we celebrate members who have had a book published in the previous year, happens Sunday, January 27th, at the Dance Complex
in Cambridge's Central Square. It's easy to reach by MBTA and parking is free on Sundays.

The day will feature short readings from our recently published authors and a keynote talk by Robin Abrahams, The Boston Globe's "Miss Conduct" columnist. Robin, who has a B.A. in theater and a Ph.D. in psychology, has experience as a stand-up comedian as well as a business writer, a teacher of psychology, and the author of Miss Conduct's Mind Over Manners. She has been writing the column since 2005.

Suggested donation is $10. Pizza and non-alcoholic drinks will be provided.


 Readers at Our 2018 Book Party


volunteer OUR BOOK PARTY NEEDS YOU

Would you like to be a SPONSOR? A donation of $25 to $100 will help us defray the costs of the book party and our Boston chapter's work. 

Or would you like to VOLUNTEER to help us set up, tear down, staff the registration desk, sell raffle tickets, or otherwise contribute to making the party run smoothly?

If you want to help us in either or both of these ways, contact Barbara Mende at  [email protected] Thank you in advance!

 
"THE BEGINNING OF AMERICA"
PORTER SQUARE BOOKS
FEBRUARY 4, 2019

Our Boston chapter will be the curator of a reading and discussion of The Beginning of America: Personal Narratives About Being Mixed Race in the 21st Century, edited by Cathy J. Schlund-Vials and Tara Betts, at Porter Square Books on February 4, 2019, from 7 to 9 pm. 

Four contributors to this "race matters" anthology will share their personal accounts of being mixed race people in the United States: Nadine Knight, Abra Mims, Via Perkins, and series editor Sean Frederick Forbes. Nadine Knight Director of Africana Studies at Holy Cross College in Worcester. Abra Mims blogs on mothering and race, and is writing a memoir. Via Perkins is a Boston area journalist. Sean Frederick Forbes is series editor of the 2Leaf Press Explorations in Diversity series and director of the creative writing program at the University of Connecticut. For a review of the anthology, click here. 

The collection of personal narratives by 39 poets, writers, teachers, professors, artists, and activists articulates the complexities of interracial life. This absorbing and thought-provoking collection of stories explores racial identity, alienation, with people often forced to choose between races and cultures in their search for self-identity. While underscoring the complexity of the mixed-race experience, they offer a genuine, poignant, enlightening and empowering message to all readers.  

 
RESCHEDULED!
WRITERS' DAY CAMP
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 16, 2019
10 A.M. to 4 P.M.
BROOKLINE COMMUNITY FOUNDATION
40 WEBSTER PLACE, BROOKLINE

This is Charles Coe, inviting you to join me for our next WRITERS' DAY CAMP, a writing workshop happening Saturday, February 16th from 10 to 3 at the Brookline Community Foundation, 40 Webster Place, Brookline (Brookline Village). PLEASE NOTE THAT THE DATE HAS BEEN CHANGED.

The day will include writing prompts and exercises, discussion of each others' work and coaching on how to read before a group...a day of "serious fun." If you're looking to jump start your writing, please join us. 

"We left charged up and inspired and ready to hit the keyboard."-- NWU Boston co-chair Barbara Beckwith, describing our recent WRITERS' DAY CAMP.

The workshop is in Brookline Village, two short blocks from the Brookline Village T stop, with ample on-street metered parking. 

The event is a fundraiser for the Boston Chapter of the National Writers Union, of which I'm co-chair. The fee is $100 (sliding scale available). VEGETARIAN LUNCH PROVIDED. To register, or for more information: [email protected]

ABOUT ME
I'm the author of two books of poetry and one novel. Memento Mori my next volume of poetry, will be published in April of 2019. I've taught at numerous writing conferences and served as poet-in-residence at Wheaton College and the Chautauqua Institution in Western New York. I've taught in Dingle, Ireland, for the Bay Path University MFA-Abroad Program and am on the faculty of Newport's Salve Regina University, teaching poetry in their new low-residency MFA Program.
  

WHAT BOOKS SHAPED YOUR LIFE?
We've had a great response to our request for the titles of books that have shaped your life, writing or otherwise. We're hoping to hear from even more of you. If you're so inspired, please email your thoughts on up to four books to [email protected]

FROM CHARLES COE:

I stumbled across Pearl Buck's The Good Earth as a grade school library rat. It's the book that sparked my early interest in becoming a writer, one that's become deeper and more meaningful over the years with every re-reading. 

FROM MICHAEL KORAN:

I am still moved by the story of Abraham in Genesis. I wrestle with my own inner voice and God by exploring the voice and God that guided Abraham.
 
James Joyce: Ulysses and Finnegan's Wake guide me.  Ulysses helps me enjoy my stream of consciousness. The Wake inspires plowing with weirds. 
 
Whitman, Dickinson, and Frost continually move me to co-create life and death artfully.
 
Dostoevsky and Marquez reveal the magic infusing my life.


WHAT OUR BOSTON CHAPTER ACCOMPLISHED IN 2018
by Co-Chair Barbara Beckwith

As both the publishing and political worlds faced turmoil in 2018, our Boston Chapter kept on keeping on!

We (unlike our government) know how to communicate. We keep in touch with both close-by and far-flung members who live throughout New England, via our monthly e-newsletter (thanks to Update editor Barbara Mende and copyeditor Susan Schopp). We also know how important it is to get together in person, which we do on the third Monday of every month at our Writers Night Out social/networking gatherings in Cambridge.

We welcomed fresh perspectives from Willie Wideman-Pleasants, who joined our nine-member Steering Committee this year, and from Roger Leisner, a new delegate at the three-day NWU national Delegate Assembly where representatives of all 12 chapters met to set the union's agenda.

We co-sponsored, with indie Porter Square Books, a lively conversation between authors Randy Susan Meyers and Meta Wagner. Our co-sponsored series continues in 2019, featuring the editor of and contributors to The Beginning of America: Personal Narratives About Being Mixed Race in the 21st Century. After our 2017 Black Lives Have Always Mattered reading, Willie Pleasants interviewed the contributors on her Boston Neighborhood Network cable TV show, Willie's Web.

We shared the value of the NWU's nuts-and-bolts free-to-members contract advice and grievance support, with the value of having a dedicated writing space, at The Writers Room of Boston's Open House (thanks to Mary Bonina) featuring our chapter.

We showcased our members' accomplishments via kudos, www.nwuboston.org, Facebook, and our annual book party. And added our voice to the Massachusetts Artists Leadership Coalition, thanks to John Hodge and Charles Coe.

We offered a four-hour Writers' Day Camp workshop for poets and non-fiction writers, co-sponsored and led by Charles Coe, who will offer a second, five-hour workshop in 2019.

We accomplished this all, despite publishing and political turmoil, because we know our words matter: "I'm a firm believer that language and how we use language determines how we act, and how we act then determines our lives and other people's lives" - Ntozake Shange

upcoming
  
Literary Events in the Boston Area

National Writers Union, Boston Chapter, World-Famous Annual Book Party - Sunday, January 27, 2019

The Beginning of America, Co-Sponsored by NWU Boston and Porter Square Books - Monday, February 4, 2019

Writers' Day Camp - Saturday, February 16, 2019 (RESCHEDULED)

kudos

Please send any news of a publication, award, or writing-related appearance that has already happened, to your editor, Barbara Mende. (A piece on your own blog or website doesn't qualify.) Send 50 words or less, plus your name and a link to the publication, event, or website where readers can find more info about you or the happening. Don't send notices of work that will be published in the future. Do send news of future events, but see the "Upcoming Events" block for that.
 
PUBLICIZE YOUR EVENTS AND SERVICES HERE AND ON OUR WEBSITE

Are you speaking or reading from your work in the near future? Do you want to publicize an event that writers would be interested in? Can you provide a service, such as editing or indexing or publicity, for your fellow union members?

Our Boston Chapter website, which you can reach at 
nwu.org/chapters/boston/ or www.nwuboston.org, is here for you to use. Not only that but if you send us an announcement of a specific event by the second Monday of each month, we'll try to include it in these updates.

Please send us news of any upcoming events that you'd like us to publicize, along with links to the venue or PDF posters if you have them. If you'd like to promote your services, plug your latest book, tell us about something writing-related that happened to you, or post anything else you can think of, we'll try to give it a place on the website. And we'd love to hear from you if you'd like to contribute to these updates.

Send all your news to your webmaster.
 

THE NWU-BOS LISTSERV IS HERE FOR YOU
 
Here's another way you can communicate with your fellow members - and not only about writing. All NWU-Boston members are invited to sign up for the NWU-BOS online discussion list. Send a blank email to [email protected], and you'll quickly get a notice that you're in. Then send any message you like (within the usual bounds of netiquette) to [email protected]

Use the list to publicize your achievements or announce an event. Use it to look for editors or illustrators or babysitters or accountants or Patriots tickets. Use it to advertise a room for rent or a concert you're in. You can even attach pictures or links or PDFs. It's one way we writers can help each other.

The more people who join, the more useful it will be. It won't be high volume, and you can unsubscribe easily. Try it!

Questions? Email your webmaster.
 
Co-Chairs: Barbara Beckwith and Charles Coe
Editor and Webmaster: Barbara Mende
    
National Writers Union, Boston Chapter, 8A Appleton Street, Cambridge, MA 02138

Blow Dust off Your Manuscript and Get Published

LET OTHERS KNOW ABOUT THIS WORKSHOP..

 

Short Stories and Poems Workshop

In the beginning, you have an idea—that needs to be expressed.  It nags at you.  You're obsessed with it.  It just has to be written down. Then what?

Take the Challenge …… The Friends of the Uphams Corner Library is challenging YOU to come to join our four-week writing group.  We will help you write that great short story or poem.  All participant will be eligible to have their work included in The Friends of the Uphams Corner Library Anthology.   The book will be published in 2019.

You must register.  The deadline is March 2, 2019.  Space is limited!

 $30 donation holds your space. All proceed will go toward publishing the book. 

You can sign up for any one of 2 locations:

Friday, March 8, 15, 22, 29.  At the Boston Home, 2049 Washington Street Dorchester.  (handicap accessibility)

Saturday 9,16,23,30.   At the Uphams Corner Library, 500 Columbia Road, Dorchester, MA.  02125

Times at both location: 10 am to Noon

Email at [email protected],  [email protected]  or

 call 617-265-0139 for more information.

Mail a check or money order payable to The Friends of the Uphams Corner Library.  500 Columbia Road, Dorchester, MA 02125  

***Please include a note with your name, address, phone number, email, and your preferred location.Sponsored by Friends of Uphams Corner Library and Authors Without Borders 

Didn't you Know?

man sitting near brown table with a clear disposable cup holding a brown drink

Photo by Diego Indriago on Pexels.com

 

Didn’t you know the signs or did you ignore them? Did you put love over reality facing you?

You put your dreams of a happy marriage with children, a home, and having a wonderful husband in front of deciding with your heart and not your mind that it felt wrong.

Didn’t you know that it was not normal with his drinking? What did you have in common besides being happy when you were with him? Didn’t you notice you let go of your friends and became isolated?

Walking down the aisle to marry was not as thrilling and exciting as you expected. The smile on his face and glow in his eyes were not there. But, you were married.

The years made you an enabler making your two daughters live in confusion, fear, and abuse. Allowing his actions brought him deeper into his addiction. Fourteen years too late, leaving scares on everyone, you divorced. You kept the blinders on for too long.

After losing your husband and one daughter from their alcohol and drug addiction, you became an author and motivational speaker about substance abuse. It was not something in your plans being younger. 

You entered a dark world. The lights come on when you reach out to other addicts. Maybe, just maybe, my words will help people fighting the same disease giving them hope for recovery.

Didn’t you know when it’s too late for your loved ones? Now, I have the knowledge and education on this demon that I wished I had when I was younger. 

““““

Will my talks save others? Will it open eyes for families to act on the disease instead of ignoring the signs? Do we wait too long that our lives and marriages can’t be put together again? Do we hold on so many years that our children continue down the same path?

How and when do we stop this merry-go-round? Education right from grammar school to the highest level of classrooms. Children are never too young or ignorant on this topic. They probably know more than us. 

Don’t be blind or deaf to the older generation or people, who have lived through the pain of watching a loved one die from alcohol and drugs, trying to help you. Don’t think it won’t happen to you. Stop the generation of families, year after year, watching a family member out of contol and doing nothing about this problem. 

Marijuana is another path with addiction. It’s just beginning.

Alberta Sequeira

Author and Speaker
[email protected]

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