Walking Out of the Dark now has 23 reviews with an average of 4.5 out of 5. Here’s one:
There are equal parts wisdom, storytelling, humor and tragedy in these pages, and even non-disabled readers will be uplifted by the story. Mike’s attitude towards his challenge is something that everyone should adopt. Whether or not you or someone you know suffers with a disability, Walking Out of the Dark will lift your spirits, make you laugh, and leave you with a new perspective on the indomitable human spirit by the final page.” Self-Publishing Review,
I’ve also updated the video trailer for the book, which you can access by clicking the Video tab above. I’m pretty happy with how the video turned out, hope you are too.
Holiday give-away: During the holiday weekend, I’m giving away free copies of the Kindle version of my book, click here to get one.
I just received the second 5-star review of my book. To celebrate, I’m giving away Kindle copies today and tomorrow, click here to get one. Authors like me rarely make money on a book, but it’s uniquely satisfying to see people enjoy it.
A summary of the book is below. If you know people who might enjoy it, please send this offer to them.
Walking Out of the Dark
Bad luck took his sight. With hope and humor, my brother didn’t let it take more.
Even after bad luck had taken Mike’s sight, he still enjoyed an adventure. In one of them, he helped with a ski race with blind skiers. These days, he likes to say, “You might think skiing without sight is tough, but we had the hard part, since we told them where to turn.” Then, he laughs and adds. “That meant standing on a ski slope with blind racers headed right for us.” His adventures and jokes help many people work through bad luck, not just blind folks.
This book is based on real events in Minnesota and begins when Mike attends a school for blind adults. A simple lesson is cooking without sight. A challenging lesson is about finding work. Mike learns that adults with low vision have a low chance of returning to work, which becomes his biggest hope. He wants to find a job again, so he can own a house again. He meets many good people at the school, but some cry more than they used to. Others laugh more, and a few compete in downhill ski racing. In this book, all of them help Mike work through bad luck and blindness.
I’m excited and humbled that a reader on Amazon.com has given my book a 5-star review. But beyond that, his comments touch on my hopes for the story.
I enjoyed the humorous dialogue in this lovely story about brotherhood and hope, bravery and ordinary people getting through those bad things in life, and from an outsider their actions can appear so extraordinary. The book is an easy read. It’s story is meaningful. There is an underlying truth to all of it. What better thing is there to read on a cold February day?
“[This brave man’s] adventures and jokes help many people work through bad luck, not just blind folks,” it says. I can easily see that the storyteller is not only trying to help families who are dealing with blindness. He is offering an outlook on life that turns tragedy on its head and might just as well be applied to the everyday hardships we often experience in life.
But still, imagine skiing blind! Cooking while blind! Meeting a girl when you are blind. What a story this is!
The first review of my book has arrived, and I’m happy with it. The reviewer is from Indie Books Gone Wild. They are giving away a free copy of the book. If you’d like to register for the give-away, click here.
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Facing life with declining sight, Mike has to re-evaluate his goals. He begins attending a school for blind adults. There he meets people like him and learns some sobering lessons about his future. But he also finds love, adventure, and hope.
Full of humor and emotion, this story gives us a hero to root for. Mike understands his new limitations, but he strives to find a way around them. Granted, not without a few bumps in the road. But he handles them with grace and flashes of humor. You can’t help but like the guy.
There are some great peripheral characters. Ones that capture your heart and tickle your funny bone. It’s a nice reminder of the roller coaster of emotions that is life.
If you are looking for a book with emotional payouts and endearing wit, check this one out.
Note: I served as a proofreader for this book through Indie Books Gone Wild. A positive review was not requested or guaranteed; the opinions expressed are my own.
A few weeks ago, I had my first book release party. It was with my family, which was appropriate because the book is about my brother. Since I live in England, I don’t get to see family often enough, since they live in Minnesota. In this case, I combined a few things with the party. One of them was my birthday, even though it’s not until November. Another was my favorite hobby, which is cycling. Considering all this, I called the book release party my Books & Bikes Birthday. Pictures describe the event better than I can write about it, so a few are below.
My family surprised me with a wonderful cake that showed my “Books & Bikes Birthday.” Even better, it was a Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake.
We usually take a family picture when we get together, and as you can see, we laugh a lot.
I asked that nobody bring gifts to my Books & Bikes Birthday. Instead, I asked them to bring a bike. Here we are leaving my sister Jackie’s place.
As the previous picture shows, the guy in front was wearing an orange shirt. That’s my brother, Mike. Here he is again. The fact that he can’t see much doesn’t stop him from enjoying a bike ride. The spirit behind that choice is one of the reasons I wrote the book about him.
I thoroughly enjoy biking. It’s even better with friends and family, especially on a trail as good as the Lake Wobebone Bike Trail.
Mike and I enjoying the simple pleasure of a bike ride. I still smile at the thought of a blind guy leading the way, especially since it seems so ordinary for Mike.
We took a nice break on a bridge that overlooked a stream.
Before I signed books, we had more laughs at Jackie’s place.
Mike and I posed for the camera with the book.
This is yet another picture showing more laughs, more family, and the last image of the Dairy Queen cake before we enjoyed it.
The picture on the book cover is from the Lowertown area of St. Paul. I’m standing very close to where the picture was taken.
Thanks to everyone for a great Books & Bikes Birthday!
Self-publishing a book has been very challenging and fulfilling, but writing it is only the first step. The next step is telling people about it. This weekend, I’ll be holding my first book event. It’s part of, what I’m calling, my Books & Bikes Birthday. Since the book is about my brother, it’s appropriate that my first book launch is with my family.
I turn 50 this November, and in the tradition of my wonderful mother, I’m celebrating at a time when everyone can get together, instead of the actual day. My Mom and Dad spent their winters in Texas, so we usually celebrated Christmas before they left, in autumn. Being a creative woman who loved to travel, Mom arranged “Christmas” celebrations in downtown New York, an island lodge on the northern tip of Minnesota, Las Vegas, and other places. Mom and Dad are gone now, but it’ll be fun to continue some of their lifestyle by getting together when we can for my Books and Bikes Birthday.
As you’d probably guess from the name of my birthday party, I love cycling. If you’d like to see some stories and pictures about my cycling adventures, and mis-adventures, you can read my cycling blog. It’s at ” http://touringonthatbike.com “. I have told my family not to bring gifts to the birthday party. I only want them to bring a bike, so we can share a ride on the Lake Wobegone Trail. That trail is still one of my favorites, after cycling for 100s of miles in the US, UK, and EU.
I’m also making other efforts to tell people about the book. I’ve been improving the website for the book, adding it to Amazon, and creating a page for it at GoodReads. Since the book includes some fun moments with sports for the blind, I’ve also been contacting organizations that offer a range of sporting events for disabled folks. If you’d like to learn more about their great work, click here. Another effort I’ll be using to promote the book is to write an update here about once a week. One of my upcoming posts will be about beep baseball and downhill ski races for the blind.
I’m very excited to say the book about my brother is finished. If you’d like to learn about the book, go to ” http://walkingoutofthedark.com “. I also made a short video showing an exciting scene from the book.
Thank you for stopping by the news section of this website.
When the book is finished in April or May, I’ll use this section to describe things like:
- When more audio clips or videos are added to this site
- When and where I’ll be reading from the book
- Other events I’ll be presenting at or attending
- Thoughts about how people have or are recovering from bad luck
For now, I hope you will enjoy the content on this website, such as audio clips from the book. Thanks again for stopping by.