Monday, 16 July 2012

PTSD / "Diary of a Vet's Wife" / Sneak Peek at the Cover

July 4th, 2012 was the date I set to release Diary of a Vet's Wife, Loving and Living with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder - the driving force behind my madness. Regretfully, I didn't make it. But I tried! The good news? I'm close, very close!

Liberty is the breath of life to nations.  ~George Bernard Shaw

As I sat watching the Fourth of July fireworks dance over New York city on TV, mesmerized by the blazing light show, my thoughts drifted to those who fought for the freedom we enjoy and often take for granted. Far too many young men and women gave the ultimate sacrifice. Yet what about those warriors who returned home dragging the war behind them?

Our country has such abundance, compared to what I see throughout the world and the havoc and terror so many have to deal with. Why must war rage on? The thirst for power ... freedom ... human dignity. The constant battle of good and evil. These wars we see from the outside, continue to FESTER on the inside long after they are over. And it's happening all over the world!

I know because I've lived with that aftermath of war. I know first hand the pain and heartbreak, and the never-ending feeling of helplessness.

Diary of a Vet's Wife, Loving and Living with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder may be my story, but there are thousands living as I once did, which compelled me to share my journey from its beginning. I wanted others to know they're not alone, and maybe they can learn from the lessons I was taught ... before it's too late.

A picture is worth a thousand words.  ~~ Napoleon Bonapart

Pictures can speak louder than the people in them. The setting - the light - the mood - the eyes.  Amazing photographs stream across the internet faster than a fire storm, yet they are soon forgotten. 

Then there are photographs hidden away in an old hat box in the back of a closet. Tucked out of sight for decades. Pictures that leave an INDELIBLE impression that often linger for a lifetime. 

During the last year I struggled with ideas for my book cover. Suggestions and renderings were offered but nothing was quite right.  A few months ago, my daughter and son-in-law in Australia sent an email asking to join the MacMillan team, and they volunteered to do the cover. Each creatively endowed in many areas, I was delighted to welcome them onboard.

Soon afterwards an email arrived requesting a photograph of my husband in uniform. Hmmm ... I didn't have such a photo. I didn't meet Lorne, my husband, until two years after he returned home from Vietnam.

Immediately, I called his mom in Houston and explained my dilemma. She wasn't sure if she had one either but said she would check.  A week or so later, I received a letter and six photos.  She apologized because she only had two of Lorne in uniform.

I had never seen either photo. One was an official military photo, the other just a snapshot. They held me captive as memories knawed at my heart. The following day I made copies for my mother-in-law and myself, then sent the originals to Australia.

Tiffany and Scott did their magic while I scrambled with what I had to do. There was proof-reading and formatting once the manuscript was sized to fit (5.5 x 8.5). Everything must be perfect. Self-publishing means you alone are responsible for any errors. Period! I still had to polish off a blurb for the back cover, which would also appear in Ingram's catalog with a 75 word minimum. I touched base with my patient editor a few more times. And there was the author photo to decide on.

When the back cover is complete, it will be downloaded for the printer. I then wait for the galley, the first book, which must be proof-read again - all 320 pages. Once I sign off on it - it's ready to roll! I promise to keep you posted! 


The sneak peek! Last Friday, I finally viewed the finished front cover of my book and I couldn't be more pleased.  It's perfect!  My story now has a face unlike any other.