I HAVE MOVED. PLEASE JOIN ME AT MY NEW LOCATION – AUTHORCHUCKMICELI.COM

Hello Friends,

This will be the last blog post on my “Something Significant” site.

In case you have been wondering why I haven’t posted on my Something Significant blog for some time, I apologize for not writing sooner. Back in August I was feeling overwhelmed by the need to keep up with the various social media I was on. I found that I was spending so much time publicizing about my writing that I had very little time to actually do writing, which is why I started down this road in the first place. I also realized that most of my blog posts were focusing on my writing activities rather than on personal opinions or helpful information.

With the help of my son, Jason, I consolidated all of my author information on a single site: my author’s website at AuthorChuckMiceli.com. In addition, I moved my monthly newsletter to the Mailchimp.com platform, which allows me, even with my limited technical expertise, to include much more in the way of pictures and graphics and to easily syndicate the post to my other social media sites.

If you have valued receiving my monthly “Up and Coming” posts, would like to continue them and haven’t been lately, please visit my website at AuthorChuckMiceli.com and go to my Events page. There you will find all of my posts since August and a sign-up form to receive the monthly updates automatically to your e-mail. You should be able to go directly to that page on my site by clicking on the the link below:

AuthorChuckMiceli.com/Events

If the link doesn’t work for you, you can simply copy the address and past it into your browser to get there. The sign-up form is at the top of the page.

Thank you for being part of my author/blog community and at this wonderful time of the year let me take this opportunity to wish you and yours all the joys of the holiday season and a happy and healthy New Year,

Warmest Regards,

Chuck Miceli

 

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Up and Coming – January 2016

This update will be brief. It comes late into the month for me but 2016 has had an unusual and somewhat challenging beginning. After my father-in-law suffered a heart attack and fall several weeks ago, he passed away on New Years Eve. In the interim, an upper respiratory illness I’ve been fighting for some time worsened, leaving me fatigued. We held a memorial service for Tony on Tuesday and on Thursday morning, I received a call that my 94-year-old mother-in-law fell and was taken to New Britain General, where I spent most of the day with her. Thankfully, nothing was broken and she is back now in her independent living facility again, although struggling physically and emotionally with her loss. In the process of assisting her, however, my infection worsened and by Friday I was spiking a 103.5 fever with cough, chills and uncontrollable shivering. I am now on antibiotics, steroids and various other medications and am on the mend but very fatigued.

None of the above is to lament over how 2016 has started. All of what has happened is simply part of living and my life is still infinitely more blessed than I can merit. It is simply an explanation that life has priorities and right now the care of my health and my loved ones must come before other things like writing and marketing my books. If you recently finished reading my current book, “Amanda’s Room,” I hope that you found it enjoyable and worth your time.
I believe challenges like those I have experienced lately are helpful in clarifying what is truly important in life and I welcome the reflection that such periods bring. Nevertheless, I hope that your year has begun in a less demanding manner.
I’ll provide a regular update in February, hopefully with news that will be useful and interesting. Till then.
Warmest Regards,
Chuck

 

When Writers and Readers Meet

I’ve just finished a couple weeks of book signings at Springfield’s Big-E. I did the same thing last year and it remains one of the highlights of my year. I get the opportunity to talk to hundreds of people and to dedicate books to eager readers.

I have met authors who say that they write their books for themselves and care little what others think of them. If they are satisfied with the end result, that is sufficient. I am not that kind of a writer. I don’t write my books for myself. I write them for the readers. When someone has finished my novel, I want them to sit back, take in a deep breath, and smile because they have had a satisfying experience reading my story and getting to know my characters. Getting the opportunity to meet the readers directly, help them to connect me personally to the book, and point out ways that will make their reading experience more fulfilling is a pure joy for me. When a reader comes up and says they bought a book the previous year, read it and loved it, I am ecstatic.

In addition to the book signings, I love to do book readings. There I have the opportunity to share my experiences writing the book, provide some background on how the idea developed and give some insights on the joys and challenges of the writing life. I also read passages in a way that underscores the emotion that goes along with the scene. I think that aspect is vitally important since a book is much more then words on a page. Written well, a book captures and shares the emotions, values, aspirations, trials and triumphs of the characters. Even more than reading is the pleasure of hearing the reader reactions and answering their questions.

Finally, and for me perhaps the most satisfying, is participating or leading discussions of my book for book clubs. Here, the readers have already finished the book. They have formed opinions about the characters and the story and are eager to share their own insights with the other in the group and with me. Here, they often re-write the book in their own minds and sometimes infuse meaning into scenes the even the writer didn’t anticipate. What a delight to realize that your book has positively impacted another in a way you could never have envisioned. It’s like hearing your own story for the very first time.

I am looking forward to producing the audio book version of my current novel, “Amanda’s Room,” so that I can immerse the reader more fully into the experience of the book, hopefully combining words with dramatic reading, music and even sound effects. At the same time, I hope this vehicle will help those who do not read but would rather listen, to experience my book for the first time. Then, I hope to find opportunities to interact directly with those readers as well.

To all those readers who have taken the time to read my books (the next is in the works), to comment on them to me directly, to rate and review them on my book sites (Amazon, etc.), to attend my signings, readings and/or book club discussions, I thank you for the privilege of sharing a little of yourself with me and for the opportunity to share a little of myself with you.

You can find a listing of my upcoming events on my website, AuthorChuckMiceli.com

What’s In A Name?

The title for my blog, “Something Significant Yet To Do,” pretty much sums up where I am now, and have been for most of my life. I have this yearning, striving, unrelenting drive, to create something of value that will outlive me. Why? I’d like to think it’s because I’ve benefitted from the generosity and creativity of those who have gone before me and want to do the same for others. That would be wonderful, but If I’m fully honest with myself, I’m certain that at least part of it, perhaps the greater part, is a desire to be liked and admired for what I have to share with others. I’ve done many things in life toward that end: directing plays, consulting, public speaking, and creating memorable events. More recently, my efforts have returned to writing. My co-authored text, “Fire Behind Bars,” about deadly fires in prisons and jails, was the first book of its kind in the early 80s and I spent a couple of years flying around the country giving workshops and seminars. I liked that a lot. But while that door was open to me for a long time, I didn’t walk through it. I took a different direction for my life instead. Fortunately, in my experience, while a specific opportunity may knock but once, life is full of them, and I believe if you miss one, it’s important to keep vigilant for others. They are all around us, if only we are open to them and willing to do the work necessary to see them through. In my own case, more than 40 years later, I am back to writing again, but more on that later. I’d also like to say a bit about my sub-title, “On striving to live life large.” Henry David Thoreau cautioned that most people lead lives of “quiet desperation” and go to the grave with their song still in them. He also admonished that not only must we be good, but we must also be good for something. That captures my feelings about my own quest and the one that I hope we hold in common. And perhaps that’s a good place to stop this first entry and get back to the other significant things I have yet to do. That is, other than to say that I welcome your thoughts on my thoughts. I believe and hope in the marvelous synergy that exists when active, searching minds come together and share. So what is your “Something significant yet to do?” I look forward to hearing from you.

Chuck Miceli